Unexpected Developments

Avatar Author: The Ghost in the Machine LoA A student in the craft. Well traveled and not well off. Seen a little to add to tales. Still on the journey -Unknown _*http://www.protagonize.com/author/The_Ghost_in_the_Machine*_ Read Bio

Cancerous vapor fills my lungs as I take another deep drag of my cigarette. The smoke wafts towards an open skylight, at odds with the sunlight streaming through the broken glass. Glass shards litter the floor, intermixed with blood. I pull the shell catcher off my weapon and place it in my pocket with a soft, metallic ring.

I look around at the bullet ridden bodies littering the floor and shake my head. The only other living thing in the room, a woman standing across from me, chuckles softly and gives me a sinister grin. I pull the cigarette away from my mouth and sigh again.

“Obviously you know me.” I say warily. She replies with a nod.
“So then you must know that I work alone.” I finish. Somehow, I can feel that’s not going to be the end of it.

The woman chuckles again and spreads her hands expectantly towards the bodies laying on floor in various gruesome poses.
“I think you can make an exception.”
With that, she tosses me a cell phone and turns to leave.
God-dammit.

I hate teamwork. Too messy.

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Comments (6 so far!)

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  1. Avatar Cheesy80s

    The opening line was a little too flowery for what ultimately should be a fast-paced tale. I would have simply opened with “I took a drag on my cigarette”, but then, that’s just my style.
    Regardless, I like this; keep it roling.

  2. Avatar 32 ^2

    Thank you for entering.

    This is wonderful, a person who almost feels cheated, much less emasculated, because someone (had to?) help him.

    I like this too because your characters are neither exposed as good nor bad, you leave that up to the reader.

    I would like to suggest, Shards litter the floor. Should your last to be too?

    Cheesy has some good points. But I feel the opening scene works great, the action is over. Your protagonist is either taking a break, or has come to a resolve that there’s noting more to be done, his situation is bleak, maybe close to giving up and unable to ask for help.

    Cheesy also makes a critical point, one that is actually a great compliment: That cigarette smoke bleeding through sunlight and a broken skylight is the only beautiful (flowery) thing in your scene, now that’s excellent writing.

    Finally, I don’t believe this requires a mature rating. I would like to suggest you chage it, there’s worse in cartoons.

  3. Avatar The Ghost in the Machine LoA

    Thanks for the comments. 32^2 I did try to make it a little more descriptive, and leave the action and motive to the reader. Thanks for pointing out the grammer, I changed the last too. I wanted to make sure with the mature tag and see how others felt about it.

  4. Ahfl_icon THX 0477

    Fun opening to a tale, with a woman of mystery and a man of action. Classic sort of gritty start, and well done at that.

  5. Avatar mark.i.wang

    This story has a skip start, I don’t know if that was intentional but I think that’s what Cheesy80s was getting at, too… with 1000 characters, I think you should focus on either the scene or the dialogue, but not both.

  6. Avatar 32 ^2

    @Mark. great point, I never would have picked up on that. Maybe the smoke could be the main character, following it through the scene?