Fanfic Dinosaur (Multi-crossWverse/Project Origin)

Discussion in 'Scribblings' started by PuzzleRaven, May 4, 2021.

  1. PuzzleRaven

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    Rewrite an entire five book series that spans years in under 20,000 words and two months, and tie up all the endings.

    For Reader.

    Moderator Edit
    Massive Spoilers for Lake Ness and the Lake Ness Series. We suggest you buy the books before reading this, as Indie Authors should be supported.

    The first book in the series is Free:
    Lake Ness: Extinction Is About to be Redefined
    Last edited by a moderator: March 13, 2022
  2. Threadmarks: Part 1

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    Extinction Re-evaluated

    “Abandoned forest camp, neglect, one radio rather damaged. We’ll be using our own supplies.” Celes wrapped her arm round Babbage’s waist, helping him out of the car and onto the forest floor. The older man visibly stopped himself saying anything, probably a snapped rebuttal he could manage himself, and then-

    “Thank you,” he said, as graciously as he could, which was not very much. She let him lean on her as he walked stiffly from the car to the front of the forestry hut. He sank down on the bench outside, sweat on his forehead.

    “Are you harmed?”

    “That dratted logging trail up here,” he explained, retrieving a small packet of jewellery screwdrivers from inside his jacket. “It shook up a few of the workings.”

    “If we can ensure no surveillance, I’ll cast a Reparo.”

    “Thank you, my dear.” He pulled his coat sleeve up, adjusting one of the screws on the brass framework enclosing his wrist. “If you can assist Ned with the search, I shall be quite alright for the moment.”

    “In this drizzle?”

    “I don’t rust, and it won’t be for very long,” Babbage said, engrossed in his work. “I hope it won’t be for very long. Warmth and a fire would be most welcome.” Celes nodded, and walked into the next cabin to search.

    “This ‘un’s clear,” a cockney voice shouted from inside the cabin Babbage was leaning against. “Move our stuff in?”

    “Not yet, Ned” Babbage chided, still working on his arm. The younger man walked out of the forest hut, straightening his rumpled shirt.

    “Sweep the whole camp first,” Ned said agreeably. “Where’s Wave?”

    “He found some kayaks in one of the huts. He’s checking out the lake.” Babbage wiggled his fingers, checking his adjustments. Ned shook himself, stretching his legs after the long drive up and surveyed the camp.

    “I don’t see it.” Ned said, his ever-present smile missing. “I don't threats I can't see. There’s nothing wrong with the huts, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing dangerous here.”

    “Like the earthquake risk.” Babbage pointed a screwdriver at the cliffs above the lake. “Those rockfalls happened in the last year. Judging by the differing levels of plant growth, possibly seasonal, or thermal changes in the rock.”

    “Volcanic?” Ned’s voice dropped.

    “No," Babbage reassured him as the man tensed, "but this area is tectonically unstable. You can tell by sight.”

    “Or by those books he was reading on the trip up,” the redhead called from the edge of the woods. She jogged up, staff casually slung across her back, not bothered by the damp and drizzle. “I’m stumped. Nothing dangerous out there, just a few deer. You might trip over a raccoon if you’re unlucky.”

    “Only a few deer, and no predators?” Babbage said with siudden interest. “Curious, Skye. I would have thought this the ideal territory for them.”

    “Could be culled or hunted.” Ned suggested, sprawling on the other end of the bench as Celes walked outside to join them. He wasn't relaxing, the well-hidden stress obvious to his team mates.

    “Perhaps.” Babbage allowed.

    “There are no arrowheads or casings,” Skye said with a shrug. “And no recent human footprints either.”

    “Interesting,” Babbage said thoughtfully. “The wording of the mission report was quite clear however: a group of teenagers setting up summer camp in an abandon Government base. Don’t let anyone die. So no larger predators or signs of hunting, yet something is keeping deer numbers in check. Diseases?”

    “None. I scanned and cast a general area-wide Curaga when we arrived,” Celes said.

