[FFML] Exalted C+C DB Summer

Miashara miashara at deepfriedpuppies.com
Wed Sep 8 10:05:49 PDT 2010

> DB is having E-mail trouble and asked me if I could try and post this C+C
> from him to the FFML
> Thanks
> Finally getting to this:

Excellent. Glad to see you finished.

Minor grammatical comments taken without comment.

>> Exalted is the creation and property of White Wolf Publishing. No
>> infringement is intended. This is a not for profit fan work.
>> This is it. If you read it, I hope you enjoyed it.
>> All chapters at ff.nt
>> Act 5
>> Angel shrugged. "It seemed reasonable at the time," was the only
>> explanation she offered. After that Hail took over the narrative of  our
>> capture and reverse interrogation. They agreed that the panther  had
>> probably let it go on exactly as long as he wanted. The  coincidence that
>> he had left with his students in tow just as Dog  arrived was too 
>> unlikely
>> to be unintentional. Similarly to Maheka, the  jungle cat had set the
>> situation so he would gain if we succeeded, but  lose nothing if we
>> failed.
> % One smart cat

One of the things I like about the series is that the characters, while 
great and powerful, move in circles of other characters also great and 
powerful. You wind up with an interplay of people who have their own agendas 
and little free reources or time to devote to these characters, but still 
recognize the import of getting a handle on them.

>> "When I was living in the Imperial City, I once heard Dragon-Blooded
>> warriors talking of 'Charms.'" Dog reminisced. We all grew silent,
>> surprised he was willingly breaking his silence on his history. "At  the
>> time I didn't understand what they meant. They talked about them  like
>> they were tricks, little moves they've figured out which let them  go 
>> past
>> the normal limits. I think that's what we're doing."
>>  >
> % Sounds about right

One of the advantages of having main characters who don't really know what's 
going on is they can explain things to the reader a little more organically 
then if everyone in-story already knows what's what. Preaching show-not tell 
is good, but I want you to have some idea what's going on.

>> "I noticed that too," I agreed. "There were things my old sensei  taught
>> me to do but never explained why. When I would ask, he just  told me that
>> it was part of the form. But up until now, I've never  been able to make
>> the tricks work. Now, they seem easy. The secret to  them, the 'trick' I
>> was looking for, makes sense now."
>> "Are these tricks, Charms,  magic?" Hail asked.
>> "No," replied Dog thoughtfully. "They're close, but I don't think 
>> they're
>> the same."
>> "So, how long did you live in the Imperial City?" asked Angel, losing 
>> the
>> fight against her curiosity.
>> > "Oh, look. The sun's setting. We should pick up the pace,"
> % Dog: If you have enough breath to ask questions, you have enough breath 
> to
> run

How did you guess? Was he not being subtle? :D

>> "My dreams are always pretty strange. I try not to pay too much 
>> attention
>> to them," he replied.
>> "Strange how?" I asked.
>>  >
> Dog: I dream of tearing off my face and discovering I'm Daniel Baldwin
> underneath.
> Ending: : Wow! That beats mine by a longshot.

And that's the first thing that springs to mind? 0_o You may want to talk to 
someone about that.
>> "Did you kill Ash Maiden?" I asked her.
>> For a moment Defile Perilous stared at me, like she was debating  lying.
>> Finally she shrugged. "Yes. I did. Shall we make this a formal  duel,
>> then?" asked the Icewalker.
>>  >
> % Too bad they didn't come to her first, but then the story would be much
> shorter

Yeah, the answers are always with the last person you talk too.

Of course, if they're with the first person you talk too and you keep 
talking, then you're probably not doing it right.

>> Angel lost her mind. She landed and lunged, and Defile swept her  weapon
>> around to parry and kill as she should have done so easily now  that she
>> could focus all her attention on Angel. Yet the starmetal  weapon twisted
>> slowly, and cleft the air where Angel had been. With a  crunch it bit 
>> into
>> rock and stopped.
>> Defile Perilous looked down and saw Angel still. She saw the glorious
>> hilt of the saber driven to her sternum, nestling between her breasts.
>> Curiously she looked at her own weapon, wondering why it had failed  her,
>> and only then saw half my bloody body trailing the ornate handle.  My arm
>> had spasmed shut when the nerves connecting it to my spinal  column had
>> been severed. It had thrown her balance off just enough.
>> "I lost?" Defile Perilous asked, confused, before Angel swept her own
>> weapon upwards, taking her head. An alchemical signal
> % sigil? perhaps?

sigil. Spell check, you failed me again.

>> glittered on her  forehead and began to fade.
>> Dog and Hail arrived as Angel turned to me. My blood had stopped  gushing
>> and now just trickled out.  All that was left was my head, an  arm, and
>> about half my chest. With three friends clustered around me,   I tried to
>> smile as the last bits of strength faded from me. Life was  good, I
>> decided. Then I died.
>> The End(ing)
>>  >
> % And so it was. I'm mildly surprised as I thought he'd survive. And since
> the person that was conducting the first person narrative is dead, it can
> end abruptly.

It's amazing how this helps to avoid belaboring an ending. Off the narrator, 
roll credits, sweep up and go home.

> % Excellent story. Sorry it took me so long to read and review it. I 
> enjoyed
> it a lot.

I'm glad you did. The world is a lot of fun to play with, and I hoped this 
would be accessible to people who didn't know how the toys worked already. I 
was most of the way through writing it when I got stuck. The Ending is 
something of a jackass, and I wasn't looking forward to finishing this. Then 
someone I knew mentioned I should just kill the narrator, and everything 
fell into place.

I'd never killed a first person narrator at the end of a story before, and 
it wasn't the sort of thing that would occur to me normally. But I was 
pleased at how it worked, and that it would be a bit of a twist I could 
foreshadow without heavy-handed 'Bum dum bum!' music in the background.

Anyway, I hoped for an entertaining adventure read, and I think that worked. 
Thank you very much for the commentary. It was a big help. Good luck in your 
own writing.


> DB Sommer

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