The Craft of Character: Point of View

NaNoWriMo Course 3, Week 4

Assignment Description:

Write an active scene (a dinner, a romance, an adventure) from the first person POV of no more than 500 words. Now take the exact same scene and write it again from the omniscient POV, entirely from scratch and without looking at the first version. Submit both scenes, and further, please comment on what changes you discover as you shift from one POV (I am telling the story…) to the other (the all-seeing creator tells the story…).


Archery Training

First-Person POV

505 words

“Your first lesson is archery.”

Zorambua announces today’s lesson with a mischievous glint in his violet eyes. He enjoys tormenting me. Maybe it’s a side effect of being alone in an ancient temple for more than three thousand years.

“You’re doing this on purpose,” I complain. “I told you I suck at ranged combat. I couldn’t even get a gun permit, and I was a detective.”

He shrugs. “We have time to spare.”

I glare at him.

“I hate you.”

“Hate and love are two different sides of a coin, you know.”

“Ew.”

His crisp, melodic laugh reverberates through the temple. A strong gust of wind blows then, dropping sand from the top of a pillar onto his head. I laugh at his spitting and dusting sand off his curls. He is not amused.

“Fine. Looks like a sandstorm is coming. Magic, then,” he grumbles, then stomps to the temple entrance across the courtyard.

It’s been a week since I became a Guardian of the Temple of Time. I sought the Time Reversal Magic to save my brother’s life. I arrived after years of chasing legends to be ambushed with a poisoned arrow and a choice between a geas and an antidote. I’ll never see him again, but it’s a price I’m willing to pay.

Even if that price includes having to bear with this jerk forever.

“You’re horrible at this, too?” he laments when I fail at slow-motioning. He may be a powerful Guardian, but acting is not one of his skills.

“I’ve only used time magic for seven years, geriatric.”

He strokes his stubble. “Problematic.” But then, “It’s okay! We have—”

“Shut up.”

“Alright, geez. You may be the one, but you don’t have to be so rude, you know.”

I blink.

He looks like a dog being caught eating the homework.

The one? You mean you knew I’d come?”

“Uhh.”

“You knew, and you still shot me?” My ears are ringing with rage. I poke his chest until he’s cornered.

“It’s nothing like that!” he defends. “When I became Guardian, my geas included a compulsion to ambush everyone with that arrow until the one who chooses the magic comes.”

I lower my hand.

“I spent three thousand years getting excited over each that managed to find this place. All only wanted fame. I was tired.” He sighs. “That’s why I accused you of things when you arrived. I’m sorry.”

I step back. “That explains your expression when you saw my seriousness.”

He lowers his gaze to the floor.

“Why didn’t you tell me?”

“You were grieving,” he says. “I… I’m not good at dealing with grieving people. I didn’t even grieve mine.”

I stare at his defeated figure. How unbecoming.

“Look at me.”

He meets my gaze. The purity of his eyes broke my heart. I take a deep breath.

“Now I’m here, big baby. Chin up, let’s start from the top.”

I offer my hand.

“Aislinn Mahony.”

He takes my hand. I find myself liking his warmth.

“Zorambua. No surname.”


Third-Person POV

450 Words

“Your first lesson is archery.”

Zorambua announces Aislinn’s Lesson of the Day with a mischievous glint in his violet eyes.

“Damn you,” Aislinn complains. “I told you I suck at ranged combat. I couldn’t even get a gun permit, and I was a detective.”

He shrugs. “We have time to spare.”

She glares at him.

“I hate you.”

“Hate and love are two different sides of a coin, you know.”

“Ew.”

Zorambua laughs. A strong gust of wind blows then, dropping sand from the top of a pillar onto his head. Aislinn laughs at him. He is not amused.

“Fine. Let’s do magic,” he grumbles, then stomps to the temple entrance across the courtyard.

Aislinn is the new Guardian of the Temple of Time. She came to save her brother’s life and arrived after years of chasing legends and solving puzzles. Zorambua ambushed her with a venomous arrow and made her choose between the magic, which comes with a geas and a curse of immortality; and the antidote. Aislinn chose the magic despite having to leave her brother alone. Zorambua being a jerk she’s stuck with forever doesn’t dampen her resolve.

“You’re horrible at this, too?” Zorambua laments like a bad actor when he finds out Aislinn can’t perform slow-motioning.

“I’ve only used time magic for seven years, geriatric,” she says, glaring daggers at him.

He strokes his stubble. “Problematic.”

“Shut up.”

“Alright, geez. You may be the one, but you don’t have to be so rude, you know.”

She blinks.

The one? You mean you knew I’d come?”

He panics.

“You knew, and you still shot me?” She invades his personal space and pokes his chest until he’s against the wall.

“It’s nothing like that!” he defends. “My geas said I had to ambush everyone with that arrow until the one who chooses the magic comes.”

She lowers her hand.

“For three thousand years, I got excited over each that managed to find this place. All only wanted fame. I was tired.” He sighs. “That’s why I threw accusations at you. I’m sorry.”

She steps back and frowns. “That explains your expression when you found out my seriousness.”

He lowers his gaze to the floor.

“Why didn’t you tell me?” she demands.

“You were grieving,” he says. “I… I’m not good at dealing with grieving people. I didn’t even grieve mine.”

She stares at his defeated figure, and finds it unbecoming.

“Look at me,” she says.

Their eyes meet. She takes a deep breath.

“Now I’m here, big baby. Let’s start from the top.”

She offers her hand.

“Aislinn Mahony.”

He takes her hand in his. The corners of her lips twitch into a slight smile.

“Zorambua. No surname.”


Notes

Aislinn and Zorambua are back! They are my favorite NaNoWriMo novel characters so far because they are so much fun to write. I love Aislinn so much I gave her the Irish surname Mahony, which means bear. (I love polar bears.)

This is the sequel to my story for Week 3-4 of The Craft of Plot. The intention was to write a piece of pure fluff, but it evolved into fluff with a sprinkle of angst because hey, Zorambua needs to friggin’ explain and apologize already.

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