Sunday, July 30, 2006
Episode 10: Guardians of the Knight
Everything seemed to be a struggle. His legs didn’t work properly, his arms moved as if in slow motion. Something definitely was up. Phoenix wasn’t sure how long he was out, but judging by the lethargic nature of his actions, not to mention his thinking, it had been some time.
He placed a hand gingerly to his forehead, then his aching neck. He felt like he’d been put through the ringer -- backwards -- and twice.
Looking up didn’t seem to make his head feel any better. In fact, the lights seemed to glare down on him making his headache worse.
“For someone who’s not a real agent,” Phoenix Gray murmured to himself. “The once-over *and* the twice-over? This is a bit much, don’t you think?”
He wasn’t speaking to anyone in particular since he was the only person in the room. It merely felt better to talk out loud. It seemed to keep him awake longer. The days in this place weren’t the easiest to endure, but the memory loss seemed to make it easier. Every time he awoke, he couldn’t remember much of what had happened the day before.
He was sure they must be drugging him. Each day blurred into the next. He wasn’t certain how long he had been there. And this place, this prison, was the oddest thing of all.
He wasn’t locked into his room. The door opened easily. The room itself was a marvel of decorating finesse. Phoenix gave it two thumbs up for having that comfy-homespun feeling. It was easy to forget he was a prisoner, which, he was sure, was the purpose for the elaborate room. Or cell, depending on how you looked at it.
His back pressed into the comfortable mattress as lights began to dance in front of his eyes. “No, not yet. I’ve got to stay awake!”
He rotated off the bed and fell onto all fours. The hardwood floors slammed into his knees forcing him to immediately roll on his back. He spit out a muttered curse and rubbed the pain.
He arched his back off the freezing floor, but it jostled him enough that the blood began pumping faster through his body. His drooping eyes opened wider until he could get a good look into the hallway. All he could see was that one wall of his room was a large viewing window.
He was a rat in a cage!
Behind the window stood a woman with red hair raining down to her shoulders and a haggard man with wild, white hair. He kind of reminded Phoenix of Doc Brown from ‘Back To The Future’ except he was sure this man didn’t have his best interest at heart.
The woman whispered something to him that Phoenix couldn’t hear. He strained his eyes to get a better look at her. When he focused in on her, he was surprised by what was staring back at him.
Faith gasped and hauled her fist back. She wanted to slug him, she really did, but he had just saved her life.
“Marcus! Are you trying to give me a heart attack?”
“I know I deserve whatever hell you want to rain down on me, but why don’t we discuss it later -- when we’re not being chased by Black Council minions.”
She nodded and took his hand. They ran for what seemed like hours. The tunnels underneath Club Crave weren’t exactly the easiest to navigate. Faith Fairchild and Marcus Hunter stopped at yet another dead end.
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” Faith murmured. “I thought you knew where you were going.”
“Come on, Shiloh. You know me,” Marcus said with a chuckle. “I act first and seek directions later.”
“Shiloh? Who is Shiloh?” Faith leaned over at the waist trying to catch her breath.
“You’re kidding, right? It’s been your alias for the last three years. You took it after escaping from Bulgaria.” Marcus took a deep breath and looked down the darkened tunnel. His micro-flashlight was barely helping them in the pitch blackness of the area.
“What in the hell happened to me? I don’t remember you except for our past five years ago. And I have no memory of this Shiloh character.”
Shouts from the end of the corridor drew closer and heavy footsteps echoed down the tunnel.
“I would love to sit you down and tell you the whole story, but those Black Council idiots are closing in on us. It’s best if we find a safe house. Liz will meet us later.”
“What did they do to me, Marcus?”
He grabbed her hand and drug her behind him down the dim passageway. “Later, Shy. Later.”
She resisted. He knew she would. She was stubborn that way.
“I know they did something to me,” Faith yelled, scratching her chest. “I can feel it inside of me!”
Marcus knew he had only one option if either of them were to survive.
“Sorry about this, Shy.”
Her questioning glance lasted only seconds when he pushed a combination of pressure points on her neck. She crumpled and he threw her small body over his shoulder.
