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The Bad Seeds (15)

Discussion in 'The Story Board' started by Matt A, Nov 17, 2005.

  1. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    As some people over on World's Finest may or may not remember, I once briefly tried to write a novel called "The Bad Seeds". Due to various reasons, I aborted this work about 1/3 of the way through.:crying:

    But now...it's back. My interest in this project has been flared once again. My desire to write this epic work of lunacy has grown, and I can't hold it off much longer. I'm currently overhauling the pre-written chapters, and once that's done I'll get to work on finishing the damn thing. Once I've done that, I might even try to get it published. Depends on how you guys recieve it.:sweat:

    Before I start, here's a quick blurb for the story, so that you guys have got a rough idea what it'll be about:


    Meet Felix Findlay. He's an intelligent, polite and respectable eighteen-year-old, who one day will come to make his social-climbing parents proud…at least, that's what he wants you to think. In fact, Felix is as bad a boy as bad boys come, and he's desperate for a chance to wreak his own brand of havoc on the world, flame-throwing superpowers and all.

    So, naturally, when he hears about the ultra-secret Daniel Clay Academy Of Master-Villainy, he applies for membership without a moment's hesitation.

    Learning how to be a supervillain is a strange and dangerous business, and before long Felix will be plunged headlong into the dark heart of a conspiracy that threatens to destroy all of humanity (but of course…). But, worst of all, our not-so-illustrious anti-hero is at risk of acquiring the one thing he fears the most: a conscience…


    Sounds cool, no?:sweat:

    -Matt A-
     
    #1 Matt A, Nov 17, 2005
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2005
  2. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    And now onto the first chapter. Though it's technically the prologue, I've called it "chapter zero" because there's no epilogue. And chapter zero sounds cooler.:p

    Oh, and the opening quote will make sense at some point, though probably not just yet. Personally, I think it shows a lot about the average mind-set of this particular universe...and it shows that I can be well-read if the mood takes me.:p

    There also may or may not be chapter titles added at some point. Depends on how I'm feeling.:shrug:

    Anyway, now to raise the curtain on this (hopefully) epic work...



    "The Bad Seeds"

    "It is much safer to be feared than to be loved, when one of the two must be lacking"
    -Niccolo Machiavelli, "The Prince"​
    Chapter Zero: Personal Problems

    As the saying goes, your average man thinks about sex at least once every three seconds. I, being a typical teenage male, am no exception to this rule: in fact, I positively endorse it. Usually, whenever I spot a girl worthy of my spotting, the only thing I’ll think about is what she’d be like in bed, and how to make this happen. Other factors, like her personality and how well we’d actually get on together, rarely figure in my thoughts until some way down the mental process…about ten or twenty seconds often suffices. This is usually why most teenage men, myself included, are rarely capable of telling the difference between love and lust: this distinction, regardless of what we’ll say when asked, is quite an important one.

    For example, if I had been able to tell apart love and lust, then I wouldn’t be in the situation I am now. Contrary to most Hollywood clichés, love rarely inspires us to sacrifice our lives for a higher cause in dramatic displays of loyalty and selflessness. If anything, love inspires us to stay alive at all costs, so that we may continue to live alongside the lucky person we have decided to dedicate ourselves to. Lust, obscurely enough, has about the same effect, except for the times when us men carry out acts of inane stupidity – such as trying to juggle and do a handstand at the same time, to pick a more obscure example – in the probably vain hope that this’ll encourage the object of our desire to get into bed with us. That’s probably why I’ve just done the unbelievably stupid thing that I have, even though for reasons that will become obvious in time my actions will prove to be counter-productive.

    So, what exactly is it that I’ve gone and done? Right here and now, there’s only so much that I can tell you, for to say any more than that will give away the story. I’ve made a very large number of stupid decisions in the last eight months, the majority of them in the final twelve hours, and pretty much all of those decisions have now culminated in a situation where the only thing I can do is die. I’ve managed to get myself trapped deep within the campus of the Daniel Clay Academy Of Master Villainy, and in as little as ten minutes’ time the whole place is going to literally come crashing down on my head. I don’t know whether or not any of my friends have escaped the hellish inferno that my own pig-headed stupidity has managed to create, but hopefully they’ll be alright. I’ve already gone far enough by getting myself killed – it’s gonna happen no matter what I do, so I might as well say that it’s happened already and save myself the worry – but allowing my friends to die too will be just a bit more than I can cope with. Which is a bit strange coming from a trainee supervillain, but then again I’m not exactly your average trainee supervillain.

    Again, this all comes down to the love/lust distinction. I hold one of my three friends in very high regard, and up until just this second I thought that I was genuinely in love with her. But maybe I’m not as in love as I suspected, ‘cause if I was maybe I would have tried a bit harder to escape from this place. But I didn’t, and now it’s too late to worry about what-ifs. So I won’t, or at least I’ll try not to. That’s the most irritating thing about the human mind: it always thinks about the things that you don’t want it to. Like when you’re hanging off a cliff and the one pulling you up tells you to not look down, but because they make you think about it that’s precisely what you do. Hah. I’m facing my last minutes on this earth, and I probably won’t even be able to stop worrying. Worrying isn’t even something I do, which only serves to make things worse. All I ever wanted was to just have a bit of fun with my life, and now all I can do is just wait for it all to blow up in my face. I’d never really even managed to get round to having that fun in the first place, either.

