O meu hovercraft está cheio de enguias

I saw this on twitter and it’s a good image for Martialla current day – I don’t know what copyright I’m in violation of, as always I apologize

I’m not a writer.  Actually that’s not true, since everyone else is dead instead I’m the best writer in the world.  This journal I’m writing will become classic literature in the future.  While I’m at it I suppose I should set about re-writing all the world’s great novels and claiming I’m the original author.   See you in hell Tolstoy!   

Anyway, I was not a writer in the world I came from is the point.  However, I know a thing or two about scriptwriting.  There are a lot of ways things that can go wrong in a script.  The stakes could be too low.  The conflict could be too easily resolved.  The characters could be subordinate to the themes they’re meant to embody which makes them flat and lifeless to the audience.  The characters could be poorly defined.  In particular character motivations are tricky.  The list of issues goes on and on.  It’s really kind of a miracle that anything good is ever written given the many pitfalls that can befall the screenwriter.   

One of the common problems with writing and the one that is my personal pet peeve is when there’s a story with bunch of characters so a writer will think “oh no, character number four hasn’t done anything in a while” so they’ll wedge in a stupid scene where that character solves a problem with whatever stupid hook the writers gave to try and make them memorable.  According to every movie ever made, every character has a special skill, and that skill will eventually save your life, regardless of how impossibly stupid it is.  The dumb kid that likes jazz will blow up the alien spaceship by playing their saxophone, or Jennifer Lopez will break open a bank vault with her ass. 

The second Lethal Weapon movie has a great example of this horrible instinct.  The first scene is Mad Max getting out of a straightjacket for the amusement of his co-workers, so you better believe that later in Lethal Weapon Two the bad guys are going to put Mad Max in a straitjacket and chuck him into the sea.  You know that classic way of killing someone. 

I was in a deleted scene for Lethal Weapon Two you know.  One of my only gigs a kid actor, I was the daughter of the “diplomatic immunity” guy.   But check this shit out, they’re currently developing Lethal Weapon Five where my character comes back for revenge, but they’re talking about giving the role to Charlize Theron, that emotionless coat-rack from the Keanu Reeves devil movie!   Can you believe that?  I’m available!

What does this have to do with anything?  If this was a movie this is where I would sneer in derision because they writers are trying too hard to make the Ela character seem useful.  She can’t fight like the other three or fix a car or fly a plane but she has girl social skills!  I mean it’s true, I do have girl social skills up the ying-yang, but the thing about movies is that realism is often not appreciated – people hate reality, it’s boring, that’s why they’re watching a movie.   

I used my talking powers to arrange for us to tag along with one of Aquaman’s water caravans which will get us in the general area of the car parts store.  And I befriended some renegade plainspeople to escort us the rest of the way there.  And I got the Jesus Lady people to send a couple folks with us to fill out our ranks a bit.  They’re religious fanatics so they should be useful if we get into a scrape.   

And that’s all fine and dandy but here’s the super sweet sixteen part.  We’re going to be traveling by water clan hovercraft.  A hovercraft!  And I mean a real one people, not the bullshit ones from my time.  We had things they call hovercrafts but they were just dumb boats, they “hovered” on the water the same way my feet “fly” on the ground.  But King Trident has an actual hovering machine that they use for his water runs.   

Lucien was confused by how excited Martialla and I were by the prospect of checking out the hovercraft. He thought it was technology from our time.  He was disappointed when we told him that there weren’t any real hovercrafts in the year 2000.   Like personally disappointed in us, like we should have invented it or something.

There’s a metal plate thing on the hovercraft that says “United Cattle Company” so at some point after the turn of the millennium but before the end of the world there were cowboys flying around on hovercrafts rounding up cattle.  I have to assume these space cowboys also had jetpacks and laser-lassos.  Now that’s a movie idea!   

Martialla had to ruin everything of course, saying that it looked like the desert skiffs from “Tattoo Nine” in Star Wars, which is a stupid name for a planet even by Star Wars standards.  To get her back I asked her if she was talking about the USS Enterprise.  She threatened to punch me in the boob but she said it with a smile.  Hovercraft! 

Martialla bombarded the crew with questions but it quickly became apparent that they had no idea how it actually works, they’ve just learned what buttons and levers they need to toggle and tweak to make it go.  I’m pretty sure there’s a name for that.  When the underlying technology has been lost but people still know how to use it day to day.  If the thing ever breaks down that will be it because no one understands the mechanics.

There has to be a lot of that going around these days. 

