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The Records of Brian Waite - Part 2 of 2
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hboff
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 4:10 pm    Post subject: The Records of Brian Waite - Part 2 of 2 Reply with quote

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The Records of Brian Waite - Part 2 of 2
Posted by CoLd BlooDed (broken_lizard12@hotmail.com)
1 December 2006, 7:43 am

http://halosn.bungie.org/fanfic/?story=CoLd_BlooDed1201060743381.html
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CoLd BlooDed
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 6:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before anybody gets to this... I apologize for the length of time it took to finally post this. You know how it is; school, work, friends, yadda-yadda, all that jazz...

I also have Dave Luck to thank for helping me straighten out some of my ideas and Russ for constantly inquiring if I had finished yet. Well, Russ, I'M DONE BABY. Now onto TBoTB... I think.

Anything wrong with this story? Feel free to tell me so I can chase after you with a stapler. Kidding. Twisted Evil

I have decided that I will eventually record an audio version of Brian Waite, complete with everything we had over the past two chapters. I was doing a test-run with Dave and he said it could work out quite well, and honestly, so do I.

Well, that's all. Enjoy the read!
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Guardian
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I started to get a vague but distinct feeling that Waite was Barumn. Only he was schizophrenic (oh wow, I spelled it right on first try). Only he had abnormal paranoia levels, and only he was most likely using that damnable journal. For a second I thought that Barumn's paranormal capability allowed him to transfer from journal devices to journal devices until it found a suitable host to latch onto and exploit the unfortunate victim of event. I suppose the turning point of truth was when his three most interacted characters of rationality disappeared. First with what could have been his lover Andrea, second with his best friend Joseph and third and final his Instructor (whatever his name was).

I have to say it was a shockingly well done and drove numerous psychological points home, and some of them were down right unnerving. But I still enjoyed the story. I can't really keep an eye out for GPS with your stories as there's little to non-existent and or nothing. Anyways, on a personal note. Damn you for killing Andrea, I was starting to like her.

Anyways, I must depart.

Edit: Audio version? Can I get a part?
-Shad
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SYSTEM
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are hints, yes, I'd agree, although one of the cool parts there are the whole conspiracy thing. You'd never see that coming until -wham- like a ton of bricks. Kay made it pretty good there, and I liked the last entry (not saying I liked it the BEST, but I liked it) for a number of reasons - the first reason being that it kept flowing and stayed clear of boring explanation and referenced the events that had taken place prior to the Barnum/Waite identity crisis, being quite succinct, leaving no holes, but not giving us a whole whoppadoodle of information to process. Thanks to the way he wrote it, there's no going 'whu?' or "Hey, wtf was that?" at the final entry.

Cheers to you on that, man!

I also liked the fact that the second entry, there's a bit of poetry on this, which also helps further Brian's character before he goes down the tubes. It also helps illustrate the deceptive side of antisocial personality disorder, in the fact that sociopaths do not see anything wrong with what they do, and act, walk, talk, and behave like normal people, which makes it difficult for crime investigators to pick 'em out.

Two thumbs up, and I gotta say:

BRUTAL.


Definitely a Hell yeah.

- Dave.
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Azrael
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just read through the whole thing, and let me tell you I could not electronically put it down. It was absolutely fantastic.

You did a great job with the voice and eerie atmosphere of each "recording." The time stamps were dead on and I found myself looking at the next entry ahead to see what the classification color was.

I was tempted to say that the conclusion was too obvious, but like the question of who is Tyler Durden in "Fight Club," you tease and leave us grasping at straws...and then like Dave said, you hit us over the head with it. WHAM.

This is a classic. In many ways (and this is no dig toward him) this scared me more than Chuckles' work. You got into my head with this.

DON'T READ THIS WITH THE LIGHTS OFF. And that's high praise for any thriller/horror writer. You got the gift, kid.

Az
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teemas
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 4:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Never saw that coming. Honestly, an amazing fic. I loved the way you were able to convey all of his feelings into the recordings and slowly blend it all together. Loved it.
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Syotica
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amazing. I loved it dude; now let's go smoke a bowl in celebration. Smile
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Commander Demitri Wolf
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Disturbing.

Long time between drinks, mate, but it was worth the wait. You're one of the only writers here I still will definitely read if they write a new story, and you didn't disappoint with this one. Keep us posted on the audio version, and of any Australians you need in it Razz
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Azathoth
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent. I've been waiting for part two. I love how he starts out sort of okay and by the end he's completely off the rails, screamind random in italics. And pushing people into meat grinders.

