Abandonment Party 2: Chapter 13 (First Draft)

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Chapters like this remind me why I like writing so much. Here, I was faced with another situation with the character Templetine. I couldn’t think up anything to define his character in the first draft, so I just used my “B.S. Method” to move the story along. “No problem” I say to myself. “I have months before I need to think of anything.”

But guess what? Those months went by. I got all the way around to this chapter again and I hadn’t thought of anything new. THEN! A few weeks ago an idea hit me. Something that worked and expanded upon the factors that were already in place. I was on my way to the shower or something and I just continued to pace there, pondering that wonderful, amazing idea that had escaped me until that very moment.

THOSE are the moments I live for. Those moments when I realize that the crappy parts of my story CAN be fixed, and that something better will rise up from it.

I probably should have saved that speech for the next blog entry where I actually show you the idea, huh?

DRAFT START

13 – Trisk vs Templetine

 “Trisk, why do you always have to be so negative?” Darrow accused. “This here with the park is just a––a paradox. It doesn’t mean that we have no chance at stopping whatever happens.”

“Well, are we really any closer to figuring anything out?” Tome asked. “And saving the rory’s life––that happened precisely the way I remembered, too. Well, from what I could perceive in my bodiless state. Parlay showed up, the fires began, and then every pattern vanished. Maybe we can’t change the past.”

After a moment’s silence Mean raised her slim arm.

“I thought we weren’t trying to change anything this time,” she said. “We still have one more trip after we get back, right? Those three other weeks: we just use those to change what we learn this time.”

“Oh, right!” Darrow said. “Of course; I almost forgot. This is just recon this time!”

Mean folded her arms and waded toward the next room. “Yep. I wouldn’t be wasting time here if I knew there was something we could be doing.”

“We could be practicing for the matches,” Trisk said. “One of us still has to make it to the end.”

“Oh, right,” Tome agreed. “What’s the lineup, then? Who’s next?”

“I am, I think,” Trisk said. “I go against Temple guy.”

Vornis yawned. “Then it’s me against, um––”

“Tenny,” Trisk finished.

“Right,” Vornis said, smacking his lips across his large teeth. He pointed a claw over at Mean. “Then we’ve got you against our dear friend, Parlay.”

Mean sloshed to her knees. “I don’t even want to think about that;” she groaned, “what happened with the male version was brutal.”

Vornis cleared his throat. “Well, you may not have noticed, but this earlier Parlay’s a bit nicer.”

Mean sunk into the water, blowing bubbles as she sighed. “Tell that to Kay Kary; she got beat so quick I didn’t even have time to see it.”

“You can keep your distance––” Trisk offered, “Kary couldn’t do that.”

“Yeah,” Mean said, rolling onto her back. “I won’t be caged up this time, either.”

“So you just float that chair outside the ring like you did with her,” Darrow said, splashing past. A mannequin bearing Hilo’s clothes gazed down at them from the rafters in the next room. Mean shivered when she saw it.

“She’ll probably be ready for that. That vein stuff absorbs patterns when it turns blue. The patterns that affect giant chairs, anyway.”

Vornis huffed and plowed across the odd water, sending Mean bobbing atop the surface. “I wouldn’t worry about that,” he said, turning sideways to fit through the passage. “Now let’s get swimming; I want to see the looks on their faces when my smiling face pops out of the water.”

 

—–

 

The sky was clear––save for the immense words written in cloud––as people appeared at the Imperial Pyramid’s corner hex doors. The vendors greeted them with various cries as they meandered to their seats. In the ring, Templetine sat on the throne. He was frowning at a ripe fruit in his hand.

“At least we know where he is this time,” Tenny said. Smatter walked on his side, keeping his eyes on the people crowding past. Charlie hovered over the ground in her leotard, scanning just over the sea of heads.

“There she is,” Charlie announced; she sprung up, darting over people as they gasped and flinched back. When she reached the door that Trisk and Mean’s group walked out of, she flipped onto her feet and landed before them.

“Oh, hi,” Trisk said. Charlie nodded.

