Try One: 589 words
Flattering, but given my penchant for quick scenes vs. Tolkein's more...leisurely...approach, questionable. I think it's the single long paragraph.
Try Two: Same piece, 200 words at a time:
Well--2 for 2. Interesting.
Wince. Not a Dan Brown fan...
King came up a lot the last time I tried this test, too.
Try Three: a random chunk out of the middle of the same piece...
There you have it! I am indeed an enigma, an conflagration of many great classic writers. Incidentally, in this paragraph alone...
He used his only tool, his words. “Tasmae. I’m your friend. I know right now, you’ve got a lot of confusing tho—-ungh!”She hit him. Hard.As he folded over, she caught him in the throat with her forearm and pinned him against the wall. She was tall enough that she could glare into his eyes with only a slight tilt of her head. “You thought I wouldn’t find out? You thought bringing the Ydrel here would make me trust you? That you could sing your pretty songs and make me forget my duty to my people? To the Remembrance?” She gave a maniacal laugh. “I know now. The Barins are a minor threat compared to humans! Humans, with their wild emotions and too many thoughts. Too many riddles. Riddles within riddles, thoughts within thoughts, feelings-within-feelings-within—” She shook her head, and when she looked up her eyes were shiny with tears. “You are contagion!”She shoved her arm against his throat, and Joshua gagged. He clutched at her forearm, but he didn’t know how to break her hold. He couldn’t get a breath to answer her, couldn’t get a breath. Light and dark flashes dazzled his eyes.#“Taz, stop!” Deryl shouted from the doorway as he staggered into the room. He fought to hold himself together until he could draw her away from his friend. “Tasmae, please! It’s not Joshua’s fault.”“Deryl.” As Tasmae turned to him her demeanor changed. First, it softened; gently, almost distractedly, she released Joshua. He collapsed onto hands and knees, taking in great gulps of air.“Ydrel,” she spoke again, and this time, her voice was low and seductive and she sauntered her way to him. He blinked in confusion.“Taz, don’t,” Deryl whispered, but she didn’t seem to hear him. Did she even see him? His eyes flicked to Joshua, but he was still on one knee, a hand braced against the ground, fighting for breath and consciousness. Leinad and the healer watched, though his muddled mind couldn’t tell if they were fascinated or horrified.“Ydrel mentor, Ydrel guide,” she breathed as she moved in close, too close. He backed up until he was against a wall, a mere foot away from the plant, which seemed to turn its blossoms toward them like a plant turns toward the sun. He tensed and trembled as she leaned into him, her face barely an inch from his. He could feel her mind flowing against his shields, and he knew if she got through, they were both lost.“Please, Tasmae, don’t.”“Shhh,” she breathed into his ear. “I understand now, I do. You tried to warn us. You showed Gardianju the humans. The dangers. She didn’t understand. But I understand. No one will hurt you now.”Her hair was in his face and he could feel its softness, breath in its scent. It made him dizzy; he couldn’t think. Dimly, he heard Joshua gasp at Leinad to do something.Tasmae was placing feather-light kisses on his ear and neck. Warm shivers moved over his body. The smell of her hair—It’s just pheromones, he thought wildly, but it didn’t help. Her body was too close. Her mind was too close. His shields sang.He would give himself to her. Give himself to the insanities. And for a moment, it would be so sweet. He whimpered, but he didn’t know if it was fear or need.“It’s all right,” she breathed. “We’ll protect you.”“We?” he squeaked. Run! Hide! part of him screamed. “Josh!”