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National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
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Schazer
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#26
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Fuck it, that's enough initial interest. I'd probably get more done this way rather than if I tried to write a whole damn NaNoWriMo myself, so I guess we need to see how bad a trainwreck we want to have by the month's end. Should we decide on a theme/genre? Should that be at the OP's discretion? If you're dedicating yourself to this, are there any genres/time travels you would specifically rather not do? Do we want to have some guidelines about how often you can blow shit up or add new characters? Would a googledoc for the cliffnotes be useful, useless, or against the spirit of the thing?

I am cool with organising this (collating all the bits, etc) provided it doesn't exclude me from writing a paragraph or three if the mood strikes me. I've got a bunch of thoughts about how to ensure we get >1666 words per day without that being lumped on one person, but we should see how things go down.

However it transpires, I can see this being a hilarious disaster.
10-29-2012, 02:35 AM
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btp
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#27
like a wild, sexy Dick Cheney

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It may be more interesting if, upon writing, we each select a particular style of story we are wanting to write: (horror, smut, fan fiction, adventure, sci-fi, etc.) Having such abrupt genre shifts might make it more entertaining
(This post was last modified: 10-29-2012, 03:36 AM by btp.)
10-29-2012, 03:12 AM
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☆ C.H.W.O.K.A ☆
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#28
i'm rad as hell, and i'm not gonna take it anymore

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I think we should write a murder mystery if we're doing it exquisite corpse style. That way, none of the facts will ever match up.
10-29-2012, 03:26 AM
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KittenEater
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#29
big dumb whatever

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cool planet
hahaha oh man
now I'm super tempted to join
ohhhhh maaaaaaan
10-29-2012, 04:19 AM
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Dragon Fogel
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#30
The Goddamn Pacman

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Oh hey, I just saw this new crazy idea.

Sign me up, this sounds fun.
10-29-2012, 05:10 AM
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Gatr
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#31
uncomfortably muscular

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i might consider this craaaazy thing, i just need to decide upon whether im capable of doing that atop my regular nanowrimo (and of course my battles)

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10-29-2012, 06:03 AM
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AgentBlue
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#32
that escalated quickly

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'Exquisite Corpse doesn't lend itself well to genre restrictions' was my first thought, but after thinking about it, I suppose it could work. Discrete genres though, that I don't see working.
10-29-2012, 11:02 AM
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Wheat
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#33
 

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I agree with the above that genre shifts and discrete genre things would probably make it too wackenfrackish and express interest into possible entry into the port-a-john that is the USS TeamWriMo

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10-30-2012, 05:31 AM
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Schazer
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#34
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presents

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Something a littleHuge Novelmber Writing Month


Welcome to the tentative home of the Eagle Time 2012 SaHNoWriMo Initiative! Trust me, we have no idea what we're doing. If someone linked you this post without context to give you something to laugh at, here's what's up: We're going to collectively toss together a piecemeal debacle sham of patchwork novel in the space of one month!

How this'll work
  • In the small hours of November 1, 2012, NZST, I will write the first 500-1000 words of a 50,000 word novel into this googledoc. Once completed, I will hit shift-enter, write the total word count on the new page, and mention either here or on IRC that it's up for grabs.
  • Someone else for whom November has begun may now read my passage and write the next 500-1000 words of the story, preface the next page with the total word count, and hock it off to somebody else.
  • The third participant will now load up the googledoc, but is not allowed to read my passage. They must write a 500-1000 word continuation of whatever story the previous passage is telling.
  • We continue in this fashion until we're approaching 5,000 words, at which point the next writer may write the end of the chapter.
  • Once a chapter is complete, it's free for everyone to read (but you don't have to if, for some reason, you had some aversion to having your bits be at all coherent in the wider narrative). This'll give us ten chapters in our "book".
  • Yeah, "book" will be an extremely generous term for it. If that.
  • Someone else can start Chapter 2 in a fresh Googledoc; this will presumably be another 5000ish words before someone wraps up the chapter and frees it for viewing in all its surgineered incoherent glory.
  • We hopefully continue this until we've written 50,000 words! Whoa Give or take, I think we'd probably rather finish it tidily than have to be cutting it off mid-sentence.

