Mike versus Mac

I finished that Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out fanfic a while ago, though it wasn’t picked for that anthology. I have to agree with that decision because I kind of rushed the writing. Ironically, the fic wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be because I was distracted by a video game. (Dragon’s Dogma, in case you were wondering. It’s not the greatest thing ever but it scratched my RPG itch for several months)I meant to revise the fic before posting it but I soon forgot about it and about writing fanfiction in general. I just kind of lost interest. Then I stumbled across it again recently, so I thought I might as well put it up.
Here finally is Mike versus Mac.

Breaking his silence for the first time in almost 30 years, Little Mac describes The Battle of the Decade to our reporter. The story of Mike versus Mac straight from the horse's mouth! Read it all in this month's issue of Sports Illustrated!

Collapse )

Two great tastes

You know, I like Orphan Black and I like Avatar: The Last Airbender, but I don’t really see why both series should be featured in the same fanfic. Also, good holy crap but there are already thirty-one pages of Orphan Black fanfics on Archive of Our Own when the show is only a bit over a year old. I’ve forgotten what it was like to be in an active fandom.


The Traitor – Prologue

I revised the prologue because I thought the original was too wordy and kind of purple prose-y in bits. Henceforth follows the new version.

Zuko was thirteen years old when he realized that his father didn't love him.

At the time, this revelation came as a complete surprise to Zuko. Years later, with a clarity afforded by distance, he could admit that his doubts had been growing steadily, like a mountain built up pebble by pebble, or a dam eroding day by day.

Like the cracks in an eroding dam, Zuko tried to shore up his doubts. Perhaps his father favoured his sister, but that was only because of her skill in firebending. Perhaps his father despised Zuko's soft heart, but that was only because his father wanted him to be strong. Surely if Zuko grew stronger and hardened his heart then his father would show his approval. Surely then his father would love him.

But monsters do not love, no matter how much their sons desire otherwise. And so, after inadvertently insulting his father in public, after unknowingly challenging his father’s disregard for the lives of Fire Nation soldiers, after discovering that he was to duel his lord and father, after begging for forgiveness that did not exist, after being mutilated by his own father, after experiencing firsthand the mercy of the Fire Lord and the Fire Nation – in short, after having every cherished belief violently destroyed – Zuko stopped being Zuko.

The Crown Prince entered the dueling grounds, but afterwards he did not spend three days holding back cries of pain. He did not listen to his sister gravely deliver news of his banishment while she mocked him with her eyes. He was not given the impossible task of finding the Avatar, a person who had not been seen in a hundred years. He did not silently listen while Uncle Iroh offered his help, did not stew in bitter rage while his ship crossed the oceans and did not stare with burning eyes at the Earth Kingdom port where they had docked.

The Crown Prince entered the dueling grounds, but it was the Blue Spirit who left. It was the Blue Spirit who looked out upon the Earth Kingdom, who took first one step down the gangplank then another, away from the Fire Lord, away from Uncle Iroh, and away from the Fire Nation. It was the Blue Spirit who stepped off the ship towards the Earth Kingdom, who stepped forward towards the future, towards vengeance, towards destiny.


You're not Alexander the Great

There seems to be a peculiar project to create even more crappily written novellas for Worlds of Power, a defunct series of novellas based on video games released for the Nintendo Entertainment System console. Well, there’s nothing demanding that the submissions be terrible but apparently the original editions were really bad. I wondered exactly what kinds of stories would be submitted so I started looking through lists of NES games, then one thing led to another and before I knew it I was writing a fanfic for Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out. An excerpt:

Mike versus Mac

Most of the people reading this weren’t alive during the Moon landings. Most of the people reading this weren’t alive during the Kennedy assassination. A few might be too young to remember 9/11. Somehow, history refuses to be conveniently accessed. Somehow, history happens without us being there.

I think about this as I drive through Los Angeles on my way to a certain house in Carson. Most of the people in the neighbourhood are Filipino, and I even pass Jollibee, a restaurant franchise which has almost all of its locations in the Philippines. Finally I pull into the driveway of a modest home and before I even open my car door the owner comes out and shakes my hand. How are you, he asks. How was the drive?

I’ve never had an interview subject so eager to talk to me. Before I know it, I’m ushered through the house and into the den. “This is where I keep my old stuff,” says my apparent new best friend. There might have been several things on fire in that room, but I don’t notice because my eyes are drawn to a poster on the wall. It’s screaming about a boxing match set for October 5, 1987. Two men, one white, one black, face off with grim determination. Mike versus Mac, it says. The Battle of the Decade.

We’ll see if my inspiration will continue. I’ll have to read some Sports Illustrated articles to check the writing style.



Herewith is a quick snippet of individual spirit snatched from the alienation of modern life (i.e., something I wrote while at work). It follows immediately after the previous scene I posted. This scene is unfinished but what the hell, here it is:

“I can’t be sure, but I’m almost positive this is your fault,” said Katara as she frantically hopped up and down in the prison cell.

