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View Full Version : Ch. 1 of Vaporize (one and only chapter I will post) Language warning



G. L. Argain
August 10th, 2014, 06:29 AM
Vaporize
by G. L. Argain
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1

Why can’t I do it?

He’s right there in front of me. He’s physically powerless against my infinite strength, and yet I can’t bear one move toward him.

That unrelenting posture, those glaring green eyes, even that aura of confidence—all of it seems to push me back. I hate it. He’s got the one thing that I don’t—nerves of steel. I wonder if it’s humanly possible. Then again, I’m an invincible superhuman who can eliminate anyone and anything just by focusing on it, so it’s hard for me to say anything’s impossible here.

“After all this time trying to convince you, you weren’t truly listening to me…” Freddie says. That’s really what he calls himself. I thought that since I’m a superhuman, my archenemy would happen to be a supervillain called “Doctor Pain” or something. Instead, it’s just Freddie. “Don’t you want what’s best?”

So what’s going on here, you ask? I’m in the middle of Times Square—and don’t worry, nothing here’s been destroyed. It’s very empty in terms of people, though…they all left. It’s about five o’clock in the evening, the sun having another two hours left in the sky. I’m standing thirty feet away from Freddie, the Man of No Feelings, and neither one of us is moving an inch.

What led us here? For me, it’s complicated, but let’s just say that I’ve been through a lot during these last few months. As for Freddie…I have no idea.

So right now I’m thinking of a way to ask him to leave—to get him out of my sight. Maybe I could make a promise to leave everything on this planet alone? No, that probably won’t do. He’s been pretty pessimistic after all I’ve done so far. I think what he wants is for me to leave this planet entirely.

“Hey! Earth to Victor!” says Freddie. Victor Mercer is my name, though my superhuman title is “The Vaporizer.”

…Wait, how did he know my name was Victor? I never revealed my true name to the public, and I certainly wouldn’t have given it away to this guy!

“Go away! I don’t want you here!” Well that was shit. Out of all the things I could’ve said— including asking him how he knew my real name—I chose that unpersuasive bit? God, I hate the way my brain works. You know what? That’s the whole reason I’m in this situation in the first place. If I was as tough-spirited as this guy is, I would have vaporized him instantly without a single care to give.

“Why? I still have business to take care of with you.”

I don’t exactly know why I hate the word “business.” For others, it probably means something like, “Look at this glorious economy! Let’s talk business. How are stocks looking lately?” Although, I guess that’s not completely accurate, huh? Well, for me, it sounds like this:

“It’s nothing personal. It’s just business.”

I always think of either mafias or corporations when the word comes up. Either way, you’re the one who’s being pushed down while the boss—in the end—gets what he wants. Or she. It doesn’t really matter these days, a boss is still a boss. I know not all business is bad, but maybe that’s just how things felt like with Luis, Rubin and the WNB—

“I want you off this planet. Now,” says Freddie.

“I thought you were going to say that.”

“Then why not get on your way?”

“Because I like this planet. You get off!” I suppose that was a good comeback. I was usually a better speaker in the past, at least until this guy came along. Outshining me in front of that huge crowd…

Besides, I don’t think I can technically leave this planet even if I wanted to. I mean, I can fly, but I need air to do that, and there’s obviously none of that in the void of space.

“It’s not about whether you like it or not. You’re a safety hazard to everything in this world. People, animals, cities, ideas…eventually, you will be the death of it all. Just look at the chaos you’ve already caused.”

“But I—”

“Don’t deny it.”

Bastard won’t let me speak. I know that I can at least protect some things. Like the time with that little kid—

Oh, shit, he’s walking toward me. And yes, I start walking backwards at the same time.

“You’re afraid of me. I can tell,” says Freddie.

You know what? Fuck it. I won’t deny that I’m afraid. I’m scared of a normal—well, at least physically normal—human being even though I have the powers of a god.

“Yeah, I am.” Wait…maybe telling him that wasn’t such a good idea.

“Do you know what you’re doing? Are you aware of it all?”

“…What? What do you mean by that?”

“I do. I’m aware of your actions and even your thoughts.”

Now he’s just being creepy. He can’t read my thoughts. At least, perhaps, not enough to be called clairvoyant.

“Just…stop being creepy.”

“I’m not.”

“And you can’t read my thoughts.”

“But I can. Try me.”

“Fine. What number am I thinking of?” I’m not even going to think of a number. Although, I can’t help but look away from him. Probably a mistake on my part.

“You aren’t even thinking of a number right now, are you?”

Yup, I made a mistake.

“Okay, fine. But that doesn’t matter. Even if you have some magic mind-reading powers, you probably can’t stop me from turning you into thin air, can you?”

“What if I told you…that you aren’t as invincible as you think?”

“Wait, what?”

He developed this eerie grin on his face; it was like a Cheshire Cat grin. That’s the first time I’ve seen him make something other than a straight, emotionless face. There’s no way he could kill me. My whole body’s indestructible. I’ve broken steel and concrete before with my freaking finger! What could he do to me? Well, I just thought of an answer, and I don’t like it; basically, he could drive me insane. More so than I already am—whoa, what? Where did that come from?

“Do you believe that your whole body is indestructible?”

I’m not even going to hesitate on that one. “Yes.”

“What about your stomach acid?”

“Yeah…wait, what are you talking about?”

“Have you ever vomited while you possessed these powers?”

What does throwing up have to do with my invincibility?

Freddie continued, “Really, it’s just the hole of your throat between your stomach acid and the outside world. If everything inside your body is indestructible, then what would happen if something managed to get out?”

You know what? I don’t know. I’ve never vomited while I’ve had these powers. There’s potentially nothing for me to be afraid of—
Although, what else can come out of my body? I may be indestructible, but that doesn’t necessarily mean nothing can come out. There’s also saliva and feces, too. Sounds disgusting now that I think about it—

“Answer my question, already.”

“Oh, uh…no, I haven’t. I don’t know what would happen.”

And the man said nothing. He’s just standing there like a statue. I don’t even think he took his eyes off me at all.

If by some chance vomiting is going to be the death of me, I’m not going to do it just because some guy wants me to try it out. Even more so, I have things to do in this world—goals to accomplish—and I am not going to let all that die from such a lame demise. I’m the God-damn protector and savior of this whole planet!! What else would I have these powers for?! I’ve made up my mind—this guy’s getting vaporized right this moment.

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I have received useful feedback on this chapter before, but I feel as though something is missing or out-of-place. Do you agree or am I mistaken?

h'aulian scribe
September 2nd, 2014, 01:57 AM
I got distracted a lot while reading not sure why thought. Maybe the structure of it reads more like an interview. Protagonist speaks then villain speaks like Q&A.

K. Altan
September 2nd, 2014, 05:42 AM
I like it a lot. It's very intriguing and catches the reader's attention. The beginning of the fifth and sixth paragraphs both start with a question that the narrator explains right afterward. I think it might be a little much having them one right after another. It's just my opinion though you don't have to change anything. Also to help the reader visualize the dialogue and to get the mood, it might be nice to add an eye twitch here or a tilted head there, maybe one of the characters runs his hands through his hair. Again, it's just a suggestion. Wonderful job all around. :)

Mr. Beanhead
September 24th, 2014, 06:37 PM
I thought this was pretty interesting, and overall, quite strong. First, a couple of very minor points.

nerves of steel JMO, but this seems a little trite.
also...too redundant

In a more positive vein...The story moved along very briskly. I definitely want to know more. Are these really super-beings? Is the narrator nuts? I'm of course, intrigued about the little boy. Overall, very nice work...I would sure like to see more.