    If only I’d just been that bit smarter…
     
    #2 Matt A, Nov 17, 2005
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 18, 2006
  3. Oni0

    Oni0 Wanted DOA

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    Learning how to be a supervillain......sounds interesting and original.
     
  4. JAG

    JAG Active Member

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    You're finally finishing this! Awsome! As I said when I edited it for you, I thought the first few chapters were great. And so, I was dissapointed when I found out you canceled it. But, now that it's being continued, I have one thing to say:


    BOO-YAH!!!!!:D :D :D :D
     
  5. Rae

    Rae Insert amusing comment

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    I may as well get this over with....

    The first three/four chapters are awesome! I love the characters and the plot is frickin genius too!

    This is just incase i don't have time to actually reread these and post replies on them later

    Rae, who has chapters 0 to 3 on her computer already :p
     
  6. Tenku

    Tenku D-don't come any closer!

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    Yay!

    Well, you already know what I said...because I sure can't. :sweat:

    I didn't know it was abandoned...:sad:

    But hey, at least we can read some more! :p
     
  7. Death58

    Death58 WFWC Vet.

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    Okay, unlike some of the others, this was my first exposure to this story. What a way to start up Chapter One. . .er-wait, Zero. . .Yeah. . .Anyway, the setup reminds me of Max Payne in the fact that you're starting from the end with the first installment, then working your way back to that moment in the chapters after it. Also, brilliant concept, the whole 'super villain training' school. Felix sounds like a very interesting character. . .I'd like to see what he did to have so many bad things happen to him. It isn't looking up for him at all. . .I really like the sounds of something that tragic happening. . .:evil:
     
  8. Oni0

    Oni0 Wanted DOA

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    If that's the case then just forget it buddy boy, im expecting more action than tragic, i hope it haves more action then tragedy!.
     
  9. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    I'm going for "midnight-black comedy" rather than "tragedy" here, but with a little bit of philosophy (not too much, but it's not really something I can just ignore) and quite a hefty bit of action. That should be enough.:p

    But seriously, I'm glad you guys are liking this. It seemed like a sweet idea the moment I thought of it, so I'm intending to milk it for all it's worth. Should be a fun ride.;) :anime:

    And as for the Max Payne thing...yeah, that was kinda an influence for the opening, along with "Fight Club". In fact, if you want a good idea of what "feel" I want this story to have, then I suggest you go watch both that and "Trainspotting". You won't regret it.;) :anime:

    -Matt A-
     
  10. Death58

    Death58 WFWC Vet.

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    That sounds absolutely awesome to me. Plus, I have a better idea of what to look forward to in this story. I like that this is going to be a dark comedy, and you already know I'm a sucker for philosophical stuff. I can't wait for the next part.
     
  11. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    Dude, you're in luck. The next chapter is here and ready to rock. I won't bother giving any lengthy introduction to this one, save that without the help of Alpha Man, percguy89, Raeofdarkness, Lord Welshi and Rae, it would never have happened. I'm very grateful for their assistance.:anime:

    Oh, and I've now decided to use chapter titles after all. Just thought you ought to know.:shrug:

    Anyway, here's the chapter:


    Chapter One: The Claw-Bot

    For the most part, there isn’t really much that you need to know about me. The only important bits are that my name’s Felix Findlay, I’m eighteen years old, and I grew up in the dull-as-hell surroundings of Quarley, Hampshire. I haven’t exactly had a privileged upbringing, but my parents made sure that I got as close to that as they could get me. You know, there’s just that certain something about social climbers that really gets on my nerves, which probably explains why I’m doing what I’m doing today. Unlike what you might have first thought, on this day, today, I’m doing something remarkably different to what I spent the last chapter describing.

    Today is eight months before I’m due to die, but naturally I don’t know that yet: as far as my mind is currently concerned, I’ve got my whole life ahead of me right now. Rather than stewing on my fate, what I’m doing right now is sitting in St James’s Park, drinking a cup of Starbuck’s finest Mocha and enjoying the London sunshine. From where I’m sat right now, I can just about see the southern side of Duck Island through the trees and bushes, and on this warm September morning it looks very pretty indeed. With or without the ducks. I’m not usually disposed towards just sitting on the grass drinking a cup of coffee, but I’ve got a few hours to kill and doing anything else in London requires more money than I have right now: I’ve got enough for the train fare to my next destination, but that’s about it. So, as boring as I may find it, I’ve got little choice but to just sit here…actually, maybe it ain’t as bad as all that. It’s just that, compared to how the rest of my day has been planned out, everything is going to seem boring.