“Well, I can’t be sure, but I’m almost positive you can go suck my balls,” said Toph as she sulked in the corner of the room.

“You don’t have balls, Toph, you just have a mouth that’s too big for your own good.”

“Well, you have a butt that's too big for your own good.”

“I'll have you know I have an excellently shaped rear. Wait, how would you even know? Are you feeling me up in my sleep?”

“Duh, how else can I tell what you guys look like? Did you forget that I'm blind?”

“Eww, Toph, you're like an onion of perversion. Every time I think you can't get any worse you end up topping yourself. Wait, did Aang actually wet his bed back in Ba Sing Se or was that you pranking him?”

“Hehe, do you remember him trying to hide those sheets?”

Katara rolled her eyes at the admission. “You're a complete brat, Toph.”

“I'm hearing lots of talking and not enough exercising.”

Katara mumbled curses to herself as she went back to sweating out her escape plan.

“That's it, Katara, do your best or whatever, ” cheered Toph half-heartedly. “Hey, will it help if I pee on you?”

At that moment the door to the outside opened, showing Zuko and Sokka frozen on the threshold.

“Uhh. . .” said Zuko, to which neither Sokka nor Katara had anything to add.

“Hey!” shouted Toph, breaking the spell of awkward uncertainty everyone besides her was under. “Who do I have to pee on to get rescued here?” she demanded.

“Aang, Toph is asking for you,” said Sokka.


I’m writing, I’m writing

Despite all appearances, I seriously am writing. Mica and claudiapriscus on AO3 kind of got me doing it all over again for He Said, She Said. Take a look:


“So what did you think of the play?” mumbled Toph around the stick of barbecued banana slices that was currently in her mouth.

“Two thumbs up,” said Zuko. “The director’s thumbs, I mean, since I’m going to cut them off and shove them up his ass.” He demonstrated his pique by kicking down a banner pole whose sign read The Life and Death of the Prince of Ill Luck.

Sokka snorted at Zuko’s answer. “Hello, jerkwad, did you not get the memo about not being a bad guy anymore?” Sokka kicked down another banner pole, not because he hated the play but because as a good boyfriend he felt obligated to act on Yue’s behalf when the play was a blatant plagiary of her novel. Also he liked kicking things.

Zuko punched a hole through a backdrop showing some icebergs floating on the sea. “Me, not a bad guy anymore?” he asked. “Says who? I never promised anything to anybody. Anyway, who says good guys can’t cut off the thumbs of people they don’t like? What, are the good guy police going to arrest me for that?”

“Uh, yes, and they’re actually just the regular police,” said Sokka as he tore apart a set of red Fire Sage robes.

“For the love of crap, can you two just make out already?” interrupted Toph. “I swear, you can cut the sexual tension with a knife.”

Sokka turned to Toph in annoyance. “You know, Toph, life isn’t one of the borderline gay romance stories you pay people to read to you. Just because two people argue with each other doesn’t mean they’re secretly in love. Almost one hundred percent of the time it means they genuinely disagree with each other.”

Toph was too busy enjoying her banana slices to give a properly derisive jeer to Sokka’s pronouncement and in fact all she could manage was a sarcastic roll of her eyes.

“Hey, what are you kids doing backstage!” demanded an angry bearded man who Zuko assumed was the stage manager or something. He didn’t bother to find out but instead smashed the chair he was holding over the man’s head instead of smashing it on some Ba Sing Se palace scenery like he originally intended. Taking the man’s intrusion as a cue, he sauntered casually out of the back door whose lock he had bashed open with a rock – this was only after listening to ten minutes of fumbling and cursing from Sokka before the other boy admitted that he couldn’t pick the lock (and only after Zuko had broken the lock did Toph reveal that she could have used her metalbending and saved everyone the trouble).

Much later, on their way out of town and back to their camp site Sokka observed, “You know, for a play that’s supposedly about the ‘Prince of Ill Luck’ the majority of the story revolved around the whole Katara forbidden love angle.”

“Yeah,” agreed Zuko as he walked along swinging a wooden sign that said Colonel Kinjo’s Travelling Players, “It’s like they wanted to make a stage adaptation of Thunderstorm but kept getting forced to make a straight propaganda piece instead.”

“What kind of propaganda piece makes you feel sorry for the bad guys?” asked Toph as she finished her snack and began cleaning her teeth with the barbecue stick she’d been eating from. “Zuko’s supposed to be the traitor but the play ends with Katara crying her eyes out and promising to avenge his death.”

“Good point, it gets kind of weird near the end, doesn’t it?” said Sokka. “But can we agree not to tell Aang that he spends the Battle of Ba Sing Se screaming and hiding under a blanket?”

