3: Abuse, Contract, Surprise, Capture, Anger

21:02 Mon 04 Sep 2006. Updated: 13:54 09 Sep 2006
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She had her gun close to her chest as she wheeled and kicked the door, which shattered into plastic fragments.

A middle-aged man, evidently used to a rich diet, was in bed holding down a young girl. Both of them were naked.
“Bruce Lawrenceson, I’m taking you back.”
The man jumped off the girl, then relaxed and shrugged.

“You have broken your contract of work with Redmane Minerals, and they are permitted to force your return and sequestration for the duration—”
“Yeah, yeah, I know the deal.” He began dressing.
“…of that contract. I am Lee Seraksonn, an authorized Redmane agent. If you resist, I will use force to ensure your return, and charge you under section 189.2.5, Privileges of Authorized Agents. You do not have the right to legal representation.”
He had his clothes on, and was packing. She covered his movements with her gun. The girl was crying while getting her clothing from the floor.

“How old is that girl?”
“I dunno. Fourteen? Pretty though.” He resumed packing.

Her kick knocked him over the bedside stand and onto the floor. The lamp landed on his back.
“Resistance is a serious offence, Mr. Lawrenceson. I will ensure your transport back, and then have you charged with assault.”
When she broke his wrist he screamed, shouting, “Bitch! You think Redmane gives a fuck about some girl? When they find—”
She brought her boot into his groin, turning his rant into a high shriek and then a low gurgle.

(250 words)

The above is part of a series of microfiction pieces.

5 Responses to “3: Abuse, Contract, Surprise, Capture, Anger”

  1. Niall Says:

    14 probably falls under the definition of consensual, in the far future. (Or at least one has the impression of it monotonically decreasing :-). Better make it 11 if you really want to portray Lawrenceson as a sick fuck.

    I find ‘jumped off the girl, then relaxed and shrugged’ a little hard to imagine, physically, so you might want to spread it out somewhat in the real thing.

  2. Niall Says:

    Also to have her crying is somewhat stereotypical. Maybe jazz that up somehow.

  3. Tadhg Says:

    14 is fine, even if that is over the age of consent in that jurisdiction… Seraksonn’s reaction here is not supposed to be clearly on the right sight of the law or of morality.

    As for ‘jumped off the girl, then relaxed and shrugged’, yes, that’s a weakness in this piece (which I might try to change—I’m not above that) that comes from trying to cram too much into too few words. It’s longer in the original. Which, by the way, isn’t necessarily “the real thing”—after all, what you see here is the only stuff that’s public, and the first draft stuff is a mess. If something doesn’t work here, then it doesn’t work, and needs correction, as these pieces are meant to stand on their own.

    The part about the girl crying is also weak, especially since the idea is that she’s not crying when Lee arrives, but rather because someone she doesn’t know has just burst in with a gun and started beating the shit out of her john, meaning likely penalties from a bunch of directions plus loss of income, as well as the possibility of immediate violence directed at her.

  4. kevintel Says:

    Tadhg, I’ve just realised that you use enormous font sizes on your site, and that this is why even on my hi-res, wide-screen notebook I prefer to read your posts in a feed-reader. Check it out at a default resolution, you’ll see what I mean.

    Anyway. So is this a sort of Open Writing Workshop? Where you post stuff and then Niall critiques it? Do we all get a shot, or just the guy riding the girl? And what does happen next? Ah, here’s a thought: “The last vestiges of the unwarranted outburst from Zirklon had lingered in the air for too long, some would say festering on their souls as they contemplated what might possibly come next in this seemingly irrepressible sequence of events. Indeed, some of the group had put their Magic: The Gazzumping (Trademarked and overpriced, but available in all major outlets, try it because some people enjoy it, although God only knows why. TV is just as good and takes less effort) cards to one side, indicating that they felt more was to come. And there was, though none could have predicted how terrible it would be, coming so soon after an event that would scar many of their minds for an eternity.

    The door burst open, and Garret entered. He mocked them all, individually and as group, interspersing his loathsome activities with strange, disturbing squealing noises. None had a decent reply to him, save for someone making light of his choice of nipple cream. They all knew, deep down, that The Mockery had only just begun…”

    Seriously, if you are abbreviating these chunks then don’t, because it sounds like you might be losing some of what would make it better; if it’s longer in the original, you should leave it longer here too.

  5. Tadhg Says:

    “enormous fonts”? Excuse me? The fonts look fine to me. We can start arguing about what normal font sizes are, although clearly you’re attempting to establish the tiny Mac approach as normative. However, be that as it may, WTF? You’ve got a hi-res, wide-screen notebook but it’s missing the Command key? Or the dash/underscore key? Or you just don’t like pressing two keys at once because it’s too fragile? In other words: change the damn font size yourself, the site’s designed to support that without too much breakage.

    Anybody can critique. I’m more or less going to ignore stuff that’s unhelpful, though.

    As for the abbreviation—see the post where I described the plan for the microfiction? The point is to write microfiction, that is 250- or 300-word pieces, based on the novel (or bits from the novel). So in a sense I am abbreviating, if the process of turning chapters that are several thousand words long into 250- or 300-word chunks can really be called “abbreviating”. It’s an experiment in episodic writing, in editing, in composition, and is intended to help me figure out a bunch of stuff about the larger structure of the novel. There’s no plan to simply post excerpts from the first draft.

    Also, as I said to Niall, the stuff I post as microfiction is just as “real” as the first draft, or as the novel which I will (hopefully!) eventually finish. They’re related pieces, and have more or less the same source material, but at this time I’m not positing one as greater than the other.

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