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 Post subject: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:51 am 
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Hello, all!

It's been a while since I've posted anything, so I thought I'd do that. No big preamble this time, just a story I've wanted to tell for a while.

I hope you enjoy!

Seeing Red


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 12:27 pm 
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Loved it.


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:16 pm 
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Thanks for reading, Brentain! I'm glad you liked it.

Loved it.

Thanks, Brentain!


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:24 pm 
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I'M NOT CRYING! YOU'RE CRYING!

:D

It's just raining on my face, I swear!

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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:39 pm 
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I'M NOT CRYING! YOU'RE CRYING!

Now, I'm no Detector, but I'm just saying that you have both a history of doing this, and now a motive...

:D

It's just raining on my face, I swear!

Thanks for reading, Orcish!


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:01 am 
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That's awesome! The first part is my favorite, I love reading that kind of analysis, it's a really great kind of exposition that works on multiple levels: it sets the scene, the mood and explores the mind of the POV all at once. The "sweets aren't proper food" observation hit me only now, and that's a good thing: the best tricks are the ones that fool you even if you know what the con is thinking. The ambiguity works well, and though the Maroa trick might seem a bit farfetched, the lawmen saw the bag full at the beginning: even if its volume slightly decreased, one would assume she managed to see a couple of apples... and if we want to get a bit dark, denutrition can make a child occupy very little space.

The second part is good because it gives us answers, though it's not as brilliant as the first one. The "you won't hurt them" exchange works, no doubt about that, but feels a bit... dunno I just saw it coming half a mile away. It may be because I recently wrote a somewhat similar situation, mind you, but yeah.

Scarlet's characterization is great, she knows herself enough to foresee the hell she will put herself through for her sense of duty; someone would say she has a bit of a martyr complex here, which I think it's something that can easily develop in those kinds of situations. She's constantly tense and mad with worry, certain that any rest she gets or mistake she makes might mean another day of starvation, or worse, and that doesn't even take in consideration what happened before. She's under crushing pressure, there's no wonder she desperately hopes for a way out... and even then she must keep herself cautious because there's no way a legendary bandit just swoops in and saves the day for a bunch of nobodies, right? I bet she needed quite some time before really accepting that they made it to safety.

Again, awesome stuff, thanks for sharing!

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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:39 pm 
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Huey! I'm so sorry that I forgot to respond to your comments! Somehow, I was sure that I already had, but clearly I had not. Sorry about that.

Anyway, thanks for reading!
That's awesome! The first part is my favorite, I love reading that kind of analysis, it's a really great kind of exposition that works on multiple levels: it sets the scene, the mood and explores the mind of the POV all at once. The "sweets aren't proper food" observation hit me only now, and that's a good thing: the best tricks are the ones that fool you even if you know what the con is thinking. The ambiguity works well, and though the Maroa trick might seem a bit farfetched, the lawmen saw the bag full at the beginning: even if its volume slightly decreased, one would assume she managed to see a couple of apples... and if we want to get a bit dark, denutrition can make a child occupy very little space.

One thing I really have going for me here is that we have no established information on how small the Rattlers may or may not be when they're young. It's possible that a child Rattler is significantly smaller than a human of comparable age. Naturally, I'm not saying that is the case, but it's possible.

Still, I might slightly alter that line before I put this up for vote. I just need to think about it a bit.

I'm glad you liked the section!

The second part is good because it gives us answers, though it's not as brilliant as the first one. The "you won't hurt them" exchange works, no doubt about that, but feels a bit... dunno I just saw it coming half a mile away. It may be because I recently wrote a somewhat similar situation, mind you, but yeah.

I think I've said this elsewhere, but I always find these sorts of stories interesting, stories in which we, the audience, know something that the characters don't. We all met Jackie long before we met Scar, so we have a good understanding of what she's like and what she values. Scar, at this moment in her life, knows none of that. All she knows is that Red Jackie is a notorious bandit and a seriously scary adversary. Jackie's exploits, taken out of the context of her point of view, have got to be pretty intimidating, and probably downright frightening, especially to someone who is still in many ways a child. We know things are going to be alright, but Scar and the kids do not.

I've always found that sort of disconnect interesting.