“Tenny wanted to talk to you before your match. He’s over there by King’s pedestal.”

“Okay,” Trisk replied. She started off, giving a backwards glance.

“Good luck!” Darrow called, and she nodded, rushing away. Charlie watched her go, and Darrow edged over to her.

“What does that guy want to talk to Trisk for?”

Charlie turned. “Trisk knows our arts; he just wants to make sure that she’s using them properly.”

Mean snorted. “Oh, right, I’m so sure that ‘the arts’ is what he’s interested in.”

“What does that mean?” Charlie demanded. Mean shrugged.

“Well, I know one of his arts too, but I sure don’t see him calling me over for a private chat all the time.”

Charlie stamped her heel. “Well, maybe he doesn’t think you’re ready. I mean, look at you––you aren’t even wearing aerodynamic clothes.”

“Okay, whatever,” Mean said, pushing past. “Maybe if I dress like a cheerleader he’ll notice.”

 

Trisk went with the flow of people all the way over to Tenny and Smatter; they stood waiting beneath King’s festive pillar.

“Hey,” Smatter said. Trisk waved, and walked up to Tenny.

“You wanted to see me?”

“Yeah,” Tenny answered. “Which art are you using?”

Trisk peered over her shoulder; Templetine was scratching at the fruit’s peel with his finger.

“Destroyer,” she answered, “If he tries to trap me with the strings I can just break out.”

“Sounds good;” Tenny said, “I just need you to promise me something: that you won’t switch arts like you did with Caldera.”

“What if I need to?” Trisk asked.

Tenny put his hand on his hip. “Then you’ll just have to lose.”

“I don’t want to.”

“Well then think of it this way––” Tenny tried again, “You used that strategy once, so now your opponent will be ready. And besides: it would be boring to use the same trick twice.”

Trisk fought a smile. “Maybe you’re right. Maybe. I’ll think about it.” She spun and crawled up onto the ring. Pinada was gliding over to his place now, and several people stood, cheering. He shook his head, waving them back to their seats.

“Templetine, you need to get to your side of the ring,” Kello announced. She tipped her umbrella, pointing him in the correct direction. Tossing the fruit down, he obeyed: lumbering over to one edge of the ring while Trisk took the other.

“Alright guys, I’m lifting up the walls now!” Pinata cried. A man whooped as the glass rose into place, and King and his brother looked on from the stand.

“Think we’ll have to censor the broadcast again?” King proposed, patting his rory’s shell. Conneld folded his arms.

“As long as I’m here to see everything as it happens, I’m fine,” Conneld said. His brother coughed. “You know what I mean. Suspicious patterns.”

“Alright––start the match!” Kello shouted, and Templetine summoned two tall spools of wire at each side wall again. For a moment the braided threads appeared between them, weaving a web between Trisk and the chair; they vanished with an instantaneous snap.

“Come on, big girl, come into my ropes,” Templetine cooed. He strode across the ring, his hands buried in the pockets of his sagging pants. Trisk slid her right shoe forward. She held her fists at her chest.

“Yeah, come on over,” Templetine said, flopping down in the throne. As Kello began counting at one, Trisk crept over to one of the spools: her legs braced and her eyes focused.

Templetine put his heel on the discarded fruit, rolling it. “Go ahead and try that teleporting trick again, too––think I care? I’d love to see you naked again.”

Trisk took the sleeve of her sweater and pulled the cuff up to her shoulder. Hooking her arm, she swiped at the spool; the bound threads burst in a fibrous cloud. Templetine leapt as the tower toppled: giving way with a crack and trailing unraveling cords. He bounded out of his seat and flopped to the mat; the spool struck the foot of the chair, bouncing once. Templetine crawled out of its way as it rolled over the floor, and into Trisk’s grasp as she caught him by the collar. She hoisted him up, stopped the spool with her leg, and drew back her fist.

“Hey––I give up! You win!” Templetine cried. “You win! Stop!”

He grit his teeth and tucked his head down, hissing. Trisk released him.

