This real-time collaborative storytelling scene took place sometime in 2002 online on Star Wars: Reach of the Empire. I played the roles of C4PU and Dash Rendar:
Infirmary (Imperial Prison Facility: Kessel)
This sterile-looking facility is where prisoners who are injuried in the mines receive medical treatment. Rows of beds extend outward from the walls, and several medical droids move about from patient to patient. From the look of things, injuries in the mines are a common occurrence, and new patients, many in very serious condition, are brought in in a nearly constant stream.
From Bacta Tank, Phoenix doesn’t open her eyes and her cuts slowly stop bleeding. The bacta’s still a muddy purple colour from the blood released already though. The teen floats in the tank, hands unbandaged and looking beat up to the extreme.
C4PU walks into the infirmary, arms bowed outward as he approaches one of the worktables.
Elaer tilts his head to the side, looking at the human in the tank curiously. Seems he can’t help but wonder what happened to the young woman to beat her up so badly. The droid finishes wrapping his ribs, pulling the wrapping tight to make sure everything’s held in place, eliciting a yelp of pain from the Duros.
C4PU rearranges the swabs and medical gear on the worktable. Quietly studies the new formation. Makes a “tsk” sound and goes about rearranging them again.
From Bacta Tank, Probably not anything all that much – just shift duty. A braid that’s waist length or longer hangs down, piling up slightly at the bottom of the tank. Ix continues to sleep or whatever it is she’s doing, a small smile crossing her face – whether or not it can be seen from under the rebreather is hard to say, as is the cause of her happiness.
Elaer glances at the protocol droid, examining it with a quiet confidence, an assessing look. It’s the kind of look you’d see from someone well versed in droid matters. He nods politely to the 2-1B droid as it finishes tending to his cuts, scooching back a ways on the bed to sit with his back against the wall and watch the room easily.
C4PU turns and makes his way toward the bacta tank. His optical receptors flicker for a moment, and then he and his reflection turn toward the 2-1B droid. “How much longer do you anticipate this patient will require bacta treatment?”
The medical droid replies, “Her bacta treatment is anticipated to last 24 hours although it may be longer if her hands are not healed by that time.” Ix just..floats and smiles, a stream of bubbles coming from her rebreather.
“Oh, my,” the protocol droid replies, turning his attention back to the prisoner adrift in the bluish-green fluid. “That is most unfortunate. The overseer made it quite clear. He wants her back in the mines this afternoon.”
This real-time collaborative storytelling scene took place in 2003 online on Chiaroscuro. I played the role of Arkady.
The spiraling stone stairs lead from the receiving hall to this cavernous, chill chamber of torch-lit stone shadows. The walls are festooned with the twisted visages of sneering, leering and snarling gargoyles with horns and fangs and wildling claws, gazing down on those who inhabit the residence as if prepared to pounce.
Jamot Seamel, first master of the Brooding Keep, carved the exquisite sculptures from gray marble taken from a quarry in the River District and, in the third year of marriage to Anae Nillu, had his vassals install the sculptures as a ward against the Shadow’s Touch. In the fourth year of their marriage, shortly after Anae celebrated her nineteenth birthday, one of the sculpted gargoyles cracked and fell from its stone perch as she strolled beneath it.
The blunt force of the marble form did considerable damage to her head, but the blow was not instantly fatal. She lingered for six weeks while the healers ministered to her, and while Jamot struggled to keep hope and faith against the misery of realizing that what had been meant to protect his beloved, created by his own hand, had felled her.
A gap exists in the circle of gargoyles – the fallen sculpture never got replaced in this chamber that became known as the Sorrow Vault.
Arkady yells, “Fat Arkady! The Shadow take you, keep your bloody hands off that gargoyle!”
Standing near the top of the stairs, the stout form of Arkady waggles a beefy finger at a particularly obese younger version of himself, who is trying to grab at a gargoyle perched on a pedestal. Other boys, ranging in age from toddler to teen, move among the gargoyles. Some boys are tall. Some are short. Some are skinny. A couple are fat. Some are hairy. Some are hairless. All seem to be just a step away from getting into deep trouble with the older man. “Now, I mean it! Hands off the sculptures! This is why we have nothing nice, lads!”
Chamber doors fling open and out staggers Jafron. Barefoot and with mussy hair, the noble frantically buttons his silken shirt before spotting his new guests. His face is crimson in an instant and he freezes mid-button. An instinct from deep within suggests to the soldier that if he should remain perfectly still, and make not so much as a whimper, he shall go unnoticed.
Arkadia brushes her unbound hair back over her shoulders as she hurriedly steps out of the suite *right* behind Jafron, almost running right into him. She tugs at her clothing and tries to cast a quick, reassuring smile toward the nobleman, but her own face is rosy with heat. There’s a glimmer of mischievous merriment twinkling in the girl’s green eyes, however. “Papa! What are -you- doing here? And with the -boys-!”