Scarlet's characterization is great, she knows herself enough to foresee the hell she will put herself through for her sense of duty; someone would say she has a bit of a martyr complex here, which I think it's something that can easily develop in those kinds of situations. She's constantly tense and mad with worry, certain that any rest she gets or mistake she makes might mean another day of starvation, or worse, and that doesn't even take in consideration what happened before. She's under crushing pressure, there's no wonder she desperately hopes for a way out...

This would be fascinating to explore more later, particularly the thought of a martyr complex. I hadn't thought about it in those terms before, but it makes a ton of sense for Scarlet, and likely persists to this day as she works at becoming a Ridder. She tells Jackie in "Shades of Red" that she wants to be a Ridder to Rid the bad bandits to protect the kids at the Ranch. It is very likely that poor Scar will never fully shake the "I must protect them" impulse, and someday, she may just have to come to terms with that. Who knows?

...and even then she must keep herself cautious because there's no way a legendary bandit just swoops in and saves the day for a bunch of nobodies, right? I bet she needed quite some time before really accepting that they made it to safety.

Ooh, that seems like fodder for a great little moment or two at Red's Ranch.

I need a little smilie of gears turning...

Again, awesome stuff, thanks for sharing!

Thanks for reading! And again, sorry it took me a while to respond.

* * * * *

You know what would be fun? If someone were to write this story from Jackie's point of view...

:D


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:29 pm 
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One thing I really have going for me here is that we have no established information on how small the Rattlers may or may not be when they're young. It's possible that a child Rattler is significantly smaller than a human of comparable age. Naturally, I'm not saying that is the case, but it's possible.

Still, I might slightly alter that line before I put this up for vote. I just need to think about it a bit.
I will note, having baked more than a few loaves in my life, that bread is much lighter by volume than a person; the equivalent weight would take up about five times the space. Granted, cheese and dried meat would bring that figure down quite a bit, but I'd imagine it would still be enough for the lawmen to notice.

Even so, it's a very fun heist. And I forgot to mention that I love the idea that Rattlers are hard to read; I keep second-guessing what my snake wants, particularly in spring.

You know what would be fun? If someone were to write this story from Jackie's point of view...
:thumbsup:


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 12:36 am 
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We all met Jackie long before we met Scar, so we have a good understanding of what she's like and what she values. Scar, at this moment in her life, knows none of that. All she knows is that Red Jackie is a notorious bandit and a seriously scary adversary. Jackie's exploits, taken out of the context of her point of view, have got to be pretty intimidating, and probably downright frightening, especially to someone who is still in many ways a child. We know things are going to be alright, but Scar and the kids do not.

"See, the thing is, Miss Red, I think that, well, maybe you sometimes forget how scary you are," Scarlet said, as she swept up the remnants of the broken crock where the startled noggle had dropped it. "To the young ones, that is. Especially if you sneak up behind them. Because they've all learned the stories, I mean. And, well, even after they meet you, it takes a while to unlearn them."

Jackie DeCoeur arched an eyebrow as she held the dustbin out.

"But you don't think I'm scary?" the Red-Eyed Woman said, fixing Scarlet with her blood-red stare. "Seeing as you're hardly one of 'the young ones' anymore?"

"I mean, no. I don't think you're scary," Scarlet said, making a conscious effort to hold the Red-Eyed Woman's gaze, which was difficult. Because there was just something about those eyes that Scarlet couldn't put into words, something that made the base of your spine start to tingle if they looked at you long enough, and made the hair on your neck stand on end if you looked back.

"Really?" Jackie DeCoeur said, still staring.

"Really, Miss Red," Scarlet said, feeling her eyes start to widen, and her pupils dilate.

"Really?"

"Really." Scarlet had meant it as a statement, but the word came out like a question.

Jackie took a step forward. "I really don't scare you at all?"

"No, Miss Red." Scarlet's own voice sounded strange to her, as though it had somehow come from far away. She wanted to take a step back, but her hooves felt rooted in place.

"Not even the slightest?"

"Well, I mean, maybe, sure, back when we first met," Scarlet said, the words coming out like a cracked whisper. "Maybe a little, back then."

"But not now?"

"...No?"

"Not even a bit?"

Scarlet tried to reply, but found she couldn't. She suddenly found that she couldn't do anything at all, other than stare into the blood-red eyes of the most feared woman in the Waste. Her mouth was open, but no words came out. Her hands were shaking. A piece of the already-broken crock slipped through her fingers. It must have hit the floor, but Scarlet didn't hear it.