OOC – Questions are just friends you haven’t met

Yesterday when I was brushing my teeth I decided that my toothbrush was done and I would throw it away afterwards.  Then I realized that the toothpaste tube was as empty as it was going to get as well. 

I don’t know when parents start making their kids brush their teeth so I don’t know how long I’ve been brushing.  I’m going to guess to guess at least 40 years.  That has never happened before.  Brush and tube “running out” at the same time? 

Now I’ve seen it all. 

It bugs me how much toothpaste must be left in the tube no matter how much you squeeze it.  One time I tried ripping the tube open and scooping out the clinging paste but it didn’t work well.  I want there to be some way to get it all.

I follow a lot of blogs.  What I think is a lot.  One time another guy talked about all the blogs he follows and it was hundreds.  Sometimes the authors of those blogs ask for feedback.  Usually no one responds.  I feel bad about it.  But I also don’t respond. 

Some of these questions are related to my other blog. 

https://agtheshine.com/

It’s massively popular and will probably be a show on Freevee soon. 

When you enjoy fiction do you prefer for it to be fiction all the way down or do you like it when real life people pop in? 

Example, if Bessie Love the old timey actress was revealed to have been a magic monster hunter in her day would that be “cool” or “lame”? 

In that example does it matter one way or the other that Bessie Love is a fairly obscure reference?  Would you feel differently if it was say, Jennifer Lopez?

Does the inclusion of real people make things feel more real or hurt you suspension of disbelief?

Decades ago in the early times of the internet I was a writing site and I hated it when people had their characters interact with real people.  But I think that’s probably because they were shitty writers more than anything. 

If someone writes a story in a world that has well established canon do you like it if the major characters show up or would you prefer that they be absent? 

Example, if I write a Star Wars story would it be “dope” or “gross” if Darth Vader showed up? 

Scenario one – straight up murder.  Scenario two – the protagonist uses magic to unbind a spell that someone else was using to live beyond normal lifespan which makes them die of “old age”. 

Logically these two actions are the same.  The main character did something that resulted in someone else dying.  But they feel different to my feelings.  Do you have different reactions to these?

When a character doesn’t kill bad guys does it bum you out if it comes back to bite them in the ass?  Is it annoying when they talk about their conflicted feelings about it all the time?

When a storyline doesn’t have a solid conclusion does it make things feel more “real” or does it seem lazy and crummy?  Or something else?

Do you like pumpkin pie? 

OOC – How to be a better writer by becoming Big Time Wrestling world champion

I don’t read as much as I did when I was young and full of life – this full life evidenced by the fact that I spent a lot of time in my bed reading – but I still read books.  This makes me super smart and better than people that watch TV or play sports.  Book snobbery amuses me.  Most books are trash.   

I used to read when I took breaks at work back in the days when I went into an office for work.  People would often come up and take the book out of my hands to look at it.  Or they would ask me what I was reading and then 100% of the time follow up with “Never heard of it”.  It was super annoying.  Why would you start talking to someone who was reading? 

Even though I read a lot because I am super smart there aren’t many authors I like.  I have a bad habit that when I find an author I enjoy I read a bunch of their books in succession and then I don’t like them anymore because here’s a spoiler – most authors write the same book over and over with variations.   

One author I do like is Elmore Leonard.  I don’t remember where we are in the cycle of authors being hated and then loved and then hated again with him but a few years ago people liked him.  I think now he’s on his way to hate land.   

I saw a tweet the other day that told me about Elmore Leonard’s 10 rules for writing.  I thought I’d talk about that because I’m running out of steam for the current story and still want to write.   So this is it.   I’m not trying to give advice, these are just my thoughts about these rules.  In the words of Bender Bending Rodriguez “I never wanted to hurt anyone, or help anyone.” 

Never open a book with weather 

That does seem kind of hackey.  It was a dark and stormy night.  I wonder where that came from.  Apparently it’s from an old book called Paul Clifford.  I should read it, that would give me all kinds of snooty book cred. 

Avoid prologues. 

I can’t explain why exactly but I also find prologues annoying.  Probably for the same reason I don’t like the “three weeks earlier” storytelling device.   

Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue. 

This probably relates to the secret eleventh rule, it makes you sound “writery”.  

Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said”…he admonished gravely. 

This one I find interesting.  These rules are part of a whole book on how you should write stuff.  I wonder if there’s more explanation.  I’ve be curious to know more about this one.  I do it ALL the time in my super awesome writing.  

Keep your exclamation points under control. You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose. 

Sure 

Never use the words “suddenly” or “all hell broke loose.” 

