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Story Time - Part II
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:47 am    Post subject: Story Time - Part II Reply with quote

Here's an idea.
I just found a short piece of writing from an English class and I thought I'd turn it into a game.

Each person writes up to a page in Word or whatever word processing application you use and then the next person writes what follows.

Quote:

As the sun slowly sank behind the distant mountains to the West and the clouds drifted away to the East, the river was lit a beautiful mix of red and orange. Fragments of driftwood sank and resurfaced, seemingly at random and every now and then there'd be a flurry of bubbles making their way to the surface, from somewhere in the depths below. A boat, moored on the North bank of the river, rocked gently, waking a seagull asleep on it's bow.

The usually warm winds had gained a cold bite and now came from the coast. A leaf fluttered and twisted by the watcher, as he huddled deeper into his coat and pulled the scarf around the lower half of his face. The watcher plucked a single blade of grass and released it to the wind. He watched it spiral towards the river then float gently down where it was washed away.

He had been sitting all afternoon and all evening, but now it was time to leave if he wanted to be inside before the storm arrived. He adjusted his large rimmed black hat and made his way to the trail he had made through the surrounding woodland.

The trail was near invisible. He had been very careful to make sure of that.

The sun had completely sunk by the time he reached his first marker and the watcher adjusted and lit his lamp. He had done this so many times he didn't even need to look anymore, a talent which came in useful on nights like this. The remaining cloud cover had obscured the new moon and there were no buildings to cast a light for at least a mile's walk to the south.

The way he would be going it would be two miles and he prayed there was enough oil left in the lamp to keep it alight until he could reach the barn by the mill. There was no point risking any further and anyway, with the day's watch unfruitful, he would have to return tomorrow. The barn wasn't used anymore so there would be nothing to disturb him. All he needed was a good night's sleep.

Then the rain started...


Last edited by Wendy W on Sat Apr 12, 2008 7:31 am; edited 1 time in total
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opticalparadox
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A whole page? Whatever happened to one-liners? Very Happy
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 1:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pfft!
Every forum does one liners and we shall stomp all over them with our zealous wordyness!
Razz
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RMCrookes
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I'm up for it

I hadn't even realized there was a part 1... goes rummaging
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Colin Ward
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 12:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How 'bout half a page - it's late...


Imperceptibly the land dimmed and it seemed the lamp grew stronger, though not by much. The wind, which had strengthened all day, was in his face and with it came the rain, hard little shots of cold. He heard the rainfall amongst the gently hissing grass.

Nothing else lived. Even with the ritual of the well-walked way, it seemed strange to the watcher as evening became night. Usually, there was something, a flurry of disturbed wings or the distant, almost human cry of a dog-fox. But tonight there was nothing. No sound, no movement except the wind in the grass and the trees and no sign that anything was left in the world other than him. He began to count his footsteps.

Then he heard it.

A tiny, odd sound, so sudden and so short that he wasn’t sure at first. He stopped for a few seconds, remembered the lateness and plodded on. A minute or so later he heard it again.

It might have come from in front of him. Or it could have been behind. He wasn’t sure. It certainly wasn’t anything that his memory could recall. He gritted his teeth and increased his pace. He had only about another fifteen minutes to cover.

And then what? he questioned himself…
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Ian Moore
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 1:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooh, this is exciting! Nice work Wendy and Colin. I think you've done a really good job, Colin, of matching the tone started by Wendy. I might wait a couple of sections before I join in. Who's next, who's next?
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 1:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooh, that was good. Very Happy
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Ian Moore
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, well I can't wait any longer to see what happens, so here you are ...

Quote:
Emerging from the trees he hastened down the darkening shadow where the woods and the endless sepia toned fields met. Caught between two fears: the open land to his left that promised to expose him, and the darkness on his right that seemed to swell with the malevolence of whatever was concealed there, he hurried along between the two like a fly trapped between window panes. His pace varied fitfully as he tried to run without fleeing, be casual without walking. He listened through the rising insistence of the storm for any reoccurrence of the strange sound, and though he didn’t hear it the invisible weight of the presence amongst the trees kept pace with him in the dark.

Reaching the lower field of the old Crookes Farm he broke from the protective cover of the woods and sprinted through the thrashing rain across the open space that yawned chasm-like between him and the barn. The sound of his own frantic breathing merged with the whipping of the wind and he couldn’t tell the one from the other. Time slowed and all that seemed to exist for him was the sounds of moving air, the ragged pumping of heavy legs, the searing of the rain, the looming of the barn that didn’t seem to be getting any closer.

Then he heard the sound again.