"You know, I happen to like being a little scary," Jackie DeCoeur said.

Scarlet said nothing.

"Because being a little scary can be a useful thing," Jackie DeCoeur said.

Scarlet said nothing.

"And being a lot scary can be a very useful thing," Jackie DeCoeur said.

Scarlet said nothing.

"And, as it just so happens, I happen to think I'm a lot scary," Jackie DeCoeur said.

Scarlet said nothing.

"What do you think?" Jackie DeCoeur said, and smiled.

"I..." Scarlet finally started to say. "I..."

"Boo," Jackie DeCoeur said.

They had to get a second dustbin to clean up the broken dishes.


You know what would be fun? If someone were to write this story from Jackie's point of view...

*makes a note...*

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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:36 am 
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@Orcish: Poor Scar. And just when she thought that home life didn't have to be so scary anymore. :cry:

In all seriousness, though, I like this mischievous streak we see in Jackie at the Ranch. We saw her do a similar thing to a centaur girl and Trotter in "No Angel," and here again we see her sort of playing around with people at the Ranch. And I like that, because it feels real for Jackie, and just for life in general. It's not an easy job, I wouldn't think, suddenly trying to raise numerous little kids who have, almost if not completely universally, not had good home lives. So it's important that Jackie have some fun once in a while!

I also like that you harken back to the thing about Jackie that I tend to most forget. It really stood out to be the most recent time I reread "Love and Theft," and I've been meaning to talk about it for a while now, but I never really found the right venue, but this is it, I think. And that is Jackie's magic. When I think of Jackie, I think of her grit, her toughness, her propensity for loquacity, her shooting, her leadership, all of that stuff. I also think of her eyes, of course, as they are often discussed by those around her. But what I forget is that her eyes are not simply unnerving, as people point out. In "Love and Theft," she essentially puts Ruby in a trance just by staring at her. And she does the same to Scar here.

It makes me wonder if Trotter, who is about the only one not unnerved by her eyes, is somehow immune to this particular ability of hers...

...or maybe he just likes the feeling?

Thanks for the story, Orcish!

You know what would be fun? If someone were to write this story from Jackie's point of view...

*makes a note...*

:plot:


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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:52 am 
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@Orcish: Poor Scar. And just when she thought that home life didn't have to be so scary anymore. :cry:

In all seriousness, though, I like this mischievous streak we see in Jackie at the Ranch. We saw her do a similar thing to a centaur girl and Trotter in "No Angel," and here again we see her sort of playing around with people at the Ranch. And I like that, because it feels real for Jackie, and just for life in general. It's not an easy job, I wouldn't think, suddenly trying to raise numerous little kids who have, almost if not completely universally, not had good home lives. So it's important that Jackie have some fun once in a while!

Hah, yeah. I was definitely trying to echo "No Angel," here, although, in retrospect, while "No Angel" feels very in-character to me, I think this one is a bit of a miss. Jackie definitely has that playful side to her, and I think she still gets a kick out of being The Red-Eyed Woman. And this interaction sort of made sense to me as a teachable moment -- Jackie's trying to make a point to Scar about taking advantage of how other people see you, and how you can win a fight without firing a shot if you take advantage of those preconceived notions.

But, having re-read the exchange, it feels off to me. It's just too close to cruel. Yes, Jackie plays it for a laugh at the end, but she really does scare the pants off of Scar, and -- like you said -- Scar's got some trauma, which I think Jackie would be mindful of. And, while Jackie is certainly mischievous, I don't think she's cruel, even as a joke, or to make a point. And I don't think she would scrooch one of the kids.

So, yeah, while this was fun to just sort of imagine, I don't think it's actually correct for either character. Which, hey, that happens sometimes!


I also like that you harken back to the thing about Jackie that I tend to most forget. It really stood out to be the most recent time I reread "Love and Theft," and I've been meaning to talk about it for a while now, but I never really found the right venue, but this is it, I think. And that is Jackie's magic. When I think of Jackie, I think of her grit, her toughness, her propensity for loquacity, her shooting, her leadership, all of that stuff. I also think of her eyes, of course, as they are often discussed by those around her. But what I forget is that her eyes are not simply unnerving, as people point out. In "Love and Theft," she essentially puts Ruby in a trance just by staring at her. And she does the same to Scar here.