    “A hidden government lab?” Ned shrugged, moving one foot further back under the overhang to get it out of the drizzle. “It is a government base, but I didn’t find any hidden entries or signs of one around the camp. Could be further out.”

    “I didn’t see any signs in the forest,” Skye said, unbothered by the weather, “and finding secret bases is kind of my thing.”

    “Could be in the mountains?” Ned asked. Babbage’s answer was cut off by a splash that echoed through the camp.He drew breath and let the echoes die before he tried again.

    “Governments don’t usually build such facilities in locations with a two-hundred-year history of earthquakes. Sensible people avoid such places.”

    “Like the sensible people coming straight into one for summer camp?” Skye pointed out.

    “Touche.” Babbage said, “I doubt the authorities know the children are coming.”

    “Unless they are using them as experimental subjects.” Celes’ matter-of-fact statement cut the conversation uncomfortably short.

    “It’s a bit disorganised for an experiment,” Ned said, after a moment’s silence.

    “No cameras or monitoring,” Skye agreed. “And no one here to run it, unless they plan to arrive with them.”

    “Ah, Wave, you’ve been quite a while,” Babbage greeted, as the Scot made his eeriely silent way up the path. The man was smiling slightly, picking his steps with customary care.

    “Aye,” he said as he reached them. “I’ve been watching the Mosasaurs playing in the lake.”
  3. Kindler

    Kindler Active Member

    Good fic. I can guess what it is based on, and anyone who read all five books is gonna enjoy your take on it.

    I'll also admit to not knowing who all the characters are? Hmm, any hints?
  4. Threadmarks: Chapter 2

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    Chapter 2

    “We are in the twenty-first century –?“ Ned said, abashed, then looked up at the radio antenna sticking out of the roof. “Never mind. Wave, how do you know what a Mosasaur looks like?”

    “Cannibal Sector Three.”

    “Sorry, I asked.” The uncomfortable silence stretched, until Skye shook her head and walked into the hut. The trestle table marked out a dinning room, with a more social area towards the end. She kicked back a chair and plunked down in it, water dripping off her hair.

    “Out of the rain.” She grinned as they followed her. Ned went to the little wood burner at the end and peering at it. Happily he stacked the kindling into the burner as Wave helped Babbage into a chair.

    “Celes, work your magic,” Ned invited. With a raised eyebrow and a withering look the fire sprang to life. “Oh, that is better.” He pulled up a beanbag, holding his coat up to dry in front of the fire. Celes joined him, pulling off her wet outer layers as the hut slowly warmed up.

    “And what,” Skye asked eventually, hands raised, inviting someone to explain, “is a Mosasaur?”

    “Extinct,” Ned said, “we wish.” Babbage raised an eyebrow, drawing an irritated breath before he turned to Skye.

    “It is a prehistoric aquatic predator of considerable size,” he explained. “Somewhat akin to a crocodile in form but with a wide toothy snout, four flippers instead of legs and a long tail, if the skeletal records can be believed.”

    “Thick hide, a dark back, and a pale belly,” Wave added in his quiet manner. “And they are larger than the car.”

    “Can they come on land?” Celes asked.

    “Fortunately not,” Babbage assured her.

    “So there’s nothing to worry about,” Skye added breezily, “because a group of city children on an outdoor holiday are going to be completely mature and responsible around the lake.” There was a resigned and rather irritated silence in the room.

    “There’s a set of kayaks and fishing gear in one of the huts,” Ned added helpfully, stirring the pot.

    “And on a survival course, they’d have to learn to swim,” Skye replied, far too happily to be sincere. Babbage heaved a contained sigh and looked down from where he’d cast his gaze heavenwards.

    “Then the first thing we have to do,” he said, “is to change the locks.”

    “I didn’t find any spares,” Ned said.

    “So when you go into town for supplies, buy one.”

    “Sure,” the young man smiled, “but how do we pay for it?”

    “Oh for-” Babbage exclaimed. “Am I the only one who exchanged funds before visiting the Colonies?”

