Ten

I thought I would do another Seth short before finishing Valley. This one was inspired by a writing contest at a forum. The due date for the contest was the day that I started plotting the story out, so oh well for that.

The prompt was “ten”. Originally Seth was going to be ten years old but then this came to me. It’s the story of Seth as a tenth grader. And no, there aren’t going to be any pics. We’re being brave and going full text here.

But if you’re curious, here’s what Seth looks like as a teen in the game. Exactly the same, just shorter.

omg emo teen Seth!

This bit isn’t even the complete first scene. This is turning into a large and complex project and if I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel by the end of the month I will put it aside for a bit and finish Valley first. But I thought I’d show you guys what I’m working on and give you a little teaser. 🙂 This is of course subject to further editing but it’s certainly no longer a rough first draft.

Ten

The universe was white, silent, cracked. He counted ten cracks, ten faults in the perfection of time and space, before the hands on his shoulders yanked him away from the wall and sent him hurtling into the hard edge of a sink.

He wanted to fall into the basin and slip down its drain. He wanted to be a drop of water exactly like all the other drops of water. He wanted to disappear.

One two three four. The hands closed on him again, pulling him back from the drain and its dream of deliverance. The sink fell away and space was white and time was black and the stall doors were breathing in and out, in and out or maybe it was him.

His legs refused to listen to his plea to keep him upright, to keep his pride intact, to at least avoid the puddle in front of the middle stall. He hit the floor and a thousand points of pain lit up in his knees and he could feel the water soaking through his khakis and it must be mixing with blood but he wouldn’t think about that, not now.

He stared at the floor tiles. They moved and changed places and sometimes he thought he saw two floors and sometimes there wasn’t a floor at all. He squinted, trying to make the tiles stay still so he could count them one two three four and then he saw a glint under the stall door to his left.

He made out the fuzzy apparition of his glasses. Vision. Sanity. A floor that would stay still and not duplicate itself. His glasses promised all these things and so he got up on his hands and knees and crawled towards them, counting all the way one two three four and he got to eight before the foot came.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Extras, Valley and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Ten

  1. Mariia says:

    OOOHHH I like it :D. It gives more information about Seth…. sorta. 😀

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you!

      When it’s finished you will have plenty more information about Seth, including part of why he targeted Lilith in particular. 🙂 I think it’ll be able to stand on its own though, although certainly knowing his future adds an extra layer of meaning.

      And honestly if it keeps going the way it is – I’ve started researching possible markets. And their policies on electronic rights and all that stuff. But for now I’m still planning on posting the rest on here.

      Like

    • BB says:

      Poor Seth *hugs* It’ll be okay baby

      Like

  2. gfitz says:

    There is always something in your life that can be construed as that defining moment and this feels like one of Seth’s. I won’t let him off the hook for becoming a diabolical monster who kills people but knowing what drove him to such a life makes me pity him and allows me to understand him a little better.

    This was, in a word, incredible. No pictures needed. And this is just an excerpt…fantastic writing, powerful, descriptive, and evocative.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Oh yes – the turning point of the story will be when Seth starts down the path to becoming the Seth of Valley proper.

      There’s an idea that I often use when I beat myself up about my own mistakes and failures – which, okay, so they’re nothing compared to Seth’s but yeah. And that’s the idea of an explanation but not an excuse. Like yeah, okay, I messed up and I have an explanation for it but the explanation isn’t an excuse, it’s just a way to help me understand why I messed up and to hopefully avoid making the same mistake in the future.

      So we could call this Seth’s explanation but not his excuse.

      Thank you so very very very much for the comments on the writing. As you can probably tell from my LJ posts of late, that means a great deal to me. And yay, validation that I can write without the pictures to help! 🙂

      Thank you again, for everything. Major *hugs*.

      Like

  3. raquelaroden says:

    Poor bullied Seth…. I like that you call this more of an explanation rather than an excuse for his behavior. It will be interesting to see what else happens with this!

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you! 🙂 And I wonder if you will still call him poor bullied Seth by the end of the story. 😉

      And yeah, I like responsibility tempered with mercy and understanding. Seth didn’t have to react the way he did and he could have made better choices, but he’s human and humans are notoriously fallible. Of course, hopefully most of us won’t fail to the point of becoming serial killers, but still…I think it’s good to accept responsibility for your mistakes and learn from them and go on as opposed to either denying that you made a mistake and not accepting responsibility or wallowing in guilt and beating yourself up for not being perfect.

      I sort of have a problem with the second one and I have to write myself little motivational notes about it a lot, lol.

      Like

  4. carnaxa says:

    Yep, you definitely don’t need any pictures to illustrate what you’re trying to get across here.

    I love the insight into Seth’s mind, you can already see the spark of what he later becomes in the story but this scene here, very powerful, very descriptive.

    I like the sights, sounds and smell it evokes.

    Being one of those who has to wear glasses for everything, I particularly found the description of how Seth was affected without the use of his eyes to be very realistic and spot on.