The Rules
  • We will be operating on an honour system. That means no peeking at what people wrote earlier, lest you be devoured by guilt.
  • You can write more than twice in one chapter, but obviously can't write off whatever you last wrote. Or make an unfortunate sandwich of someone between your past passage and your latest passage. Just be sensible, arright?
  • Try and avoid reading a passage and deciding "ew no that doesn't sound like fun", that makes it kind of pointless if you pick it up the post after next.
  • You can only contribute to SaHNoWriMo during your November. This makes it an international collaboration but also gives everyone the same amount of time to work on it. If you know anyone in Midway Atoll or Niue who's fan-fucking-tastic at writing endings to clusterfuck stories at midnight, get them on board for this.
  • You only get one chapter-opening each, because that seems like a prime time to shoehorn in characters you want.
  • In order to get 50,000 words in 30 days of November, ~1666 words are needed per day. This means no hogging it for a day; only pick it up if you've got time to spit something out in an afternoon. Preferably less.
  • Because of the above, reserving will not be a thing. Maybe at the very start, but definitely not in the inevitable mid-month slow down.
  • Please attempt to keep things coherent. It'll be enough of a clusterfuck without people deliberately throwing things off the rails.
10-31-2012, 02:00 AM
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Solaris
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#35
Lonely Rolling Star

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awww yisss
10-31-2012, 02:39 AM
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seedy
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#36
Sol Heir

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I want to play~
10-31-2012, 04:14 AM
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Schazer
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#37
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And now we have a Crying Eagle-inducing banner, courtesy of Gnauga.

E: I have done my bit!
10-31-2012, 06:32 AM
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AgentBlue
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#38
that escalated quickly

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And I am done with my bit! Next bit is up for grabs, TELL EVERYONE THAT YOU ARE STARTING BEFORE YOU DO OR ELSE WE WILL HAVE THREE PEOPLE TRYING TO DO IT AT ONCE
10-31-2012, 03:41 PM
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SeaWyrm
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#39
used to be Dfaran

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Oooooooooh yes, I found this just in time. I am so very down that I could be a quark or something.
Today is still October for me. I'll jump in tomorrow I guess.
10-31-2012, 08:12 PM
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Lankie
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#40
that one guy, that does that one thing.

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Yep I'm playing!
2 hours to go untill November for me
E: eeeee maybe not tonight actually I need to sleep. BUT I'll do something at some point promise times.
(This post was last modified: 10-31-2012, 11:15 PM by Lankie.)
10-31-2012, 10:01 PM
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Dragon Fogel
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#41
The Goddamn Pacman

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It's midnight on Nov. 1 now, I'm going to get started on a section. I'll edit this when it's done in case any non-IRC people are jumping at the bit to join in.

Edit: It's done!
(This post was last modified: 11-01-2012, 07:04 AM by Dragon Fogel.)
11-01-2012, 06:10 AM
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Coldblooded
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#42
Ankylosaurus

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I might be up for writing some stuff for this, but probably not for at least another week or so. (Both for personal reasons and inevitable mid-month slowdown reasons.)
11-01-2012, 06:44 AM
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Woffles
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#43
O toreador, l'amour, l'amour t'attend!

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my Nano story is a Lovecraft-inspired story titled Eau-De-Nil. I might just post it here!

quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur.
11-02-2012, 05:58 PM
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Solaris
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#44
Lonely Rolling Star

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Imagine Cucumber
this is going to be thing
this refering to whatever it is i am going to start to write in some short amount of time

EDIT: CORRECTION, I AM AN IMCOMPETENT UNABLE-TO-DO-SIMPLE-TASK-MAN

I will attempt make again soon just
not
now
sorry
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2012, 02:54 AM by Solaris.)
11-03-2012, 01:08 AM
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AgentBlue
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#45
that escalated quickly

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And now I am doing thing like a thief in the night that no one may see me write whilst they sleep.
11-03-2012, 11:01 AM
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AgentBlue
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#46
that escalated quickly

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Aaaaaand done! We're up to 4154 words!
11-03-2012, 02:52 PM
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Dragon Fogel
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#47
The Goddamn Pacman

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4660 words! It's time for someone to wrap up the first chapter, I think.
11-04-2012, 05:18 AM
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Crowstone
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#48
squee~

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usa
i'll wrap it up!

edit:
I've wrapped it up

CHapter One is complete! I believe this means everyone go read chapter one. (optional)

who wants to start chapter two?