I’m interested in this one also.  I suppose the idea is that most things just happen, it’s not really sudden? “Suddenly” this thing happened.  Or did it just happen?  What made it sudden?  This one is amusing because people say this IRL not infrequently.  “There I was at the bank and suddenly all hell broke loose!”  I write reality sir.

Use regional dialect, patois, sparingly. 

No problem here, I don’t really know any.  I wonder if this is because you don’t want to annoy people who don’t understand that dialect or for a more writery reason like it’s dumb.   

Avoid detailed descriptions of characters. 

Heck yeah buddy, I don’t describe shit!  I’m terrible at describing things.  

Don’t go into great detail describing places and things. 

Seems like this could have been combined with the one above  

Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip. 

This one is funny because it’s actually necessary.  I would say only twice in my life have I actually tried to write something “for real”.  One was a movie script and the other was a novel.  In both of these experiences I found myself with really weak sections because I was writing stuff just to bridge from one thing to another.  I’d have plot thing A and plot thing C and then I’d try to fill in some crap for B and it was always terrible.  I think if you’re writing something just to write it and it has no value itself get rid of it.  Although I say that have never finished either of those works so its easier said than done eh? 

Then there’s a secret 11th rule –  

My most important rule is one that sums up the 10.   If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it. 

Here’s a story about this rule.  My first Ela story, the worst of the bunch, I re-wrote the opening scene three times and I never got it “right” because it always sounded “writery”.  I think that’s different from purple pose but it’s a real thing.  Maybe overwritten is what I mean.   

In wrestling there’s a term “overbooked”.  See matches are “booked”- who’s going to win, what the story is supposed to be, generally what’s going to happen.  “Overbooked” is when there’s just too much stuff thrown in.  It often happens when they’re trying to “protect” someone.  Wrestler X has been built up to lose the title in a big match but now Wrestler X is going to be in a new movie and the studio doesn’t want them to lose on TV but you promised Wrestler Y they were going over and it’s in their contract so . . . a bunch of stupid shit happens.   

But it’s wrestling, isn’t it all stupid?  Yes, but also no.  Wrestling is storytelling and good stories pay off.  Some people, you know the ones I mean, will tell you that the reason wrestling sucks now is that the very simple story of “bad guy is bad, eventually good guy triumphs” doesn’t happen anymore.  Bad guys don’t sell merch so instead you have a bunch of cosplayers who randomly win and lose based largely on non-wrestling things. 

And overbooked match is, in essence, one that doesn’t pay off the story.  Like the end of Lost.   

Example, SummerSlam 2009.  John Cena beats Randy Orton by DQ, which is already kind of bullshit because DQs are lame.  But then the match is re-started because of reasons?  A fake DQ is actually kind of okay, because now the good guy is going to win for real!  But no, Randy leaves and we get another DQ.  Super lame.  But then the match is restarted again for no reason!  This better be it.  Uh-uh!  Randy wins with bad guy trickery!  But then the match is re-started because another referee saw him cheat.  Because unlike every other match for 200 years this one has instant replay?  Now John is going to win, but instead a “fan” runs into the ring for another DQ.  But the match is started again and Randy wins quickly.   

This is overbooking.  John Cena was supposed to win by the “story” but instead that couldn’t happen for some reason so they tried to snow it under a bunch of stupid stuff.  I suppose in a way it works.  No one remembers that there was no payoff.  Everyone just remembers that the match sucked.   

I don’t know what overwriting is exactly, but it’s first cousins with overbooking.   

The spy who just liked me as a friend (content warning, lady boobs!!!)

Also god-butt.

This blog https://sarahholz.com/2022/05/20/of-pirates-and-persians-chariton-of-aphrodisias-callirhoe/ made me aware of this painting. 

It’s called “A Girl Defending Herself against Eros” by William-Adolphe Bouguereau.  Eros is (was?) the Greek god of love who shoots people with love arrows to make them fall in love. 

I imagine in this scene that Eros has already tried to shoot the girl a few times and she ducked and dodged and/or kung-fu chopped the love arrows out of the air so now he’s coming at her stabby style.  She’s not into it, she doesn’t want to be in love, she has things to do. 

I’ve been showing this around and one person asked why Eros was trying to kill the girl and I explained that it was “just” a love arrow stab not attempted murder.  It made me realized how messed up the power to make people fall in love would be.  “Oh, you’re in a relationship, well WHAM now you love this other person!  How you like that?!”

My first thought was that it’s a violation of free will it is!  But that’s not right.  Because you don’t choose who you love.  Or maybe you do sort of but it’s still not cool to love arrow people. 

