Act One, Part Six: Parallel Scenes





Yes, I know, that last scene ended abruptly.  Here’s the next part.  

Remember back in Part One of this truck draft when we did parallel scenes with Nita and Nick to establish them as the main characters and set up their meet in the next scene sequence? This part is parallel scenes again, but this time it’s setting up a subplot doppelganger protagonist and antagonist, Nick and Max.

Nick is a conman who became the Devil’s fixer; Max is con-demon who became Mammon’s fixer; since Mammon is one of the leaders of Nick’s opposition in Hell, that makes Max one of Nick’s antagonists. As just another minion, Max wouldn’t be much fun. But Max has a lot in common with Nick–he’s completely loyal to his boss, he likes his job, and he’s good at it– and he really admires the skill and ruthlessness with which Nick conducts himself, both when he was alive and in the five hundred earth years he’s been dead.

Max likes a worth adversary, but he knows Nick is more than worthy because he has an advantage: Max has emotions that can trip him up, Nick doesn’t. So these next two scenes are parallel–two fixers really annoyed with their bosses because they’ve just discovered huge boss-created messed they’re going to have to clean up–but they also set up the Nick/Max conflict/relationship to come.

I’m still not sure it’s a great idea to introduce Max’s PoV this late, but he doesn’t fit anywhere else, and he’s so much fun to write that I’m not giving him up. Wait’ll we get to the scene where he tells Button she looks like a dandelion.



24 thoughts on “Act One, Part Six: Parallel Scenes

  1. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou. Today has been crappy and now I’m giggling at “I’m afraid of mermaids.”

    These excerpts moved quickly, conveyed a lot and promised more.


  2. I loved the afraid of mermaids, too! I’m totally fan girl-ing here.

    Also, I think I’m in love with the Mayor. As a Buffy fan, that is just confusing.

  3. I enjoyed Max. Mammon seems like a handful; his job must be difficult. That “hold my beer” line was good. Lucifer and Beelzebub were fun, too, especially the mermaid thing.

    I just read all the drafts from the last few posts, so I’m caught up now. The addition of the Mayor and the stuff on Button’s family history was good to have. I’m curious about Lily. Someone that happy and friendly must be up to something. Also now I really want to meet Mitzi Dodd. She sounds terrifying.

  4. I needed this laugh-myself-sick moment today. I loved the bit about the mermaids. And Max’s bit about needing to know if the screw was about to go up. And just all of it, really.

  5. Nice.

    There’s a couple of times I’ve seen Nina instead of Nita. I figured somebody would proof read and catch it.

    Damn, Rab saw it in Nita before Nick did.

    1. I’ll do a Change All. I caught some of them when I was writing, but I knew I’d missed some.

  6. Is it really so late? It doesn’t feel like it’s too late to meet someone new. We haven’t even been in the story 24 hours, so it seems ok to still be meeting new people.

    Wouldn’t he have a son, too? Poor Mort, living in his twin’s shadow.

    “Get smote.” LMFAO

    “I have an idea. Hold my beer.” LOLLLLLL

    Fun scene. Interesting idea about the hellgates being closed/moved around.

    1. Mort’s just fine. His dad thinks he’s the best thing ever and both of his sisters adore him. He’s the only kid his mother likes.

      Oh, I see what you mean. Nope, Mort has blue eyes just like his mom and dad. Google “superfecundation.” Mitzi gets around.

      1. So fraternal twins! Did we know that? Did I miss it? Cause that might throw someone else. Unless I just missed it cause I saw “twin,” assumed “identical” and called it a day…

        1. Well, I knew it. I have it in a scene somewhere but I think it hits in the second act. The problem is, where to put it. Nick doesn’t notice the blue eyes until he meets the Mayor, so it would have to go into that double scene sequence. Vinnie wouldn’t know that, Praxis wouldn’t know it, Crome wouldn’t know it. I don’t think Button would ask Nita about her twin’s blue eyes, Button has enough on her plate.

          One possibility is Rab, who knows everything except boundaries; there’s a reason Keres calls him Wikipedia. He’s there when Nick asks Vinnie about the blue eyes.

          Are they fraternal twins even? Two different eggs, definitely, but two different fathers, too. Yeah, I guess that still makes them fraternal. Fraternal step twins?

          1. Well, they wouldn’t be step. Fraternal half twins? Isn’t fraternal that they shared a womb? Cause if the second egg had released at a different time, they would be siblings…?

            So…what if, in the first scene, when Chloe goes “happy birthday to both of you?” and Mort responds, “twins,” he actually responds, “Twins. Fraternal.”

            Cause after Mort identifies them as twins, the next thing we get about Mort + Nita is that they kind of look like each other from Nick’s POV, which I think is what made me assume they’re identical twins (cause “kind of look like” seemed good enough boy/girl twins). Maybe, “kind of looked like her except for the eyes?”

            I duck now for cover as I suggested words.

          2. I thought it was pushing it to have Mort say “Twins” since what he really wants to say is “There’s a guy in the bar who says he’s the Devil.”
            They look like each other because they have the same mother, but yeah, I should take that out, it’s confusing.

          3. You can’t have male and female identical twins. My biology is rusty, but identical twins start as one egg plus one sperm and then split after fertilization, so they have the same DNA. To be a boy and a girl (assuming XY and XX chromosomes), there would have to be two sperm. And therefore two eggs (I think?). And I think they would be considered twins because they were gestated and born at the same time. That happens all the time with animals (especially birds, I think), but it’s probably not studied too much in humans. For, umm, obvious reasons.

          4. You’re right. Two eggs, two sperm,fraternal, where the sperm comes from is immaterial to the definition.

          5. Oh, I should add, that means fraternal twins are no more closely related (at least genetically) than any other siblings. So they might or might not resemble each other, but it would be the same way any other pair of siblings would look alike (or half-siblings, as the case may be).

          6. Yes, definitely, if it’s a boy and a girl, you don’t have to specify fraternal – they can’t be identical. (Unless there is something even weirder going on with one of the zygotes after the split, but that would have to be a plot point.) But fraternal twins from two different fathers are possible in humans. Not common, but possible.

  7. Ok, so Nita’s dad is Satan. Is Mort’s dad Lucifer or the Mayor? Probably the mayor since he hasn’t shown demon like qualities.

  8. Oh, forgot to mention, I totally loved it and it isn’t too late to introduce Max’s point of view.

  9. Heteropaternal superfecundation and superfetation. It’s a rare day when I learn three new multisyllabic words.

    Does the mayor know who Nita’s (biological?) father is? For that matter does Mitzi?

    1. 65,000 more words to go.
      But logically, Mitzi knows. She was there. She shows up at the beginning of Act Two, having been introduced by name in Act One, and then . . .
      But I’m getting ahead of myself.


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