[Image: egg005.png?raw=1][Image: egg005.png?raw=1]
(This post was last modified: 11-04-2012, 10:00 PM by Crowstone.)
11-04-2012, 08:35 PM
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whoosh!
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#49
Overseeing the Incident

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Four days into NaNoWriMo I decided what I really needed to do was start doing it, even though I had no intention of doing any such thing at the start of the month. I bashed out about a thousand words in 30 minutes after I decided this though so maybe it's not so bad.
11-04-2012, 11:00 PM
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Schazer
 RE: National NaNoWriMo Doing Month!
#50
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SaHNoWriMo: Chapter One

Authors: Schazer - Agent - Guy - Fogel - Slorange - Agent - Fogel - Crowstone

5200 words

Spoiler :
Harrison woke up, to the percussion of something solid raining down on the roof. He rolled over, clawed absently at a weekend’s worth of beard, and checked the time.

TOO FUCKING EARLY

said his watch. Harrison almost took it at face value, then thought better of it and clutched it tighter. He looked again, and the watch read eight. Arlene was already clattering sedately around the kitchen by the sound of it, and it took only a moment’s contemplation before Harrison’s own stomach convinced him that no, the freak weather would not make her mood so shitty as to avoid breakfast with her.

More out of courtesy to his flatmate than anything else, Harrison stumbled around for a pair of jeans before heading out to face the morning. Arlene was busy succumbing to the hypnotic wiles of either a mug of coffee or her phone, Harrison couldn’t tell which from behind and the technicolour downpour was worth more of his attention anyway.

“Well, it’s not rain,” Harrison didn’t comment, because of how fucking unnecessary that would’ve been. “Probably some kid’s doing,” he said, instead.

Arlene’s eyes flicked up, but really only to check her flatmate had bothered to put pants on. Wrangling the day off work while the city’s infrastructure had been downed by gumball showers seemed a far better use of her time. “Uh-huh.”

“Probably watching morning cartoons and got some bright idea in their stupid head.”

A single earthy thunk accompanied the continued saccharine staccato, Arlene clearly hadn’t thought that far ahead. The kids would be ballistic today. “Uuuuuugh.”

He would’ve said more, perhaps asking what the hell parents were teaching their kids these days, but Arlene clearly wasn’t up for it. Harrison sighed, rubbed at his chin again, and decided to go stare into the abyss of the cupboard for anything breakfast-appropriate.

“I can give you a ride to work, if you need it. This is pretty standard stuff, I’ll be finished before you’re done at school.”

If Arlene was making agonised noises, Harrison couldn’t hear them over coffee-grinding and really stupid wishes being fulfilled. Eventually:

“Yeah. Sure. Whatever. We’ll be five minutes up the road before I hear the school’s closed-”

“I don’t mind,” cut across Harrison. “I’d much rather you got there safely. When do you want to leave?”

“Well, if it’s-” Arlene checked her phone; frowned.

“Too fucking early?”

“Uh, yeah. That. Did you-?”

“Mm-hmm. On my analogue watch, no less. Not that I’m averse to the idea of subjective time...”

Harrison glanced at his watch, kicking back half a mugful of coffee. The metal back had its late-autumn bedside drawer-top chill drawn through his wrist by now, and it was all numbers and business again. He sipped at the other half of his mug, leering through a pastel bullet hell at whichever apartments dared look at all child-friendly. Looking for a kid or a stupid parent who should’ve taught them better.

Braaaaay-bwok-bwok-bwok, expelled Arlene’s phone. Harrison heard her pick it up, put it down, skull her coffee, slam down the mug, and scrape the legs of her chair along the dining area lino. He couldn’t tell whether he was capable of hating someone more than he did right now.

“Work’s off,” explained Arlene, helpfully and completely fucking unnecessarily. “I’m going back to bed.”

Harrison very deliberately counted twenty orange gumballs passing his field of vision, before he turned around and gently pushed Arlene’s chair back in.

---

It wasn’t so much the rain that was annoying Chris. It wasn’t its composition, which wasn’t all that bad; the sky had done a lot worse than candy in recent days. It wasn’t the hyperactive, youth-amplified screaming down on the ground floors that was grating on her nerves, either. What bit at her sensibilities was that quintessential feeling of helplessness; her utter inability to do anything about any of the million things that, together, made up the sad excuse that was her life. There was a hole in her heart, a treacherous shroud that swallowed any attempts to defeat it, whispering visions of what might have been.

She’d wished once. A long time ago, now so far gone that it may as well have been a different planet. A worthless wish, so monumentally inconsequential, memory refused to do it the dignity of recall. A sigh slipped past her lips, emptying her lungs in a portrait of despair.

