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 Posting a reply to post #4138

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4138 No.4138
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen of the internet! I come to you tonight with a proposal. You've all played forum games where you control the actions of a character and the author will draw your suggestions. However, since my drawing ability is rather poor, I have decided to utilize my more passable writing talents, instead.

However, you will not merely tell characters what to do. This will go a bit further. You will also choose what plot details, character traits, scene selection, tropes, and other nuts, bolts and tidbits are used.

So there are a few rules. Under most circumstances, you will choose from a list I post. The one with the most votes will usually be the option chosen, although if a certain option is given a convincing argument, I may choose that. Normally, I will not accept an option that is outside the range of choices, but if you believe you have a totally awesome idea, you may post it if you wish.

After the decisions are made, allow me a few hours to a day or so to produce the chapter. I will try and put out 2 to 3 chapters a week, although it may not always be possible, so I'm sorry in advance for any delays.

The very nature of this is very experimental, so if the result turns out to be not as good as hoped, I am also sorry. Hopefully, however, this will be very entertaining for all parties involved.

So, the first options you have involve the start of the story. How shall this tale begin?

A. Through a dream sequence of the main character, eerily foreshadowing what is to come.
B. A flashback of the main character's.
C. From the perspective of someone other than the main character.
D. Start in the action. Something is going on that the main character has to deal with.

The second question is as follows: What is the main character's name?
A. James Starr
B. Henry Olock
C. Donner Phillips
D. Andre Tallman

When a good number of votes has been cast for each option, the first chapter will be written. Happy voting!


Throwing in my votes for
D and C!

C, and D


C and B


C for the first one, but as a suggestion, maybe it would be cool if it was like a flash forward looking on the results of the action of the main character briefly and then going back to where it began or something like that.
I guess for the second one D, though maybe Roland Tallman?
If you don't understand my suggestion, I put pirate in the name as a hint, you should be able to figure it out

Here we go, our first chapter!
Sorry for the delay. This ended up being a bit longer than I thought.