Hey, didn't Halo 2 have a test level called Meat Grinder?
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Chuckles
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Az wrote:
Quote:
This is a classic. In many ways (and this is no dig toward him) this scared me more than Chuckles' work. You got into my head with this.

That being the case, I think I'll enjoy this. I'll hopefully get to this tonight, after I've rooted for UCLA and sacrificed a Nerf football to appease the gods of the NCAA (blessed be they). Oh, and go Razorbacks! It's not that I think it's fair to make Ohio State play Michigan twice (in fact, I think it's unfair), it's just that I couldn't care less about being fair to OSU.

Anyway, after all that I'll dig into this fic. CoLd, I was beginning to think that it would never be finished. There is precious little horror on here (especially good horror) so not finishing would have been a crying shame. Like Azrael, I like stuff that gets into my head, and after all of these shining reviews this has gotten, it had better do just that! Very Happy

C.T. Clown
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CoLd BlooDed
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shadow wrote:
I have to say it was a shockingly well done and drove numerous psychological points home, and some of them were down right unnerving.

Edit: Audio version? Can I get a part?


Thanks a lot, man, exactly what I was going for. And obviously you'll hear the audio version.

Dave Luck wrote:
Thanks to the way he wrote it, there's no going 'whu?' or "Hey, wtf was that?" at the final entry.

Cheers to you on that, man!


And I have you to thank for helping me fill up some potential plotholes! Thank you, Mr. Luck. Very Happy

Wow, Az, reading your comment just brought me back, reminding me of why I began writing in the first place. I strived to write stories that would shock, scare, and mess with the audience successfully. I'm flattered, and I appreciate the review. Your praise made me well up with emotion and explode.

Azrael wrote:
I was tempted to say that the conclusion was too obvious, but like the question of who is Tyler Durden in "Fight Club," you tease and leave us grasping at straws...and then like Dave said, you hit us over the head with it. WHAM.


Yeah, there were so many different ways I could've ended this, whether it be paranormal, psychological, or otherwise, but I think I chose the right one. I ended up concentrating more on the originality of this story; the atmosphere and the insanity, and then finishing it off with a viable explanation of everything. As long as I scared you, then my job is done. Smile

teemus wrote:
Never saw that coming. Honestly, an amazing fic. I loved the way you were able to convey all of his feelings into the recordings and slowly blend it all together. Loved it.


Thanks, man, just another one of things I was trying to accomplish.

Syotica wrote:
Amazing. I loved it dude; now let's go smoke a bowl in celebration.


Amen to that. Wink

CDW wrote:
Long time between drinks, mate, but it was worth the wait. You're one of the only writers here I still will definitely read if they write a new story, and you didn't disappoint with this one. Keep us posted on the audio version, and of any Australians you need in it.


Warms my soul to hear that. Laughing Thanks for the kind words. And you know, maybe I could use some Australian voice-acting. I like your thinking, I'll IM you if I find a place for ya.

Azathoth wrote:
I love how he starts out sort of okay and by the end he's completely off the rails, screamind random in italics. And pushing people into meat grinders.


Of course. Thanks for reading. Very Happy

Chuckles wrote:
CoLd, I was beginning to think that it would never be finished. There is precious little horror on here (especially good horror) so not finishing would have been a crying shame


I promised myself that I was going to finish it, and I'm very happy with the way it turns out. I patiently await your review. Very Happy

Thanks everyone.
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Chuckles
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2006 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let me start out by saying that this plot was obviously stolen from my own short story, The Foosball Vendetta. How else can you explain the fact that my main character was a clown, while your story (conveniently) contains no clowns at all. Coincidence? Bah!

Couldn't resist Very Happy

Great to see this finally finished, and good to see one of your stories on the queue for a change. Me, you and Sev are the only authors on HBOFF (that I'm aware of, anyway) who write mainly in the horror/thriller genre, and with Sev going MIA ... you get the picture. Please, keep them coming.

Let me start with the ending--and my only real criticism.
Quote:
Over the past several years, ONI has played a part in researching roles for super soldiers. This does not mean Spartans or synthetically-altered Marines. Instead, we've been studying antisocial personality disorder—or sociopathy—and how it could be used in effect with creating the ultimate fighter. We needed to find a way to raise soldiers like this by developing the proper conditions in which this disorder could be exposed… for if we completed that process we could move onto the next step of maintaining obedience among these subjects. We found a selection of viable environments that could potentially produce/uncover APD… along with a host of random individuals who showed positive signs (all dormant) of this psychological disease. They were admitted into the program without ever being told. Our plan was to slowly create an army of emotionless machines that would kill anything placed in front of it.


