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Thread: Untitled Fantasy Project excerpt

  1. #1

    Untitled Fantasy Project excerpt

    Hi all, new to these forums-- I have some very, very jumbled ideas about a fantasy-esque story I'd like to write this winter and here is an excerpt of what I've written. I have not edited any of this, very raw, and so are my ideas. I would explain the background information more, but I want to know if this excerpt actually makes you want to hear more of the story. I lose a lot of motivation if I'm alone with my project. A few of my hick-ish type characters are out camping when they run into something otherworldy. Hope you enjoy this thing:

    ************************************************** ************************************************** *

    Night began to fall. The sun sank gently into the west, splaying an amber shine across the rippling waters of Lake Arcadia. As nihilistic and cynical as Niko often was, he knew that late at night, when your eyes were torn away from the light of your TV and phone, the sky became truly beautiful, like a dazzling ocean hanging heavily above the world. He hated how that thought came across in his mind. It’s rhetoric was something his mom would throw at him to get him to pay attention to the world around him, to enjoy the experience of life. Enjoy the little things, Niko thought to himself. It’s a bit paradoxical and if there was an “on” switch, by God he would love to turn it on. His head turned back into an echo chamber- he hated it. Tonight was his. He was out on his own terms. And dammit, he would enjoy it.

    “Josh, how bout some music?” Niko asked, wanting to get out of his head a bit.

    Josh cranked the dial to channel 102.7- no, some pop song was playing- 104.9- there we go, some reminiscent 80’s tracks. Niko was annoyed because his love of older music was hard to pursue- all the names of the past get jumbled up, like memorizing pre-Civil war military leaders in history class, it all slipped out of his head the second he heard it. Regardless, it was soothing. Music blocked his train of thought. He slipped back in his seat a little bit and relaxed. Not even worried about Josh’s crappy driving. On occasion, when the road was straight and there weren’t any cops in sight, Josh would floor it, going 70, 80 down country roads. Niko would sweat and shrivel up in his seat, but he never had the nerve to ask Josh to stop.
    Every fell into beautiful focus for a split second. Everyone has those fleeting moments when all of their worries seemed relieved, if but for a moment. Maybe after you finish a big test, get off a busy shift at work, the world finally lets you off the hook. Niko got to experience this moment for about four seconds.
    Though the sky was clear, the sound of thunder shattered the tranquility to pieces, screeching through the sky, tearing the fabric of the calm June evening.

    “****!” Josh shouted, veering his wheel to the right, running off the country road. “What the **** was that?”

    Niko would have judge him for being so startled, but the resonance was unlike any thunderstorm he had witnessed before, it sounded like the lightning had bolted inside the car.

    Josh felt his legs, arms, and put his hands on his face- all there. “Are y’all okay?” He asked. His twang never failed.
    “I’m good,” said Luke.

    Niko did an arm and leg check—he’d heard stories of people in accident who were so spiked with adrenaline, they wouldn’t even know if they were injured. A guy could have a metal rod through his head and think “I’m fine!”.

    Josh put the car in park.

    “Woah, wait.” Niko hesitated. “The hell are you doing?”

    Josh got out of the car. He walked around the Durango, kicking the tires, looking on the underside of the vehicle.

    “All good?” Luke asked.

    “Think so.” Josh replied.
    Then Niko saw it. Deep in the woods to the west of the car. The sun had crept down behind the lake entirely, coating the woods in an inky blackness. With one exception. There was an azure blue glow in the forest—like an engaged cop car sans the red lights.

    “What’s that?” Niko asked. He immediately regretted it.

    Josh looked at the light, then scanned the road. The camp seemed abandoned tonight.

    He began walking into the forest.

    “Dammit, let’s get back man, this butter will melt.” Niko said. But Josh kept creeping into the woods.

    Luke sipped a beer in the back. “Let’s go see.”

    “Maybe it’s a forest rave,” Josh joked. Parties weren’t even his scene in the first place. If he were to be invited that is.
    Luke chuckled. “Yeah, that’s how you draw out bigfoot.”

    Jesus H. Christ, was he buzzed already?

