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Variations on Your Violence

I kill the fire so I don't get burned

Seven Course Meal, first dream sequence
Notes: Fenrir gave me an idea for a story, and it might actually be something worth writing. Who'd've thought! The main plot-action takes place in the modern day, but the heroine has odd dreams that flash back to past events that may or may not have happened. I want to have another artist (preferably Boorman) do the dream sequences, kinda like Hopeless Savages, to set them firmly apart from the rest of the story, and it's obviously written with him in mind. :b I felt like posting it anyway, tho, since this poor writing blog has been neglected lately.


This is a night scene, so there should be lots of black and contrasty bits. The dialogue is written to give some feel for the pacing of the scene, but in the finished version it'll be written in an unintelligible pseudo-Asian script. The actions and emotions of the characters should be clearly readable even without dialogue, but since it's a dream sequence, I want it to have word balloons, just nothing actually readable.

...in retrospect, I might ditch the dialogue entirely, if it reads well enough without. It could add a bit of surrealism to the scene, but at the same time, it's probably superfluous.

The setting is also pseudo-Asian. It shouldn't be based on anything specifically, but should have a distinctly Asian flavor. Maybe try for a combination of Japanese and Chinese influences, if anything. In my head, it looks something like the intro to Guwange, and I took some screencaps for reference. It's a fantastic game. :b Great cut scenes.


Use big, horizontal panels for this. Lots of negative space, giving it a widescreen feel. There's a building to the right, with an open porch, covered by a roof, with a wooden rail. A young woman leans against the rail. In the extreme foreground is the silhouette of a man, chewing on a blade of grass, leaning with relaxed caution against the wall of the building. The moon is just short of full, and some wispy clouds float past it. The girl is dressed in casual but finely patterned robes, with a silver circlet around her forehead. Her hair is pulled back in a ponytail with an elaborate-looking knot. She has a regal bearing, like a princess. The guard is also young, but scruffy. Unkempt sideburns, bushy eyebrows, maybe a samurai-esque top-knot. He's dressed in plain robes and loose gi-pants with sandals. A sword is tucked into the sash at his waist, designed like something between a ninji-to and a Chinese broadsword.

Panel 1
GIRL: Isn't it beautiful?

GUARD: Mmhmm.

Panel 2
GIRL: (with a playful smirk) You don't have a romantic bone in your body, do you?

GUARD: Romance ain't in my job description, hon.

Their interaction should be natural, more like they're close friends than bodyguard and client.

Panel 3
Long shot from a high vantage point across the open space from the building, like someone watching from the trees about thirty meters out. Maybe frame the panel with some leaves, to give it the feel of someone gazing out from a hiding place.

Panel 4
Looking into the trees. Deep in the shadows, perched on a branch, is a figure. His outline should be indistinct, but he should have a demonic look about him. He's got a bow, and is drawing down on the girl below. Extreme foreshortening down the arrow would be good. Try to make it look as if it's a scene lit only by moonlight.

Stick with the widescreen theme, but feel free to toss things up a bit. I mean, do whatever looks best, but keep it cinematic.

Panel 1
The girl remains blissfully unaware, but the guard squints into the darkness.

Panel 2
Close-up: The guard spits out his grass.

GIRL: Huh?

Panel 3
The assassin fires his arrow. (optional: throw in a panel of the arrow flying across the open yard)

Panel 4
From behind, low camera angle. The guard leaps at the girl, tackling her safely out of the way, but taking the arrow in the chest.

Panel 5
Split panel: one side, the assassin dropping out of the trees drawing two kris knives about as long as his forearms. You've played Samurai Shodown, right? Make him look a bit like Gen-An -- hunched, bald, slightly demonic. The other side, the wounded guard pushes up and draws his sword.

The battle page. If it helps the pacing or design, add more panels.

Panel 1
The two fighters rush at eachother

Panel 2
The assassin looks as if he's going to strike the guard down, but--

Panel 3
Dramatic silhouette - the guard slices the assassin in two, from shoulder to hip.

Final dramatic moments.

Panel 1
The guard stands, sheathing his sword. Blood soaks the front of his robe and dribbles down his chin. In the background, the girl is standing, looking disheveled.

Panel 2
He takes a few steps back towards the building

Panel 3
But wobbles and collapses as the girl runs toward him

Panel 4
The guard coughs up blood. The girl, looking panicked, with tears running down her face, tries to stop the bleeding.

GIRL: Oh god, don't die...

Panel 5
High shot, down on the two figures, the girl crying on the guard who's obviously going to die. The severed parts of the assassin lie to one side in a pool of dark blood.

Panel 6
Wide-angle shot of the moon over the trees, with a thin cloud cutting across it, like the prologue to Un Chien Andalou.