Rating/Warnings: PG-13 for cursing
Summary: Red meets John who isn’t John and things go wrong fast.
NOTE: This is a very rough draft with no editing at all (per National Novel Wiriting Month rules) and is presented for amusement value only. Think of it as a periscope into my writing process rather than a coherent story!
There will most likely be spelling and grammatical errors afoot as well as flat out bad writing, info dumps, plot holes, contradictions/retcons, uneven characterization and pacing. These snippits are also posted out of order, so please refer to the Outline to figure out where it’s supposed to fit.
“Who are you?” Red asked angry and afraid with that desperate air of hope that had kept him going.
“I’m John,” said the man who looked very sad and very tired. “And you know that already.”
“No you’re not,” said Red, “You died and I watched you die and this is some trick isn’t it? The City made you somehow and sent you here.”
“I’m real,” said John, “just like you’re real, even when I know you aren’t.”
“What?” snapped Red.
“I’m not the only one who died,” said John. “You know that too, or I wouldn’t be here. You’d be talking to you.” And there was such loss in that voice, but tempted by time and not honed by madness. “We used to be friends, long ago. I was hoping–”
“That you could trick me?” snarled Red. “That you could waltz in here pretending to be my best friend and that would somehow make everything okay? Get the fuck out.”
“No.” said John, firmly. “No I wasn’t trying to trick you. No I don’t think this will make everything okay. And no, I will NOT get the fuck out.” He glared right back at Red. “I can’t let you do this, you know I can’t, and if I have to remember that you’re not my Red, then so be it. But I think you are, I know you are, somewhere in there is my Red too.”
“Then where is my John?” said Red. “Where is the person who would follow me into the gates of hell because we were in this together? Where the hell is he when I need him?”
“He’s blocking the way.” Sighed John. “And you damned well know that.”
“My John didn’t.”
“That’s why your City was flawed.”
Red stared at him in blind fury, if he could have reached him he would have killed him for saying that. For insinuating that this thing, this whole damned fucking mess of a things was all John’s fault. His John was his best friend, his only friend in those lonely dark miserable years and NOTHING was his fault. NEVER.
“Let. Me. Out.” Snarled Red.
“No.” Said John, sadly, hope fading. “No, and I’m sorry.”
“LET ME OUT!” Red slammed his hands against the glass, screaming.
“I’m sorry, I’m so sorry.” And John turned and left.
Red screamed in rage, beat his hands against the glass until they left bloody streaks down the walls, screamed until he lost his voice and he’d cried all the tears he had left. And then he sank into a ball on the floor, cradling his hands and crying for a world he was supposed to have saved.
This is Maddy and this is my story now.