It makes me wonder if Trotter, who is about the only one not unnerved by her eyes, is somehow immune to this particular ability of hers...

...or maybe he just likes the feeling?

Ah, yes! The scrooching!

In all honestly, I never really had a fixed schema in my head for what happens when Jackie scrooches people, or how she actually does it, which is probably why I sort of shied away from it over time, and it doesn't figure much in subsequent stories. The open question in my head has always been how much of it is actually magic-magic, and how much of it is more stage-trick-magic, like a hypnotism show. The fact that it produces these consistent physical symptoms -- dilated pupils, fuzzy thoughts, suggestibility -- seems to suggest that there is actually some there there, for lack of a better expression, but, to the extent that there is something going on beneath the hood, I sincerely doubt that it's a conscious spell, or something that Jackie ever explicitly learned. My guess is it's just part and parcel of that extra bit of mojo she seems to have going on, as a result of her unorthodox -- and still unexplained -- parentage. I think it goes along with the lightning reflexes, the preternatural toughness, and the red eyes. And we have one little indication, from back in "Stare Down the Basilisk," when she tells Brax that, among other things, she threatened the other kids at the orphanage that, if they picked on her any more, she would "fry their brains." Which could just be talk -- I mean, Jackie is saying what she needs to say and doing what she needs to do to get the kids to leave her alone, to literally save her own life in the long run -- but it could also be a sign that she has realized that she can have some sort of effect on people. Although, whatever she knew back then, we know that she wasn't going around the playground, scrooching all the mean kids out of their cookies, so, if she had an inkling back then, that probably all that it was -- an inkling.

But my sense is that, while there may be some small amount of red-eyed mojo behind Jackie's stare-down trick, probably the biggest part of it is just down to legend. Because, among the smart things that Jackie did, she was very conscious of creating and cultivating an image for herself in the public imagination. She turned herself into The Red-Eyed Woman -- the devil-girl, the demon-dealer, the most infamous outlaw in the Waste, with nigh superhuman powers -- and she goes to great lengths to maintain that mystique around herself. Because she knows that that mystique is one of her powers. It's one of her advantages. As she says to Orida, in that non-canon encounter, you take the bad cards that life has dealt you -- the things that used to get you beat-up, the things that made people point and stare -- and, instead of fighting against them, instead of letting them make you less than what you are, you embrace them, you play them up. You take people's preconceived notions, and you do a kind of mental jujitsu with them. Are they frightened of your eyes? Then you stare right into their souls. Do they think you have dark powers? Then you threaten to scrooch their brains if they don't give you what you want.

You take those bad cards, and you turn them into trumps. Other people make assumptions, so you turn those assumptions to your advantage, and you beat the whole damn world at its own game.

So I completely believe that, mojo or not, Jackie would have embraced the rumor that she could control people's minds with her eyes. Whether or not it was real, once that story got around, she would have played into it, used it for her own ends. Heck, that's the sort of rumor she would have started herself. And, once other people think you can do it, you might be able to actually do it, just through the power of suggestion -- like a scrooch-y placebo effect. And, I mean, Jackie is *scary*, as I was trying to get into in the little scene above. Say you're a bank guard, and this woman walks into your bank, dressed all in black, moving like she owns the place. She doesn't even draw her gun, she's so confident. She walks right up to you, and you see those glasses, and that hat, and you know who she is. You'd heard of her before. You've read the papers. You've heard the whispers. You know all about The Red-Eyed Woman, that there's something not right about her -- that she sold her soul, that she came back from the dead, that she takes what she wants, that she can break a man's mind just by looking at him. Then she takes off those glasses, and you see those eyes -- those blood-red eyes, like nothing you've ever seen before, like no normal human should have -- and she just stares right at you with those eyes. The pictures in the paper did not prepare you for those eyes. Nothing could. And she's just standing there, and staring at you, and smiling at you, like she already owns you, like she can see straight through into your soul. And she says, "you're going to open the vault for me, aren't you?"

