Author Topic: Help Borz win a contest (maybe.)  (Read 4285 times)

Boris

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Help Borz win a contest (maybe.)
« on: March 13, 2006, 03:54:30 am »
So for all 2 of you who haven't heard it in the chat yet, I'm planning to enter an undergrad short story contest and maybe win CASH PRIZES. (srsly, like only 4 people entered so far, so I have a good chance.) The thing is, I've never so much as submitted scribblings for anything but class assignments berfore, so I'd like to get feedback from you fellows on my short story writing, which is basically the first part of that RPG I've been going on about in story form.

You can also read it like this: "I'm mercilessly whoreing my writing this week, and would really like some genuinely critical feedback, hey, where are you guys going, come back~~~~~!"

Either way, here it is:
http://boris.fybertech.com/rpg/rpginstoryform.doc (If you Mac folks can't read .doc's for whatever reason, lemee know, and I'll get off my ass and HTML it or whatever.)

Now I really don't need ego mollification, I swear. What I'm after here is genuine analysis on your part. (A few samples for the less creative: Can you detect a running theme. Do the character's feel individual in mannerism, or just like the same talking head over and over again. Am I being too obvious, or too subtle in revealing what the world is like for these people.) Stuff like that.

As I add more, I'll make new posts (as a way to reward myself, a couple of pages written means I can shamelessly bump.)

So thanks for your times.
<Armature> i just really want centaur Azula

Prox

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Re: Help Borz win a contest (maybe.)
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2006, 07:52:48 pm »
I don't use a Mac, but I still can't read .docs.

Boris

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Re: Help Borz win a contest (maybe.)
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2006, 10:07:19 pm »
I'm just gonna dump what I have so far in a post here then, regardless of loss of formatting!

