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Abishai100
July 2nd, 2016, 06:38 PM
I'm a big fan of Batman (DC Comics), a masked urban vigilante who tackles the criminally insane in Gotham City. Batman deals with not only male super-villains such as Two-Face and Scarecrow but also female super-villains such as Harley Quinn. The female nemeses of Batman challenge the crusader's views about crime and punishment and rehabilitation/forgiveness of criminal insanity, and Batman sometimes falls in love with them. His son Damian Wayne, for example, who goes on to become an incarnation of the sidekick vigilante Robin, is the son of Batman (Bruce Wayne) and Talia al Ghul (Batman's female nemesis).

Harley Quinn has always been the most fascinating female super-villain to me, so I wanted to take ideas/images from Batman comics/cartoons/films about the very offbeat relationship between Batman and Harley Quinn and create an alternative kind of love story. I've also drawn inspiration from Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid, a timeless tale of soul wagers and unrequited love and the 1976 Christian apocalypto film The Omen.




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The AntiChrist had risen to power in America as a wildly popular movie star with various films about moral corruption and dangerous philosophies for his honor. His name was Damien, and he set his sights on a young prince named Alas who was a notable heir to a prestigious family from Russia and was set to move to America in search for a good education and prospects for a respectable and worldly career. Alas was estranged from his emotionally obstinate father, and Damien was fixated upon this weakness in immigration, the American dream, fathers and sons, and storytelling. Damien was watched over by a stern nurse named Alice and was given authority to rule over the vanity of men by Satan, the Dragon. Damien's hit Hollywood film The Thief of New York made all the critics' lists and earned Damien (the AntiChrist) his first Academy Award for Best Actor. Damien decided to state in an interview with renowned American journalist Barbara Walters that the reason he made a film about a cutthroat street-wise thief roaming around NYC was that he believed that many fathers and sons in America were estranged by the essential profiteerism values espoused by the so-called 'American dream.' Damien hoped the interview, which was published in New York Magazine would be read by Alas who would find its ominous message psychologically discomforting, and that is exactly what happened. However, Alas had his own journey and challenges and was about to take a chance on an unusual circumstance of love.

Alas was attending Dartmouth College where he was studying architecture as an undergraduate. Alas dreamed of seeing places in Europe where ancient civilization architecture would spark his creativity about design and geometry. Alas's father was still not very supportive, and this was driving a personal wedge between Alas and his mother with whom he was otherwise very open. Alas decided to go to California in the summer after his junior year of college and experiment with Bohemian lifestyles and see if he could live as a libertine, free from the moral and philosophical dependencies on family and royalty. During his wild time in California, Alas's friend Tommy contracted AIDS, and Alas could not help feeling guilty, believing that his contribution to a wild nightlife in California contributed to Tommy's risky behaviors. Alas decided to become a born-again Christian and devote his life to social work and democracy advocacy, so his family name would not be tarnished either. He was a big fan of Batman (DC Comics), an urban vigilante, and decided to model himself after the fictional crusader. Alas was unaware that Damien (the AntiChrist) was fixated upon his progress and life choices and would test Alas in his faith and courage (and compassion).

When Alas returned to Dartmouth College to complete his senior year, American culture was undergoing radical changes, and school administrators were pressured to make student life much more stern and results-oriented, even if it meant that students were unhappy with the changes. In this climate, Alas discovered that two of his college friends, Steve and Daniel, both seniors geared to work for a prestigious law firm after graduation, were competing for the affections of a beautiful female Dartmouth student named Eleanor who was the daughter of the law firm's figurehead, Mr. Rothchild. Steve and Daniel were obsessed with winning the favors of Mr. Rothchild so they would be the one to marry Eleanor, and America's new brand of profiteerism-based democracy seemed to cater to this cutthroat competitiveness, and Alas realized Dartmouth's traditional neo-classical romanticism was giving way to a new brand of Machiavellian individualism. Alas discovered that Steve was attempting to murder Daniel so as to completely eliminate competition, and Alas interceded and rescued Daniel from the lion's pit of betrayal and convinced him to run away with Eleanor and get away from the manic Steve, and Daniel did so.