I mean, even if there's no mojo there at all, you think your knees maybe aren't going to shake a little? Your body isn't going to feel like it's frozen, your eyes aren't going to go a little wide, your heart isn't going to race? Here's Jackie DeCoeur -- The Red-Eyed Woman -- telling you what you're going to do, or else (the "or else" is implied, but, oh lordy, is it *implied*), and you don't think that giving her what she wants isn't going to feel like a good idea, or even something barely short of a compulsion? I think that the power of suggestion, the power of legend, and your own involuntary physical reactions would combine in that moment to make one hell of a cocktail, even if that's all it is. And then, after the fact, how would you describe it to the sheriffs, and to your awestruck friends. "She fixed me with those eyes, and it was like I lost control. I just had to do what she said."

And thus does the legend feed upon itself. And thus does The Red-Eyed Woman walk into banks and walk out with all the money, without ever firing a shot. :)

Anyway, like I said, I don't have a definitive schema in my head for which of those two things the scrooch trick is. My gut instinct says it's a little bit from Column A, and a little bit from Column B. But, at the end of the day, the result is much the same, whether it comes from Jackie's mojo, or just exists inside people's minds. :)

As for Trotter, well, I think that Trotter just loves Jackie's eyes. Because they make her different. They make her who she is. No one else in the world has those eyes. And Trotter loves Jackie in a way he never loves anyone else. Other people see those eyes, and they see a freak. Trotter sees those eyes, and he sees someone special. Someone unlike anyone else. Maybe a little bit of a freak, sure, if you subscribe to the conventional way of seeing things. But Trotter doesn't subscribe to the conventional way of seeing things. The same people who would call Jackie a freak would call him a whore. And Trotter doesn't care what those people think. Trotter doesn't really care what anybody thinks. Anybody other than himself, anyway. And then, after he meets Jackie, anyone other than himself or her.

One of my favorite scenes in "Foxtrot" -- hell, one of my favorite scenes I've ever written ever -- is when Trotter tells Jackie that he likes her eyes. And you can see that she's legitimately surprised by this -- no one has ever told her this before, and she has probably never even dared to hope that anybody ever will. And she says to him, "most people find my eyes unnerving" -- which, again, is kind of an unusually honest and personal admission in the moment. That isn't The Red-Eyed Woman talking. That's Jackie DeCoeur, the little "devil girl," hiding in the closet, from the kids who beat her up, hiding under the bed, from the Sisters who tell her that she's wicked, that she's damned, that she's someone who needs to be fixed, or cured. That's the ghost of all that trauma talking.

Most people find her eyes unnerving. This is Jackie being open. This is Jackie being vulnerable. Jackie -- especially young Jackie -- does not like being either of those things. Trotter can hurt her, right here. He could hurt her, in this moment, if he chooses to. She would laugh it off, but it would hurt.

And what does Trotter do? Without so much as a moment to think, he says: "Most people can go to the devil." Because he doesn't care what most people think. He doesn't care that most people see those eyes, with their irises the color of fresh blood, and see something to be feared. He sees those eyes -- like the color of a dust storm at sunset -- and he sees something beautiful. He sees a wild, and dangerous, and untamable kind of beauty, and he knows that's the kind of beauty he wants. Maybe he never knew that before, but he knows it then.

And, in that moment, it's all over. She's going to love him, and he's going to love her. It won't be easy, and it won't be smooth -- neither Jackie or Trotter are easy people, as it will take them a lot of years and a lot of heartache to discover, and come fully to terms with. But it's over. They're never going to not love each other. And they're never going to love anyone else same way.

Again, maybe that's mojo, or maybe that's just seeing something that you've been waiting to see. Either way, it ends up being the same thing. :)

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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:25 pm 
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@Orcish: Poor Scar. And just when she thought that home life didn't have to be so scary anymore. :cry:

In all seriousness, though, I like this mischievous streak we see in Jackie at the Ranch. We saw her do a similar thing to a centaur girl and Trotter in "No Angel," and here again we see her sort of playing around with people at the Ranch. And I like that, because it feels real for Jackie, and just for life in general. It's not an easy job, I wouldn't think, suddenly trying to raise numerous little kids who have, almost if not completely universally, not had good home lives. So it's important that Jackie have some fun once in a while!

Hah, yeah. I was definitely trying to echo "No Angel," here, although, in retrospect, while "No Angel" feels very in-character to me, I think this one is a bit of a miss. Jackie definitely has that playful side to her, and I think she still gets a kick out of being The Red-Eyed Woman. And this interaction sort of made sense to me as a teachable moment -- Jackie's trying to make a point to Scar about taking advantage of how other people see you, and how you can win a fight without firing a shot if you take advantage of those preconceived notions.