I vaguely remember a guy in Marvel comics who had some kind of love power.  I think he was in the She-Hulk universe.  He just used the power to sexually assault ladies though.  Mainstreams comics don’t normally touch on those sort of things but they throw you a weird curveball every now and then like that whole Dr. Light thing.

Or when that guy hypnotized Superman and Barda into making a porno so he could blackmail them afterwards.  Which makes no sense because if you can hypnotize Superman and Barda why do you need to resort to blackmail?  Maybe the subtext is that his power was that he only hypnotize people into making porn.  There’s definitely weirder powers in DC than that.

A person told me that the most unrealistic thing about my writing is that Martialla and Ela make jokes about porn.  No woman would ever do that they said. 

Taylor Tomlinson has a funny bit about how proud men are of themselves when they fall in love.  She really got me with that one.  I do kind of feel proud of myself sometimes.  The other half of the joke is that in contrast women congratulate themselves on not falling in love with a guy on the first date.  I don’t know if that’s true but it was funny also. 

Anyway, I’ve explained love to you all so now you know. 

OOC – A low down wordy shame

A book I’m reading directed me to a research paper called “Explorations in Automated Language Classification” which I didn’t read because I’m not a nerd but I did skim/scan.  The book was talking about how language changes over time, which I knew because I’m so smart, but it also learned me that some words are more stable than others because I’m so dumb.  Some words lose or change meaning quickly, like the word computer, which meant “A woman who performs calculations” only for a few years before it meant “magic box that makes people angry”.

This was brought up in the context of the plays of Shakespeare.  If you read them now someone super smart like me and mostly figure out the meaning but there’s a lot of nuance that is lost and someone dumb like a dumb dummy can’t follow it at all.  And then it talked about Beowulf, which is technically written in English but is incomprehensible to even a super smart person like me.  But even in Beowulf there are words here and there that you recognize today. 

The gist of all this is that the more common a word is the more likely it is to “stick” and the less a word is used the more likely it is to be forgotten or change.  In the paper they categorized the words that are the same now as they were a 1000 years ago (in English) which they assume have a good chance of staying the same for another 1000 years or longer –

Blood, bone, breasts, die, dog, drink, ear, eye, fire, fish, full, hand, hear, horn, knee, leaf, liver, louse, mountain, name, new, night, nose, one, path, person, see, skin, star, stone, sun, tongue, tooth, tree, two, water

There’s probably some kind of writing challenge that can be made out of this list but I’m too cool and lazy to care about it.  I just thought it was interesting. 

I’m surprised that liver is on the list.  I feel like I hardly ever say liver.  Maybe that was more important in the last 1000 years when people were butchering animals, although neither “save” nor “get” are on the list so maybe livers were so important you didn’t need to tell someone to get it. 

Breasts is on the list of course, but knee is a surprise.  Who knew people were so into knees?  I hate knees.  When summer rolls around and the young people put on their short shorts I hate it.  Cover up your knees people.  I bet most people in olden times had bad knees, but “hurt” or “pain” isn’t on the list so maybe they just said “knee die”.  Or again, maybe everyone knew their knees hurt so it didn’t need to be said. 

At first I thought that louse was another outlier but then I remember that until like 1980 everyone was swarming with lice and fleas and parasites so it makes sense. 

I find it interesting that people mostly only needed to count to two, and that “zero” or “none” or “nothing” isn’t on the list.  I suppose people just shrugged when they didn’t find any livers to eat. 

Anyway, I’m going to change my name to Sun-Tongue Tree-Tooth so people in a thousand years will understand.

OOC – Martialla Monday

As you all know this blog started off as “real play” solo RPG that I turned into narrative form.  Each successive story has leaned less on RPG structure but I still use a character sheet and rules set because I find it helpful in resolving things/injecting randomness and I also still use some RPG random “create an X” charts because what am I going to do, come up with my own ideas? 

Point being that I’m kind of in a low energy mood for the Ela-pocalypse story.  The dice aren’t giving me anything that I find interesting right now and I can’t really think of anything on my own at the moment.  But it’s clearly very important for me to stick to my schedule because . . . . of a reason.  So let’s talk about the Martialla character. 

Back in the bad old days of the D&D Ela story I decided I wanted to write more dialog so I needed a sidekick for Ela to talk to.  I don’t remember my childhood teachers generally, but I do remember two of them – my gym teacher and my creative writing teacher.  I remember my gym teacher because she hated me and made my life miserable because my sister was a few years ahead of me and she was a nightmare.  I believe they call that misplaced revenge.  

I remember my creative writing teacher because she would give me helpful feedback like “your dialog is terrible” and then I would say something to her like “oh that’s bad, how could it be better?” and she’d sneer at me at tell me to figure it out.  I mean what was she going to do?  Teach me something?  As if.  In fairness to her my dialog was terrible.  I mean I was in HS. 

