The finale begins, and Kim is fired up to maximum snark-ness! She was so snarky in fact, that I couldn’t squeeze in all her hilarious edits. I apologize. :'(
Dring meets Parlay on the roof of the Dhaston building. Tyle is critically injured. The model, Error, has been destroyed. But Parlay’s master plan is still in motion. He is going to connect the two planets with a permanent hex door: the hall! A massive hex door opens above Hardpan City!
Darrow and Vornis are outside the city of Hardpan now, and they witness the next phase of Parlay’s plan: the entire city, foundation and all, blasts out of the ground and starts to float toward the hall in the sky! Holy crap!
The lords ley on Jesice are worried as they see the city fly through the hall at them. Everyone else that lives on the cliff-side city is also upset and screaming from the rooftops.
Dring doesn’t know why any of this is happening either. It looks like Parlay is going to kill thousands of people for no reason. However, Parlay is ready to fulfill his promise to heal Dring’s throat damage. Once healed he can finally have the confidence to speak to Mean in person, and he can forget about Parlay and Jesice. Dring refuses and runs away, crying.
Kim’s big problem: Now before I start with the edits I must address a most pressing concern. Kim sent me an email. She told me that ‘hall’ is a dumb name. “Please rename it to something cooler” she said. “It just sounds so small and generic.”
Kim probably doesn’t know this, but I made a post on the hall’s name before. I talked about all the names people have used for spacial gateways in fiction. Portal. Wormhole. Or for you Witcher fans, “Conjunction of the Spheres.” I just wanted to build on the ‘hex door’ theme. A door opens and closes. A hall is always open.
But I don’t think something is cool just because you give it a cool name; I think something is cool because you MAKE it cool.
I’ll use a Dragon Ball example, since Kim has watched that. The character Piccolo. Without knowing anything about him, you might scoff. “What a wimpy name! That’s a kind of flute, isn’t it?” But he starts out as one of the strongest villains. A demon king, even! The hero Goku fights Piccolo and beats him at great risk to himself, but he allows Piccolo to live. Then Piccolo is forced to team up with Goku years later when a greater evil arrives. Piccolo even trains Goku’s son and teaches him how to fight after Goku dies. He learns to care about the boy, and realizes that humans aren’t so bad.
So when Vegeta and Nappa show up and murder all the other characters, and Goku’s son is about to be blasted into pieces, what are you thinking when Piccolo jumps in front of the oncoming beam to save his sworn enemy’s child?
You’re thinking “Piccolo is the coolest name in the universe.”
So I’m not changing the name. 😛
Dring teleports up to the roof to where Parlay is hanging out.
- Parlay stood on a polished floor partitioned from the rest of the roof by short, cushioned walls.
- Kim – Not sure what this is supposed to be. Like a rooftop deck? How are the walls cushioned? Like inflatables? Or covered in actual cushions? And what purpose would cushioned walls serve? In case he fell off?
Yes, that’s what they’re for! Because Parlay is standing inside a roller skating rink that can fly around in the sky! It’s just sitting on the roof now.
And no, it isn’t inflatable. I’ll be sure to clarify in the description.
Now Dring cries to Parlay about how the model, Error, was demolished.
- Then the model––a lowd ley and some guy twashed it when I wasn’t paying attention!
- Kim – Really? Why wasn’t he paying attention? Wasn’t that his only job?
It WAS his only job! What’s going on here, Dring!? Don’t tell me you were gawking at Mean in the previous chapter while she was flying around in your hex door trap! For shame! I might have to write out your voyeuristic actions in that chapter so EVERYone knows what you did!
Parlay praises Dring anyway, despite all his whining.
- “The model got far enough to mark the city; everything’s fine; you did quite well.”
- Kim – Possible to explain a little more what this means? Or did previous chapter edits explain this already?
No, Kim. I will NEVER explain it. Not until Abandonment Party 3: The Wonder Mark.
Only joking. The city was marked so that a massive hex door could be opened in the sky to connect the two planets.
- “It is the next step in King’s hex door technology: A hall,” Parlay said, his yellow eyes growing wide. “All the machinery was right here, in this area. Instead of warping space for only a moment––it makes the path between two places permanent!”
