Welcome to the Slant, where you'll find reviews and original writings by the members of Martin Library's Teen Advisory Board.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Poem: Why So Down?

by Anthony W.

Why so down?

day and night all around.

Lights are out without a sound

what troubles have you now.

Moonlight gently pouring

down upon,

a gentle lake.

Where have they gone,

these forms of conflict?

let it wash away

down the stream of,

another day.

The quiet isn't so bad.

let it rest

be still

and move on.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Poem: A Duel of Hearts

by Anthony W.

Lay siege, burn it to the hell
The day is young in this cold war
Our locking eyes burn the ground.
Is my way not enough?

Every move you make a weapon
Every gesture a will
The softness of your skin is an instant kill

This is a battle of attrition
I steadily losing ground
Day by day coldness sweeps
Hands yet to touch your rosy cheeks

Though I shall falter
I’ll try again
Crossing the field within

As the dawn grows near
And so I march
With an ace so noble and true
A soul filled confession from me to you

They say god smiles on men
All of which is false
He cheers on the heart of the lost

Ruveneska: The Scavenge, Chapter 1: Memorial Grounds

by Darro C.

Jump to:
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5

Cotoz laced his black leather boot tightly. He armed himself with his usual steel long sword. He wrapped his sheathed knife on the side of his left leg. His red cape fluttered as he stood up.

His cabin was still damaged. The floor was stained with black from fire in the back right corner of his house. The corner was rebuilt with mismatching wood leaving a dramatic color change on his wall. Spots of sunshine shone through the roof. It was merely piled up with tree bark, but not enough to cover all of it.
He left his poorly fixed log cabin to view it from outside. The only window was covered by a white cloth that hung loosely. The door was barley hinged to the cabin. Scars of battle stained the walls.

Flashes of the previous year shot through Cotoz’s mind. He remembered fighting a large number of Sleepwalkers, mindless corpses that were controlled by Ingles, to protect his village, Hogony, from total destruction.

The village of Hogony was barley saved from extinction. Though by three main leaders, they were able to rebuild it. Hogony was restored, not perfectly, but adequately with a new place added; the Memorial Grounds.

The Memorial Grounds was built shortly after the attack in Hogony. It was built on the left side of Hogony, out of the wall perimeter, but was connected by a large steel gate. It was half the village in size. Inside were graves and remains of precious people that passed away, most were from the ambush.

Cotoz walked through the village. The cabins were rebuilt better than his, but battle stains still showed. People were continuing life as if the battle never happened, with one exception. There was one thing that the ambush had certainly changed, and it was their arrogance towards their missing hero, Shuren Willans. Up until that moment, Shuren was the most hated person in the village, until he saved them from the Ingle’s attack.

Cotoz reached the stream that bordered the village. He walked over the bridge and saw the only house that was not harmed, but it did look as if it was. Though now it seemed in better condition than the others. Cotoz heard people walk over the bridge, he turned to see Lorica and Blurton approach him. Lorica, the magical archer was still as tall and thin as usual and Blurton was as gruff and muscular as before. Lorica and Blurton were the other two leaders that helped rebuild Hogony.

The trio stood together and peered at Shuren’s house. The tree entered the untidy house. A hole of missing floorboards caught there eye. Not surprised, the trio began inspecting the house. A glare from underneath the straw that the floorboards stood above frequently caught Lorica’s eye, but he ignored it.

They found that Shuren’s house was not left as it was since the ambush. Someone had obviously been there, but whom? No one entered the house ever since the tragic day. But still, items were disturbed and out of usual place since the day.

The trio had received word that there were noises from the cabin during the late night, but no one had confirmed that it truly happened. Though now, they had proof that something had entered. Drawers were open, books lied on the floor and even more floorboards were torn from the floor.

After a few more moments of silence Cotoz led the group out of the cabin and back through the village. The pathways were emptier than earlier. Stands and shops were closed as well as homes. They continued walking until they approached a giant fancy house. The trio entered Bastian’s house to find the entire village population waiting patiently.

Cotoz, Lorica and Blurton were the new declared leaders of Hogony. They had issued a meeting on that day at the usual meeting spot, Bastian’s house.

Bastian was the previous leader of Hogony, besides the elder. He was a rude inconsiderate Gippy whom was the one that led the Ingles to attack them. The traitor left on that day and no sign of him was found.

The house interior had dramatically changed from a home into a meeting spot. Bookcases that held fancy books were replaced with important documents. Fancy furniture used for show was now being used as regular comfort. Rooms were not filled with armory and weapons for protection. The Gippies may have lived as if it never happened, but they were definitely making sure it didn’t again.

The trio settled themselves in their usual spot, in the center of the room. The chattering had seized when they sat down. Everyone turned their attention towards them. The children playing in the next room had no mind in these meetings.

“Well, what’s the news?” asked Trone, the farmer. He was a Gippy who despised Shuren almost as much as Bastian did.

“As you all know, things in Oryk have been changing. Whole villages have been issued under an army at a time. I fear that our village will be also soon,” Cotoz said with concern.