Some kid’s idiot dream of candy falling from the sky wasn’t much in comparison, she supposed. At least it wasn’t hurting anyone.

crack-tinkle-tinkle, came the sound of smashing glass behind her, followed by the rattle of jawbreakers falling through the shattered skylight. Which was followed by cursing. Which was followed by the phone ringing, more cursing, and the sound of a body slipping on rolling jawbreakers and hitting the floor. It was all very hilarious to absolutely no one present.

“We need you to come in.” The Dispatcher’s voice came through a dangling earpiece, their neutral voice coming off even more so through the tinny speaker. “You’ll be logging.”

Chris fought the urge to hiss with displeasure at that, making a few grabs for the phone. “What? It’s too fucking early for this shit, I’m not on until nine!”

“No, Miss Lawra, Too Fucking Early was in fact forty-five minutes ago.” They gave a little significant cough. Her eyes flickered to the living room clock - 8:45.

“Shit!” She slammed the ‘speakerphone’ button on the handset, and dropped it amidst the jawbreakers. “You’re on speaker, D - tell me more.”

“You are partnering up with Mister Hanson for a standard locate-and-log task, with focus given to the source of this...precipitation.”

Clothes flew from the closet, eventually revealing a servicable blouse and blazer. Momentary dithering between skirts or slacks consumed precious seconds. “Harrison, huh? Okay. Anything else?”

“We would also quite like to find out who was behind wishing Eight AM was Too Fucking Early.”

A laugh escaped her despite herself. “You’re kidding.”

“Every timepiece in the city said that at eight this morning, Miss Lawra.” Was that a hint of reproach in their voice? Chris shook her head. If you started reading things into the Dispatcher...well, that way madness lay. No one could even agree on what sex they were, or could even remember ever seeing them in person. As far as any of the Wishfinders knew, the Dispatcher was the brains behind the operation, and any answers beyond that ‘weren’t relevant’. But hey, it was a job.

At 8:51, she put a bucket under the skylight and stepped out of her apartment, locking the door behind her. Her mood lifted as the elevator descended; introspection fled as she immersed herself in the thicker air of the real world, one of practical problems. She forced down with her descent the anxiety, the fear, the sadness, the despair, the uncertainty, and she emerged from the elevator ready to take on the world.

---

Hanson leaned against a rusty lamppost, arms folded. His jacket and jeans, fairly typical of him, were today complemented by an out-of-the-ordinary hard hat. Within seconds of leaving the foyer of the building, Chris realized why, courtesy of a very hefty peanut cluster.

After returning to her apartment to curse loudly and take several aspirin, Chris once again exited the building, this time wearing the bucket over her head. Hanson was unable to prevent a smirk from creeping across his face. “Look at it this way, Lawra. Least it wasn’t a hard candy, eh?”

Chris rolled her eyes and gave Hanson a glare that heavily implied “if you don’t shut your trap right now I am going to cram a fistful of mints down your mouth,” or at least she hoped so. “Yeah, sure, Haddensen. Beginning of a beautiful friendship, I can tell.” She fumbled in her pockets for a cigarette. “So where’s the genius who thought this up, and why couldn’t he have stuck to gumdrops or something?”

Hanson shrugged and began walking. “All I know is that the kid’s on the corner of eighth and LaSalle.” He quickly snatched a cigarette from Chris’s pack, still smirking. “Pretty surprising, actually. No wells or fountains for blocks. Which raises the question...”

Chris cut him off. “A fucking star. Maybe a four-leaf clover, alright? It’s always the same bullshit.” She absentmindedly kicked a half-eaten gingerbread man into the gutter. “Why do people always ask for such petty, stupid garbage?”

Hanson laughed. “Yeah, and it always works out great when people ask for something big and meaningful. Like the time someone wished for deforestation to stop, or the five hundred goddamn botched world peace operations.” He took a long drag, blowing the smoke into the street. “There’s a reason they need people like us. Just count yourself lucky that this operation should be fairly simple.”

“Way to tempt fate, moron.” Chris shoved her hands in her pockets and sighed; and the two operatives proceeded in silence, no sound but the rattling and cracking and crunching of candy as it hit the ground, and the occasional instance of a car rushing by.

Hanson drummed his fingers against his leg as the two approached the crosswalk on Eighth. “So, Lawra. You ever make one?”

She took a deep breath in, then sighed. “Nope. Never really had anything I wanted to bother with, y’know? Too many horror stories. Anything I wasn’t too scared to go in for...” she glanced briefly up at the gray skies, nearly getting a licorice twist in the eye for her trouble, “I figured wouldn’t be worth the time and effort, y’know?”