    There’s one important detail to the scene that I’ve yet to mention. You see, whilst what I’m currently doing is some hardcore relaxation, what I should be doing, based upon everyone else’s actions, is running for my life. On the opposite side of the huge lake that forms the middle of St. James’s Park, a giant robot is causing a great deal of mess. This 15’ tall, bird-like gold-coloured thing is using its “beak” to chuck around and rip apart anything that it can see, whether it be a table, a chair, a bin or even – as one poor bugger found out the hard way – a person. I know that I should be utterly terrified of the carnage being wrought not less than five hundred yards away from me, but to be honest I’m not all that bothered. My nonchalance is for three reasons: because I’m more than capable of defending myself, because events like this are just too cool to run away from, and because the Omega Force have just arrived to sort things out.

    I presume that you’re aware of the concept of “superpowers”, special abilities that go far, far beyond what your average scientist will say is possible. There have been assorted people down the ages who’ve had weird abilities, whether they were telepathic, pyrokinetic or just plain psychotic, but they’ve been so few that history has tended to ignore them. However, in my generation these superpowers have gone widespread, and now everyone’s paying attention. Unlike what you might expect, “supers” have been fairly well received, because for the most part all these new superpowers have been put to good use. Take the Omega Force, for example: these are five teenagers who use their extraordinary talents to protect the city of London from the more cruel and unusual dangers. People appreciate this kind of protection, so the supers of the world are left to get on with it. Crime-fighting has always struck me as a bit boring, but in a way they’ll help to keep me in business soon enough.

    The Omega Force walk into the park, looking the mutt’s nuts in their black Lycra jumpsuits (man, what is it with superheroes and Lycra?) with the distinguishing logos on: “Gunslinger” has two pistols crossed skull-and-crossbones style; “Poltergeist” has a ghost; “Flora” has a flower; “Sonic” has a stereo speaker; and “Angel” has…well, an angel. Seeing as Gunslinger doesn't have any superpowers - just a jetpack and the best sharpshooting skills on the planet - he needs a bit more to protect himself than the others, which explains the silver breastplate and arm and leg guards. But aside from that, these guys look like a team, and they look like they mean serious business.

    The moment the robot notices the Omega Force standing only twenty feet away from it, it immediately stops trying to rip apart a food-and-drink stall and turns to face them. Now that it’s stopped moving, I can finally work out what this thing reminds me of so much: a car-construction robot. Basically, if you took a gold pneumatic crane-arm – evil-looking claw and all – doubled its size and gave it two silver legs and a silver tail-like thing, this would be not entirely unlike the end result. Even though it doesn’t have any eyes, it still somehow looks like it’s glaring at the Omega Force, trying to work out whether it should ignore them or kill them. No matter what it does, this is gonna be fun to watch.

    After about ten seconds or so, it manages to make up its mind. The robot charges at the Omega Force, covering the distance between them in only a few seconds, despite its awkward stumbling run (which is what you’d expect when both of its legs are on the left side of its body, for reasons that I shan’t even attempt to guess). It reaches Poltergeist first, but before it can use its claw to tear him apart he vanishes into thin air. I already know that this guy is capable of literally “dematerialising” himself, so his trick doesn't surprise me: neither does it surprise me when he reappears behind the robot a few seconds later. The robot spins round to face him, leaving it open for Gunslinger to pull out his two gold-coloured pistols and start unloading them into its back. The robot goes to swipe at Gunslinger with its claw, but he spoils its fun by taking off into the air to avoid it. This draws him level with Angel, who has already started hovering around on the huge feathered wings that she was lucky enough to be born with. Gunslinger reloads his pistols and keeps on firing, and he amusingly makes no difference whatsoever.

    The robot knows that it now can’t catch either of them, so it goes to take a chunk out of Sonic. However, before it can make contact, Sonic moves his right hand slightly. There’s an almighty clap of thunder, and the literal explosion of sound that he’s just created is powerful enough to throw the robot into the lake. The spray kicked up by its landing is big enough to come within about two feet of getting me soaked. Sonic throws another ball of sound into the lake, literally creating a "hole" in the water. By the time the ball hits the bottom, spraying wet mud and stones all over the place, the robot has already made its escape.

    But it doesn’t hide for long: it jumps out of the lake a few seconds later, hitting dry land about ten feet along the shore. The Omega Force charge towards it, and even though Gunslinger’s hail of bullets cause no damage, they do keep the robot pretty much pinned to the spot. The bullets keep on knocking what passes for its head in all directions, making sure that it’s seriously distracted just through trying to move around. Flora raises her hands, chants a few words and suddenly the grass surrounding the robot erupts skywards, turning into a small forest in the blink of an eye. Each blade of grass, now the size of tree trunks, starts to claw at the robot’s tough armour as if they were blood-crazed zombies. The robot is helpless to stop this onslaught…until Gunslinger's ammo runs out, and runs out for good. Now free of distractions, there’s nothing to stop the robot's claw from tearing the giant grass blades to shreds, cutting them down faster than Flora can use her plant-manipulation powers to make them grow. She soon realises that this is a lost cause and stops with the growing, which leaves the robot open to suddenly charge at her. Sonic throws a sound ball at it, but he misses and instead the ball tears a wooden picnic table to shreds.

