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 sf attempt (not fanfic)

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PostSubject: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Wed Mar 20, 2013 6:44 pm

So I'm trying my hands at writing a longer story for the first time. It's meant to be science fiction, not fanfic, so I hope this fits the forum okay. Any feedback is greatly appreciated.

I will put it in quote tags. Am I doing it right?

Thanks for reading.

Quote :
1. The prototype.

A gentle melody brought Celine Dilwali back to awareness. She rubbed her eyes with her snow white hands, which starkly contrasted the dark skin of the rest of her body. She had enjoyed a sound sleep. The Venusian gravity had been tough on her at first, after living on Mars for years, but now that she had gotten used to it it made her feel much better. Her body was nearly as heavy here as it would be on Earth. It had made her gain muscle quickly, while she had always been physically weak before.
She looked outside through the virtual window projected on the wall. The sight was a monotone grey and depressing, as always. Nothing but endless clouds storming around the station and the rain of sulphuric acid torturing it. No matter how often she had already seen this sight, it still gave her the shivers.
Apart from the convenient gravity, Venus must have been the most hostile environment where man had ever settled. Venus is the second planet from the Sun and nearly as large as Earth. The atmosphere largely consists of carbon dioxide and is extremely thick, with a surface pressure of ninety bar. This heavy atmosphere acts like a blanket in an extreme greenhouse effect, giving the entire surface a uniform, from equator to poles, a scorching hot temperature. The landscape is a desolate mixture of barren rock formations, volcanoes and plateaus.
But the military station where Celine lived, the Morning Glory, glided high up in the atmosphere, like a gargantuan zeppelin. Here, the air pressure was much more Earthlike and the temperature much more bearable than on the surface. Those factors made construction and maintainance of a manned platform feasible. With the continuous storm and clouds of sulphuric acid it was highly challenging nonetheless, even by modern space colonization standards.
There was nothing to gain here in terms of resources. The only thing that was not in short supply was carbon and a few other select chemical compounds that could be filtered from the air. The only justification for building a permanently manned station here was its important strategic location relative to Earth. This was the most heavily defended fortress in the Solar system. It was the size of a large city and mainly built out of ultra light-weight materials based on carbon nanotubes, stronger than steel. It was encrusted in a carbon shield twenty to thirty meters thick. It was fitted with observation posts of several kinds and stood in contact with a dense network of observation satellites, most of them orbiting Venus but a good number of them deeper in space. Nothing larger than a pebble could approach the planet without being noticed. And the arsenal of nuclear weapons stored aboard was large enough to outshine the Sun for as long as a microsecond.
Celine got into a metallic blue cabin and locked it tightly. She pressed a button and refreshing hot water washed over her body. The aspirators automatically switched on with a soft humming sound. Every drop of water was being filtered and recycled.
Celine was enjoying it. She was one of the few people aboard privileged to be admitted daily showers. “What's for dinner today?” she asked. “Today, the breakfast with strawberry taste has been scheduled for you,” answered a polite, female synthetic voice from the wall. “God please, no..” Celine moaned. “This menu offers you the optimal mix of nutrients, fibers, vitamins and minerals,” the voice defended, “do you wish to deviate from your scheduled food program this time?” “Oh, never bloody mind,” Celine snapped.
Half an hour later Celine walked into her laboratory in her working coat. "Good morning, hun!" cheered her assistent and beloved Antonio Bruzzo. "Hi darling! Up working early again, eh?" Antonio was studying glass tubes filled with liquids and documenting them. "Yes.. you should have a look at the prototype! It's looking great. I reckon it's ready for testing. 'The nose' will be satisfied." Celine laughed hard. "Are you calling him like that too, now? You watch your mouth, boy, or he'll send you off to Titan!" "Oh, he wouldn't," Antonio grinned, "He needs us far too badly!"
Celine walked up to a blue virtual screen on the wall and after a few touches her log appeared and quiet music filled the background. She studied her notes thoroughly. A tune announced the news reports. "Good morning, this is the news of friday, 8th of november 2457, three o'clock interplanetary standard time. The construction of the Emissary space ship on the Saturn wharfs, Titan, has been further delayed because of new technical issues. The construction is a total of two years behind on schedule by now. According to the original planning, the ship should have started its journey to Delta Pavonis II five months ago. It should have been the first manned interstellar flight in history. Scientist have discovered chemical signatures on the planet that indicate a possibility of alien life."
Celine opened a drawer and took out a cage with a mouse in it. “In Hong Kong, negotiations on mutual disarmament have been continued. Emperor Hu Wong of the Heavenly Empire has threatened with new sanctions in case the meteor program is continued. Valencia Marez, the new president of the federation of Mars, did not want to respond publicly while the negotiations are still open. "At this moment it is in the best interest of the negotiations to abstain from comments," she announced in an interview.
Celine, visibly annoyed, walked back to her virtual screen, still holding the mouse. With a touch of the wall she ended the news report and music started again. “Same old story as ever. It's about to make the first strike and blow Wong and his Heavenly Empire into the heavens.” “You can't be serious!” Antonio replied. “Are you for real? If the meteor program is actually executed, planet Earth will never be the same again!” “Sooner or later it'll happen anyway, better for us to strike first." Celine replied. “In any case, our prototype is looking great! We're ready for the test!” “I told you so! Shall we try the compressor?” “Yes,” Celine said with a glint in her eye. “Start it up, babe!”
Celine was still holding the mouse in her peculiarly white hands. It was squaking nervously. Antonio gave her an insecure look. "Shouldn't we anesthesize it first?" Celine looked back in suprise. "What, anesthesize a mouse? Look hun, we're on Venus here. All our medicins have to be transported here from outside the planet. You know how difficult that is. We cannot afford to wasteful with our supplies, even when it concerns human beings. Much less can we waste precious medicin on a simple mouse. I thought you understood!" Antonio seemed uncomfortable. "You're right, I'm sorry."
Antonio meddled with a system of buttons near a device built into the wall. Celine removed a plastic cap and let the mouse slide inside. The mouse struggled and wiggled but got stuck between two irons. "There we go.. " said Antonio. "pressure increasing to half a kilonewton.." The mouse now positively panicked, squeaking sharply and wriggling about wildly. Antonio looked away. “Up to a full kilonewton now.” A small pool of blood started to form inside the machine. The mouse stopped struggling and was silent. “two. three.. all right, I'll increase to maximum pressure.” The hydraulic presses squaked and the mouse was crushed flat. Blood and other bodily fluids were gushing out of it in little squirts. “Up to fifty kilonewton now.. that's the biting force of a Tyrannosaur.” “That'll do, let's have a look at the results” Celine said. Antonio turned a switch and the irons that had pressed the mouse together slowly parted again. The mouse seemed to inflate back into its old form again. Antonio turned off the machine and Celine opened it and took out her prototype, the dead mouse. She inspected it closely from all sides and applied pressure at difference points. "Tissue damage, torn skin.. but it looks promising. Could you prepare a sulfuric acid bath for me?"Antonio nodded, put on protective gloves and started preparations.
Shortly after they were looking at remains of the dead mouse, as it was floating in a tub of boiling sulfuric acid. It had dissolved nearly completely, leaving only the skeleton. The bones were a dark brown instead of white, nearly black. "It's incredible!" Celine exclaimed. "The skeleton is nearly completely intact! Not a single major bone has fractured!" She gave Antonio a kiss.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:32 am