Hanson nodded knowingly. “Yeah, I guess. Most I ever went for was a bit of clear skin here, an extra slice of pizza there.”

“Truly, you’re a hero for our generation.”

“Look, I’d just graduated college and I didn’t have a steady job yet, alright? And it just so happened there was a fountain they hadn’t taken down yet.”

“You went to college?” Chris stared at him incredulously. “And this is the best job you could find?”

“Yeah, well... market was bad at the time, and eventually I just got wrapped up in it. I can think of worse ways to make a buck.” He took another long drag, before tossing his cigarette in the gutter, snatching a chocolate bar out of mid-air, and putting his arm in front of Chris. “Eighth and LaSalle. Building 140, Apartment 8.” He jerked his thumb at the building next to them. “Let’s get moving.”

---

Chris silently cursed Hanson as they made their way up the stairs. The truth was, she had made a wish once. And she had regretted it ever since. It was ultimately what had drawn her to the job; she saw a way to make amends. Even if it was too late to fix her own mistake, she could at least spare others from the same fate.

But she had also been trying very hard to keep it out of her mind. And Hanson’s stupid question had brought it all flowing back at once.

How long ago had it even been? She was what, five, maybe six? How could she have known any better?

“Apartment 8,” Hanson said suddenly. “We’re here.”

Chris sighed quietly, hoping Hanson wouldn’t hear it. She had a job to do. She couldn’t do it if her mind was on an old, stupid wish. That was then, and this was now. What mattered wasn’t her old mistakes. What mattered was that it was raining candy, and it was her job to stop it.

“Cover me, Haddensen. I’m going to knock.”

Hanson nodded, readying his weapon. When wishes were involved, it was never a good idea to assume they had stopped at one.

Chris knocked on the apartment door. A little girl opened it, looking nervously at them.

“Mommy says I’m not allowed to talk to strangers,” the girl said, clutching her doll tightly. It was a familiar line in this business; kids were impulsive wishers by nature, after all.

Hadn’t she been the same way?

Undeterred, Chris held up her badge.

“We’re with the Dream Chasers,” she said, trying her best to sound friendly. She wasn’t very good at it. “We’re here because a bad little boy or girl made a wish without thinking it through. It wasn’t you, was it?”

The girl hid her face behind the doll.

“N...no,” she said quietly. Chris could tell she was crying.

“It’s all right,” she said, patting the girl’s shoulder. “You’re not in trouble.” Not yet, at least. “We just need to know what you made the wish with.”

She screamed, and ran back in the apartment. Hanson munched on the chocolate bar he’d taken on the way in.

“Knew we should’ve gone covert,” he grumbled. “Damn regulations.”

He glanced at his partner for a few minutes, then smirked.

“Although it might have gone better if you’d taken the bucket off first, Lawra,” Hanson said, taking another bite. “I bet she thought you were some kind of bucket-head monster.”

Chris shot him a glare.

“This is no time for jokes. We’re on the job, and she may still have wishes loaded.”

“It’ll be fine. I’m pretty sure I know what it is. Did you get a good look at her doll?”

Chris nearly froze. She knew what her partner was getting at. She hadn’t seen the doll’s face, but his words were enough of a reminder...

No. Focus on the job, Chris.

“Not really,” she lied, keeping as straight a face as she could.

“I didn’t either, but it looked a little... exotic. And she seemed pretty attached to it.”

“You think that’s our wish-granter?” Chris asked. She felt her heart sink.

“I’d bet my badge on it. And every doll on record has a one-a-day limit. We might owe her a new doll and maybe a few tears, but we’re probably safe.”

He glanced down at his sidearm and chuckled.

“Probably. I’m not putting this thing away just yet, of course.”

Chris was in no mood to laugh with him.

---

Even if he was being too flippant, he was probably right. That little girl probably didn’t have any wishes left, not for now. The doll was probably the granter, and it was probably like every other one they’d seen like it and couldn’t or wouldn’t grant more than one a day. There was probably nothing dangerous behind that door, just a scared little girl who had accidentally caused a diabetic’s nightmare outside and wasn’t going to hurt anyone. It was probably fine.

But that was definitely too many probablies. Chris looked down at Hanson’s sidearm and drew her own, nodding. He wiped some chocolate off his lips and nodded back.

“I’ll take care of it this time, then.”

She obligingly stepped back while he rolled his shoulders and popped his neck. As he drew back to make a run up, something occurred to Chris.

“Stop!” she called.

