Thanks for the comments, guys! It's great to hear what you all thought, and I'll take all criticisms of my writing into account. And I can't tell you guys how glad I am that some of you are looking forward to LotF!
I can't wait to get it out there!
Also, I'd really like to know what you guys thought of the story and characters themselves, too. Particularly the characters, as I've been eagerly awaiting to introduce some of my important characters (especially Tom, Magnus, and Corben) before the release of LotF, and I'd like to know peoples' thoughts and impressions in regard to them and the story.
On the subject of dialogue, the reason it often sounds more modern is because that's simply how I write it. It's fully intentional. I may change this in future stories, but as of right now, I enjoy writing the characters this way (some in particular), and I think it helps bring out their personalities better. Call it my style, if you will.
As for addressing a few other specific complaints...
There are a few like that (dumbass, retard, ****tard) that I feel should be replaced with more classic ones (bastard, bitch, ye saucey wench) to give the setting more of a timeless feeling.
The complaint with "asshole," I can understand, and I'll certainly take into account. But uh, you realize I didn't use any of your example words in my story at all, right?
I write a lot of my dialogue in a more modern style, but I definitely still draw lines. I certainly wouldn't go so far as to use the term "retard" in a medieval fantasy story.
I know you explained the decorative armor, but my imagination flinched away whenever you described how massive it was. They also swore a bit much for my taste, and I completely skipped the 'sex scene'.
Really? Tournament armor was pretty massive
. It was made to be massive, since knights didn't require great mobility when jousting (although the suits were still surprisingly mobile from what I hear, and they were clearly made with extra protection around the joints while still retaining some mobility), but they did require lots of heavy protection.
As for the swearing and sensuality, sorry if it offended you. There's only one curse word in the entire story that isn't considered very "mild," though, by most standards. But everyone has a different outlook on that sort of thing, so anyway, sorry about that. I do try to keep it to a minimal, but given certain character personalities and whatnot, I do still drop a swear on occasion.
And since you didn't read it, I just wanted to make sure you're aware that there wasn't anything raunchy in the "sex scene." I'm not that kind of writer. I've seen worse in many video games and movies that you've probably played/seen, in fact. By movie rating standards, the term for anything in this story would simply be "sensuality."
Anyway, as I said, thanks for the comments, guys! I really appreciate all of you reading it and letting me know your thoughts. Like I said, though, feel free to elaborate on your feelings about the story and characters. Criticizing the raw writing is all fine and good, but I like hearing your thoughts on the actual story/character elements as well, which very few people really elaborated on at all.