Thursday, May 28, 2009

Revenge Pt. 1

A note about these texts: I write them very quickly and with little to no editing. As it flows into my head, so shall it be laid down. So, if you find an error you cannot let stand, feel free to leave a comment.

It was a normal, overcast spring day in the Confederacy of Rhodokius as Benam made his way down the rain soaked street. His pace carried him through the muck with the quick vigor of a man on urgent business.

He came to the edge of the paved roads in Jaekal, and turned quickly onto the main road as he pulled up his cloak. Arthur's shop was just a few blocks from where he currently was, and the nearest guardhouse was at least three farther than that.

Traffic was busy today, which was good if you didn't want to be noticed, but it bothered him since that meant increased militia activity in the area, and Benam was unsure as to whether his theft had been noticed yet.

Breathing a sigh of relief and shaking off the paranoia that threatened to set in, Benam ducked into Arthur LaPoint's shop.

“Busy day today,” LaPoint said, not even looking up from his ledger.

“If that is the case, then why is your store empty?” Benam asked as he walked to the counter.

“Seems my normal clientele are lying low since it is Festival soon and the High Council has their dogs out to make sure things go smoothly. But more than a few have mentioned that if a certain trinket came my way, I was to let their buyers know post haste.”

Benam smiled and pulled his stolen treasure from his pocket. The glittering object was a pendant that was inlayed with exotic gems and emblazoned with the House Raichs’ coat of arms.

“Well, Lord Raichs is not going to be happy this went missing. Hopefully some poor concerned noble looking to curry favor with the Councilman will snap the curio up from the villainous hands that try and pawn it in some dive.”

“Speaking of,” Benam said, holding out his hand, “I believe we had an agreement. Lest the militia be alerted to the existence of such a pawn too early in the game.”

“Always so serious, Sir Benam. Though I must say, I am a bit confused as to why you would steal from your lord’s keep.”

“The same reason anyone betrays the hand that feeds them. Revenge.”

“I see,” Lapoint said, looking over the pendant. “Well, as agreed, two thousand denars. A word of advice from one who spends a lot of time in the shadows, revenge is a bloody affair and should be avoided lest it seek you next.”

“No, it is much too late for that.” Benam said. “Just as his transgression against me fuels my rage, so too shall his treasure fill my coffers and feed the men who will come knocking one day soon.”

He put the coin purse into his robes as the slow spattering of rain began outside.

LaPoint merely shook his head, made a note in his ledger and summoned his page to deliver the good news to the various minor councilmen who would find value in returning the pendant to its rightful owner.

Benam stepped into the ever increasing downpour, turned, and strode out the front gate, a smile on his face for the first time in weeks.

New Project!

I play way too many videogames. They steal away from my productivity, so I have decided that it is time to make them work for me.

I have always had a habit of just kind of mentally plotting out the adventures and thoughts of the character's I play whenever a particular scene strikes me. This, it occurred to me far later than it should have, would be a great way for me to practice small writing techniques and hone my characterization and scene setting if only I committed them to some media other than the meat twixt my ears.

This is where you readers come in. For your personal entertainment I will post small snippets of story following the progress of the character of whatever game I am currently playing. I will also include on the first post of each series a link to the game I am playing as well as a brief synopsis about the general plot and the company who made it.

So, onward to round one. The game for this one is Mount and Blade, a middle ages tactical/combat RPG. As the player you are dropped headlong into a sandbox world to rise in the ranks of the kingdom of your choice or simply raise hell. Your call. The graphics for the game are a bit dated, but the combat, should you utilize everything at your disposal, is very deep.

Our hero for this tale will be Benam, a young page who left his post in order to acquire the means of revenge against a Lord in his realm.

So buckle up, and lets get ready for Revenge.

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Stars

Recently, one of my projects has had me thinking a great deal about the stars and the universe that we live in. As a writer, one of the things one has to do is keep a big picture in ones head so that the story relates the proper scale of things, but this can get a bit difficult when you try and think of anything much larger than say... a small island.

To help put things in perspective for things on a galactic scale, I use a program called Celestia. Just viewing our solar system is a head trip. Zooming out far enough from Sol just to take in the whole of the solar system renders the inner planets nigh on invisible. Distances out side are damned HUGE. Its amazing and more than a little bit humbling.

What amazes me even more, is the fact that every day those distant stars grow just a wee bit closer. With each unmanned probe, and each new ground based advance, we inch our way out of the protective shell of Terra, and reach our fledgling hands towards those closest of objects.

It is enough to set the imagination aflame of even the most incurious of peoples. This introduces the second problem with writing about space: namely that it is so varied and alien to the senses that it is almost too big of a sandbox for the imagination to play in.


One of my favorite themes inside of science fiction, and one that I don't feel has been explored enough, is the idea that we are so damned small in a universe so big that our minds can't even visualize it. It is so beyond our sense of scale! Yet we strive towards it in our imaginations so much, that we make it into as much a reality as possible!

Whew. Sorry, was getting a bit excitable. It is late, so I will just leave you with a video narrated by one of my heroes: