Reviews for Fake
lookingwest chapter 1 . 9/14/2011
You did a reallly great job of making this unique! I really enjoyed the take on the prompt because a lot of people went the murder horror route but I think the added element of the sci-fi mixed with almost the uncanny moments of Supernatural was a great idea! I'm getting the sense that these two are AI or at least were human built, clones even? There was also a vampiric quality to them, especially Sarah, that I was totally digging, just because you were able to put such a twist on it. Nice moments with the description of the bloodied hands, too, I think you kept that nicely consistent throughout the narrative. Overall a very unique take, best of luck in the last few hours of the WCC!
Dragon made me do it chapter 1 . 9/7/2011
You have conveyed quite the depth of emotion for apparently robotic characters. Some people struggle to get this much emotion into human characters, so well done on that :-) I really like this idea of sharing emotional programming in a single second.

I really loved the imagery in your story, your ability to evoke creepiness and mystery.

A few sentences are a bit wordy though, and minor tweaking could really sharpen their impact without losing much. For example:

'She entered the door slowly, and the door clicking shut behind her was like a gun shot in the silent room.' -

Maybe something like:

'She entered slowly. The door clicked shut behind her; its noise echoing like a gunshot in the deathly silent room.'

And:

'Her eyes strayed to the scattered body parts, roaming over an arm without its hand, half a head with a grimace frozen on the half a face, the foot that sat upright, a leg with too many bends and an impossibly white bone poking through the skin like a newly formed mountain.'

could be something like:

'Her eyes strayed to the scattered body parts: an arm without its hand; a grimace frozen on half a face; a foot protruding upright from a misshapen leg, with impossibly white bone poking through like a newly-formed mountain.'

I love this sentence otherwise, it's really graphic imagery!

'He was clutching to her lithe form with angry fire drawing her attention again.

Slowly she knelt before him again, and held his head.' -

repetition of 'again' , maybe something like:

'Again he clutched her lithe form with an angry fire, as she once more knelt before him and held his head.'

Spelling/grammar/punctuation:

'The blood on his hands was enough of reminder of what he had done.' - insert 'a' before 'reminder'

'He stared into her eyes, and brushed his hands across her cheeks to twine in her blond hair smearing her with the blood that was coating his hands.' - put a comma after 'hair'.

'they flowed into another' - change to 'they flowed into one another'

'the number blazon on his neck' - change 'blazon' to 'blazoned'

And just one technical point: if they are regular humans that they are talking about, the same identical genetic code should never resurface, the only way you get genetically identical humans is with identical twins or clones.

Anyway, I really enjoyed this world that you brought us into, the sympathy that you enter into any characters, and the creativity of the story.

Well done and best of luck in the contest!
Inkspilled chapter 1 . 9/7/2011
I really like this, the introduction was well done, though it was classic in style, it worked very well. The plot itself was really interesting and it was nicely written and easy to follow. Great work!
dx713 chapter 1 . 9/7/2011
I read about your WCC submission on The Globe and decided to have a look at it.

To summarize, I find it well written, but I'm afraid it's not my cup of tea.

The problems are more on my side I think, so I'm not sure there's anything you can do about them. The first is that I like when, even when he's not a perfect hero, I can like the main characters. Here, I can sympathize, understand what drives them, but there's still kind of evil in my book, so it's a barrier (yes, I'm old school like that, fits with my age). The second is that, especially when reading sci-fi, I like to understand the underlying mechanisms. Here, the lack of feeling from "he", and why he's in need of someone with his creator's genetic code to solve it is not clear for me. There's also the fact that "she" speaks like they don't need just a particular gene being expressed but full replication, aka a clone - if that's the case, she's very optimistic because it's impossible via natural reproduction to have a clone of a forefather... In short, I need more background to understand the characters predicament.

On the other hand, there are a lot of things I like in your story. First, you manage to conjure strong emotions with a very short story, and expose the background naturally as part of "her" thoughts. Then, I made it to the end without realizing the characters had no names, that was a fine trick.

In the end, the story, even while not being fully to my tastes, managed to make me curious about the characters and their world, managed to make me want to read more, so I think that's quite a success.
Ezekiel Finch chapter 1 . 9/6/2011
Hello there!

I love the duality that you established in the first half of this story. Blue eyes against grey ones, calmness versus emotional release, angels against demons; it all works marvelously. Then you tell us how Sarah is made for desire and the male is designed to carry emotions. There's just so much back and forth between these characters, and it really makes this piece that much deeper.

I also like how you portray Sarah and the male. Sarah, initially a being of desire, finds this male and attempts to escape the life she has been put into. But we always know that she is, and continues to be, a being of desire. She may have more dimensions but they only add onto her core existence. There's something about how she uses sex to persuade the male into continuing these kidnappings and murders gives me the impression that she is not as heroic as we want her to be. It's like she's manipulating the male into continuing these acts to give him desire, which is indeed a vice. Perhaps the roles are reversed here; perhaps she is the demon and the male is the fallen angel.