- Kim – Wait, who is King? Like the King or is this a person? Have they been mentioned before?
“The King?” You mean Elvis lives, and he’s in my book? No, this is King, the inventor of the hex doors. Tome AND Vornis go on about King many times in previous chapters. I mean, I gave King a cliche name so you’d remember him. Matt remembers him. Don’t you, Matt?
- Kim- Possible to give it a cooler name?
The hall? I see you need a lesson on what makes a name cool. I’ll write it up at the top of the post, so it will be easy for everyone in the world to find.
As the hall forms, a pentagon appears, then a flickering five-pointed star inside it, then ANOTHER pentagon inside the star.
- The flickering lines snapped solid; their edges creating a smaller pentagon inside the first.
- Kim – Wait, how is it another pentagon? Thought it formed across when a flare went out? Wouldn’t it be shaped like a five-pointed star within a larger pentagon?
Kim was confused here because the lines were flickering. She thought the hall was being sabotaged or something. Maybe I’ll take that part out.
But the five-pointed star DOES form a pentagon when the lines cross each other. Not sure why it isn’t working for you. Maybe I should put it on the book cover. It looks so cool already, though.
Now the hall is open, and Parlay can see Jesice above him.
- “Yes, yes! There it is!” Parlay laughed as the shock echoed. “The tall mesa and the city at its side!
- Kim – This is awkward dialogue. Maybe just move to the narrative or omit?
It’s more like Parlay is just repeating what he’s been told about Jesice from Tyle and Dring. I might change it, now that you mentioned that it sounds weird. And the shock is from the sudden clash of two air pressure zones colliding. The side of the hall on Jesice is way higher than the side above Hardpan.
The air is rushing from a low pressure zone to a higher one, so there’s wind rushing over everything.
- Dring wobbled as a hall emitted a dull, continuous roar. Parlay ignored him, his loose sleeves and feathered hair rippling about in the breeze that was rising––his head turned upward with an open grin at the hall in the sky.
- Kim – Sounds a bit like an 80s glam rocker here. Guessing that’s the intention?
You got me, Kim. I can’t hide my excitement for Bon Jovi any longer:
Parlay starts to sing along:
There it is! The tall mesa; city at its side.
I’m wanted: Dead or Alive!
Sometimes I sleep, sometimes it’s not for days;
The people that I meet always go their separate ways.
Then Parlay jams on his guitar as the wind whips his hair. We see a black and white flashback with Dring sobbing as he plods down the building’s stairway. Cut to Tyle dead on the bottom floor of the building. Trisk is backup vocalist. Vornis is on drums.
No! What! C’mon, Kim!
Vornis and Darrow are outside the city now with Trisk. No one is playing drums or singing.
- “That looks like Jesice. Why is Jesice in the air!?”
- Kim – Re-word? Doesn’t sound natural. Wouldn’t he wonder what the glowing door in the sky was first?
Yeah you’re probably right, since the outer array for the hall is miles long, too. If anything they should see the lines first, then have the lines lead them to the center where the portal part is.
Now everything starts to shake as the city lifts off.
- As the two turned from the car, the road at their feet shook with a tremor.
- Kim – Please omit. Where else would the road be?
Hey! We’ve got cities in the sky, magical laser beams, and rock stars all over the place. Anything NORMAL at this point is out of the ordinary and MUST be pointed out.
Parlay starts shouting commands for the city to lift off and fly away.
- “Activate balance motivators!” he called. “Clear the subsoil! Begin repulsion! Aim for the hall!”
- Kim – No idea what any of this means.
I’d like to point out that I did NOT go over this chapter before sending it to Kim. Or any of the other chapters after this. We have quite a bit of hilarious confusion to look forward to.
I’m sure you figured it out but I’ll tell you anyway: The balance motivators keep the foundation of the city stable and upright. Then the soil beneath and around the city is broken up and launched away. Now the city levitates straight up into the sky toward the hall.
Vornis tries to jump onto the city before it flies away, but falls short. Kim was a bit confused here and thought he was trying to catch Darrow’s shirt as it blew away. Pretty funny, Kim.
- It shone white in the sun, and the monster bounded toward it from all fours. He spread an arm out as he arced through the air to the city, falling short of the broken-off edge of the street; it rose out of his reach.