“I’ll pay for that tomorrow,” Marcus muttered. “But, at least, you’ll be alive.
The man with wild white hair thrust a paper in front of Phoenix.
Phoenix angled his head up to the stranger.
“You captured me so that I could *read* to you? Is this some new type of psycho-torture? Because frankly, as torture goes, this is pretty lame.”
He glanced to the window where his mother stood staring at him then shrugged a shoulder toward her.
“Why don’t you have *her* read to you? I’m sure she’s all up on bedtime stories.”
His grandfather, Chandelor Knight joined his mother at the window.
“Great--” Phoenix said slowly. “It’s a family reunion.”
Knight pressed an intercom switch before him and leaned toward the microphone.
“Read the note, son.”
Chandelor Knight *is* your grandfather by birthright. And your mother *is* alive and has been all these years. I‘m sorry for the deception. But at the time, it was the only solution. You must trust them in your time of need. If I’m not around, they will be your guardians.
Your Father, Graham Gray
It was an awfully convenient note as far as notes went. It didn’t say much and he didn’t believe a word of it. Knight may be his grandfather but gramps and his mother didn’t have his best interests in mind. In fact, his inner sense was screaming at him that his was all some sort of elaborate deception.
He knew he had to find a way out of the prison, and he had to find it soon before they drugged him into a stupor again.
“It’s my father’s handwriting,” Phoenix said. “At least, it *looks* like my father’s handwriting. I doubt he would have had time to write a note just to me and leave my sister, Scarlett, out of it. So, that makes me think that you’re trying to pull a fast one. The thing I don’t understand is -- why?”
Bobbie Sullivan followed when the red haired woman in the goth outfit led him into a secret passageway behind the bar. He wasn’t certain of her loyalties but his first priority was to get away from the Black Council.
“You’ve got to move a lot faster,” the woman yelled. “They’ll catch us if you don’t get a move on.”
“Where are you taking me? And a better question is, ‘who the hell are you?’”
“Just know that I’m one of the good guys.”
Bobbie shook his head. He knew from experience that the bad guys always said they were the good guys to get the dumb, inexperienced operatives to follow their lead and then lead them into danger.
“I have a contact out in the plaza. He can help us.”
Bobbie didn’t have a good feeling about this contact. He ducked his head as they exited out onto the plaza three doors down from the club.
“There he is,” Liz pointed at the man sitting casually on the bench outside the café.
Bobbie stopped short. It was Cameron Cash.
“Cameron Cash is your contact? Are you insane? Not long ago he was the security advisor to Julian Black.” Bobbie began to run in the opposite direction.
“No, wait!” Liz yelled. “He’s on our side.”
She turned around to run after him but Cameron came up behind her.
“Let him run. We don’t need his intel anyway.” He led her to the bathroom to the other side of the café. “Clean up. Change your look and we’ll meet up with Marcus. He should be safely away by now with the package in hand.”
Liz Hunter nodded. “Right away, I’ll be just a minute.”
Three minutes later, Liz looked like a completely different person. She resembled the typical American college student with a backpack she’d swiped from someone in the restroom and her normal straight light brown hair.
She strolled with Cameron down the plaza easily in sight of the Black Council minions they’d been evading earlier.
“I told you he wouldn’t buy the deception.” Esta Cooper removed the necklace from around her neck which effectively turned off the holographic image that made the world believe she was Roanna Ambrose.
Miles Hayworth, one of the top Knights Foundation scientists, nodded in agreement with Esta.
“You can’t keep him here hoping he might not run into Marcus or Liz or stop your plan for Scarlett. He’s bull-headed. You know that better than anyone.”
Esta thrust her hip out and secured her hand there.
“Phoenix is compromising the Echelon Project. Liz and Marcus are both a great success and you can’t let him any closer to finding out the truth surrounding his birth. The truth about Scarlett’s birth. About either of your son’s births. The legacy you have created here is greater than any one person.”
“You’re both right. I know, but he can’t be reprogrammed. We’ve already tried that.” Chandelor paced in front of the viewing window. “You have to understand. I can’t kill the boy. He’s like another son to me.”