    This is a great start.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      I hope you’re still around to read this reply. *worry*

      Thank you so much! 🙂 And yeah – I was going to include a bit about the smell of cheap soap coming from the sink but couldn’t quite make it fit.

      I wear glasses all the time too and have truly horrible eyesight, so I was very much pulling from my own experiences there. Actually I went into our bathroom and took my glasses off and stared at the sink and the faucet for a while. I have been told that doing things like that (spent quite some time in the kitchen with a glass bowl for Flood) is pretentious, but whatever. 😉

      Like

      • carnaxa says:

        That’s not pretentious, a lot of authors do things like that for their stories. One writer spent a few weeks at an asylum (as a patient) to experience it first hand to write her character. It’s what writers do.

        I’ve done that, sat staring at a blank wall to see what staring at a blank wall felt like because one of my characters did that.

        I’m still reading stories. Just taking a bit of break from everything else for a bit. Maybe indefinitely, I don’t even want to look at my game right now because I fear I will throw it into a fire and do a happy dance around it. I am seriously considering giving the sims franchise a boot – way too many problems with my game, it’s not even very playable right now. I might go back to Broken Sword or maybe get into Dragon Age. I hear that’s a really good game.

        I sent you a PM over at VSS.

        Like

  5. Ah, high school bathrooms. Headquarters for snarling bullies, desperate anorexics, tearful jiltees, and bleeding, bruised, sans-glasses Seth.

    Brilliant sensory descriptions! I can see the floor swimming before my mind’s eye. I just can’t quite tell if Seth is wearing a pocket protector or not.

    Is the source of the kicks and punches represented by anyone in Valley? And does teen Seth have a crush on a girl who works for the yearbook staff or the school newspaper? Does his yearbook picture show him with a black eye? I want to know more. I can see this being a whole novel. Different than Catcher in the Rye, but with some similar emotions.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Yeah, I am aware that it doesn’t start out in the most original way. And we are indeed going to meet a girl in the second scene. 😉

      But I figure – there’s only so many basic plots in the world and there’s a reason why we tell ourselves the same stories over and over. The thing is to take the basic structure and make it your own with your own characters and your own style.

      Going to try and finish the rest of this scene today and reveal who is attached to the hands and feet – no, it’s no one in Valley. I’ve decided that Seth did grow up in Sunset Valley. Sarah, however, did not. So nope, no one else featured in Valley is in the story.

      Ah – but their parents or grandparents might be. Idea! 🙂

      And yeah – I honestly have no idea how long this is going to end up being. And maybe I should reread Catcher in the Rye – haven’t read it since elementary school. I think I vaguely remember my mother seeming to think that everyone should read it?

      I wear glasses myself and actually last night I was looking at one of my cats after taking them off for bed and I wasn’t very sure where her paw was. So yeah – definitely pulled from my own experiences there. Not in the other stuff, though – I actually did fairly well socially as a nerd in high school. 🙂

      Thank you so much, as always. I love your comments.

      Like

      • Oh hey whoa! My high school bathrooms comment was not meant to imply that bathrooms as a milieu (~brief interlude for giggling at the word “milieu” going slumming with “bathroom”~) are trite. On the contrary, I meant that they are rich with emotional possibilities and an excellent choice for going under the Sethoscope!

        LOL @ not knowing where the cat’s paw was. Maybe Salvador Dali needed glasses?

        As for Catcher, maybe read it after you’ve finished Seth’s story, and definitely never when you’re in the doldrums. It’s more anvil than helium balloon.

        Like

  6. tipix7 says:

    Powerfully written, I love it! Maybe Seth should have his own site full of stories 😛

    Like

  7. Connor says:

    There’s not much I can say that hasn’t been said.
    It’s so vivid! And horrifying.

    I hate bullies.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you!

      And oh, I do too. This is just the first scene of the story and the actual events that cause such a negative change in Seth are deeper and more complex but it seemed obvious to me that he was primed for reacting negatively, that he would have already built up a distrust of other people and already created a shell to protect himself.

      I’m working on the drafts of the final update and the epilogue now, and once those are done I think I’m going to take some time and build the non-Sims Valley world. And then I’ll work on both Valley the novel version and this story, because I still want to tell it.

      Like

      • Connor says:

        Ooh!
        *looks forward to novel version*

        Don’t feel rushed, though… I want you to take your
        time an make it AMAZING. (I use that to
        deceive this a lot, don’t I? I need a thesaurus.)
        But that shouldn’t be too hard for someone as talented as you.

        Seth’s had a tragic life, hasn’t he?… I sort of feel sorry for him, the poor delusional maniac.

        Like

        • Connor says:

          Ugh. Typos galore. My iPod has an auto-correct feature and it messes up sometimes…

          Deceives = describe
          An = and

          Also on my iPod’s keyboard the “enter” key is right by the space bar. Hence the weird line break.)

          Like

  8. Marrow says:

    Two days ago I had trouble viewing this blog. I also noticed that your behind the scenes blog and twitter had been deleted. I then had to consider a world without valley. It was horrible!

