I’ve started on a new writing project while I’m waiting one The Erasable Man to percolate around in the back of my brain. Hopefully, but the time that I get this one planed out and ready to go I’ll have stepped back enough from TEM that I can get back into the game do a decent job of editing. (i.e. I’m planning to let it sit for at a couple of weeks before picking it back up again.)
In the mean time, I picked up a story idea that’s been floating around in my head for a year or so that I couldn’t quite get moving. I’ve also been re-reading through some of Steve Windsor’s Nine Day Novel books and trying to actually plan the story out this time, assuming the characters and settings will cooperate with me.
This story will also diverge from my normal technique in that I’m taking a deeper look at Scrivener through their 30 day trial version. At least, I’m diving in with it for the planning and rough draft phases of the project to see what it can do. To be fair, Scrivener feels like an IDE for writers and I have a distinct aversion to most IDEs and IDE like things when writing software. There are a couple of exceptions, but those exceptions usually deal with languages that are so cumbersome to work in without an IDE that you’d be nuts to use them otherwise. Plus Scrivener isn’t exactly cheap as far as software goes. Of course, it isn’t overly expensive either.
In any event, this little bit of prose is something I came up with as a prolog for the new story. I hope you like it:
The Scorpion and The Mouse
Once upon a time there was a young scorpion who was hungry and looking about for something to eat. The young scorpion spotted a mouse watching from the shadows and decided that mouse seemed a tasty morsel for one such as itself, a mighty hunter with a sting beyond comparison.
The scorpion looked at the mouse and said, “I see you hiding there in the shadows. Come out where I can see you plainly.”
Now the mouse was an old and wise mouse who had experienced many things in his days and knew the ways of other creatures. He knew of their nature and proclivities even better than many of them knew themselves.
“You are a scorpion, a very young scorpion at that,” said the mouse, “and I am an aging and feeble mouse. The years ride heavy upon my greying whiskers. What business do you have with one, such as I, who is not of your kind.”
“Oh wise one,” answered the scorpion. “I seek the wisdom of your age for, as you have rightly seen, I am but a young scorpion with little experience of the world. Please, come out of the shadows and share your wisdom with one such as I.”
“Do not be hasty young one. Why seek my wisdom?” asked the mouse. “Are there not others of your kind about?”
“Oh wise one,” replied the scorpion. “There are none such as yourself among my kind and even among us the news of your great wisdom has spread such that our elders wish to seek you out, though none have been so lucky as to find you.”
“Indeed, your elders are wise to seek one such as I,” said the mouse, though he did not move.
“Yes,” said the scorpion. “Are you sure you won’t come out into the light? The sun is warm and must surely feel good on your fur.”
“Perhaps I shall at that,” said the mouse. “It is not wise to stay always in the shadows lest the darkness consume you. But, you are a scorpion, are you not? In all my years, I have never known a scorpion that would not sting one such as I.”
“You are truly a creature full of wisdom,” said the scorpion. “Were it not I who had sought you, I or any other of my kind, would surly sting and you would die. But it was I who sought you out, oh wise one, to hear your wisdom. Please, come out of the dark and enjoy the light that you might better share that which I seek.”
The mouse smiled at the scorpion’s words for he knew that this was surly a young and inexperienced scorpion.
“Child, I will share my wisdom, if that is truly what you seek,” said the mouse. “But I must warn you that my lessons are harsh ones and not lightly sought. You are but a young scorpion, is it wise for one such as you to seek after the wisdom of one such as I?”
“Oh wise one,” said the scorpion. “Is it not wise to seek wisdom in any form wherever it may be found?”
The mouse smiled again and stepped forward into the light only to feel the scorpion’s sting pierce his back. The mouse only smiled, for he knew what the scorpion sought before they first spoke. In a flash, he turned and bit the scorpion’s tail.
“But how?” asked the scorpion. “My sting is like none other! No creatures have withstood it before!”
“Foolish child,” said the mouse while devouring the scorpion. “We mice feel not the sting of our prey.”Short Stories, The Erasable Man, The Resurrectionist, Writings - Fiction