The Bright Lord

TwilightEL

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PROLOGUE TO THE BRIGHT LORD

--Four Ways an Ending Began--

1357

He had been in the burned-out shell of a city, in the rubble that was a hospital, with the sick and the dying. The civil war had raged around him as he went to the moaning, writhing injured one by one, healing their wounds regardless of allegiance. He was a doctor and that was what he did, until that moment when the magic didn’t come and the blood didn’t stop flowing at his touch and he looked up to see the warriors in red-spattered white laughing as the blue-clad fighters dropped under the weight of swords and shields and armor suddenly five times too heavy for their muscles.

1392

They were supposed to save the world.

Just the five of them, sneaking in, a team of assassins who would be hailed as heroes when they beat the man who had single-handedly won the rebellion. She would lead them, she would protect them and everything would be okay again.

The ominous feeling began when she saw the trimmed red beard and unwrinkled skin, the face of a man thirty years younger. When her comrades charged and fought and cut into the Bright Lord with everything they had until he fell, when her comrades turned around with tired eyes ready to begin the journey home, she was not entirely surprised to see the man rise up behind them with a sword in hand.

1589

They were the first to meet each other across the mountain range, just two men out riding and hunting. They talked to each other in strange words and called on strange instruments to bring the rest of their hunts, and the two groups of strangers made friends that night because they didn’t know yet how to argue with each other and slept next to the same campfire and started to learn each other’s languages.

Much later, after the screams and battles and blood, when the stranger from the south recalls bitterly the chants and the rituals and the priests that brought strength enough to crush rocks and horses that never grew tired and injuries that never festered, he thinks I should have known. When the stranger from the north remembers the first time he saw the Heathens, he has no regrets, because he should have known better but he didn’t and he doesn’t and he won’t.

1632

There are many books in the library and she’s only skimmed three but already she knows too much, far too much. There are a lot of missing pieces but the timeline of events begins to sketch itself out in her mind no matter how hard she tries to forget, to insist that it just can’t be true.

Right now everything is fine, isn’t it? All the blood and the dying and the revolution turned out okay. So she can leave it, she can go, her curiosity has been satisfied, close the book and walk away forever. This is where the story ends.





I'm afraid this isn't going to make sense to anyone but me. I mean, right now it's supposed to be a little confusing, but I have the feeling it's going to be completely incoherent. Especially the last sentence of 3, but I've fallen in love with that sentence for some reason and I'm not changing it. 2 was supposed to make you think of fellowships and adventuring parties, but I'm not sure I got that point across. The person in 4 is the main character of the story. The reason she's not named is because... um... I don't actually have a name for her yet. Yeah.
 
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Ultimate Houde

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You are correct, it is very incoherent. The reader having no idea about what is going on, and why these four vignettes are important. Which is what a prologue is all about.

What you should have done was waited and posted the prologue along with the first 'chapter' of events. Then the prologue would seem like a dream to the main character. A prologue is also a way to get people introduced to your writing. There's simple not enough here to do that either.

But continue with this. I enjoyed working with you in the writing competition, and I'll enjoy seeing how your writing evolves.
 

TwilightEL

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Since I'm a terrible person and the Bright Lord is currently stagnating, I'm posting something else in here. It's a short story. When I was in middle school, another kid told me this story and said it was his original story. He later turned out to be the king of BS, so if you see this in an edition of "Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark" or whatever, don't blame me. This is just my retelling of his story.

I'M NOT MARTIN

There was a little boy in the hospital one day. He had to stay there overnight and get his operation in the morning. His roommate was another little boy.

The first little boy asked his roommate, "What's your name?"

The other boy said "I'm not Martin."

The boy was little, but still big enough to see this as weird. Still, he was a tactful kid, and moved on.

"What operation are you having?"

"Martin is having his leg removed. I'm not, though. I'm not Martin."

At this point, the first little boy really, really didn't want to be having that conversation anymore, but he was also very bored. Luckily, he noticed some comics on Martin's bedside table.

"You like comics, too?"

"Martin's dad got them for him. Martin likes comics. I don't, so you can borrow them."

The first little boy took the stack and settled down, glad to have an excuse to never look or speak to Martin again. He was glad he wasn't staying in the hospital for very long.

When the little boy was too tired to keep his eyes open, the last thing he saw was Martin looking thoughtfully at the foot of the bed.

The next morning, some orderlies came to the boys' room.

"Hey, boys. Which one of you little guys is Martin?" one asked.

"He is."
"He is."

The first little boy looked at Martin in confusion. Martin was pointing at him with a neutral expression. The orderly who'd spoken looked confused, but the other man put a hand on his shoulder.

"Don't worry. The nurses told me about Martin." The two checked the clipboards attached to the foot of their beds. "See, this one's Martin. Let's take him."

Martin smiled.

The other boy didn't.

"Why are you taking me? I'm not Martin," he said nervously. "I'm just here for my tonsils." Martin continued to smile as the orderlies stepped towards the other boy.

"Don't worry, kid," one of them assured him. "The surgeon knows what he's doing. You won't feel a thing."

"But I'm not Martin. He's Martin."

"Look, kid, everything's going to be fine. Just come with us..."

"But I'm not Martin!"

"Listen--"

"You don't understand! I'm not Martin!"

"Kid!"

"I'm not Martin! I'M NOT MARTIN!"

Don't worry, dear reader. The surgeons figured out our hero's true identity before they removed his leg.