---

The fatigued door practically blasted off its rusted iron hinges. Natural light flooded the dingy little bar; it’s corrugated tin walls showing the haste with which the building had been constructed. Several patrons pulled their coats closer and held their drinks a little tighter. The bartender gripped his broom and hurried to a corner. The two men who had abused the door so heartily stomped their way in. The one with messy brown hair spoke up first, “Listen up, we’re here for a guy. Tell us what we want to know, and nobody gets hurt or arrested.” A thug at the bar decided against offering anything up besides his fists. The thug and his friend rushed at the men, fists flying hoping for a drunken brawl. The brown haired man, in one fluid motion, caught the Thug with his foot and hand, and dropped to the floor, flinging the thug out the open door behind him. The darker haired man dispassionately froze the other thug in his tracks by brandishing a pistol looking weapon, then punching him in the face. Getting up and dusting his t-shirt off, the messy haired man gave a chuckle “Anybody else, or can we get what we came here for.” Three more brawlers at a table in the far corner roused themselves, joining the fray just because there was the opportunity. One promptly received the butt of the auburn-haired man’s rifle. The other two hit each other at high velocity due to a simple dodge by the pistol man. “They never figure it out, King” said the rifle man, returning his weapon to the strap over his back. “They don’t respect the fact that for somebody to hire us to collect a bounty, we’d have to be pretty good at it al-Look out!”
By this point, the angry owner of the bar had come in from its back yard with a shotgun. He wasted no time planting two rounds in the front wall, causing patrons to hit the floor and cover their heads, and the two invaders to dive for cover in the front of the bar and arm themselves. King had his gun at the ready, but hesitated “I’d rather not shoot this guy, Chase! Its legally grey if he isn’t the target.”
“Got another idea!?”
“Just maybe, cover me.”
The bar owner was holding his position in the door at the rear of the building, only a few feet from the bar counter. A sort of stalemate had developed between the two parties. King deftly worked a bar stool loose, and signaled to Chase to help him. On a silent count of three they arced it over the counter, catching the owner off guard with the unusual attack and knocking him down. They jumped the counter and disarmed the man who didn’t feel like offering additional resistance and just pointed toward the back door.
King and Chase stepped through the door back into the cloudy daylight of Boston’s skyline. The fenced area they had walked into appeared to be a small scrap yard. There were tires and bits of metal littering the grounds. An old car sat sadly derelict next to the back fence. Crates towered all over, stacked quite haphazardly.
“Our guy is hanging out here?” King asked, unsurely.
“You think so many folks would defend this ground for nothing? He’s gotta be here, and he’s been supplying them.”
They fanned out and began looking under and behind stacks of scrap. As they approached the back of the yard, the scrap became older and more corroded. King mused on the age of some of this material, wondering if it had been setting here since long before the new age. He wondered how long it would continue to sit here discarded. His thoughts were broken by Chase, who was hollering about a large tower of metal near the rear corner of the lot.
King waved as he headed over. Chase pointed, “It has a door, has to be our guy’s little hideout. Kinda clever if you ask me.”
“Living in a junkyard behind a bar. If this fellow was stealing to make his life better he sure didn’t plan it out too well.”
“Why don’t we ask him what he was thinking.” Chase threw open the little metal doorframe revealing a hastily hollowed area in the mountain of scrap. The man inside dropped the bar of something marked ‘rations’ that he was eating and threw up his hands.
“Guess he knows why were here,” Chase mused “Ok fellow, you just gonna come with us then?”
The thief frowned “No, ya can’t bring me in, I’m just doing this to get real food for my family. You gotta believe me.”
King also frowned “Chase, he’s not lying. He wouldn’t be here if he was stealing for himself.”
Chase looked hard back and forth at the two men. “Got a better suggestion?”
King merely looked down at the ground.
“What he did is against the law, so what we’re gonna do is our jobs. We’re gonnna bring him and get our pay.”
If anything the thief’s frown got deeper. “I’m not a violent fellah. Dun make me do anything please.”
“Look guy,” said chase “We’ve got you outgunned an in a bad spot. We’re not violent unless somebody else forces us to be either, so just come on back with us.”
King had a better eye for details however. “Chase, remember what this guy stole?”
“Military magic bands or something if I-” and then it dawned on him “Jump!”
The thief had decided to move preemptively as well, and was now generating a steam of flame out the doorway, scorching the area where Chase and King had been moments before. The two men backed away, taking cover behind different hills of scrap as frost and flame arced all around them. Chase began issuing rounds from the rifle, most of them being melted or frozen in the air by the magic, but the odd shot landing close enough to the thief to cause him to take cover as well. King began flanking to the side, running between cover, largely unnoticed. Chase continued to back off, outgunned by the projected flame and spears of ice. The thief slowly advanced in unison, pushing forward between any pile of scrap he could use for cover. Finally, Chase’s back was up to the fence of the yard.
“Tried to warn ya, now didn I?” The thief hollered, “Just trying to improve me and mine’s lot, weren’t hurtin nobody before now.” Angry and desperate, the thief whipped up a fireball, preparing to finish Chase. Unfortunately for him, the mountain of crates he was standing in front of collapsed, as King kicked a supporting column out of the way. The thief was knocked unconscious immediately, and pinned under boxes to boot. King moved in to quickly disarm the man, taking off the magic bands he’d been wearing on his wrist. Chase just slumped against the fence, relived to be quite alive.
“Heh, thanks for the save. Twice. Shoulda figured that guy would use some of the bands himself.”
“I do what I can.” King said flatly. “I guess we still have to bring this guy in if we want to get paid.”
“Like the guy said to me, just looking out for me and mine. I believe he honestly meant that, but it doesn’t make what he did right.”
“Yeah, I suppose so.” King said, then added “but does it make what we do right” under his breath.
He helped Chase up, and they picked the thief up and headed for the exit.

