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View Full Version : Prologue of the Sequel - 1500k sci-fi



Tettsuo
January 16th, 2013, 10:00 PM
Sorry for these lengthy excepts, but I'm in dire need of some more opinions and critics.

This is the prologue of the sequel I'm currently working on (the current manuscript is in the hands of my editor). It's a bunch of women and I'm really concerned it's not "honest". I'm not a woman, so don't feel even a bit confident about how the text reads. Does it feel "real"? Do woman talk like this?

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

“They could at least make it a bit warmer in here,” the young, fit golden haired girl ahead of me complains.

“Yeah, it's a bit chilly isn't it?” The urge to suck in my belly is overwhelming as she takes a step forwards and the long line moves again. Looking down, I find my hand touching the gift my students gave me before I left, as it lays on my heart.

She turns completely around and smiles. “My name is Ophelia,” she announces with bubbly hop that shakes her perfectly perky breast.

“Caroline.”

She quickly glances up and down at me briefly and smiles... smugly it feels. “That's a lovely necklace you have.”

“It is, isn't it? My students gave it to me a few days ago.” A joyous flash of memory, brings a smile to my face.

“Oh, you're a teacher?”

“Yes. I teach fifth and sixth graders in South Beacon.”

Again, she looks down at my body. “You seem so young to be a teacher.”

Young? God, everything is sagging. Thirty hasn't been kind to me. “Thank you.” We take another step forward, all waiting for our turn to enter into the dark hallway head. At least the floor is heated. The lattice of pipes above strikes a ominous tone as the faint sound of rushing liquid flows above. Normally I'd love the dark, particularly when I'm naked, but now it's feels like the shadows are creeping up around me.

Ophelia turns completely around and leans in close to the necklace dangling between my breast. Her confidence is unnerving to me. I vaguely remember that feeling, fresh out of college and knowing the world is mine for the taking. 10 years later and after a divorce, I no longer feel so free and powerful.

“May I?” she asks, reaching towards the golden heart.

No. “Sure,” I say feeling a bit annoyed at her more for being so confident in her self than anything else.

She squints a bit as she reads the inscription on the back. “That's so sweet. You must be a really good teacher.”

She's looks like she's barely out of high school. To young to be here, risking her life for her country. “I'm not so sure about that,” I say with a chuckle. “But I do, did, love being a teacher.”

“Why didn't you leave that behind? You know they'll take it, right?”

Damn it, she's right. “I didn't even thing to remove it. It wasn't until a few moments ago, I remember I even had it on.”

“I've been taking some classes in psychology and I'm sure someone would have some kind of name for you not realizing that you still had the necklace on.”

Oh, the stupidity of youth. “I'm sure, but what's wrong with plain ole fashion love?”

“Yet you risk losing it?”

“You can't fully love if there's no risk of loss, Ophelia.”

Suddenly she breathe deep as tears well in her eyes. “Are you okay sweetie?”

A tight-lipped smile reluctantly slides across her face. “Oh no, it's fine.” She turns around to be greeted by a gap between her and person ahead of her. We're only a few steps from the scanners now.

Her next step is not so confident. “Did you lose someone?” I ask.

“My boyfriend, Chad. He signed up for the war months ago.” The grin quickly fades and her shoulders sag a bit, her eyes fix themselves on the stone floor below. “He was killed two months ago in the war,” she says softly.

“I'm so sorry Ophelia.” I want comfort her, but us both being naked places an invisible barrier between us. I'll give her a hug after the procedure is complete, when we have some clothes on.

“If he wasn't killed, I'd never have gotten tested, never would be here in line for the Sacrifice.” With a nod, she looks up at me. “That's my reason for being here, what's your?”

“The children. It's the reason I got into teaching in the first place. If there are any human beings worth standing in line with a bunch of naked women, it's them.”

“That's amazing.” As she turns she's greeted with a long metal tube pressing against her arm.

“Oww!”

The row of women within earshot chuckle, as do I.

“Are you okay?” Asks a young woman sitting at a flickering console, her mocha skinned face, almond eyes and jet black hair strangely illuminated from underneath. Although dressed in army fatigues, she has a terribly ugly gray sweater draped over her uniform.