    To everyone’s surprise, my own included, Poltergeist suddenly appears between Flora and the robot. The robot stops dead, not sure of what to do next. Poltergeist smiles and then vanishes again, appearing by the robot’s side a second or so later. He keeps on doing this, moving all around the robot so that it keeps on twisting and turning, trying to get a hit in. After a minute or so, it becomes obvious that all this movement is making the already unbalanced robot look a little wobbly on its feet, a fact that Angel takes advantage of by using her telekinesis powers to pick up a litter bin and smack it across the “face”. This comes as a bit of a surprise to the robot: so much so, in fact, that it finally loses its balance and topples over. Flora wastes no time in covering it with giant grass blades again, and this time the robot is kept on the ground by Angel battering it with any and every object that her mind is capable of picking up. Eventually, the grass tears open two metal plates, exposing the circuitry underneath. Sonic throws a sound ball into the mess, ripping the robot’s metallic guts apart from the inside out. The robot can't have survived. Just to make sure of this, Gunslinger flies over and kicks it with his foot: no, nothing happens. The robot is down.

    Gunslinger and Angel drop back down to the ground, their faces as expressionless as their three colleagues. The Omega Force turn and walk out of the park, seemingly oblivious to the cheering and clapping of the many people who were watching the whole fight from safely behind the walls. However, I’m with the ‘Force on this one: unlike the civilians, I don’t find London's superheroes kicking arse exciting. Sure, the fight was fun to watch, but personally I’d have rather seen the robot do a bit more damage before it got trashed. I suppose I can’t complain, ‘cause it was amusing anyway.

    For all that, the ‘Force don't quite ignore everyone: Gunslinger catches a brief glimpse of me sat all on my tod on the grass, and based on the sideways glace he shoots in my direction, he’s a bit confused as to why I wasn’t watching from the sidelines like everyone else. He’ll no doubt be already desperate to know who built the robot and why it was in the park, so I won’t be surprised if he jumps to conclusions and pins a figure as obviously suspicious as myself into the whole mess. But seeing as I intend for it to be a long time before we meet again, there’s no real reason why I should care about being regarded as a threat right now.

    Now that the Omega Force has left and all the excitement is over, I remember to look at my watch: 11:27AM, it says. Time for me to get moving.
     
  12. Rae

    Rae Insert amusing comment

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    An awesome action scene! and the best part is, you can read it over again, and still not get bored by it!

    Rae

    P.S. ta for the ta!
     
  13. Death58

    Death58 WFWC Vet.

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    The action scene was brilliant, and the fact that you managed to actually keep it as though it were being seen through Felix's eyes was absolutely awesome. He seemed to keep a running commentary on the entire fight, putting in his own little quirks about the Omega Force(I especially liked the moment when he said that he wished the robot could have got to do a little more damage when the battle was over). Even in merely two chapters, we already have an idea of what type of character Felix is, and it was especially apparent when he merely sat on the grass very near the battle. Although, I have to say, he is a little over comfident. . .Having Gunslinger notice him out of everyone else there could wind up being far out of his favor. You really have me hooked with this!
     
  14. Edd

    Edd the dork that you fear

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    :eek: Oh, sweet! I'll definitely be checking back on this! :D

    Here were my thoughts from way-back-when, after reading over chapters 0 and 1.





    --Kevin "Edd" K.
     
  15. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    That's quite a compliment.:anime:

    Trust me, you ain't even seen the start of who Felix is yet...;) :evil:

    Bingo.;) :evil:

    Sweet...as long as you stay hooked, I'm good.:p :anime:

    Anyway, I'm glad you're all liking this. I'll probably put up chapter two sometime tomorrow. Watch this space.;)

    -Matt A-
     
  16. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    And here the chapter is. Enjoy.

    Chapter Two: Toland Square

    About forty minutes later, I’ve found myself in a very different part of London. Toland Square, deep in the heart of Roehampton, is a collection of apartment blocks built sometime in the 1930’s, ones that look almost like brown-brick houses whilst still being very plainly not. There are quite a few such buildings in Roehampton, along with more stereotypical council flats and some ‘50’s period suburban semis. This place reminds me of every big-city suburb I've ever seen, that “we-want-to-look-expensive-but-we-can’t-quite-manage-it” type of thing. This ain’t exactly my kind of neighbourhood, which is why I’m glad that I’m not here to stay. I’m also glad that I eventually decided to buy a map: even out here in the suburbs, London is a bloody maze.

    From what my watch tells me, it takes me less than twenty minutes to find the house I'm looking for. 3 Douglas House, Toland Square doesn’t look anything particularly exceptional, but it’s very much where I need to be. I go inside the apartment block’s shared hallway and walk to the flat’s front door, opening it with the key I was given nearly three months ago. Even though this isn’t my home, not by any means, I know that I don’t need to worry about being regarded as an intruder: no one’s lived in this house for over forty years, or so I’ve been told. A professional cleaner comes round every week to keep the place neat and tidy, but apart from them no one ever sets foot in this place on a regular basis.

    When I open the door, it immediately occurs to me that whoever this cleaner is, they should be earning an absolute mint. This place is spotless: any surface that is capable of shining is trying to burn out my eyeballs, and all the rest are doing their utmost to attack my vision anyway. Even the carpets gleam. Whoever owns this place clearly intends to make a good impression on those who set foot in here, but even though I agree that cleanliness is next to godliness, I’ve never been one to take that saying to mean what it was doubtless intended to. My parents always did their best to make our house look as much like a showhome as this place does, and to be honest my disliking of such an attitude hasn’t really gone away. But that’s beside the point. I’m not here to b*tch about cleaning addictions: I’m here to start my new life away from people with such irritating problems.

