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Write or Die?

So I'm a blog reader. I forget where I found this link (mostly because I read a blog, which'll reference another one, which will reference another one, etc, until basically it's like wiki'ing Dakota Fanning and ending up at the Great Barrier Reef. Sure it made sense while following links but you've got no idea how you actually ended up there.)

Anyways, somebody was discussing their NaNoWriMo and how, ever since they found Write or Die, they've actually stayed on schedule for their daily word count. (NaNoWriMo, btw, is the Nation Novel Writing Month. Write 50,000 words of a story. Do it in less than thirty days. The last week in November is when the actual word counts start.)

So, Write or Die. It's negative reinforcement of not writing, rather than positive reinforcement. Keep writing or your computer will make nasty sounds effects and suchlike. Set the level high enough, your words will start disppearing as you continue to delay your typing. Masochist that I am, I wanted to try it out. I banged this out in half an hour and am considering giving it another go to see where the story leads. (I have gone back and checked for obvious typos, but otherwise it's unedited.)

They hadn't been in the house for more than ten minutes before Tae managed to trigger a trap. Petra cursed as the floor disappeared, twisting to grab onto an unlit wall sconce, feet dangling over the gaping hole where thirty square feet of floor space used to be. Crunch leaped across the divide with a loud grunt of exertion, but Tae and Carmen had neither handholds nor great wells of strength to draw upon and fell into the bottomless dark. Petra lost sight if them quickly, but couldn't hear them hit the bottom.

She swung herself over to the floor Crunch stood on, grabbing onto his outstretched hand for balance.

"Looks like it's down to just you and me," she said with a grimace.

"Crunch not understand where pixie go," he said. "Odette powerful sorceress, she can protect from being kidnapped."

"Yes, well, we were all caught unawares. Be glad Tae found someone to point us in the direction of this place. Unless, of course, it's all just one big trap meant to kill everyone who enters and Odette isn't actually here."

Crunch shrugged. "Bad either way," he said. "George thinks Odette is here though."

"Wonderful," she muttered. She eased herself slowly down the hall, making for a door lit up with runes. "Try to step where I step. There's still more traps built into the floor and I haven't got the time to disarm them. I should've made Tae wait outside. I know she's clod-footed."

"Tae's never had reflexes before," the half-orc pointed out, following her, steps more nimble than his brutish background would suggest.

"That doesn't stop me from thinking she ought to have reflexes. She's half-elven, after all. It's like she was raised by buffalo."

Crunch opened his mouth to answer, but she held a silencing finger up to her lips and motioned with her other hand that two people were approaching from a side corridor. Crunch placed a hand onto his ax, cocking his head to listen as well. Petra shook her head, trying to impress upon him that they would need someone alive. She drew her rapier, looked at the floor at her feet, than shuffled backwards against the dimly-lit wall. A quick hand motion made the color of her outer robe blend in with the deep gray of the stone walls.

Two humans in scarlet robes rounded the corner. They took one look at the half-orc and raised their hands to cast spells. Petra silently ran one through, and Crunch punched the other in the face, knocking him out cold.

"What are we going to do with him?" Crunch asked as Petra wiped her rapier off on the dead man's clothes.

She started rifling through their pockets. "See if they know anything about Odette or where that pit trap leads." She drew out a small clinking bag, quickly adding it to her own adornment of small pouches at her waist, then made an 'ah-ha' noise as she drew out a set of keys from the unconscious man's pocket.

"I think we might have lucked out and kept the higher-ranking priest alive," she said to her companion, then frowned. "Unless they're just security."

"Guards have different uniforms," Crunch replied. "These two wear holy symbol of Talos all over their robes. Guards would have maybe one or two, and wear armor."

"Point," Petra agreed. "You got any rope? It might make interrogation easier if our prisoner doesn't try to escape or spell cast on us. And I think you should ask the questions. You're scarier looking."

"Of course Crunch have rope. Good for climbing down deep things. Should we stay in hall? More people could come, actual guards this time and not low priests," he warned.

"Let me poke my head in one of these doors and see if we've got an unused study or larder or something near here. Obviously not that one," she said, pointing at the rune door still further down the hall. "I wish I knew what they had on them that was protecting them from setting the traps off." She eyed the nearby doors carefully, then looked down the hall the two priests had come from. "I think that's the jakes down there," she said with a grin. "Hold on a second."

She sidled down the secondary hallway carefully, keeping an eye on the stones at her feet. The false ones had a subtly different hue to them; she thought it likely the installers hadn't seen the difference. She reached one of the two doors in the corridor and chuckled to herself. "Its got a little picture of a woman on it," she said in a loud whisper to the half-orc, who had placed one heavy foot on the fallen man's chest to keep him from getting up. "Aren't you supposed to be tying him up?"

Crunch grumbled in agreement and set to work. She turned back around, quickly checking the door for traps. Finding none, she turned the knob and slowly pushed it open. It was a small room, barely ten feet square. Against the far wall, a low bench was built, with a wooden cover and a circular opening cut out. She crinkled her nose at the smell and backed out, heading back over to Crunch, who was finishing up with his knots.

"I'd hate to have to wriggle out of those," she said, admiring his handiwork.

"Little elf is master wriggler, would not have too much problem," he disagreed. "Clumsy priests will though."

"I was right about it being the jakes. Gotta wonder why they went in pairs," she said with a grin. "Pick him up and haul him over this way. Mind your step."

He readily complied, picking up the human with little exertion. He followed Petra more slowly than he had earlier, weighed down by his burden, but the elven woman slowed her progress so he would still see which stones to avoid stepping on.



( 9 thimbles — Take up a thimble )
Jun. 26th, 2009 06:45 am (UTC)
I love your sense of humor. :D

Petra and Crunch do make a great Odd Couple sort of team, don't they?
Jun. 26th, 2009 11:50 am (UTC)
Barbarians and rogues make excellent teams, I'll have you know. It's the half-orc and elf that makes it weird. The two races can't stand each other- it's like the Goths versus the Romans. =)
Jun. 26th, 2009 12:33 pm (UTC)
The raised by buffalos amused me =D
Jun. 26th, 2009 06:45 pm (UTC)
I'd started typing wolves, then went 'but they're graceful creatures. What isn't?' and debated rhinoceros, but I couldn't figure out the plural, so went with buffalo. Which are cuter and less prone to charging at you full steam.
Jun. 26th, 2009 02:18 pm (UTC)
Petra and Crunch make a BADD-ASS duo =)
Jun. 26th, 2009 01:49 pm (UTC)
Awesome. Just awesome :D
Jun. 26th, 2009 02:09 pm (UTC)
ElfWriting, yessssssss
Jun. 26th, 2009 06:47 pm (UTC)
I have to do something to keep you from sneaking into my room and forcing me to draw pictures. =P
Jun. 26th, 2009 03:42 pm (UTC)
I place my vote in favor of seeing where the story goes!
( 9 thimbles — Take up a thimble )