I don’t remember how I came up with the name Martialla but I like it.  Is it a real name?  Maybe.  I bet I only misspell it about 14% of the time.  Partialla the Martialla character was meant to balance the ticket, D&D Ela couldn’t fight for shit so Martialla was a melee combatant.  D&D Ela had all the social skills maxed out so Martialla was rough and tumble.  D&D Ela was a leader so Martialla was a follower.  D&D Ela hated magic so Martialla was a spellcaster.  And so on.  What they had in common was ruthlessness, a hard-scrabble background, a penchant for nonchalant quips, and a lust for revenge. 

Over time D&D Martialla also became something of a morality pet/voice of reason, not that D&D Ela listened to that kind of thing much, but she (Ela) did soften somewhat over time.  None of my friends read my blogs anymore but a couple of them did try and support me in those early days – their main feedback was that they couldn’t handle Ela constantly scamming everyone and stabbing them in the back.  I doubt it came across but the idea was that Martialla would pull Ela back from being a totally immoral monster. 

A recent comment made me think it would be funny if the “twist” at the end of this is that really Martialla was the protagonist all along, there is no Ela and Martialla is in Hell eternally being reincarnated in different scenarios and living horrible “lives” as imaginary construct Ela’s minion because in the real world she murdered the man who killed her loved one. 

One concern I have with the Martialla character is making her too much of the “hyper-competent sidekick” trope.  Across genres I like to keep that Martialla is Ela’s “muscle” but sometimes I think I go too far in having Martialla fill in knowledge gaps for Ela.  On the other hand I have to remind myself that just because something is an archetype that doesn’t make it bad – it’s pretty hard to come up with something completely original.  I used to work with a guy that had been writing a novel going on 17 years and part of his process was he wanted to make sure that everything in it was something that had never been done before.  Which is insane in the membrane.  Still, I make an effort to reign in it sometimes and not have Martialla know about a topic either, or have her have ideas that don’t work out just as much as Ela. 

Recently I had Apocalypse Martialla get tore up from the floor up because I wanted a way to establish finally for real and true that they’re full of nanorobots.  But then after I hit the reset button and made sure there was no chance of any kind of real emotional impact there I mildly regretted it.  It would have been “better” writing if Martialla had died for real but then who would Ela talk to for me to practice my crappy dialog?  A new character?  Gasp.

I try (and mostly don’t) take my writing too seriously, but the other day I was having a laugh at an article that was talking about how male writers writing female characters make them models or actresses or hookers a ridiculous amount of the time and feeling superior and judgey, but then I realized that some of Ela’s baseline traits across all universes are being pretty and vain and catty, and a singer which is actress-adjacent and kind of “girly” occupation.  So in that context, if I wanted to defend myself (against whom?) Martialla serves another purpose as well, she’s the one that can get laid, and she’s “normal” so it’s okay. 

In conclusion one time I had had someone do some art for superhero Martialla and it’s great so here it is again. 

It’s hard to draw feet

OOC – Bay of whistlepigs

Note for anyone who doesn’t know, whistlepig is another term for groundhog.

Groundhog’s Day is easily the worst holiday. It’s the beginning of February, of course there’s going to be 6 more weeks of winter. It’s winter! Also even though I really like Bill Murray, I never got the fuss about the movie Groundhog Day. I found it boring.

However. Today it was brought to my attention that Punxsutawney Phil, the groundhog they drag out of the ground for this festival, is 136 years old. Which if you’re not aware is 130 years longer than a whistlepig normally lives.

That’s as may be you say?

Check out this shit from groundhog DOT org – “Punxsutawney Phil gets his longevity from drinking the “elixir of life,” a secret recipe. Phil takes one sip every summer at the Groundhog Picnic and it magically gives him seven more years of life.”

First of all if he drinks every year and gets 7 more years of life each time, that means he’s banked 956 years of life. Why are they still giving it to him every year?!

Secondly someone needs to steal this elixir. I don’t care if it only works on whistlepigs, the knowledge needs to be shared. I may write a story about the great whistlepig elixir theft but I’m probably too lazy. Do people like writing prompts? If so this is one. If not it’s not. I don’t want you to think I’m not cool by talking about writing prompts if you don’t like them.

OOC – Black Friday the 13th

One unexpected side effect of starting a WordPress blog is the many other blogs I’ve started reading.  There’s a few oddballs in the mix but they generally fall into three categories –

RPG blogs (mostly D&D since that’s the most popular RPG by a substantial margin these days) that I read to get ideas for RPGs and to shake my head at how the young people play RPGs these days and lament that the world I grew up in in gone.