    I pull a now badly crumpled letter out of my pocket, reading it over for the umpteenth time to make sure that I’ve remembered the next step of my journey absolutely right. I have, of course, but that'’ hardly a surprise: I’ve read this letter so many times that I could easily re-write it right here and now and get it spot-on down to the comma. As both the letter and my memory instruct, I slowly wander through the flat until I come to the master bedroom at the rear. All that’s in this large room is a double bed with blue sheets, two light brown bedside cupboards, a dark brown chest-of-drawers and quite possibly the largest wardrobe I have ever seen. Made from the same wood as the chest-of-drawers, it looks like it could quite easily hold four or five people inside it. When I walk over to it and open the doors, I discover the reason for this: it can hold four or five people. But it can’t hold any clothes, strangely enough, and that's because it isn’t a wardrobe at all…it’s a lift. A very cleverly designed lift, but a lift nonetheless.

    This lift is also clearly very expensive, but considering where it goes to, maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised. It’s all silver steel on the inside, but unlike most lifts this one has no buttons, and most lifts don't have a huge machine gun and a CCTV camera staring at you from the ceiling. The moment I close the wardrobe behind me, a pair of steel doors slide out and over the wooden ones. I’m sealed in this lift, with the gun and camera now both pointing right at my forehead. Very welcoming…

    “What is your name?” blares a voice from a speaker that I can’t see even with the bright strip lights in the ceiling. From what I can tell, the person asking the question is a woman in her mid-‘40’s, and she sounds bored enough to not give a damn if I get riddled with enough lead to be used as a giant pencil. I’m in no mood to encourage this, so I just keep things civil.

    “Felix Findlay.” Coming up with my name is the only cool things my parents have ever done.

    “What is your reason for being here?”

    “I’m a new student. One of you interviewed me a few months ago. I’ve even got the letter to prove it.”

    “I don’t doubt that.” She clearly does. “What is your student I.D. number?”

    This was written on the letter that confirmed my place here, and also gave the directions for how to get to this lift. I’ve memorised my I.D. number already. “8024.”

    “Right. I shall check.” I can hear her typing away at a computer for a few seconds, and then things go quiet. Eventually the woman comes back to the microphone. “Okay, you check out just fine. Welcome to the Daniel Craig Academy Of Master Villainy, Mr Findlay.”

    As the lift begins its long descent, I briefly think back to how I first heard of this place. One morning, about a year or so ago, a stunningly attractive young woman called Miss Vert turned up at my doorstep. I’d had a bit of trouble with the Quarley thug population the week before, and seeing as two of them had wound up being admitted to hospital with fifth-degree burns, this little incident had managed to make the national papers for a few days. I was only seventeen at the time, so my name was never mentioned, but there’s just that extra-special something about a kid who can create and throw around fire just by thinking about it that kinda attracts people’s attention. Evidently Miss Vert had managed to find out my name, as within a week of the whole incident she had shown up to give me the offer of a lifetime: to learn how to be a supervillain. There was no way on this earth that I was ever going to turn down an invitation as cool as that, so all I needed to do was be taken to a farm somewhere random to show off my powers, and then wait nine months for my application to be processed. It was a pretty long nine months, that much I can tell you, but not as long as the three months between the acceptance letter arriving and today, the start of the new academic year. But the waiting’s over now, and my new life is upon me: my old life is gone, left to hang with none of its inhabitants knowing I’m here. The friends and family I left behind know I’ve left and not coming back, but I can’t imagine us missing each other enough to do any checking-up.

    Neither Miss Vert nor the acceptance letter told me much about the Academy, but right now I know enough to be getting on with. The Academy, built far below the streets of London, works on an invitation-only basis, but because it usually winds up inviting about ten or twenty times more students than it can take – there’s never more than a hundred at any one time, apparently - the selection process is still fairly stringent. If I’ve been accepted, which I have, then my chances of becoming a successful supervillain are already pretty high. Exactly what I’m going to be taught here and how is something only the teachers know, but at this point in time I don’t much care about the specifics of my timetable. Just being given the chance to do something this cool is enough for me.

    After a good three or four minutes, the lift stops moving. The doors slide open to reveal a plain white corridor, no more than eight feet across and with no decorations whatsoever. It looks like some kind of bizarre cross between a military bunker and a set in a Stanley Kubrick movie. At the end of the corridor, about five hundred yards away, is what looks like a Tube line - only without the dirt - running from left to right. Parked on the line is a globe-shaped carriage, with wide, oval windows at the front and back. But that’s not what concerns me right now: what concerns me is the two red leather seats that I can see through the open door, and more specifically the jaw-droppingly gorgeous long, silky, tanned legs that belong to whoever is sat on the right-hand seat.

