The following is a transcript of the recent broadcast of “Run Up to the Monsterous Mansion Season 4”, the first episode in this season’s summer pre-show. It consists primarily of a conversation between the three hosts; Suzuki Omaya the show’s historical specialist on the mansion and previous seasons, Tom McCallister the color commentator for this season, and Greg Oyotonombe the magical arts specialist and contestant bio specialist. There are two on-the-ground reporters for the team, Maria Patel and David Silverman, who put together the bio packages and interviews for the show. Here they will be referred to as their first names.

In case this transcript skips dimensions like last year’s finale did due to the actions in the Second Foyer, a brief description of “Monsterous Mansion” – in the northern Sierra Nevada mountains of the Paiute Protectorate and Confederacy a sorcerer that assited in the War of Resistance built a massive mansion complex in the mid-19th century that was slowly expanded either by his descendants or the Mansion itself. It is  a somewhat intelligent complex that housed the family for over 100 years. In 1997, the family was abruptly dislocated from the premises and sent to one of their European homes as the Mansion twisted itself into something dangerous but did not move beyond its own borders. No one yet knows what is wrong with the buildings themselves or why they would do this. After ten years of attempting to infiltrate the complex themselves and with professional help, including the shaman of the Paiute Protectorate, an agremeent was reached with the International Broadcasting Board to allow a competitive telescry show to be broadcast on restricted channels showing self-selected teams to breach the Mansion and attempt to repair or recover what they can. Cash prizes are offered as well as access to the family’s extensive artifact holdings. While these forrays can be deadly, resurrection has been unsealed for these contestants and the necessary materials have been provided by numerous organizations across the world, from the New England Freestates to the Flying Cities. Contestants only gain cash prizes and artifact access if they survive; otherwise they are resurected at the end of the season.

Here is the transcript –

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I didn’t know him when I sat down, but by the time I got up I’m pretty sure I did.

I came in around midnight, I’d been driving all night with my boyfriend to get to Seattle in time for a convention we were working at. He was passed out in the passenger seat and I was starving, so when I saw the lit sign just off of the freeway, I pulled off to grab a burger.

At the bar, facing the cook and eating a single piece of pumpkin pie was a man. He was small, broad, and slumped over his plate. Dressed in a pair of slacks, running shoes, and a wool coat with long, knotted hair splayed down his back. I sat a few seats down from him and ordered by burger, than said hi.

He smiled, a weak and soft smile. A heavy smile. I asked him about why he was so sad.

“I’m not sad.” He said, slowly and carefully, as if each word were brand new and still had sharp edges on them. “I’m just tired. It’s been a long, hard road.”

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So this is getting placed in the middle of NFTAP2 to establish a history for a few things I want to work with later. This isn’t the only large scale edit I’m going to be doing to NFTAP2.

So, here we go!

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More Cattlepunk!

July 3, 2012

Here’s some more work for you in my Cattlepunk setting.

Please share my blog with anyone you know who might be interested! I could really use the views and the interaction of some new readers!

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So, today I’m posting the beginning of the first draft of part 3 of Notes From the Abyss. This one’s a flashback about the thing that caused the Cataclysm and set up the Macguffin that the whole series so far rests on. So.

Anyway. I hope you like it!

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This is a story written in the Cattlepunk universe I started creating yesterday, and it’s written by a good friend of mine.

Reposted with permission

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“You may begin speaking now.”

                “And this thing’ll save whatever I say, so’s other folks can hear our story?”

                “Academics and future generations will benefit from the stories you tell today. Pretend I’m not even here, if you like. I’ll sit and listen, and ask you to pause when I need to change the cylinders. The day’s long and the drink is ready, so take your time – this is for posterity.”

                “Posterity.  I wish I could be so certain that someone’d be there to remember me tomorrow, if I were taken today. I could get used to a society that’ll still dream big in the face of all this. But somewhere along the way, someone decided who gets to share the meat and the water, and who don’t. You mighta noticed, doc, that there aren’t so many old folks like you around, all soft and clean and learned. You mighta noticed what folks we do got, they’re all young and strong and mean. You templers, you wheelers, you Thirteen – not you particular, doc, but your people – they’re in love with their own story, crammin’ it in everyone’s ears even as the story keeps changing. They love to tell you that they survive because every single one of them is tough, and every single one is needed, and everyone has a skill.

                “But that ain’t strictly true, or, no offense, you wouldn’t be here putting my voice into a hunk of Nester’s Wax. Someone had the time to figure that out ‘cause you’ve all got civilization, and there’s room for people like you, who can go and learn and make new things because they’ve got other people worrying about where the water comes from, or when the cows come home. You might know how to swing a rifle, doc, but I can see that you never hauled buckets or butchered an animal or any kinda thing that folk around here do for themselves every day. Anything needs doing around here, you do it yourself, or you go without. Not a one of us is free of that, not even Baron Saans.

                “There’s some who’ll lay food and arms at his feet, sure, but that’s respect. The man made do for himself on top of pulling towns like this together, and without his like, a lot of us’d be food for the flitters. That name, ‘Baron,’ ain’t our doing. It was the templers bestowed that honor, calling him a Robber Baron and declaring us all outa the law, declaring that folk like us ‘shall not take of their bounty, under pain of death.’ They call themselves united, but see fit to leave anyone they don’t like for the bugs. They call us ‘Tweeners, ‘cause we fall through the cracks and settle where they don’t see fit to. They’ll say that anything we got we stole from them, but that’s only because they never let us have anything in the first place. Our whole being is cobbled together from their leavings and the rather dubious kindness of folk like you.

                “You keep a quiet face but I can read your eyes, doc. You’re out here bringing goodness to the little people, sure, but you carry yourself like you know you’re better. You said yourself, you come through to make study of the lot of us. We don’t have what comforts you know, but we’re not stupid. You’re here trying to learn ‘cause there’s not a one of you behind your walls that’ll both remember true and tell it straight. You know there’s no one old enough here, but if you pick up all the pieces you can find, that’ll get your picture started. I got a question outa that, though: Why go to the trouble? Can’t go on those trails of yours without worrying about a lead breakfast. What’s the point?”

                “I’ll get to that, but have a drink first. We’re coming up on the end of this cylinder.”

Gulch of Fire

June 27, 2012

A gunslinger's best friendI don’t know what else to call it yet. Anyway, here goes.

Eighty years ago, things changed.
Eighty years ago, the Great Kingdoms were attacked by the Famine and people died. Civilization died. Things changed.
Eighty years ago, the mountains shook and shuddered and rumbled. Down from the peaks came whole clouds of the Famine-Flyers. Insects as big as a fist that’d eat anything. Especially steel. Especially the flesh and armor of the great Knights, our Heroes, our Kings. They ate up all of the defenses and all of our food until we adapted. Until things changed.
Eighty years ago, the Famine started. It lasted for five years and killed nine in ten. If not from the Famine-Flyers, from the starvation. From the cold. From the fear. Now things have changed and the world’s moved on. The knights and soldiers carry hard iron now. The wizards and will-workers use science and genius to supplement their magics, since the world is weak and faithless. Clerics have taken up The Black and the serve the Saints in their own ways, burying the dead and healing the sick. Trappers, Trackers, and Scouts have taken up the Rifle to claim the land back from the Famine-Flyers – even if it is just a desert now. The common people have had to become hard-bitten and competent, honing their skills to razors. And over them all are the Marshals, keeping the peace and serving the Righteous Law since the Temple Knights all died fighting the Famine.
Things changed, the world’s harder now. But we get along.
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