But, having re-read the exchange, it feels off to me. It's just too close to cruel. Yes, Jackie plays it for a laugh at the end, but she really does scare the pants off of Scar, and -- like you said -- Scar's got some trauma, which I think Jackie would be mindful of. And, while Jackie is certainly mischievous, I don't think she's cruel, even as a joke, or to make a point.

I didn't want to barge in, but I found it a bit cruel too. If I may, this is how I pictured it:
make-your-own-scene

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 Post subject: Re: [Story]Seeing Red
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:30 pm 
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And this interaction sort of made sense to me as a teachable moment -- Jackie's trying to make a point to Scar about taking advantage of how other people see you, and how you can win a fight without firing a shot if you take advantage of those preconceived notions.

STOP GIVING ME SCAR STORY IDEAS!

I don't have time to write all of these great stories!

:)

Yes, Jackie plays it for a laugh at the end, but she really does scare the pants off of Scar,

Scar: "No, it's okay. I'm a centaur. I don't wear pants."

In all honestly, I never really had a fixed schema in my head for what happens when Jackie scrooches people, or how she actually does it, which is probably why I sort of shied away from it over time, and it doesn't figure much in subsequent stories. The open question in my head has always been how much of it is actually magic-magic, and how much of it is more stage-trick-magic, like a hypnotism show. The fact that it produces these consistent physical symptoms -- dilated pupils, fuzzy thoughts, suggestibility -- seems to suggest that there is actually some there there, for lack of a better expression, but, to the extent that there is something going on beneath the hood, I sincerely doubt that it's a conscious spell, or something that Jackie ever explicitly learned. My guess is it's just part and parcel of that extra bit of mojo she seems to have going on, as a result of her unorthodox -- and still unexplained -- parentage. I think it goes along with the lightning reflexes, the preternatural toughness, and the red eyes.

Yeah, this has always been my assumption, too. After all, I've heard that some say that Red Jackie has a demon for a pa...

:D


You take those bad cards, and you turn them into trumps. Other people make assumptions, so you turn those assumptions to your advantage, and you beat the whole damn world at its own game.

Some day, perhaps, Orida will find her way to that Ranch!

One of my favorite scenes in "Foxtrot" -- hell, one of my favorite scenes I've ever written ever -- is when Trotter tells Jackie that he likes her eyes. And you can see that she's legitimately surprised by this -- no one has ever told her this before, and she has probably never even dared to hope that anybody ever will. And she says to him, "most people find my eyes unnerving" -- which, again, is kind of an unusually honest and personal admission in the moment. That isn't The Red-Eyed Woman talking. That's Jackie DeCoeur, the little "devil girl," hiding in the closet, from the kids who beat her up, hiding under the bed, from the Sisters who tell her that she's wicked, that she's damned, that she's someone who needs to be fixed, or cured. That's the ghost of all that trauma talking.

Most people find her eyes unnerving. This is Jackie being open. This is Jackie being vulnerable. Jackie -- especially young Jackie -- does not like being either of those things. Trotter can hurt her, right here. He could hurt her, in this moment, if he chooses to. She would laugh it off, but it would hurt.

And what does Trotter do? Without so much as a moment to think, he says: "Most people can go to the devil." Because he doesn't care what most people think. He doesn't care that most people see those eyes, with their irises the color of fresh blood, and see something to be feared. He sees those eyes -- like the color of a dust storm at sunset -- and he sees something beautiful. He sees a wild, and dangerous, and untamable kind of beauty, and he knows that's the kind of beauty he wants. Maybe he never knew that before, but he knows it then.

And, in that moment, it's all over. She's going to love him, and he's going to love her. It won't be easy, and it won't be smooth -- neither Jackie or Trotter are easy people, as it will take them a lot of years and a lot of heartache to discover, and come fully to terms with. But it's over. They're never going to not love each other. And they're never going to love anyone else same way.

Again, maybe that's mojo, or maybe that's just seeing something that you've been waiting to see. Either way, it ends up being the same thing. :)

I really like Jackie stories, but there's something appealing to me about specifically young Jackie stories, from before she becomes what she becomes. It's really interesting seeing Jackie's formative years.


Huey


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