Movie review blogs that I read because I enjoy how upset everyone gets by each new Marvel movie (and Star Wars to a lesser degree) because it RUINED everything because there was a female character in it. 

And horror movie blogs.  I enjoy the occasional horror movie but I am by no means a big horror guy.  My sister is a huge horror movie fan.  She honestly tries to see EVERY horror movie that comes out each year.  It’s crazy.  I like reading these blogs because I enjoy how into it people are.  People who are really into horror movies are REALLY into horror movies.  There’s been so much written about Friday the 13th and what’s really going on there and which movies should be “canon” that there should be a Wu-Tang American Tale style documentary about it. 

This is how I learned that Friday the 13th Part 9: Jason Goes to Hell is generally reviled by the Jasonheads out there.  I get why you wouldn’t like it, if you’re really into the Jasonverse, making Jason a Deadite and the Voorhees family Deadite cultists does pretty much overturn the mythology they had going.  It’s not as bad a Midi-chlorians to Star Wars people but its close. 

As a casual horror fan though I love Jason 9 the most, and not because of the Deadite thing, even though I am a fan of the Evil Dead.  I love it because of the opening scene. 

If you’re not familiar the opening scene is a sexy lady (the same actress who did the nude karate fight in Point Break which was the greatest thing I had ever seen when I was a young fella) going up to Camp Crystal Lake alone.  She goes into a creepy old cabin and immediately gets naked.  Which of course is how you summon Jason.  Sidenote, I one time wrote a Friday the 13th script where a lady gets naked and Jason doesn’t show up and it makes her self-conscious that she’s not attractive enough to get the attention of a supernatural killing machine.  That’s probably not okay anymore but I think that was in 1998 so I’ll forgive myself on your behalf. 

Anyway, Jason shows up and nudity 2-shoes dodges the machete attack and after falling off a balcony onto a coffee table she springs away like a gazelle.  At some point she wraps herself in a towel because as we learned from Zombieland no one wants to see a naked woman running full speed. 

Jason chases after her and she leads him into a trap where a small army of FBI dudes shoot Jason to pieces with an illogically wide array of firearms.  Also they appear to be in each other’s line of fire, but whatever.  Dudes even quick-rope down trees with assault rifles to get in on the action.  And then the pièce de résistance, after shooting Jason several hundred times the FBI guys all hit the deck and they finish him off with a mortar attack.

This is awesome.  But it also does what any great film does, it makes us think.  What did the FBI know about Jason?  And what does that imply?  Some people (you know the type) have tried to say that the FBI was just going after a serial killer, but to them I say – you don’t have small artillery  weapons for close fire support at the ready to blow up a serial killer.  Even in the 90’s you’d get in a lot of trouble for that.  To me this clearly indicates that they knew they were dealing with something supernatural. 

I submit that the FBI had collected all the details of the many times Jason has been dealt “fatal” wounds and shook them off, and the times that he had “died” and come back.  And based on this they decided to try some good old fashioned heavy firepower.  Let’s blow this fucker up with a mortar and see what happens. 

So, we have to wonder, is this the first time the FBI acknowledges and deals with a supernatural threat?  If not was there a special unit that deals with that kind of thing?  This is what I need to know more about.  Has there been some FBI agent out there (Mulder?) for 20 years trying to get attention to this Jason Vorhees thing and someone finally paid attention to him? 

Or was the FBI supernatural kill unit born after the federal raid on Innsmouth, Massachusetts in 1928?  These are the questions I want answered.  Were the people that killed Jason (he came back don’t worry) working on a pill to protect teenagers from Freddie Kruger and other dream masters?  Were they trying to figure out a way to harness the power of the Hellrasier dimension to create portal that would generate unlimited free clean energy?  Did they have a Chucky operation in the works? 

The Chucky angle is especially interesting.  Eddie Caputo is a serial killer who manages to voodoo throw his soul into a doll.  I have to assume the FBI was already on his trail since they deal with serial killers, and the information that voodoo can throw souls around is something that it seems like they would be interested in.  Not very PC since voodoo is a real religion, but what can you do?  If not Innsmouth maybe the FBI magic division came sprang from the Chucky case and they started recruiting people with knowledge of African diaspora religions to build their new squad. 

And what about the army?  When they heard about Jason did they want to learn his secrets so they could build an army of nigh-invulnerable Jason-like soldiers to take out the Russians?  Did the FBI have to work against them as well to prevent that horrific dabbling?  What did POTUS have to say about it?  What about the Supreme Court?  Does the Bill of Rights extend to supernatural entities?  Does Jason have civil rights? 