“No, we can’t, because I’m going to tell him that as soon as we see him,” promised Toph. “I even memorized the lines his character was shouting at Azula: ‘Take Sokka, he’s stupid and ugly and no one likes him.’”

Sokka huffed in annoyance and stuck his hands in his pockets. He should have known Toph would remember that line. “You know, Toph, maybe we really should come clean to Katara about where we’re getting our money from,” he threatened.

“Maybe we shouldn’t,” said Toph as she threw her skewer at Sokka’s head.

“So you’re cheating at crooked dice games,” said Zuko. “You’re just doing the same to those gamblers that they were going to do to you. How can that be wrong?”

“Exactly,” said Sokka.

“For sure,” agreed Toph.

They were both glad that Zuko had been too distracted by seeing the advertisements for the play that he didn’t ask how they’d scored same day tickets for what was obviously an incredibly popular show. If he had known they’d scammed the tickets from some rich jerkoff then he would have probably thrown a hissy fit about them risking the mission or something.

Honestly, for a firebender Zuko could be a complete wet blanket. No wonder he and Katara got along so well. All Toph and Sokka did was trick money out of people who had too much of it. What could possibly go wrong with that?


I am writing

Seriously, I’m writing. This excerpt is the opening of a project I’ve had on the backburner for over a year now, tentatively titled The Year of the Dragon:

Sometimes it’s hard to remember that we used to be at war with the Fire Nation. I can still remember running for my life as the last of their raids ravaged my clan one final time; I can still remember how I screamed and screamed when I discovered what they’d done to my mother. I can remember the look on my father’s face as he and the other warriors left to join the fighting and I can remember the long days of waiting that followed immediately after, days where every now and then my chest would clench and I would think, This, now, is the sign that my father is dead.

But days turned into weeks, then months, and then years, and every now and then I could swear I felt a premonition of my father’s death, but every time I’d shake it off as nothing but love and worry mixed together. Finally, a ship from our Northern cousins came, its passengers bringing strange stories of the Avatar returning and defeating the Fire Nation. Our enemy was beaten, they said, and now the war was over.

To think that the battle for the fate of the world had come and gone without my tribe even knowing. How strange to have your universe turned topsy-turvy and not know about it until weeks later. But that’s pretty much the story of my life.

Right now I’m working on the last part of He Said, She Said, though. It’s probably going to take me a while to finish, but I’m slowly chipping away at it.

Back in Black

I want to start writing again. I’ve kind of been distracted with my new-ish job, but I still want to keep with the fiction, both fan and otherwise. And guess what? That’s just what I’m going to do.

Also, I hadn’t realized it, but my return to fiction writing apparently happened on July of last year. I’ve been back in fiction for over a year now! Well, technically I kind of dropped off with it for the last few months, but that was only a temporary situation.

Expect more anon, gentle readers. And no way am I taking another four year break like the last time.


The Dog Who Was a Prince – Chapter 3


Wow, who was the potty mouth who was cursing so early in the morning? Katara lifted her head and looked around the room where she’d woken up. She was apparently lying in a hammock attached to the walls of a room made entirely out of metal. There were miscellaneous bags of something lying on the floor (dimly, Katara remembered that the floor on a ship was called the deck). Some of those bags looked familiar, and it took Katara a moment to realize that they belonged to her and Sokka. Was Sokka here too?

Oh, there he was sleeping in the hammock on the other side of the room. From the loud snores he was emitting, he hadn’t been the one who had greeted the new day with a hearty f-word. “Fuck me.” See, there it was again. It was coming from someplace really close by, too. So close that she could have sworn it was coming from her own mouth. “Merciful spirits, please fuck me dead.” Oh wait, it was coming from her own mouth.

Collapse )

How now, brown cow?

I thought that finishing off He Said, She Said would be fairly straightforward but I seem to have  come up against a wall. The last two chapters have been going through the Stations of the Canon, as it were, by following the progression of the episodes of Books One and Two. However, Part 2 ended in a way that blasted that sequence apart, meaning that there is no way Part 3 will resemble Book Three in any realistic fashion. I could still force the story to follow Book Three but doing so would lessen the narrative as a whole since the plot would not flow naturally in that direction. Which means that I have to write more original stuff for the story.

Of course, I’m not averse to originality, but the bigger problem is that the ending of Part Two necessitates a change in tone from comedy to drama, at least in the beginning. However, drama is harder for me to write than comedy and thus it will take me much longer to finish the fic. Getting the whole thing back on track to a ridiculous adventure would mean slightly more work as well.

Really, there’s nothing for it but to do it. I find that when I’m stuck on a story that the simple act of writing gets the creative juices flowing and ideas start popping into my head.

Anyway, I have a hankering to add the next part of The Dog who was a Prince, which should probably help with my other projects. Immersing myself in Avatar fics should also help.

So there you go, folks, you heard it here first: A new chapter from moi will appear on the Etherweb soon-ish.