    I’m glad you’re continuing the blog because you have a real gift for creating truly gruesome and horrifying characters (ala Seth) and I was also intrigued by your zombie apocalypse concept. I’m hoping to do something similar one day.

    Well that’s all I wanted to say.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you.

      I have to admit that every time I look at my stats page now I want to make it private again. And the LJ and Twitter are staying deleted. And I am considering asking people who have me on their blogroll to take me off. And I force myself to look at the stats page so if I notice a referral from somewhere where I linked it I can go delete the link.

      It’s going to be a while before I even look at the draft of the last update and the epilogue again, but I will finish them and publish them one day.

      Like

      • helenpaige1 says:

        why? are the stats to high for you or are to low?
        I could take you off my blogroll if you want.. but I will continue to read the story because I want to know what happens in the end. im worried for Seth. he has mental issues lol….

        Like

        • medleymisty says:

          Oh no, it’s fine. I am a person of many mood changes at the moment. I’d edit that reply but well – I’m learning that the edits should be before you hit submit the first time.

          Definitely not too high. Actually it doesn’t have anything to do with the number of views anymore. It’s the creepy crawly feeling that people are only clicking on it to laugh and to find stuff to make secrets out of. Which I know is unreasonable, but hey.

          And, should the current mood hold for more than a few hours – I will be doing my best to have the end and the epilogue out by Sunday night. 🙂

          Like

      • Connor says:

        Yeah, it was protected for a little while. I was getting worried.
        I don’t want this story to end yet! Please, don’t stop! I’d be quite sad if this story was canceled.

        Like

        • medleymisty says:

          Oh, I’m not stopping. My current plan is to take a look at the drafts of the last update and the epilogue tomorrow, rewrite/edit/add to them, take pics, and hopefully be done by Sunday – or if not by then, at least by next Sunday.

          Bring the secrets and the stalking and the hate. I can take it. 🙂

          Like

  9. summergrey says:

    you shouldn’t let the stats bother you – the story is for you, and if you’re proud of it then it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. 🙂 and you should be proud! valley is amazing. don’t let anyone bring you down.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you! 🙂 It has been a fine line this week, walking between letting down some of my ego defenses and seeing my flaws and where I’m wrong while also keeping some defenses up and seeing the positive side of things. But I am happily listening to my angry music for when I’m angry playlist and feeling all empowered and ready to channel my emotional turmoil through Lilith and Seth.

      Eminem’s Lose Yourself is a very motivating song. 🙂

      Like

  10. moondaisy101 says:

    Yes… I can totally see how he would have been picked on for being geeky, for being different.
    He has not thoughts for his assailer… only for how the world looks, changes at every given moment and maybe the wish he possesses that same fluidity… because that would be the key to some control.
    His constant analysis, even the counting… it’s like he is looking for patterns, for order in chaos as it were…

    You convey so much with so little. From the first line pictures bloom in my mind and senses roll in powerfully only seconds after… I was totally transported. 🙂

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      Thank you!

      I’m glad you liked it, because this is the beginning of my next project. 🙂

      And very good insight into Seth there. He is indeed very analytical and a control freak. One way in which I know he’s not me, lol.

      Like

  11. Katrea says:

    I like this. We get to see more of why Seth is the way he is. How his mind got twisted. I suppose abuse can do that to you. If only people could stop putting on others the bad that was put on them.

    Like

  12. I know Seth is still a monster, but he seems so real and the poor guy is suffering. The way you write him makes me love and hate him all at once. Everyone has a story. Everyone has pain. That doesn’t excuse acting like a monster or becoming a murderer, but it does explain a little bit about maybe why he became who he did.

    Like

    • medleymisty says:

      https://medleymisty.wordpress.com/2014/02/05/eggshells-2/

      That’s a story I wrote using the bones of this one.

      I like the idea of “an explanation but not an excuse”. It’s how I talk myself down from anxiety and self-hate when I make a mistake at work. Like okay, here’s why this happened, and I am just human and I fail sometimes, but there were extenuating circumstances. But it’s not an excuse, and I will learn from it so that next time similar circumstances come up, I’ll know what to do better.

      I realize that mistakes at work are not at all equivalent to killing people, but yeah.

      Like

      • I will definitely check out the link to your story. 🙂

        I struggle with anxiety and have moments of self loathing too. I totally understand. Perhaps that’s why I create certain characters – to explore those dingy corners of doubt, to face the malevolent monsters beneath the bed that hide in the shadows because they’re afraid; they’re afraid of what the light will do to them. Sometimes people might think I’m crazy, but we shouldn’t be afraid of the shadows; there’s a lot of truth in the dark and we don’t see it unless we’re brave enough to venture down into the basements of our minds, unless we don’t explore the depths of the caverns of our hearts, and unless we walk outside and embrace the dark night of the soul. I can see my true self there – all the pain, anger, and ugliness, but also the love, peace, and the good. We can’t fully appreciate and embrace the light until we can live with the darkness too. Maybe it’s that way for you too wit Seth… I don’t know.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s