“Oh, come on!” someone behind Tome cried. “That’s all!? I want to see more!”

Templetine gasped and looked out through the glass; some laughed at him while others let their disappointment be known with loud cries. The clamor went on while Kello cleared her throat and clicked her umbrella’s handle.

“The match is not over,” she boomed. “The two will continue until I determine the winner.”

“What?” Trisk asked, turning to the glass. “Didn’t you hear him?”

“I believe she’s right, isn’t she?” Pinada spoke through his case. He slid over so to Kello, fingering his scarf as he approached her. “I’m no Gamemaster, but I believe any admission of defeat is considered legal?”

Kello swished her ponytail to the side. “Vocal cues are left to my discretion,” she stated. She stared at the ring, where Templetine giggled.

“Yes, yes,” he laughed, backing up with his hand sliding up the back of his shirt. “When a master decides, you need to listen.”

“I saw something,” Tome said as the stands discussed the decision. “A pattern. It went by me. It went to her.”

“Who––what?” Mean asked. “To Trisk?”

“Into Kello,” Tome said. He took a peek at the man behind him: a fellow who was speaking with a friend nearby:

“I told you they’d never allow a match that short––people must have complained after what happened in the first one.”

Below, Templetine pulled a gun from his shirt; he held it on Trisk as she turned back to him.

“Dark was using a gun like that,” she said. “Not very original.”

“Yeah, it’s the electric kind,” Temple told her. “So unless you want to get fried, you’d better change modes––whatever it is you guys call it.”

“No, I won’t,” Trisk said.

Templetine nodded his head to the side and pulled on the trigger: a bright arc flashed from the muzzle and licked at her stomach. She fell back with a moan and locked her hands at her chest, she bounced on the mat. Templetine squeezed on the trigger again: the electric pulse struck the floor, the glass, and then Trisk’s leg. Sparks and smoke appeared each time and she did not react.

“What are you doing, Kello!?” Tenny cried. “What are you waiting for––she can’t move! Call the match!”

Kello stared straight ahead as Pinada looked up at King. He shrugged back, wincing.

“Hey, Tenny, she knew what the risk was,” Charlie said, touching his exposed shoulder. “And you told her––”

He jerked away. “I didn’t think this would happen––I thought she could quit.” He marched up to the side of the ring, kicking it. “And I didn’t think that the Gamemaster was so sadistic that she’d let––”

“That is enough, Tenny!” Kello said, keeping her eyes on Templetine as he stomped on Trisk’s leg. “I’ll have you thrown out if you continue your disruption.”

Templetine stopped for a moment: “Come on, kid,” he teased, sniffing as he wiped his face with his sleeve. “Come get your chance. She’s sleeping, so you won’t get another.”

Tome watched as a two patterns stretched out of two people: winding across the stands and meeting where Tenny stood.

“Mean––quick, what were you just thinking?” he asked. Mean slammed her fist into her knee.

“I just wanted to––!” she began, trailing off. “What was it?” She shook her head at Tome. “I don’t know; why can’t I remember?”

Below, Tenny leapt up the ring’s corner stairs. He rolled up his sleeve and made a neat slash with his fingers: whisking away a straight portion of the glass walls.

“Tenny!” Kello said, dropping her parasol from her shoulder. “Participants may only enter the ring during their designated matches.”

“Bite me,” he answered, slashing at the glass yet again. As he drew his arm back a solid object crashed into him and knocked him down to the floor––Pinada stood over him, his feet planted on the bottom plate of his cube as he hovered.

“I can’t let you into the ring––sorry,” he said. Tenny bounced onto his feet. Pinada swept sideways, barring his way.

“Let me through, Pinada!” Tenny demanded.

“No,” Pinada replied.

Tenny swept his fingers over his lips, shuffled in thought, then struck at Pinada’s glass with his palms. The surface sparked and crackled under his fingers; Pinada touched the rim of his glasses, setting them higher on his nose.

