Acceptable Losses -- SW car-chase fanfic - Now with *director's commentary*! (bumped 4/9/05)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction Stories--Classic JC Board (Reply-Only)' started by Syntax, Mar 17, 2002.

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  1. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    This is a "flashback" story to my personal fanfic character, 9-LOM. This is only *part* of the story (as much as I've written :)).
    For those who want to read the other 9-LOM stories I've done (there's 4 complete, and 2 others in-progress other than this one), I can post those, too.

    Edit: Re-did all the page breaks, italics, spacing, tabbing.. the works. Should be easier to read now. :)

    Rating: PG -- for carchase sequences (just a few! ;)) of great action, and some SW slang for "profanity". No blood, not even very much gunplay.

    Acceptable Losses

    ?Get in the speeder.?

    ?What?? Kevin Ray asked, looking to his left as a red Jenkon 2800 convertible landspeeder pulled up alongside him at the curb. A LOM-series protocol droid was seated behind the steering wheel.

    ?Do as I said. Your life is in danger,? the droid said. ?Now get in the speeder.? He popped the passenger-side door.

    Tell me something I don?t know? Kevin thought. But? if I don?t get in, odds are this machine will shoot me right here or something. He looked up at the noon-day sun spilling light onto downtown Coronet City, wondering why this kind of nonsense always seemed to happen to him. Kevin glanced at the speeder, then back up at the sun. ?Okay?? Kevin replied warily, and moved into the passenger seat and closed the door.

    The droid stepped on the accelerator, and the speeder pulled away from the curb and back into traffic.

    ?I need to get you off of Corellia and somewhere safe,? the protocol droid said. ?There?s a price on your head, and I?ve been hired to protect you.?

    ?Yeah, I figured as much,? Kevin said, pulling his safety belt across his body and buckling it. ?If you wanted to kill me, odds are I?d already be dead.? Kevin turned to the droid. ?Mind answering one question, though? Who are you??

    ?LOM. 9-LOM,? the droid replied. ?I will take us to the starport where my ship is birthed, and we?ll leave here for the Vergesso Asteroids. That?s where I am to be paid.?

    ?Um, great, sounds like a plan.?
    9-LOM moved the speeder through the city streets. He really wanted to rush, but drawing attention from the local law enforcement by speeding through the urban surface streets of Coronet City wasn?t the brightest tactic he could employ. He pulled into the right lane, and turned at the next corner, following the flow of traffic. However, after a few more blocks, 9-LOM glanced over at his rear-view mirror.

    ?What is it?? Kevin asked.

    ?That black sedan, about four cars back. It has followed us around the past three turns.?

    ?So? What does that mean??

    ?Nothing, yet. I?ll run a test??9-LOM said. He shifted into the left lane, and turned on his directional signal. He moved into the turn lane, began the turn, and? the sedan followed 9-LOM?s lead.

    ?There. I think we have a tail,? 9-LOM said.
    ?Um? uh oh. Can you lose it??

    ?No problem,? 9-LOM said, switching the car into a higher gear and moved into the left lane, pulling around the landspeeder in front of him and accelerating away from the black sedan.

    The sedan sped up to match him.

    ?Oh, so he wants to play hardball?? 9-LOM said. He swung the speeder around a left turn, at a speed slightly faster than would be considered legal. As he came out of the turn, he gunned it. Glancing in the rearview mirror, the trailing sedan came around the corner as well ? and the driver-side window rolled down, and a gloved hand wielding a blaster rifle stuck out. 9-LOM noted this, and drove faster.

    ?We need to lose this guy,? Kevin said, glancing back and seeing the rifle.

    ?I know. Hang on,? 9-LOM said calmly. He switched over to the right lane, shifting gears again, and sped up along the right curb. Horns blared as other drivers expressed their outrage as 9-LOM cut back across the left lane ? and the sedan matched him turn for turn.

    ?This guy is good?? 9-LOM spoke, rotating the wheel to the right and pulling the speeder back across the right lane and into a ninety-degree turn to the right into the next intersection. He accelerated out of the turn, downshift
  2. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Hmm.. figured I'd get some sort of response to this. I dunno what I did wrong -- this is my first posted fanfic on this board (but about the 5th one I've written). I checked other threads to look for trends (like a rating -- G, PG, etc -- , warnings on content, summary of plot, etc...). Um.. what did I do wrong? :)
  3. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    Can't speak for everyone else but here's what I notice.

    It's a tad long, maybe. Some people like long installments like that. Others, myself included, see a story starting and think we might get involved but then we click on it and we're overwhelmed by the sheer volume.

    Also, and this is my only real peeve with what you've done (the length is marginal) you might want to leave a blank line between paragraphs. And perhaps some actual divider between scene changes. My readers asked me to put asteriks between every scene change.