Hanson looked over at her, then wildly around the hallway. Apparently he wasn’t as confident about things as he’d wanted to seem if he was panicking that much.

“What is it? What’s wrong?”

Chris pointed at the door. “We, uh, I just realized we didn’t even try the door first. Probably should, you know? She might not even have been tall enough to reach the latch."

Hanson glared. "And you couldn't have said something without being dramatic and trying to give me a heart attack?"

She rolled her eyes. "Oh, don't be like that. You were about to start running."

He shook his head, but didn't respond. Instead he just reached for the knob and turned. Chris had been right; it wasn't locked. The pair of them slipped into the apartment, hands gripping their weapons tightly; it was dark inside, but the front room at least was small enough that the light from the hall was enough to see by.

Chris cleared her throat. "Sweetie? You really should come out. You know the Dream Chasers would never hurt you. I'm sure your mommy told you about some strangers it is okay to talk to, like us. Right?"

There was no response, but she hadn't really expected one. Really, would she have answered back all those years ago? She shook her head and grimaced internally. No sense dwelling on the past. You're an adult now, you're past your mistakes, and you've got a potentially-loaded little girl to find. Do the job in front of you.

Hanson had already taken a few more steps into the room and started checking under coffee tables and discarded blankets. He probably didn't expect a response himself, but he figured it couldn't hurt to try.

"I promise nobody's going to be mad at you. Just come out and talk to us, and we can get this all sorted out before you hurt anybody or your mommy comes and finds out what happened."

"That... Didn't sound very reassuring, Hanson."

He shrugged bashfully. "I'm not great with kids, alright? Come on, she's obviously not going to come out of hiding until we find her and drag her out, let's get moving. It's a small apartment, it can't take too long."

She nodded, and the pair of them split up. Hanson continued scouring the living room, while Chris slipped towards what looked like it was probably going to be a kitchen or laundry room. Maybe a bathroom. Something tiled.

She didn't get to find out what the tile signified, though, because as she moved to push the ajar door open, she heard Hanson shouting in pain or anger behind her. She spun around, sidearm at the ready, ready to protect him from whatever–

He was rubbing at his ankle.

"Who the hell gives kids her age marbles, anyway?!"

Chris's face solidified into an exhasperated scowl. "You twisted your ankle? That's what all that noise was about?"

Hanson didn't help her mood any by guffawing. "Ha! And to think you gave me the business back in the hall, Miss Jumpy."

She crossed the floor in a couple of steps and punched his shoulder angrily. "Could you BE any more unprofessional?"

"Oh, calm down, Lawra. She doesn't have any wishes left, you don't need to be so uptight. Everything's fine."

From behind them, there was a small creak and then a smaller voice saying "Nuh uh."

The Dream Chasers turned around to see the little girl standing in the doorway Chris had been about to enter before Hanson's accident.

"You're wrong. I do have a wish left."

---

Harrison Hanson’s hand froze there at his ankle, as he slowly looked up at the little girl outlined in the hallway door. “Well, fu-”

Chris cut him off. “Hanson!”

“-uuuuudge sundaes. Kids like those, right?” A fizzling spark of hope leapt in his heart. “Hey kid, what say we go downstairs and get us some...hot fudge sundaes? ...Ice cream? ...Candy? God knows we’ve got a lot of that at the moment...” He gestured at the door with his free hand, even as the spark sputtered and died.

The little girl stood her ground, defiant. “You can’t do anything to me! I still have a wish! A-and...” Her shoulders slumped, just a bit - but it was enough to act on.

Chris took a cautious step forward. “And? Go on, honey. You can tell us.”

“M-mommy says the Dream Chasers t-take you away if they find you m-making silly wishes-” She hiccupped. “An’ they lock you up an’ they make you wish for them an’ you never ever leave ever and ever!” Tears began to flow down cherubic cheeks.

The two Dream Chasers shared a look. One of those. Hanson followed it up with a Well, go on then, Lawra. You’re the kid expert.

Carefully, Chris knelt down next to the sobbing child, and laid a hand on an increasingly soggy shoulder. “Well, where’s your mother now, honey?” She rummaged in her pockets for a handkerchief. “Does she know?” She added, for want of anything else to say.

“Mommy’s gone somewhere. I-I dunno where!” The girl blurted out suddenly - too suddenly. In the corner of her eye, Chris saw Hanson’s brow furrow; he’d heard it too. The sound of falling gumdrops rapping against the windowpanes echoed loudly into the abrupt, hungry silence.

