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The Battle: Prologue

by tRiCk


The streets are dark and the rain pelts me insistently. I walk through the darkness with my head down not making eye contact with any of the bums or prostitutes that roam my neighborhood. My mind is set on one track; an address running over and over in my head. For miles I walk until I see the building finally loom before me. It’s a ritzier apartment building than most; one that requires an access code to get through. My friend hadn’t informed me of this obstacle.

I puzzle over it for a second and study the huge building. Surely there is another entrance other than for tenants. I wander around the parking lot until I find a door marked “Employees Only” that also demands an access code. Above the door a large window shows another opportunity for entrance. Normally I am hesitant to literally “break” in due to all the high-tech alarms they have these days. I knew the job wasn’t going to be easy, but I wasn’t the kind of person to leave a messy scene like some of my so called “associates”. If I take this chance and there IS an alarm, it would give me 5- 8 minutes tops till police arrive. Not enough time for the fun I was planning.

Realizing I have no other choice, I grumble weakly to myself and shoot one more glance around to assure I was alone. I pull my hoody tighter over my head and bring my fist back for the blow. The glass breaks easily, and I chuckle quietly to myself. If only the residents knew how easy it was…

The hallway was brightly lit and I hear laughter coming from a nearby staircase. I hurry to take off my gloves and black hoody and toss them in the trash just as a couple appears in front of me. I throw on a wonderful smile and glide by wishing them a good night. Just before I disappear up the stairs I hear them comment on what a good “neighbor” they have. I can’t help but smirk.

Taking the steps two at a time, I reach the fifth floor then lean against the rail. I close my eyes and listen to the thumping of my heart. Its rhythmic at first; soothing my nerves. Then the adrenaline starts to flow through my blood. The feeling, something between the deep hunger of a predator and the raw fear of the victim, confuses me and thrills me at the same time. Then eagerness takes over and I enter the hallway, taking my time as I cross the floor feeling the lush carpet beneath my shoes.

Halfway to my destination I start my calming exercises.

“Cool, calm, collected…cool, calm, collected…” I repeat to myself, my own personal mantra. I was also the type of person who had to count to ten when angry to assure nothing utterly stupid would come pouring out my mouth. My disposition and personality was far from professional, I tended to act before thinking in most cases, but I got the damn job done.

A door at the end of the hall bursts open snapping me from my reverie. Instantly I’m on end as two billowing figures dressed in black stand only 30 feet from me. I mentally berate myself for not composing myself earlier therefore my complete shock of our encounter is oh-so evident on my face. Luckily, they seem just as shocked to see a young lady so late at night roaming the halls. As they look at each other somehow communicating with raised eyebrows alone, I take a deep breath and experience takes over.

My trained eyes are quick to take in the scene. They’ve just exited from the very room I was heading for. Dressed in black. Dark fluid on left guys boot. Their eyes… not cold, but empty. Dangerous eyes I see every time I look in the mirror.

Instinctively, I take a step back, not in fear but from the disgust of seeing myself in them. They read the move wrong though, and I realize what I look like in their eyes. I embrace it, seeing a way out of this situation. Taking another step back, I feel the coolness of the wall against my back and squish my body against it as if somehow trying to escape through the wall itself. My eyes go wide and I play the “scared young girl” role. I feel ridiculous but they fall for it shoving past me and entering a waiting elevator. As the door closes, I see one of the guys mouth some threats at me “if I call the police”. The second the doors meet I let out a dramatic sigh and slide to the floor.

“Well,” I speak aloud. “There was an elevator all along and I took the damn stairs. That’s just GREAT!!!”


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Sun Dec 05, 2021 3:55 pm
HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

First Impression: This was an interesting piece here. I liked the scene for the most part although I do have to say that this doesn't quite sound like a prologue, I might be missing some context, but this feels much more like a first chapter than anything else here.

Anyway let's get right to it,

The streets are dark and the rain pelts me insistently. I walk through the darkness with my head down not making eye contact with any of the bums or prostitutes that roam my neighborhood. My mind is set on one track; an address running over and over in my head. For miles I walk until I see the building finally loom before me. It’s a ritzier apartment building than most; one that requires an access code to get through. My friend hadn’t informed me of this obstacle.

I puzzle over it for a second and study the huge building. Surely there is another entrance other than for tenants. I wander around the parking lot until I find a door marked “Employees Only” that also demands an access code. Above the door a large window shows another opportunity for entrance. Normally I am hesitant to literally “break” in due to all the high-tech alarms they have these days. I knew the job wasn’t going to be easy, but I wasn’t the kind of person to leave a messy scene like some of my so called “associates”. If I take this chance and there IS an alarm, it would give me 5- 8 minutes tops till police arrive. Not enough time for the fun I was planning.


Well, this one certainly raises some interesting questions here. We're certainly left wondering what exactly this might turn out to be. Some very interesting little clues being dropped subtly in the background and overall, I think this piece is off to a very good start.

