The Harpykillers by Prakhar G

First came the message from the skies. The army tried to hush it, the hippies shouted hopeful slogans, and cynics rushed to their bunkers. Soon after, every child on the planet knew of the Harpies – grotesque, flesh-devouring, winged creatures

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Deb Snyder
3 months ago

Hi Prakhar, This was exciting to read! Exciting concept. I like how you foreshadowed the end of the story with the history of the towers told at the beginning, bringing it full circle. There was some great imagery, too: the sandstormer over the desert, the antennae-men, etc.

I was a bit confused about some of the details of the story. I was surprised when Ismita said it was “all over the news” – I didn’t expect this post-apocalyptic society to have a news network. What does that look like, do they have TV news, or is it all via radio, etc? I guess the question is, how intact is this human world compared with our own? I also wanted more physical description of the harpies. I thought until near the end they were just vicious beasts, and didn’t expect them to begin talking and using technology (though you did mention they had negotiated with a human leader for territory, so should have known). Also, I originally pictured them as sort of smaller, since Vrij captured one by himself (how did he do this? it couldn’t have been easy!), but by the end I wasn’t sure. It took me a couple of reads to understand that the one he captured was to be used for bait, in order to draw in and infect the whole flock. I thought the humans were using it as a test subject or a live petri dish to produce virus, but then the timeline didn’t make sense.

I think helping the reader understand more about the world this is set in would help it flow better – and this can be hard to do with a word limit. This could be really exciting if you were to expand on it. I would certainly read it! Thanks for sharing!

Christopher Joyce
3 months ago

Great story, I just got a bit confused in the middle, but the ending was good, well done.

Renee Shurilla
2 months ago

Fun story! You have created an interesting world with its own history and rules. I agree that it could benefit from more explanation. This story could be much longer, and give you a place to explore more about the characters you introduce here.