    As I suspected, it’s none other than Miss Vert herself who is waiting for me, looking to-die-for in her purple business jacket and matching skirt. The globular train shoots off down the track the moment I sit down opposite this ungodly beautiful woman, and she has the good grace to give me a few seconds fantasising time before she starts talking to me.

    “Did you have a nice trip, Mr Findlay?” she asks. Man, her voice alone could make a man go weak at the knees…which is why I’m so glad I’m sat down right now.

    “Yeah, it was alright. Nothing spectacular, aside from getting the chance to watch the Omega Force go about their work.”

    “I caught some of that on TV. I may despise those do-gooders until the day I die, but you’ve got to admit that they’re a skilled crew.”

    “Tell me about it!” I pause for a few seconds, unsure of what to say next. Beautiful women have a tendency to do that to me. “Where are we going?2

    Miss Vert idly flicks her shoulder-length blonde hair behind her ears. “To the main Academy complex. There are thirty different entrances to it, each one hidden in a different part of London: some are in office blocks, some are in old shops, others are in apartment buildings and houses, like the one you used. We’ve even got an entrance in the back end of Harrods, which we use for our more important guests. This train system links each entrance to the main complex, which is under the Westminster and St James’s districts, and then links each part of the complex together. The lecture rooms are underneath Buckingham Palace and its gardens, the leisure facilities are underneath Whitehall, and the main offices are underneath New Scotland Yard. The student accommodation, where we’re going now, has the distinction of being right below Thames House.”

    I do a bit of mental calculation, based on what I know of Central London. “This place must be huge!”

    Miss Vert smiles, and my heart melts. “Indeed it is.”

    We sit in silence for the rest of the journey, but seeing as this is only another minute or two, I don’t mind much. Then again, I could spend all day in Miss Vert’s company and not care if I didn’t do anything. The train stops at the end of a corridor that looks exactly the same as the one I was in previously: these guys must have had a job lot on white paint, then. I follow Miss Vert through a maze of corridors until we get to a door with the number “214” written on it.

    “This is your apartment.” she says. “Your roommates will be arriving any time now, so I suggest you wait for them inside.”

    “Roommates?”

    “Yes, three of them. You’ll find out who they are soon enough, but based on what we’ve seen of them so far I think you’ll all get on well enough.”

    “Fair enough. How am I supposed to find my way round this place?”

    “There’s a map waiting for you in the apartment. But I’m sure you'll figure it all out before too long anyway.”

    Miss Vert smiles. “And now I need to be going. I’ll see you again soon enough, no doubt.”

    “Huh?”

    “I’m the principle’s secretary. The one problem with an Academy like this is that all the students are troublemakers, to a greater or lesser extent, so they all wind up passing through my office at some point or another. I doubt that you’ll be disappointing me.”

    “Oh, okay. In that case, I’ll see you the next time I do something stupid. Which shouldn’t take that long.”

    Miss Vert laughs, and there’s no way that her child-like giggle doesn’t count as flirting. “I’ll be seeing you, Mr Findlay.” she says, walking off down the corridor before I can even respond.

    Once I’ve watched her fine figure turn the corner, I spin back round to the door to my new flat. Miss Vert didn’t tell me how to open it, but I’m guessing that the blue-coloured LCD screen on the wall next to me has something to do with it. The display is about the same size as your average human hand, so in a spirit of curiosity I stick my hand onto the screen: sure enough, the lights and buzzing noises that start up make it clear that this is a fingerprint scanner. The scanning only takes a few seconds.

    “Identity confirmed.” the scanner says in a highly robotic voice, the door sliding open without a sound. “Welcome to your apartment, Mr Findlay.”

    “Thankyou.” I have no idea why I said that.
     
  17. Rae

    Rae Insert amusing comment

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    awesome, as ever

    We have a nice little intro to Miss Vert, and we get a basic idea of what Felix is getting into, as well as a brief look at the school itself

    Rae
     
  18. Death58

    Death58 WFWC Vet.

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    So much white paint. . .I couldn't live like that, but just the fact that I'd be in a school for villains would definitely be awesome(I'm evil though). Ms. Vert. . .I can't wait to learn more about her. I have to wonder, if she's working in a place like this, does she have any powers? Just a theory. . .Awesome way to explain the subterranean school and the descriptions of the different entrances to the academy. It's right under the noses of so much of Central London, but how far underground is the academy? Felix said that the lift took a couple of minutes to get down to the academy, so it must be hidden fairly deep. This story is absolutely brilliant, Felix is an interesting character, and I can't stretch how cool the concept is for this. I can't wait to see his roommates. . .
     
  19. Matt A

    Matt A Smile. Or Else.

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    I think I decided to give Miss Vert some powers at one point, but if I did then I can't remember what they are. But it'll be a while before I need to worry about hat sort of thing anyway, so it's a moot point for now.:shrug:

    And I don't have a clue how far down the Academy is. I must have decided on a figure once, but again I can't remember. I'd hazard a rough guess of about 50-100 feet...which is a lot deeper than you think.;)

    (By the way, the name "Daniel Clay" is a two-part Harry Potter reference. See if you can work it out.:evil: )

    Anyway, onto the next chapter. I think you know what this one's gonna be about...


