It was a cold night; cold enough to chill the two figures walking along the lonely road to the bone. One, the smaller and thinner of the two, was huddled against the weather, soaked and cold. The other, taller and lankier, didn’t seem to feel the chill, striding along as if it was a summer’s day.
“Dad, are we nearly there?” the smaller figure asked, her words nearly lost in the wind.
“Yeah.” The man pointed. “Next bend. That’s the tree.”
It was indeed a true hangman’s tree, bent and twisted. The man turned off the road as they reached it, stepping onto a smaller track. “Just a little further.”
“You said that aaaaages ago!” the smaller one whined.
It’s the start of a new story, and you can find the rest of it in my writing section. There’s nothing further, yet – I don’t have a world or a plot, and it’s a bittersweet start. I wrote this on the day Ryan died and sent it to him for comments; he liked the characters that this is based on and read all of the 160k of original story, so I wanted to know what he thought of the new iteration and the world. But he’d already gone by the time I wrote it, and the email will stay unread. I think he would have liked it, but I won’t ever get the comments that I valued so highly. But that’s life.
So I’m picking it up again now, or at least taking another look. It’s definitely going to have to be a fantasy world – I wondered if it would fit into No Man‘s or Greensky, but I don’t think it will. It needs magic and grit, people and politics; the world’s full of mountains and strange paths. I think it may turn out slightly like Neil Gaiman’s Stardust…it’s sort of got that feel, I think.
If I’m putting it into a fantasy world, I want to turn some cliches on their head. I want to subvert the Chosen One trope, and I’d love to play with some of the other fantasy genre cliches. I don’t yet know what the Thing is; I don’t yet know – beyond a few ideas – what the plot is. But I’m just going to let it simmer and see what comes of it!