I don’t know if you’re familiar with They Fight Crime, but I have always admired the art of creating an intriguing character premise with brevity. Today, I’ve spent a lot of time developing the three child characters from the “Hideaway” excerpt of my repurposed missile silo brainstorms. I’m not prepared to present and discuss everything I’ve written today, partially because I would like some of the reveals to retain their effect when I first print them on my blog. I will, however, leave you with a They Fight Crime-inspired glimpse of the characters:
Bert is a bull-headed action-taking boy who witnessed the apex of his parents’ breakup; Trini is a strong-willed leader who, as an “accident”, was unwanted by her parents; Stewart is a natural healer/peacemaker who knows death first hand. They are on the run.
On 25 February and 2 March, I brainstormed about living in a repurposed missile silo. I am now attempting to branch out and develop my ideas, but I have three premises I’m currently exploring. Vote to let me know which interests you the most. Feel free to leave comments discussing your vote.
Possible Excerpt A: Home
Chopping the red onion finely, Faye looked up to see Felix walking in with his arms full of fresh tomatoes. She laughed. “Where’s Theo? I thought he was going to help you make the salsa.”
Gently laying the tomatoes on the table, Felix grinned. “He’s downstairs unpacking all the books, of course. I think he finally decided on the Library of Congress classification system. I wouldn’t be surprised if he moves his bed down there so he can feel like he’s living in the middle of a library. Of course, once he remembers he’s about five stories below the kitchen, he might change his mind.”
Faye grabbed a tomato and began dicing. “Alright, well come over here and get to work. Everyone will be hungry by dinner time, whether they are five stories down filling bookshelves, or up top checking the greenhouse seals.” Faye showed Felix the size to which she wanted the tomato diced, then stepped to the sink to drain and rinse the beans. She was already bustling around the concrete room, checking on the dough and stove as Felix took over dicing tomatoes. Fresh food is a fantastic way to celebrate a new home.
Possible Excerpt B: Retirement
The bus pulled away, dust billowing behind it. Rika sighed, and turned toward the hatch. She easily navigated the descent into the silo. As the hatch closed, blocking out the sun, Rika mused to herself. Perhaps it would have been better if she were ill or debilitated. Family members would visit the hospital, the sick.
Sure, here she could continue to be active and healthy. She could socialize with other people her age. There were gardening, game, food, relaxation, and exercise opportunities in abundance, but it hurt her heart to be hidden away beneath the earth. No one wanted to see the aged.
Possible Excerpt C: Hideaway
Bert had excitedly whispered to his friends that he thought he’d found a place. It was far from any cities and appeared to have been abandoned for years. Trini couldn’t believe there was any place that could be safe for any length of time. Stuart was able to convince her that it sounded safe enough to at least evaluate, so they walked five miles with Bert, and arrived at the hatch.
They first descended through two levels. Hulking in the middle of the first room, with a staircase spiraling down from its foot, was an intimidating column that sloped outward toward the ceiling. They descended silently, and then went padding through the dark rooms with flashlights bobbing. Passing through what looked like a kitchen, the children found it seemed cold and merely ornamental without power running the appliances.
After struggling with a large, heavy door in the lower level, the group discovered a hall leading away from the module they had been exploring. Rather than exploring the extent of each level in this section, they headed down, trying to take in the vastness of the structure. After descending 9 stories, they finally reached the bottom of the silo.