Esta laughed. It was a harsh and ugly sound.
“You are deluding yourself, Knight. You probably even believe the lies you hock on your brochure for the Knights Foundation. We have a responsibility to the governments of the world. You can’t forget your mission.”
Esta put the holographic necklace back on and stepped into the viewing window in sight of Phoenix who was still lying on the floor.
“You’re not my mother, are you?” Phoenix said.
Esta turned to Knight who was about to leave the room. “And you think we don’t need to deal with him? He’s more intuitive than you figured. Your dash of psychic goo in his DNA mix is becoming a problem.”
“Don’t kill him, Esta. I’m warning you. You will regret it if you defy me.” Knight turned and strode out of the room and his loafers clicked down the hallway until he was out of earshot.
Esta turned back to Phoenix. “You’re very good, Mr. Gray. What gave me away?”
Phoenix shrugged. “Bad vibes. You don’t emit the same energy patterns as my mother, which is why I didn’t stay to chat when we were first introduced in Cameron Cash’s hospital room.”
She nodded. “You’re a very gifted empath. We‘ve known about your abilities for a while. We knew it was only a matter of time before you discovered them for yourself.”
“I don’t know what you call it, but I pay attention to my gut feelings.”
Phoenix glanced at the molding around the window. There had to be a way out of there that didn’t involve him going out the door. He had a bad feeling about the door. He figured it had to be rigged somehow. Everything about this place made him feel like he was a rat in a very complex maze.
“So, why me? Why me and my sister? What did you think you could get from us? Intel? That’s a joke.”
“The location of your father, of course. Gray has been very hard to track down-- as has his brother, Mac.”
Phoenix laughed and then coughed spitting up blood. He wiped his mouth and glared up at her.
“You must not have read up much on me and my family because if you had, you’d know my father doesn’t have a lot of interest in us. And frankly, the feeling is mutual.”
“You must know something,” Esta said, eagerly.
The woman was reaching. Phoenix found it rather pathetic.
“All I know is where I thought he would be -- the American Embassy -- surprisingly, he wasn’t there. But I’m sure you already know that. He hasn’t been there for quite a while.”
Phoenix lunged at the window and slammed his fist on the glass. The blood from his mouth smeared on the window.
“All your hard work has been for nothing. Satisfied? Now-- I have a question for you. Where’s my sister?”
Bobbie ran until he came to the underground railway. From there it was easy to hop a train and get safely back into the old Legacy Headquarters. He knew he would be safe down there, at least for awhile. That location had been abandoned three years earlier after an explosion decimated the building.
He had left certain hidden objects in areas only he was aware of. He let himself into the security office and switched on the monitoring system. At least, he’d be able to tell if someone had followed him.
There was a red light blinking alerting him that someone had entered Phillip Lancaster’s office. The windows overlooking the Com area were blown out and the shades ripped. It was easy to zoom into the office to get a better look.
Nadia Kassoff was pacing back and forth with a pained expression on her face. What was she doing in here? She shouldn’t even be aware of the location of this office. This was before her time.
But Nadia wasn’t the only surprise guest of the night. A man entered the office and Nadia rushed to him wrapping her arms around him. It took Bobbie a minute to discover the identity of the man but when he zoomed in on the face and focused the camera he jumped backward.
Monday, July 17, 2006
"Where do you think you're going, little miss?"
The second man sounded younger, maybe mid-twenties. I hadn't seen his face yet, so I wasn't sure which bad guy he could be. I didn't think any of them were that young.
A face suddenly filled my vision. He had a shock of spiky hair colored in a checker board pattern of various dark blacks and vibrant yellows.
I know that hair. I created that hair for a very specific character and it surprised me that this character would be involved with the likes of a bad guy like Ian.
"No way!" I shouted. "Echo? You can't be evil!"
Echo laughed. "Evil? Of course not. I'm not evil. At least no more evil than you are."
Echo turned to Ian and smiled. "She thinks I'm evil."
That's when Ian came back into my view. He spoke to Echo but looked directly at me.