    “The Colonies?” Skye asked, curiously as Babbage took out his wallet and counted notes out between his fingers. “What are the Colonies?”

    “The reason why I’m going into town and not him.” Ned shrugged, plucking the cash neatly from between Babbage’s fingers and counting it. “I use words that won’t get us lynched or paying stupid tourist tax. Anything in particular we need? Food, Padlocks, Information?”

    “Stupid Tourist Tax?” Skye asked Ned blankly.

    “Extra money people charge tourists for being stupid,” he explained.

    “Thanks,” she said happily, and then: “and what are tourists?”

    “In our case, people who go kayaking on a lake with large marine predators,” Babbage said waspishly, “so particularly stupid tourists.”

    “I’ve got a trip into town then,” Ned swung his legs round the chair and stood up. “Anyone coming with me?”

    “The fewer the better, I think,” Babbage said. “The rest of us can explore up here. Let us put together a list of supplies first.”

    “Agreed.” Ned frowned. “If Wave spotted the Mosasaurs in five minutes, someone down there knows something.”

    “And if no one else does, someone’s covering it up,” Wave said quietly. “Be careful.”

    “Always am,” Ned said, cheerfully. “I’ll keep eyes and ears open.”

    “So we have our hazard.” Babbage sounded entirely too happy. “A situation akin to Coelcanths, perhaps, known to locals but not science or the authorities.”

    “This is a established government camp,” Celes said, “so the authorities are either unobservant or complicit.”

    “Or unwilling to report.” Babbage spread his hands out. “Dinosaurs? Preposterous!” He smirked. In the quiet of the cabin his clockwork ticked a counterpoint to the rain outside.

    “Implausible is right,” Ned said finally. “You have a plan for this?”

    “Always.” Babbage smiled, and it was Ned’s turn to prompt him.

    “Care to share?”

    “We let them tell us, and express our great surprise.” The scientist made it seem obvious. “We shall present the plausible and allow them to discover the implausible for themselves.”

    “And then we get out of here because getting involved with authorities is a mistake?” Skye said, too innocently, and Babbage laughed.

    “In one.” Ned grinned back at her, riffling the cash between his fingers. “Now, about that list...”

    “I suggest forming a plan of action first.” Babbage looked at them for suggestions and Skye held up her hand.

    “I’ll skirt the lake shore, check the terrain. They’ve got to have a nest somewhere.”

    “If I survey the roads and forest, that will give you more time,” Celes offered.

    “Look for feeding sites.” Babbage suggested, “or anywhere remains may wash up. I shall check the equipment here, ensure we have radio and locate maps. Wave?”

    “I’ll be keeping an eye on the Mosasaurs.” He lifted a sketch book carefully and Babbage nodded.

    “And I’ll be in town.” Ned said, “charming our local conspiracy. If I’m not back in six hours, level the place.”
  5. Kindler

    Kindler Active Member

    Hey, another part to the story. Thanks, it's a great read.

    Ok, I think I can guess who some of the characters are, but I've no idea what they are doing together?
  6. Reader

    Reader Vile Critic

    I do not know who they are, but I believe they are giving a book exactly what it deserves:
    Fic Requests Open | Page 2 | Bookangel Boards
    Please, @PuzzleRaven, continue.
  7. skye

    skye Active Member

  8. jessica

    jessica Citizen of Logres

    E:screamcat:Mosasaurs for christmasE:screamcat:! :)Pls to have? ::coffee::
  9. Mine all mine

    Mine all mine Active Member

    Why are we waiting? Oh yeah, 'cos the story has dinosaurs. Write On!
  10. Post-Life Crisis

    Post-Life Crisis Active Member

    Okay, so I'm guessing Charles Babbage, from that webcomic that had him as a steampunk cyborg. The only Celes I know is Celes Cher, so I'll guess her. The others, I dunno yet.
    More Mosasaurs. I'll buy the original if you write a new chapter.
  11. PuzzleRaven

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    I have much more written, but I feel bad about ripping into an indie author's book. The first ones not that bad, it is just the sequels that go off the rails.
  12. Angel

    Angel Munificent Critic

    I, for one, am curious as to where this may go next. As long as the original texts are treated with the respect they deserve, then I do not see a problem.
  13. Threadmarks: Chapter 3

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    Chapter 3

    The sound of the car rattled off behind the trees, the driver carefully avoiding the worst of the potholes on the badly misnamed ‘road’ that lead to the camp. Ned’s estimation of six hours had been revised by Babbage into American distances, with a result of “back not before dark, but before tomorrow”.

