This is my reworked introduction to my WIP novel, all 250 words of it. I return critiques as well, and also am seeking critiques for my query and synopsis, and if you took a look at them I would be really thankful!
A scream pierced the cabin and I jolted from a trance by the hearth. Elodie, my little sister, rushed down the stairs with her dark braids flying behind her.
“Nyssa, it’s Ma,” she gasped.
Lurching to my feet, I hastened up the stairs with Elodie close behind. Her nightgown rustled as she walked. Although her dress was worn, patched together with Ma’s deft hands like everything else we have, I know it brought her comfort. At least, Ma used to repair them, but it’s been my job as of late, along with all the other chores around the house. Our older sister Kara wouldn’t touch anything that might result in work, not even after the sickness tore through Autain three months ago.
Pushing open the door to Ma’s room, fresh incense and heat blasted in our faces. My hair billowed in the updraft and I tucked it back in place.
A lump of dread formed in my stomach when I saw Ma. She was lying on a fluffed-up bed, as she has been for the last two weeks. Her chest rose and fall with each labored breath. Whimpers rose from her blue-tinged mouth, and when I placed a hand on her forehead, her skin was ice-cold despite the heat in the room. My own forehead dripped with sweat, so did Elodie’s, but Ma’s skin was as cold as the northern winds beyond the mountains. I removed my hand from Ma’s forehead as a chill wormed its way into my fingers.