I did not find the reasoning behind ONI's actions to be believable, even within the confines of science fiction/fantasy. Or, to state it a little better, I find their reasoning unbelievable because of the context inherent to all things Halo: the war between the humans and the Covenant. Coming from me, this might seem the height of hypocrisy (and based on some of my writing, it might very well be the height of hypocrisy Very Happy ), but it just doesn't seem like such a program would pack enough bang for the buck. They would add nothing to the war against the Covenant (unless they were also fearless) and could probably not be produced in numbers great enough to make any real difference. Beyond that, they would require a greater amount of infrastructure to maintain and oversee than normal soldiers. Now that I've said it, let me add that this takes little or nothing away from your story. While I find it somewhat unbelievable, it certainly is not absurd or crazy. I had them breeding giants in one of my stories, and I don't even want to contemplate the "bang for the buck/reality" rating I'd get for it. Still, I felt it significant enough to mention.

Your first chapter was good, but I thought the writing was noticeably better in this one. Journal entries aren't the easiest things to write with any realism, but I think you pretty much nailed it. At times your main character seemed to be babbling random and useless thoughts, but in the end it all fit together perfectly. I was impressed by how genuine and original you made his thoughts sound. Here's one I really liked:
Quote:
He is everywhere. He is all living things. I can't concentrate on something without seeing him, hearing him, smelling him! I'll look up and he's in the corner, I'll turn away and I'll see his grin, then finally, when I'm on the verge of taking my teeny tiny pencil and stabbing it into the soft flesh behind my ear, I'll close my eyes… only to see that fuckers giant grin, his teeth filed to cannibalistic points. I'll hear him laugh, and with every breath he makes I can feel my heart shrinking… my entire soul freezing. I've got to do something before he gets me. He distracted me from getting most of my work done today, and I knew I was in trouble but the APPCO instructors did shit all. Lucky break for me, I guess… I guess, I guess…

Beautiful. You can almost hear the misfiring neurons as this guy prattles on and on. His words are unpredictable, informative and consistently crazy. He describes what he sees, what he feels and what he does with sentences we ourselves would never construct. I felt as if I were peering into his sickened mind.
Quote:
You'd think that the silence and complete emptiness of the kitchen would've deterred me; you'd think the unusually large butcher knives buried in the countertops, covered in a brownish liquid that could only realistically be grease, would've given me the hint. No, no, never. Because Waite is just so goddamn smart, he knows what's good for him… I brushed past hanging pig carcasses and rusty stovetops to try and reach that backdoor—I just wanted to get out of there. Finally, after what seemed like hours, I reached that little grey doorknob—just wrapped my knuckles around gods gift to the universe—and nearly bit off my tongue when I heard something heavy fall back in the kitchen where all the industrial cooking machinery is. Unfortunately, those frozen pork slabs blocked my view of whatever the fuck it was.

A mysterious noise in an empty kitchen with dead animal carcasses hanging everywhere? Talk about atmosphere! Heck, he could have gone back to find Rocky Balboa practicing his jab and it still would've been scary. Nicely done.

Quote:
I found myself surveying his body, his encasement of past victims that completed his winter fashion line… the collection of skins were a semi-healthy beige, fading somewhat into the color of nothingness that composed Barnum's soul. I could see everything, everything; the rough, inexperienced stitching that zigzagged around his appendages and torso and neck and scalp… the dried, flaky blood that dribbled from where his eyes were supposed to be… the patches of hair that clung on to surviving flesh. The only thing that phased me, the only thing that truly scared me, was the fact that no matter how hard I concentrated, no matter how much I willed myself, I couldn't see past the black shadow that clung to his face.

That sure ain't Sly Stallone, although his acting might be scarier than anything we could dream up. This was extremely rich and vivid, and I could picture it easily.

Quote:
Now, I've got to figure a way to break from these chains. Can't you hear them rattle with every step I take? Every word I speak? They tremble with envy, they want to be free… individuals. Isn't that what society is? Everyone's chained together to keep humanity in order, but we long to be individuals… individuals. We carry the lead ball, which is really composed of the 'important' people. The people with authority. We, the chain, carry the lead ball—we carry the only true 'individuals'. Has a ring to it, doesn't it? Well, what if we all broke off and did our own thing! What would happen to society? This realization has given me a very bitter, bitter insight. You better fucking believe I ate the forbidden fruit. Knowledge. Lunacy-driven knowledge.

Sharp bit of writing there. You added a good measure of depth all through this, but that passage was my favorite.