"That's because she thinks we're behind everything that is going on."
A third voice joined the other two. This one was a young girl's voice.
"Don't' you think it's about time you gave her the 411 on the situation? She is, after all, the creator of us all." The girl giggled. "The characters teaching the one who created them. That's pretty cool, don't you think?" This voice belonged to Evie Raines from my series, Legacy of Spies.
I was completely thrown off guard. What was Echo and Ian and Evie doing working together?
Evie pushed the other two away and leaned over me. I was pretty much stuck where I was since the trio had shackled me to the bed where I was still lying on my back. I could only see straight up.
"You know what," Evie said. "I have a bug to pick with you. Why is it that you gave all these spy guys episode after episode of exposure but I get barely nothing. And... AND... I don't even get to meet the cool, dreamy spy guys? I mean, come on! Who was I really going to hook up with on LoS? I think we all knew that Tony Wolfe was on his way out and I doubt Mac would give me the time of day not when he has both Nikki and Teresa to contend with. And, by the way, you never did tell me who my sister is."
Evie crossed her arms over her chest. "I don't think that was very nice of you at all."
All I could do was stare at her since my arms were still clasped in bindings. The thoughts running through my head were bumping into one another. I was trying to figure out why I wasn't' dead and why they were talking my ears off. I was also a bit concerned about how they had come to know of my intentions for other characters like Tony Wolfe. And why they had banded together in the first place.
Seeing Evie there opened up the possibilities even wider. This wasn't just The Legacy. This was Legacy of Spies too. And most likely my entire Legacy Universe had been affected. It was boggling my mind.
"If you're all not mysteriously evil like my other main characters... why am I still tied up?" I was really getting tired of lying here like a victim.
Ian came over and sat next to me. "I needed a captive audience. I needed time to explain my position."
"Explain your position?" I mocked. "What position? In my story, you were evil."
"No," he said, defensively. "You hadn't completely developed my character yet. I had the * possibility * of being evil. I even heard a rumor running down the train of thought that you even thought I might be the real Ethan Fairchild."
I wanted to turn away but I couldn't. I felt open and exposed lying on a table like a slab of meat.
"There's no way you could know what I was thinking."
Another voice joined the mix, one decidedly British. "We're all thought forms in your mind. And with a person like you with a vivid imagination ... those thought forms sometimes communicate."
The British accent threw me off for a moment, but seeing Nigel Bennett from Legacy of Spies almost didn't surprise me.
"So, you know about every decision I've made about plotlines and character histories?" I had to find out as much as possible before I attempted an escape. I was already working on getting my hands loose from the bindings.
"We remember things that you remember. And like you, sometimes the memory of plotlines past begin to fade. Every character in your Legacy Universe is struggling for existence. You're forgetting about us and we don't want to be forgotten."
My mind was still a little boggled about how Ian could know I thought about the Bulgarian Underground lab from time to time and had more than once conjured the possibility that the wrong Ethan had escaped. And maybe a cloned Ethan had been sent into my universe instead of the true spy guy.
"There had to be a reason why you resisted making me completely evil," Ian said. "A reason why you held out the possibility that I could be one of the good guys."
"Stop reading my mind, Ian." Speaking to these guys was beginning to get a little spooky. Now they were catching onto my immediate thoughts. I didn't' know if that was good or bad. I guess it depended on if they were truly good or evil.
The biggest concern I had at the moment besides getting home was "who brought me here and how much damage had they done to my storyline?"
"I know you're full of questions, but I have just one. If your favorite character is Kevin Fairchild, why did you make Ethan your main spy?"
They all stared down at me with enquiring eyes. It was a little unnerving. But I was almost free of my bindings. I had been working to loose them the entire time we talked.
I hated being put on the spot. How did they know that I preferred Kevin over Ethan? This must be another display of their mind reading ability.
Ian leaned down and whispered in my ear. "Seems like we're all on the same train of thought doesn't it?"
"I don't know," I mocked. "Were you expecting this?" I had freed my hands and punched at Ian's face. I imagined him crumpling to the ground and reeled backward. The shock on his face was apparent. I had moved him without barely a punch. And I knew that the punch hadn't caused him much pain.
