I’ve written this to be as constructive as possible. I like what you have overall, but there is work to be done.
Read the story now
Starts out reading like history. Not necessarily a bad thing, but this can be hard to make engaging to those not otherwise interested in reading history.
Some technical issues I found (not an exhaustive list, just the first ones that stuck out to me):
- First sentence feels better without "very"
- The sentence that starts with "Territory held" is really long, verging on Tolkien length.
- “Nor” should generally not be used without “neither” and should never be used with “either.”
"[...] no ill will, supernatural nor of mortal hand, [...]"
Should be restructured to:
"[...] no ill will, neither of supernatural nor mortal hands, [...]"
- There are issues with tense shifting, additional punctuation problems, and words being used that I’ve never even heard of before. More on that in a bit.
Thoughts on Plot:
Everything made sense until the King decided to have his twins fight to the death. I understand that he wants a strong and capable successor to take his place since clearly there are enemies at the gate. But ordering his twin sons to fight to the death leaves open the possibility of both dying from injuries, one surviving but being horribly maimed, and/or one surviving and being psychologically unhinged because he just killed his own brother. None of those situations leaves his kingdom in a survivable state. If the order to duel was given out of madness, and that madness was explored a little deeper, that would make more sense. If I missed anything, plot-wise, I apologize. It was difficult to read at times because of the words being used.
I’m curious where the story is going, but it was hard to get to the end of what’s already here. My advice is something I read a long time ago. Never say in 15 words what you can say in 4, and don't use a 5 syllable word when a 1 syllable word will do. It’s something I still struggle with, but I try very hard to keep it in mind as I write. Yes, there are plenty of legitimate situations that call for extended sentences. But more often than not, we tend to put in more words than are necessary to get the point across, either to fit a certain style or to make something sound more impressive. Another major don’t – try not to use words that have your audience running to the dictionary. They might do it once or twice, but any more than that and you’ve lost them. They are out of the illusion and may not come back.
Like I said at the start, I like what you have overall, but there is work to be done. I hope you find this helpful and not discouraging. Keep going!