    Chapter Three: Flatmates

    This flat is about one of the coolest I’ve ever had the good fortune to come across. It’s done up in the same way that I’m assuming the rest of the Academy is, all white walls, chrome surfaces and furniture that wouldn’t look out of place in the Tate Modern. Very…retro, but actually quite stylish. Like I said before, Stanley Kubrick would feel at home here. Then again, Blofeld probably would as well: this being a supervillain academy and all, that’s probably more the look they were going for.

    In terms of the actual layout of the place, the designers very much went for “open-plan”. The front door opens straight onto a massive lounge/kitchen area (a bunch of students do indeed have no use whatsoever for a dining room) with five doors positioned more or less at random along the walls. As I myself check, these doors lead to the four bedrooms and the bathroom: the bedrooms are fairly basic, with a bed, wardrobe and desk each – let’s face it, that’s about all I need – whilst still looking as stylish as the rest of it, and the bathroom…well, let’s just say that it could win a fair few design awards all by itself. If you like chrome, steel and glass, then you’ll just love this bathroom: come to that, if you like those three materials, then you’ll love the whole flat. Which perhaps explains why I’m so happy that this’ll be my home for the next three years of life.

    After a few minutes of exploring, I eventually figure out that the first bedroom on the left is mine. When I had my interview for this place, I was asked to fill out a fairly lengthy questionnaire about my tastes in various things, clothing included. The upshot of this is that I haven’t needed to bring any stuff with me, ‘cause the wardrobe in this particular room is already filled to the brim with the kind of casual T-shirt/jeans combos that I adore so much, and everything is exactly the right size. I briefly wander into the bathroom to check my appearance in the huge mirror that’s in there, and as usual everything is to my satisfaction: fair skin is spot- and freckle-free, black hair is short without being squaddie-length – it’s too short to gel, but then again I’ve never quite been vain enough for that sort of thing – and red T-shirt and jeans give off just the right kind of “I’m-too-cool-to-care-about-fashion” vibes. All in all, lookin’ good.

    I spend a good hour or so watching TV in main living area, putting the 40” plasma-screen mega-gadget through its paces. From the looks of it, it can pick up every channel in every country in the world, including some Dutch porn that’s actually surprisingly high quality. But I don’t watch that for long, ‘cause I’m not a perv, and anyway being caught watching that sort of stuff perhaps ain’t the best way of making a good impression on my new flatmates. I’ve just managed to get into a fairly entertaining game of American Football on one of the US channels when said flatmates finally show up. I turn off the TV and lean my head over the back of the sofa in order to get a better look at them.

    They’re all about my age, and from the looks of it they’re quite a cool bunch. The first one through the door is a girl about my age wearing a green strappy top with no sleeves, a nicely revealing piece of clothing that's matched by the tightest pair of black shorts I have ever seen. That kind of outfit looks a bit show-off on some people, but with this girl it only contrives to make her look utterly jaw-dropping. I thought that Miss Vert was hot, but that woman ain’t got nothing on the girl standing in front of me right now. T*ts just big enough to hold, arse that’s firm and not too round, flat but not anorexic stomach, silky legs up to the armpits – well, you know what I mean – face that’s too pretty for words, long black hair that just cascades down the side of her face…this girl has got everything that I could ask for in a woman. I haven’t got a measure on her personality yet, but I only hope that I haven’t started drooling already.

    The next one is a guy, and he looks slightly more run-of-the-mill, but still perfectly likeable. His spiky blonde hair, white Adidas jumper, jeans and black trainers make him look like someone who wants to be a chav but can’t quite manage it. The whole chav style has never really been my thing, but in some cases – such as this one – it can work quite well. Whoever this guy is, I’m guessing he’ll be a bit of a laugh, and if he isn’t a complete chav – which he doesn't seem to be – then he shouldn’t have that much of an attitude. I think we’ll get on well.

    The last dude is by far and away the weirdest of the lot. I can’t tell if they’re a he, she or even an it, ‘cause all I can see is a brown ankle-length trenchcoat, brown office shoes and a brown trillbee hat. And when I say that’s all I can see, I mean it: it looks like there’s just these three pieces of clothing moving through the air, with no one inside them. It takes me a few seconds to figure out what the deal is.

    “Invisibility, huh?” I say to the clothing.

    “Yup.” the clothing replies. The voice is very throaty and obviously very male, sounding not entirely unlike Sean Pertwee.

    “Must be pretty cool.”

    “It is, or at least it would be if it wasn’t permanent.”

    “Oh. I think I can see how that would be a problem.”

    “Ah, it ain’t that bad. I was born with this, so I’ve had a whole lifetime to get used to it. As long as I remember that my arms and whathaveyou aren’t necessarily where I think they are, then it isn’t a problem. Try to think about it in terms of being blind: that’s the closest that you’d ever be likely to get to this.”

    “Fair one.” I try and fail to think about what being blind would be like: after all, it’s not something that I usually need to deal with. “Anyway, feel free to park up.”

    My three new flatmates jump onto the huge curved sofa that fills the centre of the room. The girl sits down right next to me, and I’m hoping beyond hope that she’s done that deliberately. I tell you, that would make my day.