- Kim – Okay, so they were outside the city after all? Why wasn’t the trench a threat then? They were never worried about that? Possible missed opportunity for conflict: They would have to move the car with Trisk in it away from the trench before they’re all killed?
Missed opportunity? I can still make it happen! Stop being so glum, Kim. I know this chapter seems insane, but creating fun from chaos is my specialty!
The city flies away. The wind that tore off Darrow’s shirt was from the vacuum created as the soil was ejected. And since the city is moving upward, air is moving around the entire thing. It’s science.
- After checking the mud-flecked car where Trisk was still sleeping, he watched the whole city go: its foundation marked with large block letters reading ‘HARDPAN.’
- Kim – So the car is fine, just a little dirty on the outside? Absolutely nothing landed on the inside of the convertible? Like Trisk isn’t even covered in anything? And they have no worries about the edge their on caving in and falling into the trench? And he just watched Vornis possibly fall to his death and he doesn’t react at all?
Okay maybe they SHOULD push the car a bit further back. That’s tons of dirt, not mere flecks!
Now the lords ley at Ley Ledge see the hall in the sky.
- The flags at the walls were being whipped in every direction, and a new sky and yellow landscape hung above the zigzagged banners.
- Kim – Also a blue sky? So not very different? How could they tell the two blue skies apart?
Whoops, I meant to say that the new sky IS the yellow landscape of Overland as seen through the hall. They can’t see the sky from the other planet since the hall is pointed at the ground.
Or maybe the lords ley DON’T see it? Lord Ley Prayler is trying to escape the falling city, but Lickwolf acts like he didn’t even notice what’s going on.
- “What are you talking about!?” Lickwolf asked.
- Kim – Um, what? Does he not see it? Possible to change dialogue to make him sound a bit more observant/intelligent here?
I’m not sure why he’s acting like that; Lickwolf should have noticed the hall. And he should have confidence in the Jesian military. They couldn’t stop a little robot, but I’m sure they’ve got this under control!
The lords ley DO look down the side of the cliff for some reason.
- The other Lords Ley joined Prayler at the railed edge, peering down as they reached it: and from the many rooftops beneath them, the people of Jesice stared back. Their screams and cries rose up, and the skies were thick with flocks of agitated birds.
- Kim – Wait, why is everyone up on their rooftops screaming? Is that what they do to get the attention of the lords ley in emergencies? Why wouldn’t they be evacuating the city or taking shelter somewhere?
Don’t you pay attention to politics, Kim? Screaming mobs get results!
But how would they evacuate? Jump? Other than air travel, the only ways down are by elevators and very long stairways. People could flee to the interior of the cliff, too. But all of this would take a very long time, and these poor saps on the rooftops know it.
Okay, okay. I’ll write in a parachute salesman.
Oh, NOW Lord Ley Vail notices the hall and falling city. He just needed a rooftop full of people to scream at him.
- “What is that black oval in the field by the city?”
- Vail clapped his palm to his mouth. “A shadow––the city’s shadow,” he answered. “It’s moving.”
- Kim – Wait, what? How is he seeing that? Isn’t the city rising directly up? Wouldn’t their view just be of the city getting closer and closer? And why is the shadow a complete oval? How are they seeing the entire shadow unless they were seeing it from under the city?
Not sure what you mean about not being able to see the shadow. The sun is hitting it at angle. I guess I need to specifically say that it isn’t noon? The shadow should NOT be an oval, however. It should be like a black smear across the plains.
At the end of the chapter Dring is horrified by what’s happening. He shouts “I thought I knew you!” as he runs away from Parlay.
- Parlay did not give chase; he watched him go and he let his arm drop.
- “No, Dring, you never had that chance.”
- Kim – Not sure what this is supposed to mean. Like is he sad he didn’t open up to Dring more? And could combine with previous paragraph/action from Parlay.
Uh oh, another ending chapter line that’s open for interpretation. Maybe that could be my trademark. Kim ends her chapters with cliffhangers; I’ll end them with vague mystery quotes.
However, my friend Matt SHOULD know what Parlay means here. Only because he’s read further than you have, Kim. I’m not saying he’s more in touch with fictitious characters’ feelings. 😉
See you next time!