Realizing I have no other choice, I grumble weakly to myself and shoot one more glance around to assure I was alone. I pull my hoody tighter over my head and bring my fist back for the blow. The glass breaks easily, and I chuckle quietly to myself. If only the residents knew how easy it was…

The hallway was brightly lit and I hear laughter coming from a nearby staircase. I hurry to take off my gloves and black hoody and toss them in the trash just as a couple appears in front of me. I throw on a wonderful smile and glide by wishing them a good night. Just before I disappear up the stairs I hear them comment on what a good “neighbor” they have. I can’t help but smirk.


That doesn't sound good at all. The general vibe of this person so far seems to scream out danger here. It seems like this is someone capable of causing some serious damage and they won't be one bit hesitant to do so. Its terrifying but not for the POV character, but the others.

Taking the steps two at a time, I reach the fifth floor then lean against the rail. I close my eyes and listen to the thumping of my heart. Its rhythmic at first; soothing my nerves. Then the adrenaline starts to flow through my blood. The feeling, something between the deep hunger of a predator and the raw fear of the victim, confuses me and thrills me at the same time. Then eagerness takes over and I enter the hallway, taking my time as I cross the floor feeling the lush carpet beneath my shoes.

Halfway to my destination I start my calming exercises.

“Cool, calm, collected…cool, calm, collected…” I repeat to myself, my own personal mantra. I was also the type of person who had to count to ten when angry to assure nothing utterly stupid would come pouring out my mouth. My disposition and personality was far from professional, I tended to act before thinking in most cases, but I got the damn job done.


Okayy...so well there are certainly even more alarm bells ringing here and things continue on with this person here. They are almost certainly on some sort of dangerous mission to cause chaos inside this building and we can't even tell if they are doing something for a good cause or for a more selfish reason.

A door at the end of the hall bursts open snapping me from my reverie. Instantly I’m on end as two billowing figures dressed in black stand only 30 feet from me. I mentally berate myself for not composing myself earlier therefore my complete shock of our encounter is oh-so evident on my face. Luckily, they seem just as shocked to see a young lady so late at night roaming the halls. As they look at each other somehow communicating with raised eyebrows alone, I take a deep breath and experience takes over.

My trained eyes are quick to take in the scene. They’ve just exited from the very room I was heading for. Dressed in black. Dark fluid on left guys boot. Their eyes… not cold, but empty. Dangerous eyes I see every time I look in the mirror.


Well, this is an unexpected twist there. A very interesting moment in this piece and well..there's certainly a few questions to be asked in this particular piece here. So far, you've done a pretty good job of really creating some awesome tension and this part is especially powerful in that regard.

Instinctively, I take a step back, not in fear but from the disgust of seeing myself in them. They read the move wrong though, and I realize what I look like in their eyes. I embrace it, seeing a way out of this situation. Taking another step back, I feel the coolness of the wall against my back and squish my body against it as if somehow trying to escape through the wall itself. My eyes go wide and I play the “scared young girl” role. I feel ridiculous but they fall for it shoving past me and entering a waiting elevator. As the door closes, I see one of the guys mouth some threats at me “if I call the police”. The second the doors meet I let out a dramatic sigh and slide to the floor.

“Well,” I speak aloud. “There was an elevator all along and I took the damn stairs. That’s just GREAT!!!”


OKayy...not sure that punchline really manages to walk here....its funny but seems strange out of tone with the rest of this place and the very dramatic start is kind of ruined. Its an interesting ploy to use though, and it certains ends this prologue on a very interesting note here.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

Overall: Overall, this is a solid looking start here and for the most part I liked it. That ending got just a tiny bit iffy, but I think on the whole you've done a pretty good here and I enjoyed this. :D

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry




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Sun Jun 26, 2011 8:49 pm
RacheDrache wrote a review...



How did I never see this? Definitely not the type of work that should go without comments for this long. Not that any work does, but a coherent prologue? Especially not. (Pssst, generally not a good idea to comment first on your own work... pushes it into the works with 1 review and you miss out people who go there first looking for stuff to read.)

Anyway, feedback, feedback...

First, foremost, most importantly, I want to know what happens next. I want to know what the heck this girl is doing, what world this is (I get faint sci-fi vibes but I might be wrong), and what her job is. I have my suspicions, chiefly assassins and assassinations, but I could be wrong yet. Doesn't really matter; me want the next chapter.

In way of critique.... first, punctuation and grammar. You've got run-on sentences and missing commas and such galore here. Try reading aloud as a proofreading technique (so your brain doesn't skip over things on you.) If grammar and punctuation just aren't your things, this forum should help you out.

As an example of some punctuation gone AWOL:

My disposition and personality was far from professional, I tended to act before thinking in most cases, but I got the damn job done.


Run-on sentence there. You could fix it by making the "my disposition...from professional" into a subordinate clause, though, e.g. "While my disposition and personality were far from professional and I tended to act....cases, I got the damn job done." Which is what I think you were going for with that sentence.

Also, make sure your tense is consistent:

The hallway was brightly lit


Otherwise, it's too early on in the story to start making general comments on writing style or whatnot. I liked your main character too, though. She had spunk without it being obnoxious.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Rach




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Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:24 pm
tRiCk says...



Any feedback?





What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty, in form and moving how express and admirable, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god -- the beauty of the world, the paragon of animals!
— William Shakespeare