***
“All I’m sayin” Chase grumbled “is that they have resources of some kind, and building material is cheap. They don’t have to keep their building in such crappy repair.”
King surveyed the crumbling walls and was inclined to agree. One of the chains holding a faded sign from the roof suddenly snapped as if to lend timely support to Chase’s complaint. King resisted the urge to laugh out loud as Chase simply sat, mouth agape, pointing at the sign. Finally, breaking the silence, the hallway door opened and a well-dressed young woman entered. She flashed an ID at a faceless figure behind the front check-in windows, and joined the two men, sitting on dingy waiting room seats.
“Yes, hi to you too, Chase. Yes, I see the sign. Yes, ha ha, I have no idea how people will know this is the bounty hunter’s guild now either, without the sign. Have I covered everything?”
Chase took the opportunity to finally lower his hand and shut his mouth.
“You’d never believe the timing of that support breaking” King finally answered, “Like right as he opened his mouth.”
“So, the highlight of you two’s day then?”
“Pretty much. The new republic of Boston apparently can’t afford to pay its bounty hunters in real food anymore. We just get those magi-rations and some Bux.”
Chase, ready to complain at the drop of a hat, joined right in. “ ‘Boston Bux, no you can’t redeem them outside city limits, no you can’t exchange them for gold, yes we print off more as it’s convenient for us.’ ”
King frowned “So yeah, I’ve lost my last reason to do this job. We’re not working for the public good, and we’re not getting paid in anything useful. Hell, You can get magi-rations just for proving you’re 50 percent human, practically.”
“Useful for the monster or mutant on the go” Chase added, chuckling.
The young woman exaggerated her snap back to attention “ ‘-And that was Chase and King, Boston’s only clowns slash bounty hunters.’ ”
“Charming as ever, Nami.” Said king, before grabbing his worn, long brown jacket from the seat back and placing it over his front as a blanket. “I think I’ll take a little siesta here while Chase talks your ear off.”
“Hey, you’re so cool man,” Chase shot back “Maybe I just won’t wake you up when they call us.”
“So then you were planning to talk my ear off?” Nami asked, a hint of seriousness creeping through.
“Oh, you two-” Chase fumed for a moment “- Yeah, let’s all just be silent and mysterious, maybe people will mistake us for social outcasts and we can slide through life while Chase does all the talk– wait, that’s me.”
“Hey, I’m not silent, just terse. What’s more, I don’t work with you.” Said Nami
“I’m asleep and have no opinions on this subject.” King added helpfully. He wished he had a classic western hat to pull over his face, to complete the illusion.
“Mark my words, there’ll come a day when you two get stuck without me and have to talk to other actual humans by yourself. That’ll be a misadventure.”
“Remember the part where I don’t work with you?” Nami questioned.

Finally, the loudspeaker rang to life. “West, Nami. Daniels, King. Freeman, Chase.” Nami and Chase jumped up, heading to the rear door of the waiting hall. King slowly slid out of his seat, sitting on the floor for a moment before finally committing himself to getting up. He slowly paced the length of the tiled, fatigued floor, entering the dark room at the end. He sat himself in the even more Spartan chair at the end of a cheap polished table. The curiosity over the job momentarily overcame the annoyance gathering in the pit of his stomach. Chase was already arguing with the city’s new official.
“All I’m saying is there was no reason for you guys to replace the nice lady. I don’t even know what I’m gonna call you yet.”
“That sounds like your problem to me” The official went on in monotones “I’m just here to explain assignments.”
“See, the nice lady did the same thing, but it was service with a smile!”
The bald official purposefully deadpanned.
“I guess I’ll just call you boring guy and be done with us.”
Nami cut the conversation short “Chase, stop antagonizing the civil servant and let him give me my job”
“Thank you, ma’am.” He pulled down a screen and set a small slide projector on the table. “Although it’s technically for all three of you.”
Nami grimaced, almost directly getting a laugh from Chase.
“This” the suit said, inserting the first slide, which pictured a beautiful storefront “Is a suspected speakeasy. They’re trafficking illegally obtained real food, and inviting the criminal underground to come have a meal in privacy in exchange for protection.”
“Meanwhile, you guys can’t bother to give us even bread for stopping this kind of violation.” Chase cracked.
“You know, if you weren’t so focused on the negative, you’d realize that rations kept an entire city from starving.” The suit pointed out, carefully.
“I’m starting to think I’d rather actually go hungry rather than eat magic enhanced cardboard one more time, and still feel empty.”
“Sounds like your problem again. Anyway, your job is to gain clandestine access to this establishment. We want a directory of faces of potential organized crime members.”
“Why does this take three of us?” Nami asked “Wouldn’t one be better for stealth?” She added, hopefully.
“Sorry, the reason that we requested three of you is we’ve already obtained information on an organized crime group you could use to create a false identify.” He replaced the slide. “You may be familiar with Mr. and Mrs. Juliard, and their good friend Johnny the Monster.”
“The latter’s reputation precedes him.” Chase frowned, “They say he killed a squid demon with his bare hands. Pure muscle.”
“Well,” continued the suit “Deepest darkest rumor has is they skipped town last month for ‘bigger and better things.’ Didn’t even tell their friends they were leaving. We’re betting most of the organized crime in the city doesn’t even realize they’re gone. Namedrop at the door and try to get in and set up to be there for the evening.”
“We’ll need some help looking the part.” King spoke up “I dunno about those two, but the only pair of duds I own is on my back.”
“Go see the reclamation department about it, I’ll let them know. One more thing, if anything gets out of control, just cut and run. No sense in getting one or more of you killed just to list a few more faces that will go into hiding over your death’s anyway.”
“Standard fee, et cetra. We know the rest.” Chase finished. 

---

The cutoff isn't any particular point in the story, just where I stopped writing~
<Armature> i just really want centaur Azula