The tale is almost done. You can find links to all the other sections here.
The Princess and the Imp opened up a portal to Assembly and rushed through. Behind them, they dragged Santa (but not Santa) with Assembly General chasing close behind. Just as General Protection
Fault was about to pass judgment on the 1337, just as the Assembly General was
about to scoop up his bride in his heinous embrace, “Wait!” Shouted Princess Zyx, hoisting the Marriage Contract
and pointing to the Android’s transcript,
“I move that this whole matter be
declared a mistrial!”
Burblegax tugged at the hem of her skirt, “Princess, what are
you doing? You’re not trained in combat
Princess Zyx looked down at the imp, “If you’ve ever trusted
me, trust me now.”
General Protection Fault smiled with teeth of the cruelest
binary, “Thank the Code, Narrative bugs have proliferated until the entirety of Assembly is under threat. I warn you
though princess, if you retreat to the ‘it was all an autistic child’s dream’
defense you will be subject to the stiffest existential penalties possible.”
Princess Zyx cursed under her breath, causing some cartoon
birds that had flown up to attend her in her hour of need to faint. How had he known her plan? Well, now she’d have to go with plan B…
General Protection Fault forged a Gavel and Bench of
nanomachines, banged with great enthusiasm.
“Order in the court! Order in the court!”
The android and the elf scrambled to get close to Princess
Zyx, try and provide her with legal counsel.
She held up a finger to shush them.
“Now,” Said General Protection Fault, “Who will you call as
your first witness?”
M Todd Gallowglas will be bringing it all home this afternoon! (Link to come)
As I posted about previously, I'm participating in the Genre Underground's "Tell A Story" Author Chain (organized by the incomparable M. Todd Gallowglas). The story has truly gone off the rails but I'm enjoying the ride. What follows is my first contribution, but you should really follow it from the beginning if you have any desire to comprehend what comes next (although to be honest, I think reading this story might be the surest way to lose any comprehension).
Alice wielded the microplane grater, fending off The WeebleWobble TeapotBot’s attacks and shredding through it to create thin curly cues of mozzarella-like metal. “Now!” She yelled, “While it’s distracted!”
“Oh, ok.” He said, throwing his red vial at mass of robot.
The glass shattered, and hundred gallons of Marinara sauce exploded outward filling the machine's servos. The robot sputtered, sparked; went finally still.
Alice dusted herself off, stepped back towards the portal to her restaurant. “Here,” she said, tossing the elf a small fortune cookie. “This one’s on the house.”
Absently, the elf put the cookie in his pocket as the portal closed behind Alice.
Now, he had a score to settle with Assembly General and an escape attempt to make good on. He couldn’t trust the court, not now, so the only way to gain justice for Princess Zyx was to dispense it himself.
Exiting the the foundry, the tremendous Fortress Boudoir of the Assembly General loomed as the most imposing structure on Assembly, taunting the Elf to -as the kids on the naughty list would say- “Bring it!”
The elf ran towards his fate.
“A spell only a lawyer can cast?” The lawyer asked, remembering dimly something in one of his early lectures as he stepped around the wreckage of Bunny-bots.. He stroked his chin, “Hmm, yes, If I remember correctly it is a ‘frowned upon’ form of Legalese, Minutaemancy. I didn’t think there were any practioners left, after the docket wars of...” The lawyer shook his head, resisting his instinct to turn everything into a closing argument. “In the meantime we have a elf to catch, a uncooperative summoned witness to secure, and a nearly shredded plan to salvage. It was all going so well until the spell interaction in the bar...”
“Hey, Withered Grapes!” The regenerating troll yelled from across the foundry floor, freeing itself from the wreckage of the security bot. “I still got a bone to pick with you.” He cracked his knuckles and his neck, hoisted one of tree-trunk thick robot arms like a club. “Or, all your bones... heh.”
The android powered up auxiliary weapon systems and the lawyer flipped through his portfolio, trying to find the most relevant combat appropriate clause.