It was coming for him across the field. If he turned to see what it was he would be lost. Anyway, he thought philosophically, somewhere amidst the torrent of his terror, what did it matter what it was? It had been sent by the Directory. If he was lucky it might just kill him. If he was unlucky it might want to take him back first…


Last edited by Ian Moore on Thu Jun 28, 2007 5:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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RMCrookes
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just thought I'd let you know that Old farmer Crookes won't be leaving the safety of his fireside on this dark and stormy night (you'll be more than relieved to hear). He would undoubtedly turn this excellent story into a farce.

Lets have some more - I'm very impressed all three of you
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 5:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The creature shuffled on it's branch and chuckled as the human disappeared into the distance. Stupid, self important creatures, but oh so easy to manipulate. The creature stretched itself out and used it's long cat-like tail to brush away a leaf that had got caught in it's fur. Idly, it scratched symbols into the branch using it's talons, humming to itself.

Glancing over to make sure that the watcher had reached the barn and the doors were now shut, it gave a big toothy smile. “You can stop now,” it purred, “he's inside.” Within a few seconds the rain had died down to nothing more than a light drizzle and soon it stopped completely.

“Well,” a voice emanated from nearby, “do you think he'll like the gift we left him?”

“Oh, I'm sure he'll love it.”

The creature jumped down from branch to branch until it landed softly among the rotting leaves. It gave one last, self-satisfied look toward the barn before darting between the roots of a tree into one of it's many tunnels.

It's companion stayed where she was, staring across the fields.

“I do hope you enjoy the gift,” she smiled to herself.


Last edited by Wendy W on Fri Jun 29, 2007 12:23 am; edited 1 time in total
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Colin Ward
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ian, Wendy - excellent work Very Happy
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Colin Ward
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, here's a bit more

The watcher was spent. He wasn’t unfit but the fear and the dash had drained him. His lantern dimmed but he seemed not to notice it as he slowly recovered.

Then the lamp went out.

It was just about as dark as it could be inside the barn. There was a useless glow from the lamp wick as it charred without fuel. The watcher stood, reached into his pocket for a match and then had the presence of mind to stop and try to dry his hands. The first match wouldn’t light and fear rose again in the watcher’s chest. Then the second match spluttered into life. The watcher knew the barn well and found a stub of a candle which he lit. By its limited light he found the container of lamp oil and refilled his lantern which he also coaxed into life.
He was wet and cold and wished he were at the cottage, where he could have a fire and a hot drink. He wasn’t hungry or thirsty but knew that the work of preparing a small meal would have taken his mind from the terror of the last half hour.
“What to do, what to do?” His instructions were to report anything unusual to the Ministrator at their fortnightly meetings but that was six days away.
Watchers are not chosen for their imaginative qualities but he imagined the interview with the Ministrator.
“So you tell me you thought you heard a sound following you home”
“Three times, Ministator. And it truly felt that I was being pursued”
“By what?” This wasn’t going well.
“I’m not sure”
Then the Ministrator would explain that his job was to Watch and report on the Boundary of the river and nothing else was important. Sarcasm would probably be employed.

Who else could he confide in?, the watcher asked himself. He only vaguely knew the watchers to the north and south of him and they would have no better idea. He only really met them at the annual Beating of the Boundary ceremony. The only other person was the Morning Watch.
The Morning Watch was a younger woman who watched the Boundary from daybreak to noon. The watcher always took care to be punctual, arriving at the prescribed five minutes to noon.
“Never too early and never, never too late” He automatically chanted the words under his breath, caught himself and resolved. Tomorrow he would discuss it with the Morning Watch.

And he would arrive early…
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooh, very good. I like where this is heading.
Who wants to go next?
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RMCrookes
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not me

This is fantastic!

Very Happy
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Wendy W
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2007 11:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
A sudden sound distracted him. He wasn't alone.

There it was again, not the noise from the woods. This was different, a sharp scratching sound from somewhere inside the barn. He lifted the lamp high over his head and surveyed his surroundings. Everything looked to be in order. Maybe it was rats. No, too loud to be rats. What was it?

Something glinted in the far corner, amongst the old flour sacks and netting that sat slowly decaying, discarded and forgotten about, untouched and unwanted. No, not untouched. They'd been moved. Whoever had been there had tried their best to disguise the fact, but they were different.

Cautiously, the watcher made his way over, glancing round to make sure that nothing was watching him. He knelt at the edge of the pile, gently pulled one of the flour sacks to the side and gasped.

Before him sat a polished wooden box. Highly decorative bands of silver stood out against the rich dark wood. He reached out running his hand across the metal. Serpents weaved their way in and out of a knot work of roses and every so often there were faces. They seemed to be drawing him in, pulling at him.

Unthinkingly he reached for the catch.
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