But that’s not even the most interesting question raised by Jason 9.  The real story I want to know is what the heck is going on with Creighton Dukes?   

So Dukes goes out to Camp Crystal Lake as a teen and Jason murders his girlfriend so he dedicates his life to learning about how to defeat him.  Uh, excuse me?  How does one study Jason?  Where does that information come from?  Is there a Jason section in the library I don’t know about? 

And why does he break that dorky dude’s fingers as “payment” for telling him what the hell is going on?  Is he magic and he draws power from pain?  He later produces a magic dagger that is the only way to kill Jason.  I submit that he’s a magic man and he made that dagger.  His girlfriend was murdered and he traveled the world Dr. Strange style looking for true magic and he found it.  And now he lives in an armored compound and has brought in six serial killers as a bounty hunter.  I want to know more about this dude. 

He tells Jessica Kimble that she’s the only one who can kill Jason because she’s actually Jaon’s niece.  How would he know that?  Because he’s the one who did the magic on the dagger of course.  It all makes sense. 

And while we’re on the subject of the Kimbles, Diana Kimble is Jason’s half-sister, the daughter of Elias Voorhees.  We don’t know much about Elias Vorhees, but we do know that he’s “far more evil than Jason” and he was killed by Momma Vorhees for beating Jason.  Oh, and we know that his great-great-great-grandfather was a warlock who was maybe burned alive when girls started going missing in Salem Massachusetts. 

So Diana is the daughter of this dude and whom?  And how did it all go down?  Does she really not know the deal?  She was hanging around Crystal Lake working at a diner, can that be coincidence?  Was there waiting for the day the dude with the magic dagger would show up so she could kill Jason?  She tells the dorky dude I mentioned before that they need to talk about Jessica.  She’s killed before she can give much exposition but that implies that she knew something about what was going on.  Is she magic too?  Was her mother a witch?  Did she specifically seek out Elias to get pregnant because he knew that only a Vorhees could kill Jason and she was getting the bloodline going for that specific purpose?  I need to know. 

Other stuff post – a third of an idea for nothing

There’s probably a way this story could be wedged into the Grace blog but I don’t think it would work best with the main character not being the focal point.  Which is kind of the flaw with the Grace blog overall, often when I think of an interesting (to me) magic premise, it has her being more of an observer than an active participant.  I’ll probably do nothing with this idea.

There’s this lady you see and she’s just hanging out doing lady stuff.  Based on every sitcom ever that probably means she’s either putting lotion on her hands or folding laundry.  Sitcom ladies love putting on lotion and folding laundry.  Then her wedding ring starts thrumming.  As you might imagine she finds this disconcerting.  Actually yeah, let’s go with the lotion idea, she takes the ring off for the lotion and then said ring starts vibrating and hopping around on the nightstand.  That would be cool. 

WTFF she thinks (you know what the extra F is for) and she grabs the ring as it pops up into the air of its own accord.  Before she can get too freaked out about that though she suddenly knows “oh shit my husband is in trouble” and his exact location pops into her head.  She hops into the car and tears off down the street.  She has a little trouble with the wheel because her hands are slick from all that lotion but she manages.

As she’s driving, the location in her mind is moving and she eventually realizes that she’s heading for the hospital.  Uh-oh, Spaghetti-Os she thinks.  She gets to the hospital and runs in and asks the lady at the counter (are those always nurses or do they have administrator people hanging around?) if her husband is there and when they’re trying to help her and/or blow her off she follows her mental homing beacon into the ER where her husband is all ripped up.

“You can’t be in here!” someone shouts and they push her out the door.  A doctor comes out and says her husband was in a car wreck and they did everything they could but he’s dead, deader than every dead dog that ever died.  She’s sad, funeral happens, sadness, etc.  She mostly forgets about the whole crazy wedding ring thing because it’s so sad.

But then one day she sighs and goes to do something with the big plastic bag of her husband’s stuff they gave her at the hospital and when she pulls out his wedding ring, both rings go bonkers and start shining with a bright light and spinning around and flying around and what have you.  Which is pretty freaky but she’s still too sad to care much about it.

The very next day a dude shows up at the house and he’s all like “Your husband and I were old pals and he told me if he ever died suddenly that I needed to come tell you a secret”.  And she’s not into it because she’s like “I know all my husband’s friends and I’ve never seen you before” and he says they hadn’t seen each other in a long time but he has something really important he has to tell her so she has to let him in right now.