Having felt that he had done well in the Steve-Daniel fiasco at Dartmouth, Alas then turned his attention to New York Magazine, where he began work as a photojournalist, utilizing his design skills to present stories of everyday pedestrianism in NYC but through the lens of social optimism. Alas really felt like he was the comic book superhero Batman (DC Comics), taking cool steps to make people in urban environments feel better about the clutter and claustrophobia associated with modern traffic-related maladies. Alas was soon assigned to a special photo case involving a day-in-the-life of Damien. Alas had no idea Damien was the AntiChrist, and Damien had been waiting for him. Damien had determined that Alas's special photo assignment for New York Magazine would give him the opportunity to corrupt Alas's optimism and make him more nihilistic about the so-called American Dream and the urban landscape. When Alas arrived to follow Damien around for a whole day, Damien confounded Alas with frenzied visits to glamorous lunch parties in Hollywood, politically charged celebrity-hosted eco-activism charity events, and a crazy visit to a Hollywood drug dealer's mansion where photography was strictly forbidden. At the end of the day, Damien asked Alas, "So, what did you think about the pace of American life in one day of a celebrity?" to which Alas humbly replied, "I had no idea that capitalism fueled 'strange bedfellows.'" Damien gave an eerie smile, and Alas turned in his photos to New York Magazine, satisfied that he provided accurate pictures of 'American color.'

Damien had his special consultant/vizier (Satan disguised as a marketing agent) arrange a meeting between Alas and a beautiful new NYC model named Hillary. Damien wrote to Alas telling him that he wanted him to meet Hillary, because she was a great match for him and that she would enlighten his delicate sensibilities about American optimism. Alas agreed and the meeting was set. Alas discovered that Hillary was very reckless in behavior and somewhat of a drug abuser (cocaine). Alas also learned that Hillary was rumored to be dating Damien for some time, but paid no heed. Alas confided in Hillary, because he found her to be surprisingly intelligent. He told her that his dream was to be like a 'pseudo-vigilante' (like Batman) for New York Magazine, using his skills and wisdom to instill optimism about the American Dream. Hillary was very impressed, especially after seeing samples of Alas's work for New York Magazine and realized she was falling in love with him. Hillary was very ashamed of her troubled past and sins as a model and did not want to disappoint Alas; she was terrified of his disapproval. Hillary cooked up a special scheme that would prove to be the undoing of Damien (the AntiChrist). She told Alas to imagine that she was the daughter of a powerful druglord in Russia and construct a piece for New York Magazine that explored how Russian mail-order-brides came to America in search of a more healthy life. When Alas decided it was a terrific idea (realizing that Hillary herself sought to be a life-experience muse for such a piece), Damien (the AntiChrist) was frustrated, since he now knew that Alas was a man of redemption-consciousness and was always in circumstances where love would outweigh the troubling considerations of hell.

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:disturbed:

14734

Abishai100
July 5th, 2016, 02:44 AM
I really like how this concept is working out for me, so I've decided to add a Chapter 2, which explores the side-story of Alas's brother Prux.

I've taken inspiration from the German folk tale The Pied Piper of Hamelin and Henrik Ibsen's An Enemy of the People.

If I like how these ideas are continuing to develop in my brain, I might add more chapters or develop this concept for a larger story or book.




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Prux was the opposite of Alas --- stubborn, self-absorbed, daring, and philosophical. Prux and Alas were separated at birth and grew up as distant twins unaware of the existence of the other. Prux was traveling around Europe and was in Prague where he was working part-time for a small antique store owner, brushing and cleaning vintage violins. Prux had learned to play the fiddle while wandering around Europe as a youngster and enjoyed caring for these antique violins, and his boss was very pleased with his work. Prux was about to become a vigilante just like his brother Alas.