    ***************************************

    Like so. :D Just makes it easier to read.
  4. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Yeah, that's how I do scene changes. Well.. my story has no scene changes. It follows 9-LOM from beginning to end. :) The only thing that shifts (about 4 times over the course of the whole story) is the perspective, and that IS spaced out.
    I'll try to re-tab the paragraphs -- I was just copying it out of a Word DOC -- I didn't actually type that all in the little box! :)
  5. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Re-did everything. Should be a little cleaner. :)

    ~~~~~~~~ = perspective changes (change in location, but not in time)
    ******** = scene breaks (change in time, may or may not be perspective)
  6. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    ::comm crackle:: zzzt-Roger that, salvage operation commencing-zzzz
  7. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    {Finally finished it. Here's the rest}

    ?What?ll we do?? Kevin asked.

    ?We?re going to catch a train, then get to the spaceport where my ship is docked.?

    9-LOM accelerated, the speeder?s engine growling its protest, and navigated his way through the streets and towards the hover-train station?s speeder parking lot. Boba Fett was steadily gaining on them as 9-LOM?s speeder?s engine continued to fail. He swung it into the lot, and continued driving towards the main station building.

    ?As soon as I stop the speeder, jump out and run for the station building,? 9-LOM said.

    ?Okay, got it.?

    9-LOM drove the speeder into an open area in the lot. He started slowing, then hit the parking brake. ?Go! Go!?

    Kevin bailed out, hopping over the door, and scrambled for the entryways for the hover-train station. 9-LOM popped the driver?s side door, and stepped out, as Fett?s speeder neared. 9-LOM quickly dodged forward and then rolled and slid over the hood of the speeder, just as Fett took the driver?s side door off, and continued past. 9-LOM rolled off the hood, landing in a crouch, and grabbed his rifle from the back of the speeder. ?I?m right behind you!? he called out, as he sprinted after Kevin. Looking back, 9-LOM saw Boba Fett step out from around his speeder, and lifted his left arm and took aim at 9-LOM?s speeder. A rocket shot out, connecting with the front bumper of the landspeeder, and it abruptly exploded, the wreckage flipping forward. 9-LOM was almost knocked down by the blast, and had to dodge to the left to avoid the falling debris. He sprinted into the main lobby of the station, where he spotted Kevin.

    ?Your car!? Kevin exclaimed.

    ?It?s a rental,? 9-LOM replied. ?We need to keep moving.? They continued running through the lobby, and a few shots came through the entryway. The other patrons in the lobby noticed this, and a rolling mob began to form as people scrambled for their lives. 9-LOM looked back, and saw Boba Fett run in and fire a few more shots from his EE-3 rifle. 9-LOM pivoted, pulling the disruptor rifle in close against his shoulder, and took aim. He fired a blast, but Fett jumped to the left; the shot passed through where Fett had been standing, and hit the forward landing strut of a Lambda-class shuttle, destroying it and causing the shuttle to pitch forward. Fett fired a trio of blaster shots as he fell to the left, the shots passing over 9-LOM?s shoulder and nearly hitting Kevin as he sprinted out the other door to the station lobby, out to the train docking platforms. Fett stood, and 9-LOM turned and ran after Kevin.

    ?Go! Go! That train over there!? 9-LOM called out as he pointed to one of the trains. No one would be boarding it, and the automated functions in the main engine were causing it to depart. The trains all got their navigational data from a central computer hub, which told each of the wholly-mechanized trains when to depart from the station. 9-LOM had checked the departure times and destinations of the trains ahead of time, and knew which one was heading for the Corellia spaceport where his ship was berthed. Kevin jumped onto the rear platform of the train, and started climbing the ladder to the top of the train. 9-LOM jumped on and followed him up, as Boba Fett ran out to the docking platforms. He engaged his jetpack, rocketing towards the train and landing on the roof, just as 9-LOM cleared the ladder and started running forward. Kevin hopped the gap between the last car and the next one, and shots from Boba Fett?s rifle started passing overhead.

    ?Down! Go down into the train!? 9-LOM said. As he hopped over the gap, he pivoted, taking aim with the disruptor and firing a shot. Fett was forced to duck, and as 9-LOM landed, he rolled back into a crouch. He turned as he stood, and ran after Kevin. He saw Kevin slide down the next ladder in between the two cars. 9-LOM pulled a grenade out of his satchel, armed it, and rolled it back towards Fett. He saw Boba Fett spot the grenade, and scramble backward. 9-LOM dashed forward, jumping over the gap to the next car just
  8. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Just thought I'd salvage this, one last time. No more bumps to the top after this one.
  9. Lt_Jaina_Solo Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 27, 2002
    star 5
    i liked it!

    are you going to do a sequel or something?
  10. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Nope. 9-LOM fails this one. In essence, it's a supplemental to another story (the first one I wrote. There's a throwaway line where 9-LOM says "I've only failed a mission once...")
    For more backstory and stuff, I can PM you the "director's commentary" for the story. :)
  11. Aunecah_Skywalker Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 25, 2002
    star 5
    I just had to post a reply here. Syntax , I loved this story. The tone, pacing, and everything was just so great! And the ending was such a tear-jerker. I was so sure that it was the droid that would die, not Kevin!

