It’s almost like clockwork. This time it took a day and a half before it showed up, but whenever my book one reaches 4.3 stars, I get a few writers and/or editors that smack me with two or three one or two star reviews with some outlandish blah of hate. One of the last ones made a comment that was “If Mr. Cheek could stop jerking himself off long enough to learn how to write an interesting character” or my other favorite “Doesn't understand mmorpg's.” You’d think blatant nasty comments would go against Amazon’s guidelines (which it does) but unfortunately they’re not usually enforced? It’s also one of the reasons I usually ask people to leave some love for book one. I think they choose 4.3 as the magic number because that’s when the star’s pictures goes from looking like 4 stars to 4 ½ stars.
!!!POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT FOR BOOK 4!!!
Some of the feedback I’ve received in reviews from book four have been somewhat different than what I expected for a few of the scenes. It’s almost like people think that Tavon and Star’s companions slept together or that Star and Fylreh slept together in the story but that never happened. The joke with Tavon getting drunk and horny and the women being shocked but in a funny way goes back to some of the old LAN party stuff that has happened to my friends and me. Where someone would pull up some porn and people would be like wtf or we’d be in the country at a farm of one of our friends when one of the farm animals start to go to town on their mate or at a party where someone’s dog start to get horny or hump each and the jokes and slight embarrassment sometimes that come up from such raw nature. I wanted to capture that reaction where people laugh it off as being just normal. I think some people’s imagination took a few of the scenes to the next level and one that wasn’t there by some of the comments.
The situation with Startum and Fylreh is another story altogether. Their drunken make-out session goes back to any party where you and the girl you were interested in were making out hot and heavy and then shocked the next morning when you’re faced with the reality of what you did. Or, in Star’s case, where he was trying to help Fylreh and she was blitzed out of her mind and getting all handsy with Startum. There was no one ‘taken advantage of’, although sometimes it seems like two people can’t make innocent mistakes in today’s day and age without one of them now getting in trouble. If your both young, your both innocent and you both get a little tipsy. Who’s at fault the next morning when you realize you were sucking face with someone you didn’t expect to? Now don’t make this innocent comment into a bigger issue than it was. We’re not discussing some of the bad stuff that can and do happen. This is really about that simple mistake that can sometimes occur between two people that respect and like each other. That was Fylreh’s and Startum’s first kiss.
Interesting enough, they both end up deciding to explore a relationship together from mutual respect. At the end of the book, a stupid fight pops up and they’re both left heartbroken. Another common thing that we’ve all been through. Some people think it’s because he’s naked with Helgath, but that is not the case. In the story, everyone was naked for the majority of the end part of the story that the nudity at that point is inconsequential due to the general horror of the situation. Besides, Fylreh doesn’t have an issue with nudity in general, specifically with Helgath or that they’re bathing together. Her issue with Helgath is that she has some Orc blood in her veins. This is because, in my story, the Centaur’s ‘Racial Enemies’ are Orcs. In Dungeons and Dragons, races sometimes simply hate other race that is their designated ‘racial enemy’ to the point where they blindly hate them and will even attack whether the person themselves are good or bad.
For Fylreh and Startum to continue having a relationship, Fylreh is going to have to learn to look at Helgath as an individual and not as an Orc. I brought this up to reflect some of what I see happening in our society today. It seems like more and more people are choosing to hate other people just because of their color, culture, age or race. Instead of using their own mind to judge the individual actions as just or unjust, they are simply hated due to no fault of a person’s birth. For me, this is something that is an atrocious concept and one I wanted to address in the story.
Lastly, Startum only actually has sexual relations once in the story and that is with Keela. It doesn’t quite work for either one of them and they part as friends and companions. Companions being a term used for NPCs that have attached themselves to a player in the game. That doesn’t mean Fylreh and he doesn’t get hot and heavy here and there but there is no other sex going on with our intrepid adventures in book four. From some people’s comments, they think the bathing scene where Fylreh and Startum fight over Helgath is about him messing around for easy sex. That was not the scene and is something that he even says that’s not even an option for him at this time. He’d never disrespect Fylreh like that even if Helgath would be more than willing. Even the end of the book where they all fall asleep together isn’t about sex or nudity. It is about commiserating the emotional pain that they’re sharing from Startum due to their soulbound connection and his heartbreak over Fylreh.
Another two characters that came out better than I’d initially thought they would were Hollysharp and Helgath. Both immediately took on a life of their own. Hollysharp, I got the motivation for her character when I saw this picture http://i.4pcdn.org/tg/1512248027780.jpg , just is so powerful of a personality that she literally took over parts of the story. Being in the Information Technology field and being a tech’s tech, I fit her character around many people I work with and a touch of my own personality. I’m usually the guy that focuses on getting the mission done and speaks directly about the issue without putting fault on people. Albeit, Hollysharp has no issues laughing at people who don’t know what she knows. Another thing that is common in the tech field and something that I’ve suffered through with my coworkers. Sometimes in the story, I wanted to punch her for being such a hard ass when I put myself into Startum’s shoes as I told the story but after a while you can’t help but love the feisty engineer.
Helgath was another surprising character. She really took on a life of her own and I loved the mating rune that I came up with for connecting her with Startum. It made so many parts of the story just work on so many levels. Also, there is this sweet innocence and cold blooded killer about her that is so endearing. Yeah, I know. It's a strange combination but one that really seems to work. I got some motivation for her character from here https://www.pinterest.de/pin/449093394088082015/ There is no sexual relations between them at this time but they have a solid connection after everything they went through together so far. Her painful life and what she finds with Startum also speaks to me from the things I have suffered through, so altogether she really speaks to me. More so then I thought she would when I created her.