Disclaimer: I only skimmed it. Here's what I noticed:

-Your formatting works in books. Stuff to be read on a screen needs to be broken up in separate paragraphs; not just a new line but empty space between.

-The entire first third is info-dump. It shows that you know what you're talking about and you're not just going OMG SPACE LOL, that's going to help your story tremendously, but you need to sprinkle all these things throughout your story. Have them mentioned in dialogue, or casually observed, like here:

Quote :
She pressed a button and refreshing hot water washed over her body. The aspirators automatically switched on with a soft humming sound.
That's good. I don't know what an aspirator is, maybe other readers do; in any case she does, so she doesn't dwell on explaining it. Either I'll find out later or it's not important, and in the meantime it gets the point across that this is sci-fi and not a wild west story.

-You need to start with something that catches readers' interest. Even if you do a little bit of infodump here and there (and sometimes it's really hard to work around that) I'll be much more willing to read them once I've developed an interest in the characters and a curiosity for the world they live in. The first sentence is crucial; I know within the first paragraph whether I'm going to give a story a shot.

-Also: in dialogue, each person talking gets a new line. Like Summercorn pointed out in xerro's story; you keep one paragraph going as long as the same person is talking (unless there is a lengthy silence or something else happens, and it's just the same person to speak again afterwards). When the other person pipes up, you start a new one. Otherwise the reader might have to go back at some point because they realized they've lost track of who said what.