“This is bad,” Tome said, his eyes darting. “Thoughts––they’re moving from person to person. They’re merging somehow; overriding their normal cognitive patterns. I don’t know––”

He flinched back; six patterns leapt from the surrounding audience and dove at them: two racing into Mean, Vornis, and Dark. The patterns hovered a moment before joining together at their scalps.

“Well, we need to stop this match first,” Mean said, bounding straight out of her seat.

“Yeah,” Vornis agreed, leaping over ten rows of people.

“No, don’t!” Tome cried, reaching after them. He turned to Dark, who was slipping past people as he made his way to the stairs, apologizing as he brushed someone’s lap with his cape.

“What are they doing?” Darrow asked, “They’ll all get kicked out!”

“I think that’s the plan,” Tome said. “Shoot––I didn’t want to––”

He closed his eyes and dipped his head; Vornis crashed to the ground face-first at the foot of the ring. Mean sunk past the top of the glass before making it over; she grasped and twirled as she was pulled down. Her feet hit first, then her knees and palms. Her hair hung straight past her face as she wobbled and fought to stay up. A clatter sounded as Dark fell, too.

Pinada glanced over at him and then Mean, watching them both become pressed flat to the ground.

“That spell––!” he whispered, and Tenny saw his chance: his fingers punctured Pinada’s glass barrier and poked through. Vapor streamed through the holes with a sharp hiss, and Tenny swept the entire case out of his way. Pinada tumbled with it and collided with one of the sides: tipping the entire thing over.

“Pinada!” Kello shouted, “You attacked the hero Pinada!” Tenny ignored her and chopped away at the ring’s glass walls now, creating a jagged gap and wiggling through.

“Tenny, you are so disqualified!” Kello roared, clenching her umbrella’s handle. “Intrusion! Intrusion in the ring!”

Templetine removed his shoe from Trisk’s stomach and retreated: backing up to the chair as Tenny knelt at the girl’s side. She grimaced and curled up tighter as he stayed there with her; Kello started the count and made it through to the end.

“Well, is that enough for you?” Pinada asked. He stood up, doubled over, and coughed. “Is that––is that enough to determine a winner?”

Kello sighed. “Templetine goes to the semifinals––” she announced, “due to Tenny’s disqualification, his opponent will be the Beast.”

The people around her reacted with cheers and applause, others booed, stood, and jeered at Tenny.

“Throw his ass in jail!” one shouted. “Pinada, do it! Go get him!”

“No,” Pinada replied. He placed one foot on the side of his cube, tipping it so that the four corner ornaments were on top again. “The punishment for breaking the rules of the game has been carried out––there’s no need for anything else.” He coughed again into his hand, adjusted his glasses with his fingers, and touched the punctured case with his palm. After a moment the holes closed up.

“Thank you,” Tenny expressed from the ring. Pinada waved him off, wheezing and sniffling into his scarf. He lowered the four walls at the arena’s sides, and Mean, Vornis, and Dark stood upright at last. From their chairs, King and his brother overlooked the scene.

“Did you see the spell that was holding them to the ground?” King asked.

“Yes, I did,” Conneld replied. King shifted in place.

“Did you see who cast it?”

“No,” Conneld said. “There was too much going on at once––too many people. But it was precise. Just the way that he used to do it.”

King stifled a chuckle. “Don’t tell me that you think Eon is right? That the traitor Sing still lives, and that he’s come to my fair?”

“Well I know that it got Pinada’s attention, whatever it was,” Conneld said. He got up, and his medals clanged against his chest. “I think we’d better get down there to clean this up.”

“Oh, quite right!” King said, hoisting himself to his feet and mounting his rory. “I’d better call Parlay to see if she can help that poor Trisk girl, too.”

 

—–

 

Templetine touched the hexagonal key to the door. It slid apart, letting in sunlight from the slanted window. He walked in, tossed the key onto a table, and began talking when he heard the doors click together.

“Nice work out there; those suckers had no clue was was happening.”

A metallic device on the table stirred, and a cylinder affixed to its top began turning.

Yes, I do quite enjoy forcing thoughts upon others,” a distorted voice spoke. “Although, I may have been a bit greedy with those last three.”