The largest bookshelf the lawyer had ever seen crashed through the ceiling, bringing down a rain of
debris and smashing the troll bouncer flat. The mahogany shelves were filled with thick leather bound tomes chronicling case law from endless centuries in the thousand thousand planes. The books spun, opened, their fluttering pages forming a loose portal.
From out of the center stepped Gratzgia Snulgrithn aka Snolthrign Giatztarg with an expression like the canary that ate the cat.
“You’re in trouble now boyo,” she said, smiling with all three of her yellowed teeth, “I got my own lawyer.”
From behind the beasttender-cum-hair snake stepped a beautiful, perfectly coiffed woman with dark brown eyes that could terrify a basilisk. The android’s atmospheric sensors detected that the temperature on the foundry floor had lowered several degrees from no discernible cause. The lawyer swallowed, rubbed at the pale circle where his wedding band used to sit on his finger.
“Well, aren’t you going to introduce me?” The woman said.
“Paralegal Android 1337 allow me to introduce Evenlyn Mundus-Bane Senior Associate...”
“Actually, I just made partner.” She corrected.
“Evenlyn Mundus-Bane, Partner of the Firm Stoker, Benchley & Mundus-Bane.” The Lawyer exhaled, “Also, my ex-wife and the most black hearted woman ever born to any sentient race this side of the nineteen hells.”
“Charmed, I’m sure,” she said, nodding towards 1337, before continuing with the lawyer “Irwin you’re looking well. Now, pleasantries dispatched, shall we get down to business?”
The lawyer turned to the android, “You catch up with the elf,” before opening his portfolio to the hidden clauses and finest of the fine print housed in the back. “I’ll handle her.”
The Genre Underground's Story Chain starts Monday the 15th and I'll be participating! It'll be over a dozen indie authors creating a collaborative story post by post and link by link. It's going to be a tonof friendly oneupsmanship and I'll post more details as I get them.
Indie Game: The Movie is a documentary that tells the interlocking stories of three indie games and their creators: Fez – Phil Fish, Super Meat Boy – Edmund McMillen & Tommy Refenes, and Braid – Jonathan Blow. I'd previously played all the games mentioned (with the exception of Fez) and enjoyed them. I'm a gamer since I can remember so -if nothing else- viewing this film was fascinating as it allowed me to follow along (post play) with the thoughts and philosophies of the creators who made these games.
It's an incredible privilege to see into the minds and lives of the people who make popular, idiosyncratic art. Film has a documentary tradition (because it's filled with filmmakers) and writers have endless stacks of memoirs to chronicle their journeys and their struggles. But video games are still a young art form, and one often dismissed (Ebert's 'video games are not art' comments spring to mind). Which is part of what makes Indie Game: The Movie's reverent discussion of games all the more special.
The cinematography is lush and gorgeous and oftentimes clever; in no hurry to move on with the narrative. But the so very true, so very relatable stories of creators struggling to make (and make their living at that making) is what truly powers this film.
As a writer, the creators I'm most familiar with my own ilk and their own peculiaties when it comes to acts of creation. And while they're all amazing, and have all helped me develop as a creator; by spending so much time with writers I sometimes lose sight of the larger picture by becoming mired in the minutiae of writing specifics. Basically, sometimes I develop artistic nearsightedness. More than anything, watching a film like Indie Game: The Movie, helps me take a step back and see the universal aspects of making art: the agony and ecstasy and doubt and hope and triumph of it all.
It's a rare pleasure to find a work of art that lives up to the legacy of the work it chronicles. And that’s exactly what Indie Game: The Movie is. I highly recommend this film.
Earlier this month, I got to attend Condor and enjoyed it thoroughly. Played some Pathfinder, tried out a game called Artemis (cool concept, multiple players each with their own station and responsibilities each control a subsystem of a starship: can't wait to see this evolve into PVP), sold some books, created a live episode of of the John vs Patrick podcast (which I'm still editing), spoke on two zombie panels (which was awesome), and participated as part of the 'Delphic Oracle' (which was an absolute blast).