Like this:

Quote :
Celine, visibly annoyed, walked back to her virtual screen, still holding the mouse. With a touch of the wall she ended the news report and music started again. “Same old story as ever. It's about to make the first strike and blow Wong and his Heavenly Empire into the heavens.”

“You can't be serious!” Antonio replied. “Are you for real? If the meteor program is actually executed, planet Earth will never be the same again!”

“Sooner or later it'll happen anyway, better for us to strike first." Celine replied. “In any case, our prototype is looking great! We're ready for the test!”

“I told you so! Shall we try the compressor?”

“Yes,” Celine said with a glint in her eye. “Start it up, babe!”


-Now I'm going to go back on what I said earlier, about trying to avoid infodumps by having people talk:

Quote :
Antonio gave her an insecure look. "Shouldn't we anesthesize it first?" Celine looked back in suprise. "What, anesthesize a mouse? Look hun, we're on Venus here. All our medicins have to be transported here from outside the planet. You know how difficult that is. We cannot afford to wasteful with our supplies, even when it concerns human beings. Much less can we waste precious medicin on a simple mouse. I thought you understood!" Antonio seemed uncomfortable. "You're right, I'm sorry."
He's her assistant, and it doesn't say anywhere that he is new to this; he would have dealt and come to terms with this a long time ago. I get that you're trying to 'show, don't tell', but it still has to make sense (also re: dialogue, note how technically all of that could have been Antonio talking).



Quote :
Antonio gave her an insecure look.
It's possible that other people don't mind this and it's just my personal thing. But. We are in her head, we don't know how he feels, we can only observe how he acts. If they're an item, it's possible that she knows him well enough to recognize his look as him feeling insecure, but even then I feel it would be a better choice to say something along the lines of 'he gave her a look she'd come to recognize as insecure' (=her interpretation) or 'he bit his lip and shot her a glance' (description of his actions, interpretation is up to the reader).

-And lasty, tiny nitpick: if the window is just a projection anyway, why won't they show something more uplifting? Or at least give her the option to choose? You could have her flip through the scenes and come across the 'real' one and still shiver at that.


I hope this was useful to some extent. Good luck with your endeavour!
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:20 am

Wow.. I need some time to digest this. Thank you very much. I'm going to redo the whole thing and your comments will be a great help.

An aspirator is supposed to be a fan, a machine that sucks the air dry. But English isn't my first language and I had to look this one up. Maybe there's a better word.

Regarding the virtual windows, in my mind everyone has the choice to display whatever they like but Celine somehow prefers to see the outdoor reality, in spite of the fact it's a grim, depressing view. I will make that bit more clear.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:05 am

spork wrote:
Wow.. I need some time to digest this.
I'm sorry, I know criticism is painful?! A lot of it is really just formatting. I hope I wasn't too blunt or something. :/

I like that you have so much information regarding the setting, you know, the weather, the differences in gravity, that kind of stuff. You either know a lot about the topic or you're doing your research, either way it's promising. Even if you don't mention everything you could say, it's still going to show in your story.

Quote :
An aspirator is supposed to be a fan (...) I had to look this one up. Maybe there's a better word.
Oh, don't think it's the wrong word just because I don't know it. I'm ESL too, after all. Razz
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:12 am

grmblfjx wrote:
spork wrote:
Wow.. I need some time to digest this.
I'm sorry, I know criticism is painful?!

Not at all! I just meant to say I was impressed to receive so much high quality feedback and need some time to let all the information sink in. It takes a lot to offend me and you weren't even trying. Wink

Thanks again, you awesome attack egg you.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:37 am


Oh. All is good, then. You're very welcome Smile
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:36 pm

grmblfjx wrote:
-Your formatting works in books. Stuff to be read on a screen needs to be broken up in separate paragraphs; not just a new line but empty space between.
2nding this. I hate to pick n formatting, but it really alters weither or not I can bear to read a thing.

grmblfjx wrote:
-Also: in dialogue, each person talking gets a new line. Like Summercorn pointed out in xerro's story; you keep one paragraph going as long as the same person is talking (unless there is a lengthy silence or something else happens, and it's just the same person to speak again afterwards). When the other person pipes up, you start a new one. Otherwise the reader might have to go back at some point because they realized they've lost track of who said what.
Also quoting this for emphasis. This is so very important.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:05 pm

The word you might want, if it's specifically to dry the air, is a dehumidifier. Here is a link so you can check and see if this is what you need.. I'm a native English speaker, but I still sometimes have trouble finding the right word, so don't feel bad!