Chapter 1: Shadow of the Woods
His breathing was heavy as his legs pumped forward. Urgency was in his step, but the task at hand did not require it. What then, was he running from? Or maybe he was running to something.
Henry Roland Tallman leaped from a thick root and landed, nearly tumbling over. His palms were dirtied as they pressed into the soft soil. With a jerk, he pulled himself backwards and set his back against the sharp incline in the ground, made by the root.
“You’re sure early.”
Henry’s soul nearly jumped out of his mouth. “Aick! What the hell!”
It was Alastair Danforth. The scoundrel had a way of sneaking into important events, secret meetings and mischievous escapades. “You’re usually late. Odd that you would show up this early for this kind of business…”
Alastair was trying his best to be condescending, but Henry knew that it would not be taken seriously. Might as well strike back. “Well, Al, I personally was wondering why you decided to put yourself so far ahead of everyone else. There is no leader here, you know.”
As Henry’s eyes adjusted more to the darkness, he could see Alastair’s smug grin. “Oh of course, but I just don’t want this operation to fail, you know. But,” he turned, moved a lock of long, black hair out of his eyes and faced Henry head on. “Why are you really here?”
Was it a trick question? Henry was here for the same reason they all were. What was Alastair trying to pull? “Uh, Al, what do you mean?”
“I know you haven’t been acting like your normal self, Henry…” Alastair turned away from him. “Something’s been bothering you, hasn’t it?”
Henry tightened his fists. Why did Alastair think this was any of his business? “I’m fine, Al.” He whispered. “You can stop with the funny business.”
“Whatever. I mean, I just thought…” He turned his head toward Henry, then back again, “oh, nevermind.”
The soft sound of footsteps echoed behind them. Neither said a word, just in case…
“Ah! Henry, Alastair!” Nathan ‘Checkmate’ Dorrigan approached and crouched in front of them. An auburn-haired girl whom Henry had never seen before accompanied him.
“Check, I thought we said no girlfriends?” Ala/stair gave him a haughty smirk.
“Honestly, Al, what are we, little kids? Don’t worry, Carly-Ann is cool.”
“Nice to meet you.” The girl peeped.
Alastair arose. “Nice to meet you, too.” He smiled and shook her hand.
Henry rose and the four of them began to walk further into the forest.
“So, what’s the big news, this time?” Checkmate asked.
“Morgan heard that they dumped something back here.” Alastair said. “Something salvageable.”
Checkmate chuckled to himself. “Heh, why in the hell would they toss out something that could still be used?”
Al shrugged. “Beats me. CoraPhan’s rationale makes about as much sense as a twelve-year-old’s MyFrame page.”
Carly-Ann giggled. “Oh geez, I remember the whole MyFrame thing. It seems so stupid now, looking back.”
Henry rolled his eyes at the bad joke. “This has happened before, though… CoraPhan has dumped stuff out here?”
Al nodded. “That seems to be the case. Every time, though, it got swept up before we could get at it. Morgan thinks that some of the college students will come and get the stuff before anyone else can reach it.”
It struck Henry as rather odd. “Really? Maybe someone else comes out and gets the stuff, first- a disposal company, or something.”
“Heh, your guess is as good as mine.” Checkmate remarked.
“But that would seem strange, too.” Al muttered. “When Morgan saw the scrap out here, he said it was left abandoned in the woods. What sense does that make?”
Checkmate shrugged. “I dunno. I really don’t care. Free cool stuff, eh? Haha!” Carly-Ann chuckled with him.
Henry couldn’t put his finger on it, but the entire situation made him very uncomfortable. Morgan’s little raids were done with the intention to provide the engineering club at school with some fun stuff to fiddle around with, but to him, it seemed like he was running from someone who was after him…
They approached a part in the trees. The clear night air revealed a panorama of dark blue-purple sky, dotted with stars, faint, wispy clouds drifting ever so slowly and most prominently of all…
“Hey, Henry!” Checkmate nudged him.
“Oh, uh, what?”
“Geez, man, you act like you’ve never seen The Tower before.” He rolled his eyes.
Henry’s gaze was caught by the gigantic structure before him. It stretched high into the sky, roughly 1,600 feet tall, dominating the skyline for miles around. It was rectangular, like most skyscrapers, but its width was that of an entire city block, possibly slightly larger. Tiny points of light dotted up the side of it, stopping about three quarters of the way up, trailing off into a few isolated windows. A large, red and yellow symbol glowed in its side. Airplane-warning lights blinked in an unending pattern, to some strange, otherworldly beat. It was The Tower.
“Well…” he muttered, “I guess I’ve never been this close before.”
“Oh, you have!” Checkmate spat. “Let’s just get to the place!”
Is this the real reason I went? Henry thought. To get this close? To merely look at that thing from a different angle?
Every moment, they approached closer and closer to the edge of the Tower grounds. Henry found his breathing was conspicuous.
“Hey!” Morgan appeared through a patch of thick foliage. “Glad to see you guys could make it.” The residual light reflected off the surface of Morgan’s glasses. “Oh, who’s the lady?” He winked at Carly-Ann.