“Honey, I need you tell me the truth.” She burrowed into maternal instincts she thought she’d never have to use. “I promise you won’t get in trouble. Just tell the truth.”

“Mommy s-says the truth is...a re-la-tive con-cept com-prised of a hundred million million lies,” the girl enunciated carefully between sobs, “an’ t-there’s no such thing as the r-real truth.”

Hanson closed his eyes, because the alternative was actually seeing the kid’s complete sincerity. He suppressed a sigh, and gingerly lowered himself onto an ottoman. “Kid - kid, just tell us what happened. We’re not going to take you away.”

More sobbing was the only reply.

He let the sigh out. “Christ. Mom must be real ballistic if she’s going to get this mad over it raining candy.”

“I wished - I wished Mommy away!!!” the girl wailed. “She was - she was yellin’, an’ I said -”

Chris nodded, the image of an understanding adult. “You said, ‘I wish you were dead,’ didn’t you?” She finally drew out the handkerchief and began mopping ineffectually at the torrent of tears. “Don’t worry, honey, this happens all the time, we can get someone in to patch things up-”

“I said ‘I wish you’d leave me alone! Forever!’ An’ Susan Jane Rainbow looked at me and she said ‘done’.” The last word came out in a guttural half-scream, unearthly, twisted and hateful. Children have an innate talent for mimicry, and hers served her well. “An’ then Mommy stopped yellin’, an’ she didn’t talk to me, an’ she only made dinner for herself, an’ this morning she packed her clothes an’ things an’ turned off all the lights an’ she left an’ she hasn’t been back,” she continued, but Chris and Harrison weren’t listening anymore.

“Dispatcher speaking.”

Chris bit her lip as she held the phone - there'd been too many false alarms recently. What if this one...but no. Better to be prepared than to have some malignancy catch the Wishfinders with its pants down. "Code Green. Suspected malignancy."

The Dispatcher's voice held no emotion, as it never did. "Understood. What manifestation?”

“A doll. Hanson is getting more details.”

Wordlessly, Hanson took the sopping wet handkerchief. Ignoring the twinge in his ankle, he bent down closer to the continuing flood of mucus and attempted to divert a few rivulets thereof. “Kid. Susan Jane Rainbow, that your doll’s name?”

Nod. “She’s my only friend in - in the whole wide world.” Hiccup. A small bubble grew under one nostril, then popped in a spray of mucoid particles.

“Tell me...tell me what she looks like, kid.” Hanson was suddenly aware of the darkness in the apartment. "Chris. Chris, can you get the lights?" His partner nodded - ‘malignancy may have an aversion to light’ - and made her way amidst scattered toys towards the light switch. “Can you show her to me?”

Slowly, the girl nodded, taking the first step she’d made since they’d come in. If Hanson had blinked, if he hadn’t been half-expecting it, he would have missed that split-second where the shadow underneath her foot lingered in the light from the hallway, before slipping away into the dark with the rest of its brethren.

Chris cursed silently as she kicked a cluster of marbles out of her way. In her ear, the Dispatcher’s neutral voice continued to ask for status reports. “I don’t like this, D: that’s my status report. This one seems like it has...well, a lot of wishes. More than the usual malignancy, I mean.”

“Those are my thoughts exactly. I have checked with the registry and I do not believe that the malignancy you are encountering has been previously logged.”

“Shi...sugar.”

“There are reinforcements and a collecting team on the way, Ms. Lawra.”

“Thank heavens.”

She nudged aside a side table, and came to the light switch.beside the door. She reached out...

Flick.

Flick flick.

Nothing.

Yet the power was definitely on. A blown fuse? A tripped circuit breaker? A prickle of sweat washed over her brow. She turned to her partner. “Hanson, get out the flashlight.”

Click. “That’s weird. Must have forgotten to charge the battery... Chris, how about those lights?”

A cold feeling was collecting in her gut. Carefully, she flicked the light switch again. Nothing. The next words she spoke felt as heavy as lead. “Dispatcher, extreme probability of a positive Green identification of malignant high wish potential - Hanson, no, stop her, don’t let it come into the light!”

---

It was already too late.

Susan Jane Rainbow floated out of the room, glowing a shade of green that the two agents hadn’t even known existed.

You shouldn’t frighten her like that, you big bullies. She’s just a little girl!

The voice echoed in their heads. It was terrifying and adorable at the same time. To Chris, it was also terrifyingly familiar.

“It’s her,” Chris said, stunned. “How can she still be here? How? I tore her head off!”

