Friday 3 February 2012

The Dorothy Delusion - part 10

Previously on the Dorothy Delusion: .1. .2. .3. .4. .5. .6. .7. .8. .9.

The year is 2032. This is the City, centre of world politics.

Leon moved through the shadows. He tried to ignore his body’s complaints about the crouching and sneaking but it wasn't easy. His back ached and splinters of pain stabbed through his knees.

He didn’t imagine he felt even half as bad as Scarecrow, slumped outside, but in a business full of tough guys, Scarecrow was the toughest. He would need medical attention, sure, but he would be fine; Leon hoped.

There were no guards inside, maybe they didn’t trust them to know the General was at the top of the ladder. In the centre of the warehouse was a operating theatre. Leon recognised the makeshift sterile environment. Plastic sheeting and bright lights. Dark silhouettes through semi-opaque white. He enhanced the outlines as best his image software could manage, two beds, one occupied, and three other figures.

So, three men: the General, his agent and the surgeon. The figure in the bed had to be Dorothy. He edged closer and drew his sidearm, they all had their backs to him.

He pushed into their bright cocoon.

“Back up, hands where I can see them, no sudden- ”

Leon froze as the men turned towards him and he saw the impossible ghost.

“Hello, father.”

“Simon... I- How?”

The Siberian smiled his cold, cold smile; in one swift motion he drew his own pistol and levelled it at Leon. Leon could have dropped him before he got the weapon level, but his finger wouldn’t budge. He felt so much older, wearier.

“The General saved me. When Dorothy left me to die, when no one else came for me, he did.”

“I saw you die, Tiger.” From the bed, Dorothy’s voice was strained. “No one could have survived that.”

“And yet, here I am.”

The General looked warily at Leon’s gun, still aimed at his head.

“Siberian, we should be going. Since the Lion seems to have overcome his cowardice I would hate for anyone else to have a change of heart.”

“Too late, General.”

The Tin Man stepped through the plastic sheeting. The cane in his left hand clicked where it hit the concrete floor, yet his approach had been silent. In his right hand was his small pistol, pointed at the Siberian.

“Well, Tiger.”

“You knew?” Leon growled.

“I suspected.”

The General went for his pistol. Leon fired, hitting the General in the shoulder and spinning him so that he crashed into the second bed, tumbling in a mess of blood and bed sheets.

Two more shots cracked in quick succession. The Siberian dropped behind Dorothy’s bed in a spray of red. Leon couldn’t tell how good the Tin Man’s shot was, the Siberian’s own bullet punched into his chest. The world roared and suddenly fell silent.

Everything was coming back to Dorothy. Her body felt fatigued but her mind grew sharper by the second. Being bound at the wrists gave her limited options but she was dextrous, and lucky. As Tiger fell she snatched for the knife on his belt. It was just in reach and she plucked it from its sheath as it rushed by. A quick flick reversed it and she sliced through her bindings.

Tiger struggled into a crouch by her bed, taking cover from the Tin Man, and Dorothy slipped the knife against his throat.

“It’s over, Simon.”

> goto 11


  1. I think you do action well. The sequences are always tense and even with multiple participants, I can follow everything clearly.

    My only niggle is that it felt short this week. Was it? Or is that just your super pacey writing? I want to know what happens!

    1. Thanks, Pete. =)

      Actually it was a little short, I hadn't noticed. I know I lost a lot of words editing the fight scene, trimming it down to essential movements, and it was probably on the short side already.

      I think as a hangover from my flash writing I leave a lot to implication and imagination, a very fill-in-the-gaps style. (see the cut-short Scarecrow/ gangsters fight scene) Don't know if people like that or would rather have the whole shebang. I think I worry that people don't want to wait around too long for the punch line. Although saying that, I enjoy The Vagrant partly because it just kind of meanders happily along.

    2. Oh no, I think the pared down fight description works really well. I was just being greedy about wanting more of this scene or an extra scene.

    3. I suspect it was more to do with what scenes fitted more appropriately into the final part (next week) as more of a wind down. =)

      I suspect, much like Godstorm, I will look to expand this to a novella to publish... maybe... cos, you know, I don't already have enough plans to get on... ;)

  2. I liked the conflict of Leon discovering that Simon still lived. I'm enjoying the way you've streamlined these fight scenes. What I like about it is how much it allows you to achieve over the arc of these installments.

    1. Thank you, Aidan. =)

      I enjoy imagining fight scenes, and strive to make them detailed without becoming confusing. I'm really happy about all the positive comments. =)

  3. It's coming together nicely now John. I like Dorothy, there's something very alluring about women who know how to take care of themselves when the chips are down, and I'm left wondering how many bodies are going to be on the floor when the violence has run its course.

    1. Thanks, Steve. =)

      It all concludes next week, I hope you like the way it shakes out... =)

  4. This was very tense! I'm liking the Dorothy character very much, she's brave and strong and in charge of herself! I'm looking forward to seeing how this all ends! ^_^