    Niko was anxious but his pride swallowed his anxiety whole. This place was most likely abandoned, no park rangers in sight to bust them, and the biggest threat in the heart of Oklahoma was maybe a coyote or two. Do coyotes even eat people? Niko wondered. Probably not. Especially a group of three.

    The three continued into the forest. The sound of lakeside bird squabbles died down with the sun, and the lakeside wood was quiet. Only the crunching of leaves, and a few crickets nearby.

    The blue light was growing closer. Still, it’s origin was unknown.

    “Is it one of those pillars they have at the universities? Ya know, you press it and it calls the cops?” Josh asked.

    The boys walked into a clearing and it became clear—this was not a man-made light. At the base of a rotted out true there was a hollow with jagged, black teeth of wood. Inside the hole, the turqouis light emanated, deeper than the dimensions of the tree would even expand. Before the gaping maw of the hollow lay a seemingly unconscious girl. She was African American, her dark hair was grown out and frizzled. Her arms were coated in all sorts of golden and bronze bracelets, like royalty.

    “Oh sh-“ Josh began.

    Nico’s heart skipped a few beats. He prayed to whatever god might’ve been listening, hoping he hadn’t stumbled across a dead body. He squatted at her side.

    “Ma’am, are you okay?” He asked.

    She didn’t move.

    “Oh God,” Nico said. “We need to call the police I think.”

    “There’s no service out here.” Luke argued.

    “None for me either,” Josh admitted. “Plus there’s beer in the Durango.”

    “Are you ****ting me, that’s what you’re worried about? Help me get her up.”

    Luke and Nico grabbed the girl’s arms and maneuvered her marionette-like body to its knees. Her knees wobbled and she seemed to fading back into a conscious state. Her eyes began fluttering and she took a deep breathe.

    “Phew,” Nico was relieved. Taking his hands off her shoulder, Nico’s arm brushed the back of the girls frizzled hair, revealing what looked almost like violet chalk marks on the back of her neck, like a tattoo giving off a feint bioluminescent glow.

    “Woah.” Nico said. He got lost in the moment and traced his finger across the back of her neck. “What’s thi-“

    The girls hand clamped on Nico’s throat. His trachea being crushed, he’d never felt so helplessly breathless since the Mozarella stick incident from back his childhood.

    He clawed aimlessly at the girls arms with his left hand while trying to pry her clutched fingers off of his throat with his right. But it was hopeless, she had an iron grip. Luke and Josh starred in horror for a split second before Josh aided in removing her vicegrip. As Nico began to turn blue in the face, she loosed her grip entirely and the boy fell to the forest floor with a thud. He quickly began doing a crab crawl backwards as his palms traversed the wet leaves and stabbing twigs.
    Nico had made it a about ten feet way before he realized the strangler was not pursuing him. It was in this moment, Nico saw her face for the first time. Her worried expression was bathed in the azure light of the glowing tree. Her eyes were brown and soft. Her mouth was agape and she brought her fingers to her mouth. Josh backed up a few feet as she raised her hand. Luke stood amidst the scene, but seem a bit paralyzed, either in awe or horrified. Both of these sensations were fair game.

    “I’m- I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you.” She said.

    “Didn’t mean to?” Josh retorted. “You just strangled him! What the hell’s your problem, we were trying to help!”

    She began to back away slowly, fearing what she had done. “I’m sorry—it was a startled reaction—it’s just so dark here I thought maybe—” She rubbed her temples like her thoughts were hurting her. “Agh! I’m just so exhausted.” She began falling to her knees again. The boys did not offer a helping hand this time.
    The girl planted her hand in the soil. She felt the wet grains of dirt between her fingers.

    “Where are we?” She asked, confused.

    Luke, Josh, and Nico all exchanged concerned glances.

    “Oklahoma?” They all responded, confused as well.

    Suddenly, thunder roared in the distance. Another tendril of lightning descended upon the forest, maybe a mile out. The reasonance of thunder rolled across the forest. The wind billowed though the trees, the crickets went silent.

    The lost girl’s face went from sad and apologetic to sheer terror. “They’re coming. We need to go, now.”

  2. #2
    TheFairyDogMother kiz_paws's Avatar
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    Welcome to LitNet, Wallace.
    I enjoyed your excerpt and hope that you will indeed post more.
    Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty
    ~Albert Einstein

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