There was news one summer of a new violent street gang called the Ugly Walkers who were creating an extortion ring and using profits from their narcotics ring to build a mini-empire in Prague. The Ugly Walkers would take a 'convenience tax' payment from shopkeepers in exchange for promised security from vandals and thieves, but in fact, they forced the shopkeepers to employ them as 'guardsmen' as a 'vigilantism-esque' citizens' patrol front to hide their nefarious underworld and gang-related activities. The Ugly Walkers wore red ski masks and were unrecognizable to the people of Prague and there were many rumors about who might be a member of the gang. A number of the so-called shop 'guardsmen' members of the Ugly Walkers even befriended the Czech police.

Prux noticed all of this and realized that the street morale of Prague was descending into gloom. The Ugly Walkers were destined to become a shadowy force or 'black-hand' of Prague, and Prux noticed that his boss was very demoralized by all these developments. One day (that summer), an Ugly Walker came into the antique store Prux worked at and insisted that the store-owner employ them as 'guardsmen.' Prux's boss replied with a shocking defiance, "I was waiting for you hoodlums! I refuse to hire or pay you for your so-called 'services.'" The Ugly Walker became enraged and pulled out a night-stick which he used to smash three of the twenty fine antique violins Prux had just brushed and cleaned that morning. When the Ugly Walker stormed out, Prux's stunned boss said with gloom, "I'll hire those goons. Who can refuse them?" Prux became furious and decided something must be done.

Two months later, two members of the Ugly Walkers (Siba and Theodore) were running a 'pride-stroll' around Prague on a Saturday night. They were carrying night-sticks concealed in their autumn jackets. If anyone crossed their paths, they would bully them for sure, and now many Czech policemen were in the pocketbooks of the Ugly Walkers. The atmosphere was rather unwelcoming. Siba and Theodore came upon a strange man who seemed to be dress in a large red vintage night-gown, complete with cap and was playing the fiddle. They walked up to his man and asked him who he was and where he came from, and the strange man replied, "My name is Prux, and I'm trying to join the Ugly Walkers and be their official street-musician. I can provide nice entertainment and atmospherics for your gang's dominion. All you have to do is pay me." Siba and Theodore liked this offer and the look and style of this fiddling Prux and decided to introduce him to their gang. They did not know this was the same Prux who was enraged by the vandalism done by an Ugly Walker in the antique store with vintage violins Prux really cared about.

Prux became a very popular figure in the Ugly Walkers gang and by next summer was found to be playing the fiddle every Saturday night in Prague as Ugly Walker gang members walked by 'patrolling' and serving as 'guardsmen.' Prux also met a strange female consort of the Ugly Walkers, Siba's sister named Elise. Prux and Elise became friends, but Prux did not disclose his vigilante intentions to her. Since Prux was now a respected 'insider' of the Ugly Walkers, he decided to use his advantageous position to create unwanted trouble in the name of the Ugly Walkers. Every other Sunday morning, Prux would play his fiddle very annoyingly in front of one of the main churches while church-goers were entering for Sunday Mass. Prux gained some notoriety for this behavior, and when he was asked what he was doing (by a local journalist), Prux (in his red nightgown and cap) stated, "I am playing a spiritual welcoming-tune for church-goers in the name of the under-represented Ugly Walkers who are simply trying to help the Czech police keep the streets clean!" When the journalist printed Prux's words in the local newspaper, the people of Prague began to refer to the Ugly Walkers as mere 'rabble-rousers.' Prux knew he had succeeded in subtly undoing the dominion of the Ugly Walkers with a simple journalism trick, so he asked Elise, with whom he had fallen in love, to run away with him and flee to France. Prux and Elise lived a happy life as employees at a French bakery and were about to run into Prux's long-lost brother Alas, who was now calling himself, oddly-enough, the Dark Knight.

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:tan:

14774

bdcharles
July 5th, 2016, 12:12 PM
As I've said to you before, this - to me - is a synopsis, telling me what the story is about, rather than telling me the story. I mean, it all sounds great and I would very much like a chance to read it! :)