Once you've changed the formatting, put it back up. I'll give it a look then. My eyes aren't great right now, so I can't actually read it without pain while it's still formatted like that.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:43 pm

You guys are all sorts of awesome. Once I have edited the story (and added a bit) I will put it online somewhere and post a link.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:19 pm

rae wrote:
Once you've changed the formatting, put it back up. I'll give it a look then. My eyes aren't great right now, so I can't actually read it without pain while it's still formatted like that.
Haha, I know this has nothing to do with anything, but I have given close, personal friends who asked for concrit this ultimatum before. Separate paragraphs for separate speakers or I refuse to read it, full stop.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Fri Mar 22, 2013 12:00 am

An update. I corrected paragraphs and dialogues. I also followed some of the other suggestions, but not everything to the letter.

For now I'm still looking for a good place to dump it and link to, so I'll just dump it here again. Enjoy and thanks for reading.

Quote :
1. The Prototype.


A gentle melody brought Celine Dilwali back to awareness. She rubbed her eyes with her snow white hands, which starkly contrasted the dark skin of the rest of her body. She had enjoyed a sound sleep. The Venusian gravity had been tough on her at first, after living on Mars for years, but now that she had gotten used to it, the physical conditions here made her feel much better.

She looked outside through the virtual window projected on the wall. The sight was a monotone grey and depressing, as always. Nothing but endless clouds storming around the station and the rain of sulphuric acid torturing it. Grim as the view was, Celine felt she needed the artificial window and refused to project pleasant sceneries instead, like most others here aboard the Morning Glory did. She felt she would slowly choke here in this hermetically sealed floating fortress if she didn't at least create an illusion of being connected to the world outside.

Celine got into a metallic blue cabin and locked it tightly. She pressed a button and refreshing hot water washed over her body. The dehumidifier automatically switched on with a soft humming sound. Every drop of water was being filtered and recycled.

Celine was enjoying it. She was one of the few people aboard privileged to be admitted daily showers. “What's for breakfast today?” she asked.

“Today, the breakfast with strawberry taste has been scheduled for you,” answered a polite, female synthetic voice from the wall.

“God please, no..” Celine moaned.

“This menu offers you the optimal mix of nutrients, fibers, vitamins and minerals,” the voice defended, “do you wish to deviate from your scheduled food program this time?”

“Oh, never bloody mind,” Celine snapped.

Half an hour later Celine walked into her laboratory in her working coat. "Good morning, hun!" cheered her assistent and beloved Antonio Bruzzo.

"Hi darling! Up working early again, eh?"

Antonio was studying glass tubes filled with liquids and documenting them. "Yes.. you should have a look at our prototype! It's looking great. I reckon it's ready for testing. 'The nose' will be satisfied."

Celine laughed hard. "Are you calling him like that too, now? You watch your mouth, boy, or he'll send you off to Titan!"

"Oh, he wouldn't," Antonio grinned, "He needs us far too badly!"

Celine walked up to a blue virtual screen on the wall and after a few touches her log file appeared and relaxing music filled the background.

A tune announced the news reports. "Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. This is the news of friday, 8th of november 2457, three o'clock interplanetary standard time. The construction of the Emissary space ship on the Saturn wharfs, Titan, has been further delayed because of new technical issues. The construction is a total of two years behind on schedule by now. According to the original planning, the ship should have started its journey to Delta Pavonis II five months ago. It should have been the first manned interstellar flight in history. Scientists have discovered chemical signatures on the planet that indicate a possibility of alien life."

Celine opened a drawer and took out a cage with a mouse in it.

“In Hong Kong, negotiations on mutual disarmament have been continued. Emperor Hu Wong of the Heavenly Empire has threatened with new sanctions in case the meteor program is continued. Valencia Marez, the new president of the federation of Mars, did not want to respond publicly while the negotiations are still open. "At this moment it is in the best interest of the negotiations to abstain from comments," she announced in an interview."

Celine, visibly annoyed, walked back to her virtual screen, still holding the mouse. With a touch of the wall she ended the news report and music started again. “Same old story as ever. It's about time to land the first strike and blow Wong and his Heavenly Empire into the heavens.”

“You can't be serious!” Antonio replied. “Are you for real? Can you imagine the meteor plan being actually carried out?”

