Friday, December 5, 2014

I Wrote This?! - a series reviewing my older writing - Static

This installment of I Wrote This?! is a mishmash of the last two, sort of.  No, I didn't bring the dark elves into the same universe as the X-men and Batman, let's not get totally crazy.  What I mean is that this is just a small piece of story, an intro based on an idea for a new character that I started and never picked up again.  And it is still set in Claw's world and she is still ridiculously overpowered, even showing off a power or two that I don't think was ever brought up in that other story.

The date of the original wps file I have for this story is from 1998, though it may be from earlier if I made a few edits somewhere along the way.  I imagine that's reasonably close though.

            Claw crept into the tiny crack in the side of the building, not making a sound.   She knew more likely than not this was a trap, because Sinister bonded his havens to himself the way she did to her costume, and any damage would usually be fixed immediately.  Trap or not, it really didn't matter to her.  It was more likely the trap was made for someone else, someone who couldn't teleport like she could.  The cold chill and empty void behind her told her Nightfall was following, and she dismissed it as his only way of showing he cared for her.

            "Flowers and chocolates are nicer," she said into the void behind her, and jumped ahead a bit more.  Finally making it through the thick wall, she stepped out into a large, spacious room with a strange contraption in the middle.  It glowed brightly with a white light, and surrounding it were machines that were connected to it.  "The power source!"  Claw thought with satisfaction, and made her way over to attempt to pull the plug on it.

            She reached a plug coming from it which led to everything else, and put her hand out to grab it.  Nightfall stopped her, putting his hand on her arm, and she felt the cold deadness that was associated with his power sweep across her arm and grow farther up the longer he held on.  "I'm fine, if there's a backlash of some sort I can absorb the energy, don't worry about it."  He let go of her hand, and shook his head.  He pointed up to the large glowing center of the power core.  "Wha-?" Claw started to say, but stopped short when she realized what it was.  There was a boy inside, and indeed it seemed that the power was coming from him.

            "He is either a mutant who can channel electricity through his body, or one who creates electricity.  Either way, if you pull the plug, you may kill or seriously injure him.”  Claw put a frown on her face, unsure of what to do.  She jumped up on the large humming core, feeling a shock go through her, but she ignored the pain and just began to absorb the energy until she herself began to glow.  She leaned up against the glass which held the boy inside.  She tapped it gently, and the boy raised his head.  His face was one used to pain, and also to seeing nothing but the cold hard stare of an uncaring master.  Looking through the glass, seeing Claw, perhaps because she did not look upon him with disgust, or perhaps because she herself was also glowing like he, the electricity stopped for an instant, the lights flashed and quickly returned, as he caught hold of himself once again.

            "You can turn off the electricity?" Claw asked him through the glass.  He shook his head and put a hand to his ear.  "He can't hear me," she said, turning to Nightfall.  Looking over the machinery, he found one which seemed to be the control panel.  He pressed in a red button which seemed to him like it had been touched often.  A thinner piece of glass descended behind the thicker one, and the thick one lifted.

            "I can hear you now," the boy said, his voice straining.

            "You can turn off the electricity?"  She asked again.

            "I am the electricity," he said sadly.

            "Do you wish to escape?"

            "I wish it were possible."

            "Keep the electricity going," Claw said, and turned to Nightfall.  "Go back into the crack a bit for when the energy is released."  He nodded and walked into the shadows.  "Hold steady," she said, turning back to the glass.  She formed a tight fist and using the energy she had absorbed so far, punched the glass as hard as she could, and it shattered.  The boy's eyes widened, but he kept the electricity going.  "Stop now!" Claw said, and jumped into the boy right in perfect time when it went dark.  "Don't move!" she whispered to him, and soon she teleported a mile away from where they were.  He struggled away from her quickly.

            "What the hell was that for?  And didn't you just leave your friend?"

            "Nightfall's a big boy, he doesn't need me, unfortunately.  He'll catch up soon.  And I just saved you from the clutches of an evil mastermind, so if I were you I'd appreciate it."

            "Why?  So I can live in a world that won't except me, know me, or care for me?"

            "Hey, you're welcome.  'Sides, if no one cared, then why would I rescue you?  I'll find a place for ya.  I'm sure there are plenty of other ingrates you could get along with just fine.  As for now, I think it might be a good idea to get you some medical attention.  After that, we'll see."

Yes, that's right, not content with taking Nightcrawler, Rogue, Wolverine, and Phoenix's powers, I also gave her Bishop's too.  I mean at this point, why the hell not?

I believe this "story" idea was born when I was messing around with a superhero character creator.  They had pieces specifically made for a character with electrical powers, and so I designed one and started thinking about the type of character with that power and how they might fit into Claw's world.  I still like the idea of an evil mutant like Sinister using such a character as a living power source.  I also made him so rude because he's basically been locked up, tortured, and isolated ever since his powers emerged so he's not going to be very good at dealing with people.  In the stories I wrote in my head but never committed to writing, Static ended up living with Wolf, who Claw felt would be the best companion for him since they had both been manipulated by Sinister.  Of course Wolf's people skills weren't so hot either, so it was an interesting match up.

Hinges of Destiny readers no doubt have figured out that Static was given a gender and personality change to become J.  The gender change was because I realized my number of female characters was ridiculously thin, and Static was underdeveloped enough (and far too tied to Mr. Sinister) that changing him was an easy fix.  J's personality isn't so much like Static's as she was the way I wrote about the severe shyness and social anxiety I've struggled with all my life.  She also had a little bit of influence from a friend of mine who is very quiet by nature but when he does talk, it's often to say something very funny.

As far as the prose here, it's not great, but not as cringe inducing as some of my earlier stuff.  The descriptions of actions particularly need work, I think.  The whole bit with the tube Static's entrapped in changing for the sake of being able to talk to him is pretty pointless and really poorly worded.  And you have to love the way Nightfall decides to push a button just because it looks like it's well used.  What if it was well used because it was used to torture the boy into submission?  Why doesn't Claw just teleport him out the tube or telepathically tell the boy what's going on?  If you're going to make your character so overpowered, you might as well use it.

I have one other piece related to Static in my files, which may have been another attempt to write this story from his perspective.  Not too much new here, but since I write in first person so rarely these days it may be interesting to see:

Do you have any idea what its like to not even remember your name?  I’ve been living inside a tube for as long as I can remember.  I have no concept of how long.. Who can measure days when you can’t even see the sun?  All I had was the buzz of the room, and words of an uncaring master.  I was a power source, not a living creature.  I don’t know how I became this way.  Electricity flows through me like water out of a sink.  I can create it and let it flow, or I can absorb it from outside sources and hold it in.  Maybe that’s all I am.. A being made out of pure electricity that was somehow given consciousness and form.  If that’s true, I wish he hadn’t bothered.  If it isn’t.. I need to know who I am.

            I am forever indebted to Claw for saving me.  I don’t know much about who the bad and good guys are in this world, but I know anything is better than being used.  And with her mind powers, maybe she can help me discover just what I truly am.  If the truth isn’t too ugly for me to take.

I have three other monologues that feature other characters but I think I will save them for another day.  These date to 2004, so they were part of an attempt to remove it all from the X-men reality but before I had truly developed my own world yet.

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