Templetine laughed, wrenching a shoe off and tossing it onto the floor.

“I could have won the whole game right there if someone hadn’t stopped them from charging the ring. Too easy.”

But who stopped them?” the voice pondered. “And do they suspect you?

Templetine kicked his other loafer free. “They’re all idiots here––you should see them,” he chuckled. “They think some villain who’s been dead for years is behind everything. It’s pretty sad when some bogeyman gets more respect than the planet’s owner.”

The voice on the radio cackled. “A testament to how inept she is! How simple it is to waltz over and take all we want!

Templetine sighed and his sunken eyes narrowed. “She’s not as foolish as you think,” he said. “Are you being careful over there? Has anyone asked about me?”

My twin commented on how you haven’t been seen for a while,” the voice said. “I think he’s hoping that your people managed to kill you. I’ve been sending them out to harvest though––don’t worry.

“Good, good,” Templetine said. He sat down on a nearby couch, picking up a withered fruit that sat next to the whirring machine. “Contact me if anything happens. Remember that we’re both dead if we’re caught.”

The cylinder on the device ceased to spin, and Templetine stared at the fruit in his hand with a frown.

DRAFT END

Summary: Since all of this is being changed, here’s what you need to know about the match: Trisk is rendered helpless by Templetine. As she lies helpless, Tenny, Mean, Vornis, and Dark are COMPELLED to rush into the ring to save her. Zounds! This will disqualify them!

Tome, being the only one to realize that minds and thoughts are being tampered with, has no choice but to use a gravity spell to hold everyone down. Except for Tenny. Tenny then proceeds to give Pinada the metaphorical finger, enters the ring, and is disqualified. Tome was okay with that, I guess.

After winning, Templetine returns to his room and talks to some mysterious voice.

Choice Edits:

After a moment’s silence Mean raised her slim arm.

This isn’t school, Mean! If you’ve got a theory on temporal paradox then spit it out!!

“Oh, right,” Tome agreed. “What’s the lineup, then? Who’s next?”

I need to get some tournament brackets written up so that I can put them at the start of the matches. I have an old one that I made before I started writing this story, but it’s full of scribbles.

The vendors greeted them with various cries as they meandered to their seats. In the ring, Templetine sat on the throne. He was frowning at a ripe fruit in his hand.

Okay, here we go. I changed Templetine’s personality and “powers” so everything here needs to be re-worked. MAYBE he can still hold the fruit. Eh, no, I’ll save that for later.

“Destroyer,” she answered, “If he tries to trap me with the strings I can just break out.”

Ha,ha,ha, what’s that? I thought I called Smatter’s art “tearing.” I’ll still have Trisk use that one, though.

“Come on, big girl, come into my ropes,” Templetine cooed.

Holy crap I cannot erase this fast enough.

Below, Templetine pulled a gun from his shirt; he held it on Trisk as she turned back to him.

I obviously had no idea what I wanted Templetine to do, so I just had him use Dark’s gun from the previous match. It’s crap, but it got me through the first draft.

Her feet hit first, then her knees and palms. Her hair hung straight past her face as she wobbled and fought to stay up. A clatter sounded as Dark fell, too.

Okay, now I do want to keep the part where Dark, Mean, and Vornis rush the ring. Everything after this is good.

“Tenny, you are so disqualified!” Kello roared, clenching her umbrella’s handle. “Intrusion! Intrusion in the ring!”

Sometimes I have to think about why I made certain lines the way they are. This is a rare situation where Kello forgets her Gamemaster professionalism and just spits out something silly. She has every reason to do so; I just need to be careful that I don’t erase the line for being out of character.

The voice on the radio cackled.A testament to how inept she is! How simple it is to waltz over and take all we want!

This dialog is a little too cliché, I think. What’s funny is that–when I first wrote this–I actually knew way more about the guy talking to Templetine than Templetine himself.

Now, to end the post, I’d like to present some Fire Emblem: Awakening characters in their underpants:

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Sorry, this is the only way I can get my friend Kim to read all the way to the end. 😛

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