“Sooner or later it'll happen anyway, better for us to strike first." Celine replied. She quickly changed the subject. “In any case, our prototype is looking great! We're ready for the test!”

“I told you so! Shall we try the compressor?”

“Yes,” Celine said with a glint in her eye. “Start it up, babe!”

Celine was still holding the mouse in her peculiarly white hands. It was squaking nervously.

Antonio gave her an insecure look. "Shouldn't we anesthesize it first?"

Celine looked back in suprise. "What, anesthesize a mouse? Look hun, I know we haven't lived on Venus for long yet. But I think you're well aware that all our medicins have to be transported here from outside the planet. You know how difficult that is. We cannot afford to be wasteful with our supplies, even when it concerns human beings. Much less can we waste precious medicin on a simple mouse. I thought you understood!"

Antonio looked at his feet and shuffled uncomfortably. "You're right, I'm sorry."

Antonio meddled with a system of buttons near a device built into the wall. Celine removed a plastic cap and let the mouse slide inside. The mouse struggled and wiggled but got stuck between two irons.

"There we go.. " said Antonio. "pressure increasing to half a kilonewton.." The mouse now positively panicked, squeaking sharply and wriggling about wildly. Antonio looked away. “Up to a full kilonewton now.” A small pool of blood started to form inside the machine. The mouse stopped struggling and was silent. “two. three.. all right, I'll increase to maximum pressure.”

The hydraulic presses squaked and the mouse was crushed flat. Blood and other bodily fluids were gushing out of it in little squirts. “Up to fifty kilonewton now.. that's the biting force of a Tyrannosaur.”

“That'll do, let's have a look at the results” Celine said. Antonio turned a switch and the irons that had pressed the mouse together slowly parted again. The mouse seemed to inflate back into its old form again. Antonio turned off the machine and Celine opened it and took out her prototype, the dead mouse. She inspected it closely from all sides and applied pressure at difference points. "Tissue damage, torn skin.. but it looks promising. Could you prepare a sulfuric acid bath for me?"Antonio nodded, put on protective gloves and started preparations.

Shortly after they were looking at the remains of the dead mouse, as it was floating in a tub of boiling sulfuric acid. It had dissolved nearly completely, leaving only the skeleton. The bones were a dark brown instead of white, nearly black.

"It's incredible!" Celine exclaimed. "Look at that, the skeleton is nearly completely intact! Not a single major bone has fractured!" She gave Antonio a kiss.



2. A New Mission.


Celine strolled through a long hallway, softly illuminated by a series of green LED lights placed at regular intervals on the floor. She wore a comfortable white bodysuit that fitted her tightly. There was a cool breeze in the hall, caused by the air refreshment system. She halted when she arrived at a heavy double door blocking the way. The same synthetic voice that had spoken to her under the shower announced: "Welcome, Celine Dilwali. You are requested to enter the waiting room."

A much smaller door, easily missed at first sight, opened besides. She entered it, into a dimly lit room. Two heavily muscled soldiers approached her, one of them carrying a scanner. The door closed behind her without a sound. "The usual routine, lieutenant. Please remove all clothes."

"Of course," Celine answered. Although she wasn't prude, this routine still made her feel uncomfortable. Reluctantly she undressed. She still hadn't entirely gotten used to the rigorously controlled life aboard the fortress.

Fortunately the soldiers here acted with professional formality. One soldier thoroughly scanned her clothes, while the other pointed at a white screen near the wall. "Please take place behind the screen, lieutenant." Celine obediently did as she was told. An x-ray scan appeared on the screen. The soldier screened the picture from top to bottom. After a short while, though still too long to Celine's liking, he nodded. "Thank you, lieutenant."

The other handed her back her clothing. While she quickly started to dress up, the soldier asked her: "what is this item you're carrying, lieutenant?" In his hand he held the dark mouse skeleton from the experiment.

"Confidential," answered Celine. "It's a request from general Popov."

The soldier eyed her suspiciously. "That is correct, Carl," a heavy, rasping voice from the wall said. Carl shrugged and handed it back to her.

The other soldier loudly declared: "Body check OK!". Then both retreated from the room through the back door. As soon as they were gone, the door to the hallway opened again. Celine got back into the hall and the board computer announced: "you have been granted permission to enter."

The heavy doors slid open, revealing a bright light that hurt her eyes. She went in and general Popov greeted her from behind his fake wooden desk.