Hanson was curious about his partner’s outburst, but he didn’t have time to ask questions. He pointed his gun at the doll and...

I wouldn’t do that if I were you, Susan Jane Rainbow said to him. If you hurt me, I’ll make that room collapse, with her inside it. And that wouldn’t be fun for anybody, would it?

“She’s not bluffing, Hanson,” Chris said. “She can probably bring down this whole building.”

That’s right, Chris Lawra. It’s so nice you remember me. I remember you, too. I remember what you did to me.

“I know how you work, ‘Susan Jane Rainbow’. Or should I say, Patty Pancake? You can’t hurt us if we don’t hurt you.”

Yes. And you already hurt me. That wasn’t very nice at all.

The doll raised a small hand, and Chris began gasping for air.

Whatever should I do with you? I could just tear your head off, but an eye for an eye is so old-fashioned. Perhaps I should let you suffocate. Or pull a vital organ out through your throat. The possibilities are endless.

“Don’t... worry... about... me...” Chris gasped weakly. “Stop... her...”

Hanson didn’t waste time arguing. He rushed past Susan Jane into the girl’s room, hoping to at least rescue one hostage.

Yes, that’s right, Harrison Hanson. Step into my den. I’m sure you’ll enjoy it in there. Why, you’ll love it so much, you may never leave!
The door slammed shut behind Hanson. He wasn’t surprised; he’d seen enough horror movies to know he shouldn’t waste time trying to open it.

The girl lay on the bed, weeping. Hanson walked towards her, cautiously.

“I’m so sorry!” she bawled. “I was scared, she told me to... to...”

“It’s okay,” Hanson reassured her. “We’re professionals. We’ll get you out of this.”

I’d very much like to see you try that.

Hanson ignored the doll’s mental taunts. He had one job right now - to get the kid out of harm’s way before backup arrived. When the Wishfinders got here, and saw what they were dealing with, they weren’t going to worry about civilian casualties. It was one thing if he and Chris went down - they were professionals. They knew the risks. But this poor girl had been caught in it just because she’d ended up with the wrong doll.

There was a loud hissing sound. Hanson looked down and saw a dozen unpleasantly large snakes crawling through the room.

Say hello to my friends, Agent Hanson. Won’t you join them for lunch?

“Maybe I should have asked her about the doll after all,” Hanson muttered to himself.

---

“Alright. Chris’ll be fine. I’ve got at least a minute before that doll stops torturing Chris and starts to actually kill her,” Hanson thought.

What’s that? Do you have a plan? Please think more, I’d love to hear it.

Chris began screaming. “At least she can breathe now,” Hanson reassured himself as he brandished his gun at the snakes. “Who’s first?” he yelled!

The snakes all leapt at him at the same time and Hanson ducked. Some of them were now on the bed with the girl. Hanson jumped onto the bed, crushing a snake under his feet and he grabbed the girl. “Sorry!” he cried while the girl shrieked.

The snakes hissed and slithered off the bed away from Hanson and the girl. “What, you don’t want to hurt the girl?” He pointed his gun to the girl’s head and she began to sob. “Well I can’t think of anyway I can get out of this situation with this girl alive, so why don’t I end it for her now?!” Hansen shouted at the wall.

No!

“Let Chris go and open that door!” Susan Jane Rainbow complied. She was now glowing a pale shade of orange. “There’s no way you’re getting out of this one. This stalemate will be broken as soon as our reinforcements arrive. Chris, how does this doll work?”

Chris was still gasping for breath and her nose and arms were bleeding, but she whispered, “She needs the kid as her power source... When I was a little girl, she used me.”

Used? hehehe.

Hansen narrowed his eyes. “What’s so funny? You don’t mean that- AUGHH”
All eleven remaining snakes had snuck up and bitten Hansen’s legs at the same time, forcing him to drop the child on the ground.

So much poison in your veins now! I wonder how long you’ll last. Maybe a minute? Unfortunately, I can’t even stay that long. Your reinforcements will be here soon and my two power sources and I have got to go. Nice meeting you! Bye bye!

The side of the building collapsed and the doll flew off into the open space with the bleeding Chris, the crying girl leashed with her and the eleven snakes. Hanson grunted, gasped, and blacked out.


All in all, it was relatively coherent (although Harrison Haddenson Hanson did not emerge unscathed). Five days into November, we're about 3000 words behind if we're sticking to schedule. Whoever's kicking off Chapter Two should get to it!
11-04-2012, 11:37 PM
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