    You're an awesome writer :D :D

    Aunecah_Skywalker
  12. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Might as well bump it. ;)
  13. Ultima_1 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2001
    star 5
    Great story! Very descriptive.
  14. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Hey, cool, someone else read the story! Thanks for the response. :D
  15. SobiFan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 7, 2003
    star 3
    Hello, daaahling [face_love]

    Very James Bond, and even though the action, mood and overall feel is serious, there's a really great comical twist in there as well ;) great job!
  16. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Hey, another response. :D
    I've said it once, and I'll say it again - 'Acceptable Losses' was a lot of fun to write, and I'm glad people enjoy it. :D
  17. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Thought I'd post my "director's commentary" for 'Acceptable Losses' - it's basically my "production notes" for the story, and helps explain why some things happen, and why I made decisions I made, stuff like that. :D

    Note: DO NOT READ THIS COMMENTARY UNTIL YOU'VE READ THE STORY - IT's GOT SPOILERS!

    "I had infinite problems starting this fanfic off - I wanted it to be *the* ?carchase? fanfic, but I couldn?t come up with an opening for it, something to justify the chase. In the end, I decided to take the BMW Films approach: just start off with a chase, and explain it later, in the middle of the chase. I think it worked out pretty well.

    Essentially, this story fills two roles. I wanted a definitive carchase story, but I also wanted to branch off from a plotline I alluded to in ?One for the Money? - the one time Syntax had failed a mission. Of course, you don?t know that he?s supposed to fail it until the very end (unless you?re reading these notes BEFORE reading the POV itself. Oops) This fanfic takes place before Syntax joins the Alliance, maybe a year or two prior to the events in ?One for the Money?. Boba Fett is the main antagonist. I dropped him in as the main character just because he?s my favorite ?real? Star Wars character, and I needed an excuse to use him in a POV. It also justifies why Syntax ?fails?. Not much in the way of character development in the story - it?s pretty much all?s-to-the-walls action that happens to fill in some of Syntax?s backstory. Hope ya enjoyed it.

    ?Kevin Ray? is the name of one of my friends from school, as a matter of fact. On a school assignment, he wrote ?Damon Dellamarggio? (my name in real life) in as a character in a story? and killed him off. This fanfic happens to repay the favor. Also, Kevin?s crime in the POV is being a ?card shark? - Kevin in real life plays the Star Wars CCG pretty avidly, so that?s a nod to him.

    A ?red Jenkon 2800 convertible? is a nod to my father?s red ?97 Pontiac Firebird. Actually, the Jenkon 2800 is meant to be more like a Trans-Am, but you get the picture.

    Yes, Corran Horn is *the* Corran Horn, from the X-wing series. I figured I could slip him in, because the setting and time was workable. I?m not much of a fan of Corran, and I figured this was an excuse to humiliate him a couple of times during the course of the chase.

    Actually, the driver of the van that gets flipped by a disruptor shot was supposed to be Drake, from Wolfshead Squadron (a pilot in a SW flightsim fan group I'm affiliated with). He wanted his character in the story, because it seemed like it could work, but in the end I couldn?t do it while also staying true to the facts established in his pilot bio. Essentially, Drake had never left his homeworld prior to joining the Rebellion, but this fanfic would have put him on Corellia. I couldn?t make it work, unless I set the fanfic on Drake?s homeworld (and cut Corran Horn from the story), or have Drake alter his own pilot bio.

    The scene where 9-LOM?s speeder loses a door is essentially taken straight from a scene in an episode of ?Law and Order: Criminal Intent? that I saw. It was cool, so I stuck it in the fanfic .

    The shootouts in the train station lobby and on the top of the train take LOTS of liberties from the game ?Max Payne?, with ?shootdodging? and stuff.

    Now, for the ?edited/deleted scenes?. A LOT of stuff got cut from the chase; I had a whole scene scripted that takes 9-LOM and Boba Fett through a construction site a la ?Gone in 60 Seconds?, and another scene that takes them off a pier and along a harbor (working under the assumption that landspeeders can also work on water. This isn?t entirely the case, as my research into landspeeders has revealed). In fact, the ?harbor? scene was also originally intended as a swamp-speeder chase in ?One for the Money?, when 9-LOM and the Rebel operative crash on the planet at the end. It didn?t work out, and it didn?t fit well in this one, either, so it was cut *again*. Rest assured, both ?chase? sequences will be seen in future fanfics. There
  18. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    Probably worth mentioning - for those who wanted a "sequel" to this story... I think I can make it happen. ;)
  19. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    It's been six months. I figure I can bump this story so that people can read it. ;) Also, it's kinda applicable in light of the "death and dying" challenge in the Writer's Resource -- I saw that thread, and immediately thought of this story.
  20. Syntax Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 1, 2001
    star 5
    People should read this story. It's my personal favorite that I've written.
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