    Letting the sounds fade and the natural noise of the forest return, Celes followed the main lake trail out, stepping to the side of the bark chips to keep her passage quiet. Skye ghosted through the trees around the track, keeping just in the edge of sight as she explored the forest floor for animal signs.

    The lookout point at the end of the trail was flat ground, the lake beautiful if they had not known the dangers, and Celes stopped well back from the edge as Skye came to join her. The trees provided a light protection from the drizzle, and the lake stretched before them, peaceful though the rain softened its far shore into a ghostly outline in the distance.

    “I found nothing,” Celes said, and Skye blew out a breath.

    “So we worry about what we didn’t find.” She said it cheerfully enough. “Deer, quail, small game, no large predators at all.” As she spoke, she swung her staff to point at the lake. “No surprise if they have to drink. Look out there.” Two geese were swimming out towards the middle of the lake, gliding smoothly over the water’s surface. It was not an unusual sight, and Celes frowned at her interest. “Strangers,” Skye said significantly. “All the local birds are close to shore.”

    They watched in silence for a time, and then it happened. So fast it wasn’t even a blur one of the birds simply disappeared, no outcry, no flurry, just there and then gone, only spreading circles on the water where it had been. Its companion, honking in desperate agitation, took flight, running across the water, wings beating frantically until it found the safety of the air.

    “Don’t go near the water,” Skye advised, breezily.

    “They’re fast.” The conclusion was obvious and unpleasant, “and they lunge.”

    “Could be worse.” Skye shrugged at Celes’ quick glance. “They could come on land.” Skye was still smiling. Celes wasn’t.

    “Any signs?”

    “Nothing so far.” She shifted the staff, leaning on it as she watched the lake. “And I don’t want to find out the hard way. There’s another trail further back.”

    Celes nodded in silent agreement and turned away from the lookout point. Skye took the lead, quiet and silent on the forest path as the bushes barely brushed her. Alert for trouble Celes followed her more noisily, crunching on the path of bark and woodchips until they reached an unmade dirt track further up.

    “Vehicles,” Celes noted, bending to the dirt, “Two trails, grass between.”

    “But old,” Skye pointed her staff to a bush. “No treadmarks still in the tracks, and the branches have grown across the trail.”

    “Understood.” In one word Celes managed to convey both understanding of the evidence, and the fact that, in wilderness work, she accepted Skye was her better. Without disturbing the branches, Skye took the lead, ghosting down the trail without disturbing the undergrowth.

    The trail stopped as the trees ended abruptly, opening into a clearing of stumps and dirt that went down to the shallow mud at the lake shore. The felled trees had been cleared, opening a view of the lakeshore from a new angle. Skye stopped, eyes scanning the lake where the water lapped at the mud. Celes tensed behind her, one hand half-raised as the other reached for her own weapon.

    Before them, the mud across the shore was littered with bones. Small, short, some coated with mud and some washed and bleached white.

    “Either this is a killzone, or the tides wash the bones here.” Celes paused, scanning the water. In an answer, Skye pointed forward with her staff to an angular shape just beyond the lake’s edge.

    “Tides didn’t wash that up.” The rusted jeep was fully submerged in the water, clearly visible on the edge of the drop off to the dark waters beyond. Its wheels were fully submerged in mud, obviously built up over time as the image of it wavered through the water. The pair exchanged glances, approaching carefully down the trail to get a better angle. Celes crouched, checking the dirt as she scanned ahead.