“What was that?” I ask, leaning forward to see the area Ophelia was struck. Now, being next in line, I'm concerned. Although I've watched the women ahead of us have the same stainless steel tube slapped on their bare skin, I stop where I am.

“-and why didn't you warn me?” Ophelia asks, rubbing her thin upper arms, shaped perfectly. She's so pretty it's making me terribly self-conscious.

“It's the retro-virus, along with various immune-defense inhibitors,” she states.

The line looks at her blankly, joining along with Ophelia and I.

She notices the eyes on her. “It's the beginning of the process you'll all be undergoing,” she announces to all of the women staring at her now.

Suddenly, the sound of chatter fills the long pipelined hallway. “Once that's done, you'll pass through the sealed portal ahead,” she says pointing towards long opaque plastic strips hanging from a large doorway in front of the line.

“And then?”

The technician sighs. “Didn't the guy at the entrance, the one that collected your notification letter, explain this all to you?”

What's this attitude about? “No he did not. So, please explain. You have a line of confused, cold and naked women waiting for some answers.”

Another sigh… kids these days. Some of the women in this line are old enough to be her mother. Not me of course. She can't be more than 25 years old. Pointing up she directs our attention to the steel pipe that's now folded back up into the ceiling. “The first step is injection of the retro-virus. "The next step is to detect any metal in or on the body,” she looks at my necklace. “Ma'am, you can't have that on during the procedure,” she says with a third sigh.

Okay, that's it. She just struck out. “Then you and this line can go to hell.” I don't need this shit. I'm sure there are other ways I can help without having smart mouth children sighing and calling me ma'am.

“Wait Caroline!” Ophelia says, grabbing my wrist. Holding on to me, she turns to the rude military girl. “What's your name?” she asks.

“Patricia.”

“Patricia, my name is Ophelia and this is Caroline. This necklace means a lot to my friend here. I mean like, a whole lot. She's a teacher, and her entire class of children gave it to her. She wouldn't be here if it wasn't for those kids she loves.”

The smirk on Patricia's face melts away as Ophelia's perfect smile beams. “What if you hold it for her? At least at least ensure it isn't lost in some pile of jewelry.”

With nod, she locks eyes with me. “Okay, I'll hold it.”

“Is that good with you Caroline?”

“Yes, thank you Patricia.”

Now both looking at me, Ophelia and Patricia happily smile. I did let my temper get the better of me there. It's not Patricia's fault I wasn't properly informed. To her I probably am a 'ma'am'. “Look Patricia, I'm sorry I overreacted. It's just, this is all a bit nerve-wracking. The line, being naked and saggy; all of it. This doesn't give one the sense of comfort.”

“It's fine, I understand. I wasn't sighing at you, I just wish Patrick would have explain it all before you ladies got this far. And, it is cold, but for a good reason. That's why I'm wearing this ass ugly sweater!”

As I undo the clash on the thin gold chain that holds the pendant, Ophelia looks down at her arm. Large red marks have already formed.

“Ophelia, please continue on through the curtain. The retro-virus is very sensitive to temperature. Once you pass through the metal scanner, you'll be placed into a holding tank that's designed to sedate and lower your body temperature while the process begins.”

The small pendant, shining even under the cold florescent lights above, rest warm in my palm. “Don't worry, I'll take care of it Caroline,” she says, her brown eyes happily gleaming as they meet mine.

“I guess I'll see you on the other side Caroline,” Ophelia says, turning quickly to watch me as she disappears behind the opaque white of the plastic strips. I see her, the shade of her form, beyond the now still partition.

“How will I find you?” I ask.

“I'll find you, don't worry about it. Now step here please,” she says pointing down to a set of large footprints painted on the floor. As sudden as so many times before, the steel bar flashes down against my arm. I feel the needles quickly jab in and out so quickly I barely have time to realize I've been injected.

“Not too bad was it?” Patricia asks.

“You don't have time to react.” I say, looking down at arm. I can feel the subtle burn under my skin as I too pass through the opaque hanging strips.

“See you in a few days Caroline,” she says from behind me.