I've been told in the past you should walk away from a project for awhile sometimes to get to the heart of it. Maybe I'll post a snippet of it and let you me what you think.
I'll definitely keep trudging along because even though it's not pouring out of me in that relentless gotta get it down I think I might explode of I don't kind of way I know it's a good story and if I can just get the laziness out of me I should be find.
Going to put on a pot of coffee now. Here's a snippet of Rebel. Think action. Think grit. Think Rebellion. Think things aren't always as black and white as they should be. :)
The Great Healing had happened. At least it was rumored to have happened. There was definitely the evidence for it. Blue skies. Green grass. Beautiful trees and the sounds of birds chirping. But he was still without a past. With only his name to hang his hat on.
There were a lot of people taking sides. And there were a lot of sides to pick from. The Rebellion had strong pockets of support along the eastern coast and the Midwest. But somewhere along the Texas New Mexico border the exiled Queen had her sympathizers. Blu was the only thing he could remember about himself. His eyes weren’t blue though, they were an emerald green and his hair was coal black. But even within the Rebellion there was a fracture. On the east coast there was a strong movement behind making the much talked about Healer and her protector, a former gladiator, the new rulers. The further west you went the more disorganized the movement got. The more violent the Queen’s sympathizers became and the more dangerous it was to be a loner like himself.
And since Blu was the first word he could remember about his past whenever someone asked him what his name was that’s what he told them. When they asked him about his last name he would always say some things are just left alone. And he had a troubled way about him that women seemed to like to try and heal. And often he let them try well into the night.
He wasn’t young, but he wasn’t old either. As desperately as he wondered about the nightmares and what some would call visions. The nightmares he could handle. The visions. The visions were another problem altogether and they had left him vulnerable to attack on more than one occasion. Now was no different.
In the desert it rarely rained before the Great Healing. But now it rained a lot. And now he lay flat on his back paralyzed and surrounded by water. Only he was a child and an older girl, a teenager, was holding his head under it. And he knew it was because of something he’d said. She yanked his head up.
“Worthless, useless, powerless. You will not dethrone me in Daddy’s eyes.”
His mouth was open wide and his heart pounded each time the water surrounded him. He gasped for breath each time he came up for air. Yet as he was he couldn’t move.
The present and the past overlapped the dam he had heard break not that long ago was sending a flood of water towards him. He may not be useless or worthless, but the vision had him paralyzed to do anything but surrender to the vision.
He could hear footsteps but couldn’t differentiate if they were from the vision or from the present day. He felt a light touch to his chest.
“Yeah, he’s breathing,” a woman’s voice said. “Help me get him up.” Suddenly the vision began to break and he saw a striking young woman with long black hair pulled back from her face. Her cheekbones were high and her eyes were light brown and she wore the uniform a Healer supporting Rebel. “Don’t worry babe, we’re going to get you out of here.” She came in clearer and he could see a small unit of men approaching with a raft. “We don’t have a lot of time. Let’s get him loaded up.” She turned back to him. “What’s your name?”
He tried to find his voice but he couldn’t find his voice.
“That’s okay, save your strength. Hurry up! The water’s headed this way and I think I saw a group of Queen Sympathizers about five miles back. We can’t risk getting caught. Especially this far out from Headquarters and with an injured man.”
“Just leave him here. He’s obviously dead weight.”
The young female rebel pulled out a nine millimeter semi-automatic pistol and said, “Test my authority again and I’ll shoot you and leave you for dead.” She looked at him again, her harsh gaze softening. “Load him up. All of us needed a helping hand at one time or another. Now hurry.”
The three other rebels lifted him up and laid him in the inflated raft. The young woman climbed in after him and the other rebels took their places just in time as the water flooded the desert area whisking them to God only knew where.
The young woman was sharp and barking commands as they raced along the waves. She took his hand and glanced tenderly at him. She wasn’t worried for herself with that look. She was worried about her men—and him.