There seems to be no trace of merriment in Arkady’s face as he reddens and turns toward the sound of the whooshing doors, the blurted inquiry of the woman. Distracted from critiquing the gargoyle-handling by his sons, Arkady growls, shaking his finger at Arkadia. “We come to take you back, Arkadia.” He narrows his eyes, lowering the finger and glaring at Jafron. “M’lord, I mean no great offense, but she is yours in service to the house – not in service to your base needs. I hear things, down low where we are, and it bodes ill. I come here, and I see it for myself. Have you no fine ladies to bed, that you must soil my only daughter? An abomination, you are, m’lord, I must say it, I cannot keep my tongue. So, me and the little Arkadys come callin’. If you be a man of honor, you’ll release her, free and clear.”
- This real-time collaborative storytelling scene took place online on OtherSpace about 11 years ago. I played the various roles of the “guides” Fulton encountered during his vision quest on the planet Quaquan:
- Vision Cavern
- The centerpiece of this round chamber with its low ceiling and walls carved with stick-figure heiroglyphs is a gurgling blue spring surrounded by a rough ring of yellow stones and lit from below by luminescent moss growing on rocks within the spring. That glow gives this chamber its only illumination. The echo of the water dances off the walls.
A young Qua boy walks into the cave, without a word, bearing a basket of cloth-wrapped dry white bread – a small loaf. He sets the basket on the edge of the spring.
Fulton glances at the boy. “Thank you.”
The boy ponders the offworlder for a moment. He seems about to speak, a question on the tip of his tongue, but he stops himself, turns and walks away.
Fulton watches after the boy, as he leaves, then looks towards the basket.
With a small nod to himself, he turns his gaze towards the spring. Spirits? Nonsense. Thoughts cruise up and down his mind, but he quickly shakes them off, deciding its best to focus on that which needs to be thought upon.
A sweet-smelling mist begins to roll into the cave through vents low on the rock walls.
Fulton sniffs the air, quickly looking around. “What in the-?”
The mist smells like orange blossoms – and it tends to put you at ease. It does not harm you, or render you unconscious. It simply makes you feel…content to be.
Fulton turns his gaze back at the spring. Tilting his head slightly back, he closes his eyes, and feels calmness sweep him over.
You hear the sound of feet padding into the cave through the entrance, and rapid, raspy breathing.
Fulton opens his eyes quite slowly, not at all startled, and glances towards the entrance, looking for the source of the sounds.
Opposite the spring from you stands a wolf with gray fur, strong haunches and bright blue eyes that study you with brilliant intensity. Thanks to the effects of the mist, it doesn’t seem to surprise you at all, really, when the creature speaks: “You seek the wisdom of the guides?”
“I do.” Fulton replied simply, staring at the wolf.
The wolf’s tongue lolls out, a look that might almost be mistaken as mirth on its face. “What is your question?”
This real-time collaborative storytelling scene took place on OtherSpace back in 1999. I played the role of Rathorl, a reptiloid Nall competing against a rival for a mate:
Sun Goddess Square – Nalhom
Before you stands the very edges of a tropical jungle, amidst it a large, carved stone structure grants you entrance into the heart of this planet. During the daytime the sun’s warmth hits the very center of this lush courtyard and during the night the clear cool light of the planets three moons converge on this spot to form a spectacular light show. To the left and right of the carved structure lie huge buildings carved out of the same stone but much more ornate in their construction. One structure lies open allowing the suns rays to filter in during the day while the more ornate building is decorated with large bronze statues of a female lizard holding the sun above her head while Ydahri and other slaves look up in awe. Off to the left the ground flattens and appears cultivated.
Betoth moves, with a clacking of claws and a harsh, constant hissing, from the tunnel of the tube station. He is as he always is– Betoth, in his armor, bearing his weapons. Though his armor has obviously been polished, he has made no other concessions to the event.
Kh’rrtyris rustles into the Square, some ways behind Betoth. Upon seeing Rhas’eas, she hisses, nostrils flaring slightly, and bobs her head in deference to her mother. “Mother. Nalia shine upon you and grant you favor.” Her tail begins a slow, swishing movement from side to side, jaws opening a fraction as her tongue darts out to scent the air.
From her perch near the bronze feet of Nalia, Rhas’eas is resplendent in her finery, obviously donned especially for the occasion. As Betoth enters, she merely inclines her head. At Kh’rrtyris greeting, she raises her palm, “And may she shine on you, my youngling”
R’ikamvril tastes the air with a flick of her dark tongue, obviously eager for the battle to begin. She stands off to the side, but her eyes are keen and alert.
Betoth extends his palm to Rhas’eas, inclining his head. His hand then drops to his swordhilt. He draws it, the metal rasping out. He narrows his eyes, the wrinkles making his scarred flesh jut out ridgily along his cheeks. “I am prepared.”
Rhas’eas drops her eyes to examine the steel of his blade. Her mouth opens slightly with wry amusement. “I see you took my advice. Your sword is newly sharp, is it not?”
What I’m Reading
Blackout by Connie Willis
What I’m Playing
Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War II
You Don't Know Jack
World of Warcraft
Left 4 Dead 2
What I’m Writing
No Son of Hekayt - Book I: Artifacts
Free to download in PDF format!
Coming soon: 31 Days of OtherSpace - 1 work of fiction a day during March 2011.