Peer Review by Tushar Mandhan (India)

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Chapter - 1 (Might be a little sensitive... This is a warning!)

By: suaurum


Hello...Fellow members of WtW.
I have been off grid for some days. OK. Many days.
I would like to inform everyone that I have deleted the first two chapters of my novel.
I would be starting again. 
The content is same. However, It is more improved and more expressive.
Hope you all enjoy reading it.
Chapter - 1

Aurum always felt out of place. Even while trekking with her classmates in a breathtaking forest, whose name she couldn't remember, her spirit was wandering away.

As she tried to catch up with the crowd that had already left her behind, she watched in awe as an alluring silver and green butterfly came out of nowhere. It slowly circled around her before landing on her thin and lean shoulder. Intrigued by its beauty, she lifted her hand slowly to caress the butterfly’s fragile wings. But the butterfly fluttered away as soon as Aurum touched it. Aurum looked up to catch a last glimpse of the mesmerizing butterfly, only to find herself in a different part of the forest.

It was a clearing and a few feet away from her was a pond. 

With cautious steps, Aurum approached the pond. It was filled with crystal clear water and had the ability to attract any wandering traveler to it. Aurum, unable to look away, took a look at her reflection.

She was a tall, lean and thin figure of 16 years. Her shoulder length, dark brown hair was pulled back in an untidy pony. Her face was anything but clean. A layer of dirt had settled on her forehead. She wasn't pretty but she had sharp features with gold flecked-brown eyes. Her wheat skin was covered by a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt. Her feet were tucked in a sturdy pair of combat boots and on her shoulders rested a trekking bag.

The water in the pond shifted and she saw strange shadows lurking beneath the surface. She closed her eyes. Deciding that it was a trick of her mind, she turned around and walked away. Ahead of her, the dark forest stood still. She stopped on the edge. She had no idea where she was. In that moment, the temperature suddenly dropped and the bright sunlight was almost immediately covered with grey clouds. She could feel somebody behind her. Her first thought was to turn behind and get help. But her instincts told her to not move. It could be dangerous. And yet, her curiosity got the better of her and she turned.

“Who are you?”

Aurum’s clear and half-shrill, half-deep voice rang out.

In front of her stood a man dressed in black robes. His face was covered with a hood. On his either side stood two men wearing combat suits in the same color. They each carried a long and pointy spear. The only difference was that their eyes were completely black. Aurum shuddered. Those abnormal black eyes seemed to suck the warmth out of her. She looked away and realized the gravity of the situation. The sun had started to set. She need help. Fast. She put on her best “I am tough” face and walked up to the man whose face was covered with a hood.

“Look…I could really use your help. Actually, I got lost and—” A hand grabbed her neck roughly. Aurum felt the coldness of the fingers that choked her. She tried to remove his grip but it was too strong.

“You are Aurum Arondale, aren’t you?” the man asked. His voice was raspy and hoarse. Aurum nodded faintly. She could feel the dizziness in her head. Her head felt as if it was going to explode any minute. Aurum’s eyes felt heavy as she began counting her audible heartbeats. And then suddenly, the pain subdued. And the beats of her heart died.

Do you know that feeling that you feel just before dying? It is a hollow feeling that makes you realize that your time is up. You feel light weight and empty from inside. Your whole life appears in a slideshow before your eyes. All the decisions you regret, all those you celebrate, all the mistakes you made, your loved ones, your achievements and finally you yourself. The value of your life and your worth in this world finally becomes clear to you. All at once, you unlock the mysteries of this infinite universe.

At least, that is what Aurum believed. Maybe she was wrong. But right now, that was all she felt.

Her mind slowly became alert to her death. Aurum felt herself drowning agonizingly slowly in water. The pond water, she realised. A faint smile formed on her face as the water began to fill her lungs. In any case, her death wasn’t as tragic as that of her parents. Car crash.

No one would know that she was dead. That thought comforted her. After 16 years she finally felt at peace as she was dying. She opened her eyes one last time. Her mind again messed with her as she imagined a black-haired water god coming to her rescue. She internally laughed at herself and closed her eyes, one last time.

It wasn’t as bad as people usually described. Death felt calm and unfamiliar at the same time. But what really matters is acceptance. When accepted, Death is as easy as one can imagine, but when you are not ready to die, it is as painful as hell.

For Aurum, Death seemed okay.


Hi guys. I hope you enjoyed reading this piece as much as i enjoyed writing it. Put yourself in Aurum's shoes and I promise you will live through the story. I request you all to feel the emotions felt by her. Thank you.
Don't forget to give feedback and write reviews. 

Message to Readers

I hope you all enjoy reading this piece as much as i enjoyed writing it. Thank you.
This piece does not promote suicide or self-harm. They are just random thoughts fathomed in my head. Thank you.

Peer Review

The detailed description. This piece is so intensely described, you can actually see the pictured sliding in front of your eyes.

I loved the way you have created a mystery around the world of Aurum as I said above the details are phenomenon. The only thing I would like to suggest you to add some line in the first para. It is beautiful but instead of getting into Aurum's character, you can write about something else related to it. I hope you got what I meant.

Reviewer Comments

All the best and keep writing this book. You're on right track.