"How did you do that?" Ian asked backing away slightly.
"My train of thought is just a little stronger than yours. And like you said, I did create you." I mentally froze them all to the spot and then ran out the back door. I was probably making a mistake but I needed time to regroup and decide what to do next.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
I'm becoming tres excited about this new, refreshed series. It makes me want to delve into the mystery of LoS.
I was also going through some old notebooks and found some of my first attempts at the Legacy. Back then I was calling it: Knights Foundation [The Legacy]. I thought about the name Knights Templar [The Legacy], that was back before anyone knew anything about the Knights Templar. Now it just seems to passe.
Anyway, I started writing a first person account (Kevin's persepective) of something I've tentatively called The Foundation: Secret Memories. I'm going back to my old, old cast. No Gia but instead was Tessa Wainright. And Nick Boyd (from BAON, By Any Other Name for those who aren't up on my series' initials). Also from that series is Angela whose original last name was Hastings and I wasn't happy with the last name of Seraph so I'm changing it back.
I'm sure that doesn't make sense to anyone but I'm still using Kevin (who is in a wheelchair), Ethan is still the super spy but the story focuses in on Kevin, the second banana who is laid up from an injury.
I've also put in Natalia West, a younger character but still in the spy game. And last but not least I've brought Philip Lancaster (previous co-director of The Legacy) back to life as the head of the agency.
I've given them my own pet names.
Ethan - Danger Man
Tessa - Ice Queen
Nick - Dark Prince
Natalia - Innocent Wildcat
Philip - no nickname but he does spend a lot of time down in what Kevin called his "batcave"
I'm just so happy that the creative wheels are spinning again. I've missed them greatly.
Monday, July 10, 2006
To give myself a fresh outlook on Legacy of Spies, I'm recasting it.
Here's what I've got so far.
Mac Gray - Jensen Ackles
Nikki Carpenter - Ashley Scott
Theresa Shea - Evangaline Lily
Paul Thomas - Locke from Lost
Thad Gray - New character - Chad Michael Murray
Jack Darcy - Forbes March
Teryl Ellison - Karen Cliche (Lexa, Mutant X)
Victor Cross - (King Pin from Daredevil)
Evie Raines (Still Buffy)
Raven Martinez bumped to recurring
Nigel (Still Christian Anholt)
Tony Wolfe (bumped to recurring)
Darien Wolfe (bumped to recurring)
Raphael Martinez (bumped to recurring)
I wanted to focus in more on the Gray sibling rivalry. Graham Gray (Viggo Mortason) will play a subtle part but he has a role on The Legacy's Shattered storyline so he may not be in this much.
I was reading one thing in a writting manual... it said to keep the main character the main character. Don't bump him to the minor leagues when your story should revolve around him, especially a series character. I think that is where I failed in this series. I bumped Mac to almost a recurring status and I don't want that at all.
Take a gander at the site. I've put a few new bio photos up and a new cool graphic on the front page. I hope you like it.
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Yes, can you believe it? I've finally realized that this web series stuff is tres hard to do alone. I miss the many brainstorming sessions I had with Sacha years ago (back in 1999). Yes I am *that* old.
I'm going to be looking for storyline consultants who don't necessarily want to write but want to see their name in lights. Are web lights very bright? And I'm also looking for episode writers. I want to write complete storylines for each episode. Think Alias or La Femme Nikita. Full, complete stories in each episode.
I want to get the season focused enough that I know exactly what missions/epiosdes are going on for each and every step of the way. I think organization will be good for me.
So if any of you know anyone who can led a hand to my trusty series. I'm attempting to dust it off and get the cobwebs out.
Monday, July 03, 2006
Have you ever thought that if you went to sleep that when you woke up everything would be back to normal? I feel that way many times during my dreams. I don't know if you know this, but I'm notorious for having bizarre dreams. Maybe that's why I like to write fiction since I have such a vivid imagination. I don't know.
All I know is that I was dreaming of being strapped down, and then woke up and realized that I really was. The only pesky question running through my brain was the identity of who had captured me.
