I absolutely love writing action scenes. I feel like I’ve always been pretty good at it, and that probably stems from growing up reading a lot of books with great action scenes. (Michael Stackpole, I would have to say, is a huge inspiration for this; his action scenes are always stellar.) I’ve been complimented on my clear, fun, descriptive action scenes. It’s one of the few times that my tendency to over-visualize is an asset, I think. I don’t know if I’m any good at writing the stuff in between the action, but I’ve got that, at least.
So when Jens sent out this prompt this month, it got me a little excited (and I didn’t have to grab a dictionary to understand it 🙂 ):
Prompt: Write a story with the best dang fight scene ever. But it also has to mean something. Within the context of the story. A spectacular, mind-shattering fight scene, but with emotional heft and moral repercussions, in under a thousand words. Yeah!
So I took the opportunity to fledge out a little more the Scarlet Ranger’s history. With some expansion, I think this might might a pretty good stand-alone short story, so I’ll just post a brief bit of it here. This is set in the early days of her career, before Kelly even took the mantle of the Scarlet Ranger. A member of the Liberty Gang, Lieutenant Governor (formerly sidekick to the Governor, of course) is featured as well.
The more I think about it and the more I write about her, the more I want to NaNo Kelly’s story. I enjoy writing her enough that I think I could keep it up for a month, and portions of the story are already rolling around in my head.
Anyway, on to a dark, dingy Chicago alley, mid 1980s…
She licked her lips and picked at her mask, hoping she’d applied the spirit gum properly. “Okay, yeah. What do we do?”
Lieutenant grinned, and Kelly saw the wrinkles in his face deepen. None of those wrinkles had been in the posters she’d had as a kid. “Just follow my lead.”
He sprang from the rooftop. As far as she knew, Lieutenant had no powers, but the man was fearless. He grasped the rusty metal rails of the fire escape and swung out, his cape billowing.
In the alley below, Lieutenant’s appearance did not go unnoticed. The five men unloading boxes from a stolen armored truck cried out. Two broke and ran, but Lieutenant would have none of that. Even as he plunged the last ten feet to the damp floor of the alley, one arm lashed out, casting a pair of weighted lines around their legs. As the runners crashed to the ground, their more foolish comrades drew pistols.
“I think that’s my cue,” Kelly muttered. She hopped off the roof, reaching for the fire escape. She missed, misjudging her own strength; her fingers swiped open air several feet from the rail.
“Fuck!” she shouted, tumbling gracelessly to the ground. She slammed into concrete, cracks splintering in every direction. “Ah, God-” she lifted her head to find that she’d fallen amongst the three gunmen. Kelly froze, terror overwhelming the rational part of her mind screaming that their bullets wouldn’t hurt her. They stared at her in confusion for a moment. They exchanged glances, and grins split their faces. They raised their guns.