I’ve been writing this material as screenplays, assuming (foolishly) that the format would actually be valuable to a Hollywood agent and, further down the fantasy road, movie director. I also thought I’d put this all into novel form someday. That might happen. For the time being, the scene setting, actions and dialogue (all in present tense) will suffice.
This all takes place in Verisye, a fantasy world not unlike others seen many times. There’s no real technology above crossbows, catapults and large-gear mechanisms. The biggest distinction is the Aviarinelle, a multicolored river which runs through the sky. It’s high enough that it courses past snowy mountain peaks, and it is endless to the eye. Occasionally, characters hear it or think they hear it, so the river serves as a kind of constant in place of any widespread religion.
Tagline for this story: In a fantasy world, two unlikely heroes race to save a boy prince who’s been kidnapped.
(Opening credits with “Would?” by Alice In Chains)
In early morning in a fogged-in swamp, two constables (police) creep along a wet boat dock. They are MARVELLA, a blond woman (our heroine) and IBIX, a tough, older man. Both wear the light armor and swords of their job, which is to protect their small nearby town of Dillingham. They are both afraid, swords drawn. Visibility is only twenty feet in the fog.
“We must be close,” Ibix says.
“Why in Gerji [hell] would a boat come here? The dock has been rotting for years,” Marvella says.
“Unknown. Damn this fog.”
Soon, the grunts and moans of a dying “man” are heard. At the sound of clinking armor, Marvella pushes forward to help him.
Close to the boat, which rammed the splintering dock, they reach an Ehara who has been mortally wounded in vicious combat (he still has a sword run through him). A smeared trail of his blood leads back to a broken section of dock, where he fell from the boat.
[Ehara are my own invention, a race of wildly-colored humanoids from the tropical southeast regions. They are thin and tall, averaging seven feet in height, hairless, and come in different hues with markings like tiger stripes, etc. in a different color. Their structure looks similar to an NBA player, but gives them phenomenal strength and mass (they can’t ride horses) and speed. The trade-off is that they are forbidden from magic use, they don’t believe in possessions and are generally altruistic. They are also mistrusted in much of the realm, thanks to the Knight Wars.]
Marvella says, “Ehara.”
Ibix comes up, surprised.
The Ehara man, beige-toned with green markings, perks up at their arrival.
“The prince,” he says, fighting to breathe/stay conscious. “My cousin…Dirkennion…in Greenhump. Find…Dirkennion. They took the Prince of Endless.”
The Ehara man dies. Marvella and Ibix stand up.
Marvella asks, “The Prince of Endless?”
“He means Endruskenlessinia. Everyone just calls it ‘Endless.'”
The two of them look at the boat in the clearing fog. An axe is buried in a bloody railing.
“Endless,” Marvella repeats. “Is this prince the heir?”
“I imagine so.”
Greenhump is a hillside farming village so named for a large grassy bulge on one side.
DIRKENNION, an Ehara man with maroon skin and copper-colored stripes, wearing light clothing, is standing under a walking bridge being constructed. He is holding a large stone centerpiece in place while workers on ladders adjust other stones to complete it. The bridge crosses a steep-sided creek.
A worker grunts, “Sorry. Almost there.”
Dirkennion replies, “You are okay. Do not pinch your fingers.”
From the creekside, a VILLAGE ELDER watches with admiration. Others watch as well.
A worker says, “It’s in. Let go.”
Another worker says, “Careful. Slowly.”
Dirkennion ignores him and slowly lets go. The stones hold in place. People applaud. Workers clap happily and continue.
Soon, Dirkennion comes to the Village Elder.
“Well done, Master Dirkennion. What will we do without you?”
“I will be around.”
Village Elder gives him a pained expression. “Your time of service is almost complete. Where is the council sending you after this peaceful village? Greenhump is not very exciting, I know.”
“The peace has never bothered me.”
“You are Murrizza, an elite warrior. For two years, you have baled hay and plowed fields for us simple folk.”
Dirkennion smiles at him. “I go where I am needed, Master.”
Village Elder laughs, knowing Dirkennion is halfway joking with him.
to be continued…