The water was rough as it sent them spiraling and twisting through lush greenery and new saplings. His breath finally started to return to him and he could move. He felt the sweat coming from her hand and felt just how hard she was squeezing his hand. He didn’t even know her name and she had risked hers and her units lives to get him out of there. She was scared, he could feel it in her touch. But her jaw was set and she had task to accomplish. That wasn’t fearlessness. That was courage. And that was admirable.
He sat up and she looked at him for a few seconds when the same guard who had been ready to abandon him shouted and pointed ahead, “Amelia!”
They looked and saw a huge stone wall surrounded by high rocks with a vicious whirlpool forming. She looked in the raft there was a long rope.
“Alright, one of us is going to tie this around our waist and make a swim for the shoreline. Then the rest of us calmly, but one by one are going to hang onto the line while the others pull him or me in.”
“Who’s making the swim for it?” The rebel asked.
“I will,” Amelia said.
“You’re crazy, you’re not strong enough to pull us in.”
“Then I’ll do it,” Blu said.
“Yeah right. For all we know you’re a Queen Sympathizer,” the rebel sneered.
The young woman shouted, “Enough! What’s your name?”
“Okay then. Tie the rope around you--,”
She wasn’t looking him in the face as she knotted the rope around his waist. He tilted her face up and cradled it, “Hey, it’s okay to be scared.”
“What is this? The dating game?”
“Fuck off Larry,” she snarled as they headed toward the whirlpool. “This is it. If you don’t make it, none of us will.”
“I got this,” he said with a confident smile on his face.
He jumped into the racing water and swam hard. The water swirled around him and the coolness of it on his hot skin threatened to take his breath away. The rocky shore seemed miles away and he could see the raft being tossed about as if on the raging seas. As he made it to shore and turned around he could see an argument erupting between the rebel giving her so much flack and the young woman.
Three of the rebels jumped out and crawled along the length of the rope as he pulled them ashore as the raft was whisked away down the rapids formed by the broken dam. And he realized the young woman was still on the raft.
“What the hell were you selfish bastards thinking?!” he shouted.
“She said she could make a swim for it,” Larry gasped as he stretched against the rocks.
He glowered at the rebel and said, “I’ll deal with you in a minute.” He gathered the rope in his hands and headed back into cool almost, icy waters and prayed both he and the young rebel didn’t both die in the process.
He swam hard toward her and as he neared the raft the raft neared the whirlpool. He shouted to her and threw the rope. “Amelia, grab on!”
The look of grief and anger and terror in her eyes struck him hard in the chest and he connected with her in such a visceral way his adrenaline surged through his body. He swam harder than he ever had and sidled up next to the raft.
“Put your arms around my neck.”
She leaned over the edge of the raft and into the water and held on to him tightly just as the raft was pulled into the whirlpool. He began to kick hard, his adrenaline still pumping.
Amelia sprang into action throwing the rope over the top of the wall. She looked him in the eye and said, “Lift me up and I’ll pull you up!”
She didn’t look big enough or strong enough. But he knew they had little time to argue. He should be climbing up and pulling her up. But she wasn’t budging.
“Now!” she shouted. He lifted her up and she scrambled to the top. She dropped out of sight and shouted, “Come on!”
He crawled up the wall and dropped down to the soft ground on the other side. She fell to her knees heaving and gasping for breath. She looked at him and said, “My men…”
“If they have half a brain they will find a way over the wall,” he said coldly.
“I know they can be a real pain in the ass but--,”
“But nothing. You risked your life for all of ours. That commands a certain amount of respect.”
She continued to gasp and she started to cry. At first it was so softly he almost missed it. He wanted to ring all of their necks. One by one he wanted to rip them all a new one. He took her in his arms and tried to comfort her.
At first she resisted him. He held her closer.
“Leaders aren’t allowed to show their weakness. Especially female rebels. When they do they’re punished for it.”
“Well, you saved my life Amelia, you ever need help you can depend on me to have your back.”
She leaned into him and wrapped her arms around him. She didn’t saw anything, not at first. “And I’ll have yours.”
He said nothing, he just rocked her back and forth until night began to fall. The men found their way around and it made for a long, tense, quiet walk back to headquarters.