Lesson 10: Body language
In writing, we have to give readers enough of these details to make conversation feel real, while at the same time keeping the scene going at a decent pace and not overly bogged down with description.
Vague prompt: In 500 words, depict a scene in which two or more characters are having a conversation. Focus on using vocal intonation, facial expression, body language, eye contact, and gestures to add meaning to their interactions.
Specific prompt: Brielle is a young moon elf who snuck out alone to play in the forest at night. She meets a dark elf and is very afraid until the dark elf manages to convince her that he/she (your choice) is not evil. Neither of them speak a common language. In 500 words, depict their interaction.
I came back with another attempt.
Hopefully It'll make for a good comeback :P
Exhausted and quite satisfied with the time she has spent yet again sneaking out, Brielle exhales and lies down on her back, looking at the moon above her, casting a beautiful reflection on the river; just like a mirror.
As the forest hushes, she hears a faint rusting behind her, making her body twitch in surprise.
Turning around, clocking her head to the side, she sees a silhouette with pointed ears, caught under the light of the moon.
The silhouette falls flat down to the ground, making a loud thud as its grip on the nearby tree weakens.
Brielle on the other hand, swiftly motions back to her feet, dashing to the forest on her left.
Except, she stops after reaching the first tree she could grab onto.
Using the old, reliable, but ancient tree, Brielle peeks from the side, looking at the mysterious person that had her heart racing.
The persons sings the universal sign language of 'I-come-in-peace' by making a circle with his hand gesture, then putting his hand on his chest, as a sign of good will.
Yet, Brielle did not seem to agree with this as she sees a dark pool of liquid gushing out from under the elf.
Taking an even closer look, she sees that it is actually a he, and that he, has a darker than her color of white.
She gasps, putting a hand to her to her mouth as she backs away in fear.
But before all that, the elf reaches out to her, grasping the air as he flops to the soil, nothing to protect him from the impact.
By instinct, she runs up to him, stopping halfway until she realizes what she is about to do.
She then remembers the words of her strict foster parents, "Stay away from dark elves no matter what! Those savages do not deserve sympathy."
Now just meters away, she looks down on him as he struggles to look at her, raising himself up with one arm as the other bleeds a dark liquid.
She fidgets, that uncomfortable feeling of dread slowly starts to wash over her as she shifts her sights everywhere but to the elf in front of her.
Brielle's face is downcast, miserable looking, as if she feels what he feels at this moment.
But the elf in a black smiles, showing his teeth amidst the pain that he endures.
She kneels down towards his, disregarding the warnings she had been told, she reaches out to him, cautiously.
His face contorts, terrifying Brielle instantly, forcing her to back away, falling on her behind.
The elf signs a common elf language of 'hello' trying to calm her in his own way, knowing that their words come off as different to each other.
She, on the other hand, signs differently, making the elf laugh internally.
Brielle, not knowing the reason, calms down, sighing to herself as she crawls towards him once more, curiously reaching out to his face.
He smiles as she traces his face with his fingers, silently.
And so does she.
If the prompt says the characters don't "speak" a common language, that really doesn't mean you're supposed to invent a common sign language they share. Then you seem to write that they actually have different signs, which confuses me on why it's even called a "common" elf language.
Having the dark elf be injured in your scene could be an effective way to make him seem less threatening to Brielle and help accomplish the prompt, but it introduces a plot event that has to be addressed. If someone has a major injury that is causing blood to actually pool around them, that adds an urgency to the scene completely at odds to the gentle, tender scene you were trying to to create. When the scene ended without addressing the injury at all, I was left imagining the dark elf dying of blood loss shortly after the end of the piece.
Beware of using incorrect words in place of similar-sounding words. "clocking her head to the side" is not an appropriate use of the word "clocking". I assume you wanted a variant of "tilting" and the closest-sounding one I can think of is "canting".