I hated being helpless especially at the hands of either one of those traitorous characters. But I was grateful for one thing... At least I was alive.
And another thing that kept my hopes up was the fact that my characters didn't seem as vicious under the influence of another writer's pen. If I had been her, I would have made them even more deadly than they already were. That fact made me question who was really behind this all. I knew it couldn't be one of the characters. They were make-believe. They didn't live, breathe or think for themselves. Someone else was pulling their strings. The question was... who?
I attempted to open my eyes a fraction of an inch in order to get a good read on my surrounds, but my captors, like me, seemed to be somewhat psychic, although, my psychic intuition hadn't been on my side lately. And I can't tell you how much it really sucks to have your own intuition go a little on the wonky side.
Ian Fairchild's intuition, however, happened to be working perfectly fine.
"You might as well open your eyes," Ian said in a rather smarmy tone. "I know you're awake." I could almost see the smirk on his face in my mind's eye.
I inwardly sighed. I almost think I preferred to be captured by Gia. At least I knew in what area her psychoses laid. Ian ... well he was somewhat of a mystery. I hadn't created much of a back story for him so he could possibly do anything. The only thing I could cling to was the fact that Ian had seemed somewhat normal before his past with Faith had been revealed. And that past had never truly been confirmed. Because if Ian was all that I imagined him to be... I could be in big trouble.
Not that I thought Gia would be a better option, mind you. Both options were equally nasty and depressing fixes to be in. And as it seemed Ian wasn't going away any time soon, in fact, from the smell of it, he was fixing breakfast.
"What did you two do? Flip a coin to see who would get to torture me first?" I struggled with my bindings to let him know that I wasn't happy about being tied up like a crazy mental patient.
"Nah!" he said casually. "The FO's came in to led me an assist against Gia. Thank you, by the way. We had no idea Gia's character had been compromised along with the main spy guys: Ethan, Kevin and Michela."
"Oh, no problem," I mocked. "I love helping a stark raving lunatic."
Ian chuckled. And to make it worse, that laugh sounded damn sexy. "Easy now, kitten. Let's not get carried away."
God I hated this. Not only did he sound like Ethan. He looked like him too.
"Why couldn't I have created an ugly evil twin? It's so much easier to hate someone who looks the part."
Ian came closer, standing over me. I could feel his breath on my cheek. "Was that some sort of backward compliment?" He quickly turned away, looking over his shoulder. "I think she's breaking down. Heck, I think she deep down really likes me."
I tried to see an evilness in his grin, but darn it! That grin was looking almost charming.
"I can't take this," I said. "If you're going to be evil, be evil! Don't pretend to be a productive member of society."
"Oooh," said a second voice. "She's a feisty one. Harsh, but feisty. Why don't you do her a favor and put her out of her misery."
I gasped. "Wait! There's no need for that." I struggled with my restraints. I had to get out of there and I had to get out of there now. I didn't want to imagine what they both had in store for me.
Sunday, July 02, 2006
There is a small town in the Midwest called Purgatory. There isn't much to do in this town. One stop light, one movie theatre that plays shows popular three years ago and a newspaper that has one issue a month. Everything is unassuming here... or is it?
Purgatory holds a secret. That secret is AlphaSite, one of a series of super secret strongholds that house another set of Legacy agents. This set is more of a supernatural aspect.
Shayne Michaels is a cynical cowboy who has never outshined his movie star brother Chance (from Darkstone Secret Agent). Chance is the worlds most popular actor. How can Shayne compare? Now one of Chance's co-stars is in dire need of a little supernatural ghostbusting and Shayne and AlphaSite are up for the assignment.
So as you can see, a lot more goes on in Purgatory than meets the eye. Even a nosy teen reporter named Rita Logan and her friends Woody, Casey and Jordan can't keep out of the excitement when a superstar enters their midsts. They have to uncover why such a movie mavon would come to their no-where town.
See what develops in Purgatory. After all, it's a life sentence.
What do you all think of that one? I'm getting more inspired by the minute.
Maybe I should just called the series AlphaSite like I first intended. What do you think?