Thursday, April 02, 2009

COG page 2

I gotta say it was fun working with Foz McDermott. He's a damn nice guy who commits to the excellence of the story, but also knows when to give enough space to let a collaborator swing a cat. Because, just in case you didn't know, the hurling of various felines is ESSENTIAL to my comic creation process.

But seriously, you should know that by now.

I had some questions about the script and within an email, Foz had sent me his number. We chatted and I still had problems visualising the action. That night I was actually meeting up with the real Jim Martin (the writer not the shape shifter) at the Saddle Ranch on Sunset with a bunch of my Aussie friends. Foz said he'd drop by, but he'd rather not step inside. His call...


Sunset Boulevard. A road of broken dreams hyper-saturated with billboards screaming taunts to the broken, hungry souls that wander its star-struck pavement. The sickly sweet cologne of the valet attendant weaved unpleasantly with the toxic exhalations of the traffic around me. The jagged teeth of a bitter wind as cold as the hearts of the hollow eyed people that aimlessly shuffled around me failed to move the bitter scents. It clung to the back of my throat with the jagged fingers of a dying man. Inside I could hear the warm laughter of friends and strangers. Music swelled over a thumping beat like jungle drums calling the tribe to celebrate by the fire against the cold, cold night. The solid walls of the bar suddenly seemed a fragile membrane against the bleak, neon cold. I flipped up my collar and scanned for my contact.


I'd been warned about him. A loose cannon. A maverick who broke as many rules as he did legs. He had a reputation. Once he commited to the job, he finished the job. Somehow I'd been roped in. Grigsby. It's all damn Grigsby's fault. I'd be inside surrounded by warm smiles and cold drinks if it wasn't for him. Foz needed someone with my specialised skills and he put the pressure on Grigbsy. You see, Grigsby knows people. He knows people that you shouldn't know. Unfortunately, I'm one of those people. I don't know what Foz did to him, but he dropped my name. Grigsby never drops names. I can only hope Grigsby only needs crutches, cos I have a feeling as far as my dealing with Foz goes, that would be getting off lightly.

Suddenly a streak of metallic night pulled up at the curb. Its engine thrumming with power. I could hear imminent sirens and gunshots in the distance. The tinted window lowered and I heard a voice rasp, "Get in."

I narrowed my eyes and peered through the gap that the mirrored pane afforded. In the front passenger seat was a blond. Always a damn blond, I thought. She smiled and I felt my eyebrows hood my eyes. Despite her beauty it was the looming presence behind her that caught my attention. Again that voice hissed from it, "If you're waiting for an invitation she's got a 9mm one pointed straight at your heart."

I looked away careful to keep my hands in sight, "That's a bad place to aim. Grigsby's work burnt that outta me years ago."

A smile split the hulking shadow of the drivers seat, "Grigsby won't be bothering you no more."

Now it was my turn to smile. If Grigsby was done, maybe I could get out of this. All of this. Start again. But I knew wherever I went my hands would be as clean as Lady Macbeths. "It seems we can do business."

I got in the car figuring the back seat was safe. Looking around I couldn't figure out how you broke the legs of someone sitting behind you. As soon as the door shut the car took off screaming around a corner. He drove the car like a guided missile. He knew the layout of the land down to the trash cans and his twisting route disorientated me, which is normally impossible. I was dealing with someone who'd read my file. The metallic beast lurched to a halt and he turned to me slinging a huge arm over the back of the blond's seat. She pretended to look out the window ignoring us. She was smart and knew it's better to pretend not to know. "Down to business." He whispered.

I leaned back bracing myself against the seat. If anything should happen, I'd need as much leverage as possible to deal with a man of this power. "You should know," I said, "This is my last job."

Again the shadows split, "It's always our last job kid. But the only way you and I get out of this is without a pulse."

We locked eyes. Without dropping his gaze he reached into his coat. I tensed, my endorphin system honed by years of training to a hair trigger. "These are for you."

He handed me a dvd and a what looked like a floor plan of an apartment. There were designs on it. Arrows, crosses and circles. The uninitiated would think it looked like a football play. I knew better. It was a kill plan. He interrupted my study of the goods, "You burn those when you're done. And if you got any questions then I'm working with the wrong guy and I do to you worse than Grigsby."

I opened the door and got out. The cold air embraced me, reminding me I was alive "No questions. It will be done by Friday."

The shadows of the unfamiliar alley loomed around me, but this time I'd rather take the devil I didn't know than being inside that car with the one I did. "One last thing..." I said.

A sliver of shadow appeared as his window slid down a half inch. "What?"

"Lose my number."

"You're gonna lose the abillity to walk if you don't do this right."

The window snapped up and the scarlet light of tail lights bathed me as the chrome beast disappeared out of view. I snapped up my collar and looked around. I could feel shadows moving around me, sizing me up. The dvd and kill plan disappeared into my coat. I'd need my hands to be free. My adrenaline charged senses could tell it was gonna be a long, hard walk back to the bar. But that's ok... I needed to work off some tension.


So yeah, I met up with Foz and he gave me episode 21 as well as a floor plan to detail the action on the final page. Sorry, should I have been more clear there?

Oh, and the other night Ollie told me that him and Zach Craley are writing the next four installments of the comics that lead up the break. They interweave with what we've already seen and I promise you, they're gonna be awesome.

FACEBOOK: Look me up. Mention you know me please.

NEXT POST: Page 3 on Friday.


HERO said...

That post is hilarious! You sure know a fun way to spin a yarn!

Does that just come to you? Multi-talented, I see, with the art and writing! And I can't even do one of 'em decently...

Anyway, keep up the great work!

jasonb said...

Thanks man! I glad you like it! I was worried that the post would be a bit boring, so I decided to take what was a surreal experience and turn it into an over-the-top experience. It was a fun hour of creative writing. =)

Alexandre Togeiro said...

Great post! The 'JasoNoir' narration was very entertaining, excellent writing there! :)