    I cough to get everyone's attention. “I think we’d better introduce ourselves. I’d tell you my name, but as I’m sure you all know none of us are allowed to do that.” We’ve all either devised or been given an alias each, which is what we’re to be known as whilst we’re here: seeing as secrecy and anonymity are part of what being a villain is all about, I can understand that. “Seeing as I can’t tell you my name, I suppose that you’d better call me “Wildfire” instead.” That’s the name that I gave myself years ago, when I first discovered my superpowers.

    “What can you do, then?” the blonde guy asks. He’s a Geordie, from the sounds of it. That’s something I didn’t expect.

    “I’m a pyrokinetic, which means that I can do this…” I hold my right hand out in front of me, and after a second or two’s concentration a bright red flame appears on my palm. It quickly spreads across my entire hand, going no further down than my wrist. I can feel the heat of the fire on my face, but as usual it doesn’t burn my hand. The others are clearly impressed with this, but I’m not done yet: I point my burning index finger at the wall behind the blonde guy’s head, sending a half-inch-wide stream of fire right past his ear and burying itself in the paint. I extinguish all the flames the moment I can hear the paint crackle from the heat.

    The blonde guy stares at me. “Woah…”

    “Yeah, it’s pretty damn cool.” I look over at the invisible guy. “I think you’d better go next, seeing as you’ve told us something already.”

    “Uh, okay. You guys already know what I can do, so I don’t need to say any more about that. My name’s Ghost, for obvious reasons, and…well, do I need to say anything else?”

    “No, not really. We’re flatmates, not penpals. Anything else about you we’ll find out in time.” I turn to the girl sat next to me. “Your turn.”

    “Suits me fine. I’m Newton, before you ask.” I can tell already that Newton comes from Belfast or somewhere in that area. Her distinctly Irish lilt is particularly charming, a fact no doubt helped by her worship-inspiring looks. “I’ve got that name because I can control the flow of gravity, making whatever I want drop in whatever direction I want. I can even make different things go different ways at the same time. Like this…”

    Newton clicks her fingers, and before I even react I’m suddenly plummeting – there’s no other way I can describe it – the ten feet towards the ceiling. I smack into it with a bump, crying out with the pain of the landing. I turn onto my back, and the others are still sat on the sofa, looking up at me. They’re all smiling, and I’m doing my best not to be sick from the sheer weirdness of it all. I know that I’m lying the wrong way up, but as far as my body is concerned gravity is as normal: a feeling that is every bit as disturbing as it sounds.

    “Hey, this isn’t funny!” I shout. “Get me down!”

    Newton laughs. “In a second. I’ve got something else to do first.”

    She clicks her fingers again, and a small cushion is picked up off the sofa and attaches itself to Ghost’s hat. He takes the hat off and spins it round in his hands, the cushion not even moving. It looks like it’s stuck there by industrial-strength superglue, but we all know that gravity’s doing that instead: as far as the cushion is concerned, the side of the hat is down, regardless of what actual direction the side of the hat is facing in.

    Newton clicks her fingers for the third time, causing both the cushion and me to drop to the floor. I rub my nose, feeling both a little hurt and a little embarrassed by my second ten-foot fall in a minute. But at least gravity is back to normal now.

    “Okay, let’s pretend that never happened, shall we?” I say to Newton as I sit back on the sofa.

    Newton giggles. “Whatever you say, boss.”

    Now it’s finally the blonde guy’s turn. “My name’s Shockwave,” he says, “and I must admit that my powers are f**king hard to explain. It’s best if I just show you what I can do.”

    Shockwave stands up and quickly punches the air in front of him with his right hand. Over in the kitchen towards the side of the room, a glass that was stood on the island unit is thrown towards the cupboard doors and smashes when it hits them.

    Ghost sounds as surprised by this as I am. “Now that was pretty impressive!”

    Shockwave grins. “Yeah, it be cool. When I throw a punch, the force of it will keep on going until it hits something, even if that something is several miles away: how this works, I don’t know, but to be honest the effect is just too much fun for me to care. I just need to make sure that I’m paying attention when I do things like that, or else I’ll trash everything around me without even thinking about it. Which is fun, but not always helpful.”

    “Oh.”

    “Like you said, it’s no problem.” Shockwave sits back down.

    “So, what are we gonna do now?” Newton asks.

    Even though I can’t see it, I can tell that Ghost is smiling. “Lessons don’t start until after the weekend, which gives us a few days to get used to things. Apparently there’s a bar and stuff round this place somewhere, so I think we should go check it out before everyone else has the same idea.”

    Newton nods. “Sounds good to me. You guys up for that?”

    Me and Shockwave voice our agreement, and so the four of us waste no time in going for a wander. We’re gonna get on just famously, I can tell…
     
  20. JAG

    JAG Active Member

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    Great chapter! I can't wait to see these guys fight the Omega Force.:evil:

    I assume 'Daniel' refers to Daniel Radcliffe, the actor who plays Harry in the movies? Haven't worked out the 'Clay' part yet, though.:shrug: By the way, have you seen Goblet of Fire yet? I haven't, but I'm going to ASAP.
     

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