After all, Martin wasn't deathly allergic to the anesthetic they used.
 

Zombipanda

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Awesome! Twilight quoted me in her signature!

Anyway, in regards to the first story, I feel like it's going to be pretty impossible to give any sort of critique without access to a little more. It's like a movie trailer. The style is very good and there's some nice, sweet lines in there, but it doesn't really tell the reader anything they can be critical of.

It's nice how the second story was framed like a fairy tale but I don't think the twist is sharp enough to really suspend the story on its own. What I mean is, the reader isn't presented with enough information of any quality that will make them want to invest themselves in the story.
 

TwilightEL

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That was a horrible story.


Not has in writing but just the story.

Kinda the point.

I also read your prologue and I was confused.

One day I'll write more and make it make sense, I swear.

I liked it, and I remember reading all of those books when I was younger.

Heh, weren't they so bad? I loved the illustrations, though.

I've definitely heard that before but I forget where.

Was it from that time I told it to everyone in the chat?

Awesome! Twilight quoted me in her signature!

Yeah, I was thinking of telling you or posting about it in the Avatar/Signature thread, but then like two weeks had gone by and I decided you'd probably noticed it by then anyway.

Anyway, in regards to the first story, I feel like it's going to be pretty impossible to give any sort of critique without access to a little more. It's like a movie trailer. The style is very good and there's some nice, sweet lines in there, but it doesn't really tell the reader anything they can be critical of.

Yeah, that seems to be the general consensus.

It's nice how the second story was framed like a fairy tale but I don't think the twist is sharp enough to really suspend the story on its own. What I mean is, the reader isn't presented with enough information of any quality that will make them want to invest themselves in the story.

That's true. The kid who told it to me was using it as part of the origin of his Silent Hill-like horror game, but on its own it's like those Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark--the twist is the point of a story, and I think that only works for some authors.
 

TwilightEL

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I'm using this thread for general story purposes. This one, for lack of a better title, is Posthumans. It's a universe I've had a few ideas for for a while, which will be posted as short stories. This is the first part of one of those stories, which doesn't yet have a name, from that world. I mentioned it to Parker once in an IM, so if you remember it... here it is. I haven't gotten to the part you liked yet, though. Sorry.



The first crime scene Officer Jonathan Walker ever saw was also the neatest house he’d ever been in, all gleaming wood and polished metal. Everything in the study had its proper place, down to the last paperclip. Even the corpse was neat, still sitting upright with her hands on the keyboard. The only mess he could see from the doorway was the entry wound in the victim’s forehead.

“Hey, Walker. I hope you’re not squeamish.”

“Huh?” He turned, shaking his head a little. Lieutenant James was watching him carefully. “No, sir. I’m fine. Who was she?”

“Marissa Green. She was a reporter. The one who’s been attacking Smoke River. My kind of woman—it’s a shame, really. The whole case is one big dead end.”

“You don’t like Smoke River?”

When he got no reply, Walker looked away from the dead woman to see James’s look of incredulity. The older man laughed under his breath and shook his head. “You’re such a rookie. Listen, Walker… nobody likes Smoke River. You’ll learn.”

SEVEN YEARS LATER​

The restaurant was halfway between Smoke River headquarters and Engels City. It was popular in its county, but few people outside of the area knew about it and there was always a table available. All in all, it was the perfect meeting place for Erica North and Johnny Walker.

They came to you? Impressive,” she said sincerely.

“I know, right? Not bad for a private dick,” Walker said, smirking. He unconsciously rolled his left shoulder and flexed that arm. “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—that bullet was the best thing that’s ever happened to me. No cop ever had the Bureau of Posthuman Affairs knocking on his door, I can tell you that.”

“But you didn’t call me here to brag, did you?”

He grinned ruefully. “When have I ever talked to you when I didn’t need anything?” She rolled her eyes. “I’m sorry. It’s like this… what they want is to find everyone from the Smoke River Incident.”

“They’re paying you to look up public records? Everyone is already registered.”

“No, no, you don’t understand. They want to look up everyone. Powers or not. There are about a hundred people for me to find.” North sat quietly for a moment. Her dark eyes seemed utterly focused on Walker, but he knew that she was deep in thought. She spoke slowly.

“Why?”

“They didn’t say.”

“But you have a few theories.”

Walker casually sipped his coffee, glancing out the window. “It’s not really my business, is it? But I’d like your help. I’ve heard your bosses hired some of the unaffected from Smoke River. I also need to find the registered.”

“Okay.” He grinned. “I can help you. But…” His smile died as her eyes took on the same hard look. “I don’t know if I’ll be able to find everything you need. I have my own problems and I can’t afford to be making trouble for upper management right now.”

“That's fine! And remember--if you've got trouble, anything you need, just ask.” North eyed Walker dubiously. “Really. And I have this.” He pulled a flash drive out of his pocket and handed it to her. “It’s a list of people I haven’t found yet. Very short, actually. I do most of my own detective work, you know.”

“That’s fine, fine.” She stood up without meeting his eyes. “You take care of the bill. I’ll get what you need and call you later.”

“Thanks!” He held up his smile until she walked out the door. “Suspicious goings-on at Smoke River. What an amazing revelation.”
 
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Ultimate Houde

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Interesting concept, something happened which caused some people to gain superpowers.

I'm going to read it again, there was a few things I noticed, but I want to make sure I'm explaining it correctly when I tell you them.
 

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