“Don’t get any ideas, Morgan, she’s mine!” Checkmate scowled. Carly-Ann was apparently very amused by this.
“You find what you’re looking for?” Alastair asked.
Morgan sighed. “Not quite… I’ve been doing some moderate combing of the area, but I’ve mostly been waiting for you guys. However, now that we’re all here, I think we can spread out to find the machine.”
“It is a machine, right?” Henry asked.
“As far as I know.” Morgan said, nodding. “Alright. Meet up back here at 100 hours… you know, 1 AM.” Without another word, he took off down the slope, into the woods.
Henry took a deep breath and set his gaze up The Tower once again.
“Hey, Henry…” Al set his hand on Henry’s shoulder. “If you want me to go with you-”
“I’m fine, Al.” Henry stepped forward. “There’s nothing out here and I’m not gonna get lost.” Before anything else could be said, he ran down toward the Tower.
What was up with Alastair, anyway? He had never acted so concerned for Henry before, especially over something as silly as running through the woods…
Henry’s pace slowed to a brisk walk. The warm spring evening was enough to energize anyone, even someone with vague sense of dread bearing down upon them. The trees weren’t quite as sparse here and the constant glow of the Tower peeked through the infant leaves.
Henry couldn’t take the silence- both physical and the silence in his own mind. He began to talk aloud to himself. “You know, I think what would be really scary right now…” he whispered, “would be if a werewolf just jumped out of the bushes! Grr!” He imitated a growl. “Personally, I’ve always thought that werewolves were scarier than vampires. I mean, it’s a freaking wolf that hungers specifically for human flesh! Pff, creepier than some effeminate dope who seduces stupid girls with his supernatural hawtness! Yeah, werewolves are sweaty, hairy and-”
He practically dove for the ground. The sound was distant, but coming out of a nearly dead silence, it made him jump like a flea.
“What the hell was that?” Henry asked no one. As he became calmer, his mind slowly went through all the rational options that the explosion could have been. “Probably just a car backfiring… or something like that.” Dusting off his clothes, he continued on.
So what was he looking for, anyway? A machine? That’s pretty vague… Henry’s mind wandered for a while. Before he knew it, he was right up close to the Tower. “Wow… damn.” He looked up. The constant pulsing of the plane-warning lights mesmerized him. What was it about the Tower that entranced him so? He stared on- pulsing, pulsing, pulsing… Was he afraid? Was he just morbidly curious? He couldn’t say. Slowly, he stepped forward, ever closer to the titanic monolith.
Something caught his foot and before he knew it, he was on his face. “Oof!” Henry grunted. “Son of a bitch!” He cursed. Getting up for the third time that night, he looked for what he tripped on. “Well, well… what’s this, now?”
A metal object stuck out from the ground, shining, stainless steel. “Let’s pull this bastard up!” He struggled only slightly in extracting the box- it’s edges were rounded, so it was hard to get a good grip, but he achieved success with a little digging and dirt under the fingernails. “Looks like… a safe deposit box. I wonder whose it is…” He said aloud. Looking up and down, he found no name. “I should turn it into the police… I guess.” That’s what the right thing would have been, but his curious blazed like a flame. “Hmm… doesn’t seem to be a way to open it… where’s the key hole?”
Henry’s blood chilled in his veins. A cold sweat broke out over his skin. There was no way to rationalize this away- something was behind him. Something was approaching. “Hey guys, I can hear you, not use trying to sneak up on me…”
Slowly, his head turned around. All rational thought left his mind in an instant. A figure in black, standing over six feet tall, bore down on him. It stared with its single red eye, glowing with a hellish light. Its arms hung slack at its sides and a wheezey breathing noise emitted from its head.
“G-gah-guah-AAAAAAAAAAHHH!!!!” Dropping the safe deposit box, Henry jumped to his feet and ran as fast as he could. Away from the thing, away from the Tower.
The shadows of the forest swished past him like angry crows and insect chirping created a Doppler effect as he passed. Faster, faster, further, further, until- WHACK! A tree branch slammed him right in the forehead and he fell to the ground, out cold.

Polls Chapter 2:

Henry meets a girl at school the next week. How does he know her?
A. He knew her from childhood- they lived in the same neighborhood.
B. He is distantly related to her- they're third cousins.
C. He met her recently, at the school's games club.
D. He has not yet met her. They meet for the first time today.

Henry has a best friend. What kind of person is he?
A. Wild and goofy- a natural foil for someone more relaxed.
B. Quiet, but motivated. More introverted, but not asocial. Seems to have the right bit of advice when you need it.
C. A socially awkward, brooding whiner who seems to be afflicted with chronic Foot-In-Mouth disease. He relies on Henry perhaps a bit too much, but Henry has known him forever and couldn't just leave him to fend for himself.
D. Other?

I plug in for choices A and B!

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