She’s not buying it but she says “go ahead and tell me then if you have something to say” and he barges in and tries to rip the ring off her finger.  I’ll say she’s wearing both rings at this point, that seems like something a fictional person would do if their spouse died.  Maybe even a real person would do that.  If I want things to get really hardcore, he has some tin snips and he tries to cut her finger off to get the rings.  Point is, they tussle and she gets her gun because she’s in the coast guard?  Do you get a sidearm in the coast guard?  Maybe she’s in the naval reserve. 

Anyway the guy goes ‘bleeeeeeeaghhhhhh!” and runs at her like dudes like to do in movies when ladies have guns and she plugs him.  And she’s all like WTFFF?

The cops turn up and she’s telling them about it and one of the uniformed officers is like “I need to take these rings for evidence” and she’s like “What?  Why?  How are the rings evidence?” and then she does some Sherlock Holmes stuff and realizes that this dude is not a real cop.  He notices her noticing his uniform and he’s like “I’m actually an auxiliary policeman so that’s why my buttons look weird” or whatever the thing is that she Sherlocks. 

She calls out to the lead detective and is like “What’s the deal with this guy trying to take my rings?” and the dude bolts and it’s a whole thing. 

That’s a decent first part of a story, but like most of my ideas it’s really a third of an idea.  Her husband was a magic man because magic is real and there’s secret magic people out there.  He enchanted their wedding rings so he’d know if she ever got into trouble but without intending to it also worked the other way round – she was alerted when he was injured.  Now that he’s dead these other evil magic people want these rings because he was pretty dang magic and he put most of his magic into the rings and they’re a valuable commodity. 

So I have a first act and an antagonist and that’s about it.  What happens then?  That’s generally as far as I get with story ideas and I wonder, once again, if that’s because I’ve spent so much time running RPGs.  In an RPG, a set-up and a bad guy is usually all you need.  The players don’t need much incentive to send them running off in every direction doing all kinds of stuff, much of it insane in the membrane. And by all kinds of stuff I mean mostly violence.  Spending time building out story beyond that can be an exercise in frustration because 77% of the time you’re never going to anticipate which way the PCs are going to jump.  It’s uncanny how good players are at unconsciously thwarting the GM. 

The Dream Police

That song is by Cheap Trick, I never would have remembered that.

I’ve updated the character sheet and made some site changes if anyone is interested. I remember in the D&D Ela phase people asked me for a character sheet ALL the time (because it was so popular you see) and then when I finally put one up I don’t think anyone ever looked at it.

I’ll probably start posting some stuff for Ela story #3 this week.

Here’s some stuff that was left on my comic book Ela idea pad when she died –

Liberator pistol, not sure what I wanted to do here other than I found out about it and thought it was neat

Shark people, I forgot exactly what the idea was here, I think Martialla was going to hate them but they were actually allies

Malibu Al – a shady used car salesman guy from back home who was in Madripoor running from trouble back in the states

Red Viper – A retired supervillianess who robbed banks for the commies, to bring down capitalism you see, I think I stole this idea from Icons

Australia’s first combat cyborg – I’m not sure why I started picking on Australia, but I was going to continue with that

The shapeshifter guy was going to turn up again, somehow?

Saving Maggie was going to involve a Bullseye rip-off called Pinpoint, two people who are really good at throwing shit fighting? Thrilling!

Ela narration about how much she misses sugar, basically the same thing as I did with Coke. Why do it again? Shrug.

Ela bumps into a supervillian during some kind of wild melee and it turns out to be her estranged sister! Why is she a supervillian now? And how did she get powers? We’ll never know now I guess.

When Ela and friends stormed the prison where the Duke was supposed to be they were going to kill him and then find out he was a clone and the real Duke was alive and well! Comic books!

Some people really hate when other people talk about dreams. It’s generally not the best conversation fodder I admit. One of my friends loves talking about dreams the most, and my other friend hates it the most – what a hilariously mismatched pair!

The other night I had a dream that I was talking to an old lady who was a covid researcher. We were talking about covid research and then out of nowhere she tried to stab me in the groin with a syringe. I moved and she hit me in the thigh. The police came and it was a whole thing.

The next night I had a dream that she was standing in my driveway with her syringe waiting to stab me so I called the police. They showed up but she put on a “I’m just a confused old lady act” and the police left. She was still out there saying she was going to get me and air-stabbing with her syringe.

I figured if she showed up in my dreams again that she most likely had to be some kind of Freddie Kruger style dream infiltrator.

Thinking more about it I think she might be the ghost of the old lady that haunts my attic. I guess she has dream powers now? Which is nice for her.