While I have to admit that this didn't scare me, it was still plenty eerie and a joy to read. Your timestamps, bracketed descriptions and dialogue were pitch-perfect, and no doubt delivered the desired effect. In the end, I have to agree with Azrael: you got the gift, kid.

C.T. Clown
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SYSTEM
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2006 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
They would add nothing to the war against the Covenant (unless they were also fearless) and could probably not be produced in numbers great enough to make any real difference. Beyond that, they would require a greater amount of infrastructure to maintain and oversee than normal soldiers. Now that I've said it, let me add that this takes little or nothing away from your story. While I find it somewhat unbelievable, it certainly is not absurd or crazy. I had them breeding giants in one of my stories, and I don't even want to contemplate the "bang for the buck/reality" rating I'd get for it. Still, I felt it significant enough to mention.


The base of the idea of a bunch of sociopathic killer soldiers was derived from the Species HSS2-Super Soldiers from TFMCBG, but it grew and is now totally independent now from the Species HSS2 Super Soldier concept, although I can say they -kind of- do relate.

What I like about the idea of a bunch of sociopathic soldiers was that although they themselves might not have been such a great idea or have such a bang-for-the-buck, they certainly could have opened windows for bigger and better soldiers, such as the Species HSS2 Super Soldiers or something else.

- Dave.
_________________
"Lizzie Borden took an axe and gave her mother forty whacks. When she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one." - A child's nursery rhyme.

"When in doubt, empty your magazine." - Murphy's first law of combat operations.
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CoLd BlooDed
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2006 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chuckles wrote:
Or, to state it a little better, I find their reasoning unbelievable because of the context inherent to all things Halo: the war between the humans and the Covenant.


I was waiting for a comment like this. In all fairness, though, when did I mention anything about them being used against the Covenant? Twisted Evil However, I completely understand where you're coming from; one of my biggest fears for posting this was not having a plausible conclusion. Well, I thought about it for awhile, and this applied best; it tied up many loose knots and potential holes in the story.

Chucky wrote:
...and could probably not be produced in numbers great enough to make any real difference.


I think the hundreds of worlds that the Humans occupy (or at least, used to occupy) would serve as a sufficient buffet for these disorder-inflicted subjects. Then again, I'm not talking about thousands (although an 'army' may be stretching it) of sociopathic Marines. In addition, the subjects they're talking about are just that, subjects. People that serve in further research for the project ONI is conducting; if the tests don't run successfully, who knows what happens then?

Chuck wrote:
At times your main character seemed to be babbling random and useless thoughts, but in the end it all fit together perfectly.


Those random, useless thoughts were purposeful. During those moments Brian Waite lacked any sleep whatsoever, he was put in the state where he'd say anything that came to mind. Literally. Whenever I'm out of it I always have those thoughts that just bubble up out of nowhere and I decided to put stuff like that in.

Chuckycheese wrote:
Beautiful. You can almost hear the misfiring neurons as this guy prattles on and on. His words are unpredictable, informative and consistently crazy. He describes what he sees, what he feels and what he does with sentences we ourselves would never construct. I felt as if I were peering into his sickened mind.


Thanks a lot, man, that means a lot coming from you. I busted my hump* to get that feeling across. I guess I know my job was well done. Very Happy

Chuck Norris wrote:
Heck, he could have gone back to find Rocky Balboa practicing his jab and it still would've been scary.


Well, it's not like that thought didn't come across... Wink

Chunkles wrote:
Sharp bit of writing there. You added a good measure of depth all through this, but that passage was my favorite.


Thank you; I felt obligated to put in that crazy, yet strangely true, rant. It was the right time for his isolated 'thinking' phase. Thank you again. Very Happy

Chukk wrote:
While I have to admit that this didn't scare me, it was still plenty eerie and a joy to read.


Me? Scare you? If I could accomplish that then I could easily win the nobel prize. Laughing

Chuck wrote:
In the end, I have to agree with Azrael: you got the gift, kid.


Flattered. Thank you all so much for the kind words. And thanks for the review, Chuck.

*it's really more like a misshapen bone
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Chuckles
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2006 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CoLd wrote:
Quote:
Those random, useless thoughts were purposeful. During those moments Brian Waite lacked any sleep whatsoever, he was put in the state where he'd say anything that came to mind. Literally. Whenever I'm out of it I always have those thoughts that just bubble up out of nowhere and I decided to put stuff like that in.

I may have stated it badly when commenting on the "random thoughts" but my point was that you managed to make them seem random, while all along having a purpose for them. Not an easy thing to do.

C.T. Clown
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