But back onto the main reason why this just stands out: the concept and execution. Robots emulating humans and trying to become humans have been done to Hell and back, but what really defines your piece is how it's pulled off. The combination of the dual nature of these two plus the horrific process of taking a human is perfectly paired. And the way you portray Sarah and define her primarily as a being of want makes me imagine that she is an anti-hero and she is manipulating the male. It's scary, profound, and well done.

I wish you luck in the WCC!

Ezekiel Finch
RavenclawMoose chapter 1 . 9/6/2011
This was quite an interesting piece. I liked how the female was described as an angel at one point and the male as a demon and yet, in a sense, their roles are almost the opposite. Sarah seems to be the one pushing him to kill, she tells him she'll bring him more humans, as though she's tempting him and encouraging him to kill. She even seems excited at the prospect of more carnage. The male, on the other hand, seems almost innocent and lost. His rage was described as childlike, and he weeps into her stomach like a child crying against his mother. She even calls him baby. It shows this wonderful contrast between outward appearance and the truth of a situation or a person.

The only issue I had was that it was a bit unclear how he transferred emotion to her, and how she taught him about sex. The way you describe the characters, it doesn't sound as though the male can feel emotion, so how does he give Sarah the knowledge of emotion? Also, I'm assuming she was created purely to want lots of sex, so that men could buy her and use her for sex, though I wasn't completely sure. It would be better if you stated some of these things more explicitly.

Good luck in the WCC!
Dr. Self Destruct chapter 1 . 9/6/2011
Hey there, AJ!

Wow, I gotta say, the premise of this story is pretty f-ing awesome. Machines wanting to be human? Wanting to feel human emotions? Very cool, and it leaves a very deep feeling, giving the reader A LOT to contemplate in such a short amount of prose. I've always been a fan of contemplating what it means to be human - I do this through the use of immortals, but in this story you do it through the use of machines. Being a pretty big tech-head, I have to say I loved the idea behind this.

Right away we're thrust into this emotion-driven story. The image of a man sitting with bloodied hands is indeed a great way to get the reader's attention and to hook them almost immediately. Also, I really enjoyed that simile of the door closing sounding like a gunshot - it adds a nice kick of tension and addresses the reader's senses, helping with the immersion of the story itself. Within the first few paragraphs, I found myself sympathizing with this man/machine. Such a sad picture... this powerful creature, given so much strength, but all he really wants is to feel emotions. To be human.

[and knelt before him an angel in white before a demon of darkness.]

Loooooved this. I think this was my favorite line in the entire story.

It's such a touching story to see this woman accept him regardless of the dead bodies lying around them. I really adore that about Sarah - she's ready to accept him, to love him, no matter his violent nature. I always get so sick of watching romance movies where the woman gets all pissed off about the man being mean or hurting people... it's about time for a female protagonist who isn't squeamish around the carnage her mate can wrought. It's a nice break from the norm... and I absolutely love how she licks his tears off his cheeks. It's almost like she both hates and savors his despair at the same time. xD

Their dialogue is wonderful as well, because you create a lot of questions from the first part of the conversation between them. And then, as things progress and become more emotionally driven, we're shown Sarah gasping while he touches her, and the man whispering her name... and that right there made my heart start to race. Very passionate, and very touching.

The paragraph describing them finding each other was an awesome addition, too. How he gave her knowledge to free her, and she gave him sex. A pretty fair trade, if you ask me. Now I'm intrigued to know how that first time went and how quickly he caught on. :3

[With their minds melded they were a single entity in two bodies. Neither was complete without the other,]

So, so beautiful.

The only suggestion I can really make is maybe elaborate a bit more on the ending. The subtle hints and clues of them making love, or talking about how they melt together, is very lovely, but I wasn't entirely sure if this was being spoken of metaphorically or literally. I don't want to sound like a perv, and this might be completely personal preference, but I'd've loved to have seen a bit more physical contact between them being described. Doesn't have to be graphic, of course. ;3

Anyway, I really, really liked this (as if you couldn't tell xD). Good luck in the WCC!

I saw a few missing commas while I was reading through the first time, so I tried to catch them all during my second read through:

[Her eyes strayed to the scattered body parts[] roaming over an arm without its hand,]

Edit: Comma after 'parts'.

[She looked back to him once more[] meeting his sliver-gray stare.]

Edit: Comma after 'more'.

[his black hair behind an ear[] ignoring the blood that coated it.]

Edit: Comma after 'ear'.

[She surged forward[] closing the distance between them.]

Edit: Comma after 'forward'.

[With their minds melded[] they were a single entity in two bodies. Neither was complete without the other,]

Edit: Comma after 'melded'.