Tuesday, December 01, 2015

New Beginning 1050


Three corpses dangled by ropes around their necks from the branches of the enormous border oak. Though rotted by time, the corpses still retained a mostly human shape, if you ignored the long tails. The breeze shifted. Carrion stench swept over the makeshift slave market.

Or, rather, the market of spies pretending to be slaves.

“Do they really think we're that stupid?” said Korus.

Psiris said, “They're expecting--”

“Dismount!” said Captain Nisin, suiting action to word.

The six men in the patrol meandered towards the market, leaving the two dogs guarding the horses at the top of the hill.

One of the slavers met them with open arms. “Good day, good sirs, and welcome. Are you looking for anything in particular? Oh, but I get ahead of myself. Come sit in the shade and allow us to display our wares.” The slaver led them to a tent with one side open.

"Here's a good one," said the slaver. "Tough, strong, women want him, men want to be him. Tell them your name."

"Bond," the muscular man hissed through clenched teeth. "James Bond."



Opening: Anonymous.....Continuation: khazar-khum

5 comments:

Evil Editor said...

That first sentence is awkward, what with its three prepositions in a six-word span. I would go with ... dangled from ropes tied to the branches of an ... I think most readers will assume the necks part.

The characters are still at the top of the hill when you say stench swept over the slave market. Does that mean we aren't in a character's point of view?

I don't see asking if the customers seek anything in particular as getting ahead of himself. In fact, one could argue that doing anything else before asking them is getting ahead of himself.

I like the idea of spies pretending to be slaves to gain entry into somewhere they want to be, though apparently it's not working very well if these guys can spot the charade from up on the hill.

Amy said...

For me it felt jarring when Captain Nisin cuts off the other guy with his "Dismount!" line, the wording there made me feel like something suddenly happened and they were about to see some action or something....then next line they are "meandering" towards the market. It was like all this drama for nothing. It made me chuckle and it probably wasn't supposed to.

Depending on where this is going it could be interesting though.

davefragments said...

I think you need to gather the characters and descriptions together.
Like this:

Captain Nisin and the patrol meandered towards a makeshift slave market, dismounted and left two dogs guarding the horses. Three corpses, mostly human but for dangling tails, hung from the branches of a border oak. The breeze carried the stench of carrion over the makeshift slave market. Or, rather, the market of spies pretending to be slaves.
“Do they really think we're that stupid?” said Korus.
Psiris said, “They're expecting--”
One of the slavers met them with open arms. “Good day, good sirs, and welcome. Are you looking for anything in particular? Come sit in the shade of our tent and allow us to display our wares.”


i think the this serves the elements of the opening better.

AA said...

I like Dave's version better. But you may be going too fast. I'm not getting a good idea of the scene.
I don't see what the corpses have to do with the slave market. Maybe they tried to escape? But generally speaking, if you're trying to sell something, you don't show the grossest parts of your business to the customer. The smell alone would be off-putting to potential customers.

Newish Writer said...

Thanks to everyone for your comments, suggestions, and edits.

Special thanks to khazar-khum. I've been giggling all week.