non-negative "mutter"


Senior Member
Suppose there's a person I recently fell in love with, a situation I'm yet to tell anyone about. Then, a good friend of mine goes on a date with that person. The next day, I ask my friend "How was it yesterday?" My friend recounts the great time, says that the relationship can grow. So I say "Good," the word coming out softly in a positive tone but also in a subdued voice, me feeling glad for my friend but at the same time somewhat torn up.

What verbs instead of "say" can I use for that soft uttering of "good" with mixed emotions? Is "mutter" too negative for this (dictionaries say it's usually for a complaint or an angry expression)?
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  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Ah, how I wish I could make up new speech verbs when I write fiction. 'Good,' mulloped HanaPopo. But I find I'm stuck with people murmuring, sighing, saying brightly, saying with a slight quiver in the voice . . . It never really captures what I want them to sound like, but I'm afraid 'murmur' is probably the closest you can get. You can murmur a monosyllable: it doesn't always mean a "soft undercurrent of sound" like the murmuring of the breeze.
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