Divided Destiny — Semi-Interactive Fiction

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Samster, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. Howdy!

    Content in Question (open)
    ([ Divided Destiny #1 ]) Conestoga

    After seventeen long years, it's all coming together; finally, humankind can begin to mourn. In all the hurry, we'd nearly forgotten what we were preparing for: Rolling in on the red carpet at over twenty-five thousand meters per second is twelve-kilometer Near-Earth Object Vulcan 2039 OV872; we've taken to calling it Vulcan's Hammer — apt enough, we figure, considering it'll make the apocalyptic Chicxulub crater look like an acne scar. They say it's too big to detonate and too fast to deflect; out of desperation, we tried anyway — now we have OV872a and OV872b, both headed straight for us; all we can do is flee from our mother Earth.

    Government space agencies have been dropping like flies all century, and the corporations don't see any profit in a crash evacuation program. It's astonishing how many of those in the know are in such disbelief that, after nearly two decades, you'd think there were never anything wrong; but enough people with enough resources made it happen: Two hundred of Earth's brightest and the frozen gene pool of another thousand will give humanity a second chance.

    Imagine my surprise when a Notice of Admission landed in my hands on my way out of the administration building I worked at. "Me?" I begged. I'd had plans to watch the launch countdown with my family, but it had been decided that I was too valuable to society; I'll be the last of the Burkes. At least there will be a Burke, I told myself in the mirror a hundred times. Small comfort; I haven't been able to look my wife in the eyes since that day; my children — strong, gentle Emma; brave, honest Isaac — no matter how many times I tell them that I love them, I will never be able to believe that after what I am about to do to them.

    But they believe it — that's what hurts the most. They think their husband and father will fly into the stars and make a new home for humankind; for them. Standing here, hours from launch, at the end of a long row of sleeper coffins, I see their faces and bittersweet tears and wonder what they'll look like when my arms aren't there to hold them when the hammer comes down. Will their last thoughts beg for me to rescue them, somehow? My daughter looks up at me with those sharp green eyes of hers — she'd always been years ahead of her age: "We want you to be happy when you go, pa'." Isaac is only two, but the way he glared at her after that made me wonder if those words were his idea; I couldn't help but laugh.

    My wife's touch brings out the tears; the scratchy tip of her thumbnail against my neck reminds me just how real this is. The bell-tone over the intercom reminds us we only have a few more minutes with our families. "We have to go," she whispers into my ear. If I could shove all three of them into the coffin and run I would, but there's only room for me. I bring the Burkes in for one last family hug.

    ([ #2 ]) — The Father.
    ([ #3 ]) — The Mother.
    ([ #4 ]) — The Daughter.
    ([ #5 ]) — The Son.

    I've been struck with a dose of motivation and finally produced something presentable. I was hoping I could get some opinions regarding various facets of what I'm doing from content density and writing tense to presentation and logistics.

    That final bit is the least self-explanatory of the named bits I'm interested in hearing your thoughts about, so I'll explain myself: The way I have it worked out in my head, each of the choices the reader makes will refer to (and later link to) a specific post containing the next bit of narrative. I'm concerned about the imminent bog-down that would rise from having several branching sequences to write, and so wonder a) if this seems to be an optimal solution and b) which order to write the posts (either completing one sequence first, or keeping all sequences at the same count from the prologue).

    In any case, I appreciate your help! :D