"Welcome, miss Dilwali. Please take a seat," he said with his heavy voice. His face bore a scar, along the bridge of his nose. His room contrasted starkly to the sterile order in the rest of the military complex. The floor was covered with all sorts of junk. Toy models, paperwork covered with incomprehensible scribbles, books and even a few real plants.

"Your research is progressing nicely, isn't it?" asked Popov. "Could you please show me the prototype?"

With a proud smile Celine gave him the skeleton. Popov inspected it in fascination.

"Absolutely beautiful.. and it was able to resist a force of fifty kilonewtons? The biting force of a Tyrannosaur, I believe?"

Celine felt her ears redden. Had they been overheard on during the experiment? "Yes, general."

The general smiled innocently. "In case you weren't aware, everything you do is registered and recorded. Except in this room." The general fiddled with the mouse in his hands. His right hand had been amputated and replaced with a robotic arm. "Our conversation here is strictly confidential and whatever is said must remain between us. I hope you hear me well."

The general gave her an intense stare.

"Of course, general," Celine answered.

"Good. How long do you expect it will take before our soldiers can be treated with the new bone reinforcement technique?"

Celine considered the question. "I expect to apply the technique succesfully on a human test subject within six months. Then it will probably take another six months before we can apply it on a large scale."

"Excellent. Do you judge that Antonio would be capable of taking over the responsibility of this project?"

"Absolutely. The major challenges have been overcome, now that we have achieved a positive result on a mouse. From here it is largely a matter of routine." Celine said, beaming with pride.

"Very good, very good.. I summoned you here with an offer to take on a new mission. The authorities on Mars are looking for a genetic engineer with broad medical and chemical skills, to take part in the extrastellar expedition to Delta Pavonis. And they selected you as a candidate for this job. I have to congratulate you, because this is an honour that only befalls the absolute cream of the crop. However, I also need to add that I do not expect you to take on the offer. I hope you realise it is a madman's quest. The probability of a fatal accident along the way is currently estimated at twenty percent. And even if the ship does make it safely, it will be impossible to ever return to the solar system. Colonists aboard will be forced to settle down on Delta Pavonis two, no matter how hostile the planet turns out to be. The basic parameters for human settlement are known to be met, but beyond that we know absolutely nothing about the place. So again, I do not.."

Celine now became so impatient that she dared to interrupt the general. "I will go."

The general was suddenly silent, taken aback by her brisk reply. Then he asked: "Are you saying you are actually considering it?"

"Yes, I am completely serious. This is something I have always dreamed of. I want to do it. I want to take part in the new frontier."

"I strongly urge you to take your time and consider this carefully", said the general. "Communication with home base will be practically impossible. And once you're in, there is no way back. This is no game, Celine."

"I know. And I have already made up my mind. I know what I am choosing, sir."

"Please consider that Antonio would not be allowed to join you if you decide to go. He has not been selected and you would have to leave him behind forever. If this affects you emotionally, you will have to remain here. Each of the colonists must function at full capacity, mentally as well as physically."

Celine laughed briefly, but quickly regained her posture. "Antonio? I am not worried about him." The general frowned at her. "You know," she added with a polite smile, "with all the soldiers bound to their oath, there just aren't that many attractive men available on Venus."

"I see," the general answered. "I see." He threw her back her mouse and she plucked it from the air with catlike agility.
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PostSubject: Re: sf attempt (not fanfic)   Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:14 pm

It's online now: link. Three sections written so far.

Sorry for the attention whoring, I promise this will be the last update. Of course, comments very welcome, especially blunt comments. Razz

Some points I haven't replied to yet:

grmblfjx wrote:
The entire first third is info-dump.
Most of it was added later because I was afraid of giving too little background. Glad to erase that part.

grmblfjx wrote:
He's her assistant, and it doesn't say anywhere that he is new to this; he would have dealt and come to terms with this a long time ago.
He's fairly new to life on Venus, I added a line to make that more clear. The experiment is unusually brutal, too.

grmblfjx wrote:
Quote :
Antonio gave her an insecure look.
It's possible that other people don't mind this and it's just my personal thing. But. We are in her head, we don't know how he feels, we can only observe how he acts.
Hmm.. I can see your point but imho this emotion wouldn't be too hard to read.

grmblfjx wrote:
I like that you have so much information regarding the setting
Stop it please, or my ego will explode. Blush

rae wrote:
The word you might want, if it's specifically to dry the air, is a dehumidifier.
Yes, much better!
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sf attempt (not fanfic)
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