    “Still no tracks,” she commented, looking to Skye for confirmation.

    “The drizzle softens the earth. Tracks don’t stay.” Skye stopped safely back from the edge, surveying the water. Her staff was raised in both hands. “So the real question is how far these things can lunge.”

    “I don’t see any present.” Celes had her head tilted and was listening. The lapping of water was loud, nearly drowning the faint sounds of the forest behind them in breaking waves and rainfall. Her hand was resting on her sword, ready to move.

    “Let me go first,” Skye used her staff to sweep ahead as she moved carefully down the bank, her boots squelching in the soft mud. She probed cautiously, reaching down under the water’s surface, tapping at something with her staff before she bent and pulled it up. The long bone ended brutally short.

    “Human?” Celes asked.

    “Hard to tell. There are a lot, they’re submerged, the shrimp have been busy-”

    “Freeze!” Celes’ sword was out, pointing at the lake beyond the jeep. Ripples were stirring in the water against the wind, a shadow darker than the lake’s black surface drifting smoothly beneath them. The twin waves spread outwards, four feet apart at their closest, parallel and moving away from each other as the thing below them moved on. The wave reached Skye’s boots, overtopping the worn leather. She didn’t move her legs at all, raising her staff ready to meet a charge.

    The forest had gone silent, the sound of waves on the shore suddenly loud as they lapped higher. The swell swept over the jeep, slapping against the side of the vehicle and not moving the rusted door as it struck it, and soaked Skye above the knee. She didn’t move.

    The thing swam on, the swell passing with it, as both women watched until the shadow was lost in the darkness of the lake. It was not until the last of the ripples died down that Skye spoke, her voice carefully low.

    “Ten feet long?”


    “It has gone?” Skye still did not move, did not lower her staff, letting Celes tread silently to a better vantage point. From the edge of the trees, she surveyed the water, and it was a few tense breaths before Celes finally agreed.


    “Good.” And then with her usual bright humour, “because if it dislodged the jeep, I wasn’t swimming down to get it.” Keeping her moves slow, the water barely disturbed by her movements, Skye waded to the side of the jeep, the water above her waist. Bending down she reached for the front seat, soaking her arms to the shoulder as she searched in the front. She ducked under the water briefly for a close look before she stood up and backed away, looking round the lake warily. At Celes’ signal that it was clear, she waded just as carefully back onto land.

    “Nothing useful,” she said, ignoring the water soaking her despite the cold. “No bodies and the inside is rotten.”

    “It needs a thorough investigation,” Celes said, and Skye nodded.

    “Yes, but I need to move on. There’s not much time before dark.”

    “You know where the creatures are?” Celes made it a statement, not a question, and Skye pointed to the further shore of the lake.

    “I had a look this morning. There’s a waterfall round the far side, coming from a crevice. It is a distance, but I saw daylight through the gap.”


    “None this side, but someone’s put yellow tape all over it saying ‘don’t enter’, so I’m invited,” Skye shrugged her staff across her back, “and I think there’s a camera by it.”

    “Were you spotted?”

    “Oh, please.” Skye’s expression spoke volumes. “Anyway, I want to know where what eats me is coming from. Give me a few days. I might be mountain-climbing.”

    “Don’t die,” Celes warned as they walked up to the path, and Skye grinned back.

    “Never the same way twice.”
  14. Post-Life Crisis

    Post-Life Crisis Active Member

    It lives! Extinction is not forever!
  15. atry

    atry Active Member

    Does that entire chapter pass the Bechdel test?
  16. porridge

    porridge Active Member

    Rushing things there, lass. Is t’Mosasaur a bloke?
  17. Post-Life Crisis

    Post-Life Crisis Active Member

    You check if you want.
  18. atry

    atry Active Member

  19. jessica

    jessica Citizen of Logres

    ::confu::::scream::This went weird fast.
  20. PuzzleRaven

    PuzzleRaven Active Member

    I don’t know, I didn’t look. Any Bechdel test passes in this chapter were an accident, trust me.

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