Sunday, September 4, 2011

Spanner Chapter 15: Start the Violence (Revised)

Chapter 14

Chaos Angel Spanner — Book 1: Rock City Blues
Chapter 15: Start the Violence (Revised)

Now you’ve done it, Shira. You’ve stolen Leila Shelley’s heart, stolen her from the serial-killing Corporate cad her grandfather the Governor is trying to force her to marry, and started a snowballing political crisis in the process. Governor Brinkman has called his grandfather: King Patriot I of the Holy Christian Patriot Kingdom of Texas ( Roger Steele Becket, founder of Dictel Corporation), and now the King is coming to Seattle to do bad things to it. There’s only one thing you can do now, and you know exactly what it is. But at the same time, you’ll have to keep Leila’s revenge from turning both King and Governor into martyrs the Party can use against you. And Jesus America himself shall appear right before your eyes...

Thus the second part of Book 1 comes to its climax. Shira now finds herself right smack in the middle of the political crisis that may destroy the American Empire — or even the world...

Table of Contents:
  1. Plots and Plans (August 30, 2011)
  2. The Calm Before the Storm (August 31, 2011)
  3. Hard Times in the City (September 1, 2011)
  4. Epiphany of the God-King (September 2, 2011)
  5. You Are the Demons (September 3, 2011)
  6. Message Coming on Channel 12 (September 4, 2011)

From the first edition, I’ve made some significant changes. (Also since then, a fascist strain of cyberpunk has unfortunately developed courtesy of first-generation cyberpunk K.W. Jeter, whose recent novel Noir might as well be official RIAA propaganda with extra added ultraviolence, making me wonder if he’s one of that ruthless cartel’s most ruthless lawyers.) Also, in the scene set in Ariel’s shop, the visitors are different yet again (originally Shira and Leila, then Charlie and Desiree in the first draft, and now Ric and Willa in this edition). Otherwise, the original introduction still mostly fits.
Faithful readers, school is now out. Sure, there’ll still be scenes set at school, but that’s not where the main action is anymore. It’s out in the streets. All the high school kids are about to find that out for themselves once class resumes next chapter. This weekend belongs to the emperor of the world, his would-be assassins shooting for eternal glory, and the Angel of Chaos out to pwn them both. The final act of Spanner Book 1 begins here.

The original canon of cyberpunk science fiction coincides with the end of the political thriller’s heyday, the Eighties. The Left died with the Soviet Union as Stalin’s last and biggest victim. But still there is a political strain within cyberpunk, even if a minor one; naturally, it tends anarchist, just like punk rock itself. (Fortunately there’s still no fascist strain corresponding to Nazi street punk.) Even The Matrix skirts the edge of political cyberpunk, even if the sequels lose themselves in tech-gnostic obscurity. Now, I’m not yet avoiding the problems with political thrillers; the masses have even left the city to avoid getting hurt or killed when the assembled “Cons” (Neo-Confederates) start trashing it. But the Cons and “Corps” (Corporates) are the American Imperial élite. The masses will make their début soon, and then they will make their presence known.

Scenarios taken from my Project Notebooks of the early ’00s: the first visit to Ariel’s New Age shop (which occurred earlier in the 2008 Script Frenzy script) and the police riot (in Seattle, no less); from the early Notebooks of the Nineties come the names of the three networks ABCNN, QVCBS, and ESPNBC.

Now we start rockin’...
Chapter 16

Back to Chaos Angel Spanner table of contents...

Copyright © 2011 Dennis Jernberg. Some rights reserved.
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