Another Gippy shouted, “Then we won’t do it!”

Lorica eyed the Gippy with amusement, “It’s either fight for them, or be enslaved.”

Silence fluttered throughout the room. No one had a reply. Suddenly, Trone shouted, “How strong can they be?”

“Stronger than you can imagine. We’re talking about the army that nearly enslaved all of Oryk all those years ago,” Blurton said irritated. He looked at Cotoz. “Our only hope is to join the other army.”

Confusion replaced the Gippies’ faces from shock. A middle aged Gippy, named Iawor, said, “The other army?”

Cotoz took a deep breath. “As you all know, our fellow villagers, Shuren and Rollan, left the village to visit his home village, along with Miss Karoline. Well it turns out that they were drafted in the war, by the Zelzes.” Cotoz waited for a few moments for a reaction, but none came.

Quietly, a hand raised in the air. Lorica nodded at the young Gippy woman. She said shyly, “Zelzes are real?” Lorica nodded again. “Then that must mean that Dragons are also real . . . “

“Quite true,” Blurton said.

“What is the point of this war?” Trone questioned.

“As you all should know, Ingolor attempted to take over Oryk, but failed by Lord Zelzor.”

The Gippy woman raised her hand again, and before being called on, she said, “I thought that was just a myth, a legend.”

“Well it is true, trust me,” Lorica said certainly.

“We feel that what was not accomplished before is being finished now, by his grandson,” Cotoz explained.

Now fear replaced confusion. More silence swept the room. “Well what are we going to do?” the Gippy woman asked.

Everyone now placed their eyes on Cotoz, the battle expert. Cotoz was certainly the one who would lead training. Sure Lorica and Blurton were excellent fighters, but Cotoz was mainly better. “What we must do is prepare.”

The villagers seemed to be overthrown by a sudden blast of confidence. They all had faces of eagerness. “Train, right?” asked Trone.

Cotoz nodded. “Ever since the time of war has ended, we have slacked and lost our potential as sorcerers and warriors. We will train and our ancestors will be proud. We will fight for the good of Oryk.”

“This Garland fellow,” stammered Trone, “he’s the real deal?” The trio nodded. “His grandfather really did almost succeed?” The trio nodded again.
“Who will train us?” asked the Gippy woman.

Lorica stood up. “I will train u in magical arts to the best of my ability.”

Blurton paused for a moment, gradually; he stood up and said, “I guess I will train you in survival and smart decisions.”

Cotoz said immediately, “And I will train you in the art of combat.”

“Well what will we do afterwards?” asked the same Gippy woman.

The trio sat back down, with the exception of Cotoz. They looked puzzled for a moment. Cotoz entered deep thought. He opened his mouth to speak, but before he could he was interrupted.

“Will the Grundells be fighting on their side too?” asked Trone with a near frightened face.

Lorica said, “I am not going to lie, yes, the Grundells are on their side.”

A loud roar of protest filled their ears. The village obviously did not want anything to do with their eternal enemies, the Grundells.

A generation ago, the Gippies and the Grundells were engaged in a frantic war. The real reason of the war was still unclear, but so many died. They could not forgive one another.

“Can I have your attention please?” Lorica said. He was not heard over the loud chatter. “Attention please!” he said once again, but they still didn’t hear him. “ATTENTION DAMN IT!” he screamed, the room silenced at once.

The room settled down. Trone looked as if he were ready to throw a fit, but no one dared to say a word. Quietly, the Gippy woman raised her hand again. She opened her mouth and stuttered, “I - I have no problem with it.”
“Shuren is a Grundell, and you accepted him,” Blurton began, “did you all forget that?”
“Alright Blurton, say we somehow managed, even if we do join, who can beat Garland?” asked Trone, who seemed to be unanimous with the rest of the villagers, “I mean you did say this was the army that nearly took over Oryk all those years ago.”

“One, his name is Shuren Willans,” Cotoz said.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Essay: Spring

by Austin C.

Spring is a nice enjoyable season, as long as you have your allergies under control. I can enjoy spring to a point. I love the warmth weather it brings and the breeze it has especially when I’m in a moving car with the windows down. I do though have the worst allergies there is in spring, my eyes water and get bloodshot red, my nose itches like crazy, and I get headaches so bad I fall asleep. In my opinion fall has to be the best season but spring is a good season to escape from winter because after all the snow and being isolated inside layers of clothing, it’s nice to walk outside with a little feeling of exposure.

A major problem with spring is the insects. I hate them mostly any bugs that attacks or is of an annoyance. Bees are of an annoyance because they just fly around and you run into one of them without even knowing and risk being stung and that’s not fun. The one insect I hate the most is the mosquito. Mosquitoes are very annoying. I hate when I get bitten and I don’t notice it until that night and then it irritates me. What I like the most about spring is the rain. Rain isn’t the best when you are doing anything outside but when I drizzles outside I enjoy it. The sounds of rain as it lands on the roof and pavement is smoothing even though it makes me tiresome. So this is why I thing spring is a pretty decent season to have.