The Chaos Book: Episode 1 Intro
Every week, I'm going to post a new intro for an episode to The Chaos Book. It will provide a bit of backstory for what's coming up, and then you can submit and vote for the elements that'll become the foundation of the story. You should see the final product around 2-3 weeks later.
The Chaos Book: Episode 1
Day 100,424 / Des Moines, Iowa
The sun is low on the horizon as another five zombies fall into the trench. They flail around a bit, but once they’re on their stomachs, it’s game over for them. There’s about a hundred of them down there, rolling around in the water, squawking and groaning, generally useless.
Finn is rubbing his temple, eyes locked on the bridge two feet away from where all the zombies are falling. There’s an army of them coming across the field, but they’re all aimed in the wrong direction. Finn sighs deeply, puts on his best salesman face, turns to Dr Regent.
“All right,” he says smoothly. “So you see the issue I was talking about at our last meeting.”
Dr Regent doesn’t say anything. He looks like he’s going to cry.
“Well it’s not all bad news,” Finn continues. “For one, they’re already dead, so once you clean ‘em off, they’re good as new. So it’s time wasted, but not money.”
Dr Regent nods unhappily.
“So here’s what I’m going to recommend, given today’s experiment.” Finn starts jotting notes on a small pad of paper while another ten zombies plunge into the trench. “I’m giving you two numbers here. One is for my good friend Hans, who specializes in werewolves. Now I know how you feel about your zombies, but I have to be honest here: a werewolf isn’t going to get tripped up by a bridge, and he’s going to scale that wall over there in seconds, not… you know… months.”
**Dr Regent glances over at the small fortress of a mansion across the bridge. A pair of snipers are laughing at the zombie horde.
“Now if you’re really set on your zombies, the other number might help some. My pal at the Pentagon can get you some exoskeleton frameworks to help guide your guys more efficiently. Think of it as remote-controlled carnage. Plus, they can punch through walls.”
Dr Regent sniffles. He’s avoiding eye contact with the camera. Finn puts an arm over his shoulder, turns him away, speaks softly.
“Listen,” he says. “There’s nothing wrong with a misstep or two at the start. You think Dracula got it right the first time? Hell no. Nobody’s going to remember this day, ten years from now. All they’re going to remember is what you do next.”
Dr Regent is sobbing.
“Now listen: I’ve got a plane to catch, but I’ll be in touch by email if you need anything. We can have another sit-down, hash things out, draw up some process maps… anything you need. You just call, all right?”
Dr Regent nods. He pats Finn on the back and heads over to the trench, avoiding the camera’s glare. Finn straightens his back, turns toward us.
“Sometimes they’ve got to learn the hard way,” he sighs.
“How’s he going to get them out of the trench?” I ask.
“Hell if I know,” Finn says, scrolling though messages on his iPhone. “Not my idea, not my problem. How many meetings did we have where I told him zombies were a no-go? Five?”
“Seven!” he spits, rolls his eyes, then puts the phone to his ear, waiting while it rings. “You guys good for tape?” he asks me.
“We’re fine,” I say.
“Not like Amsterdam?” he jokes.
“Not like Amsterdam,” I reply.
“It’s me,” he says into the phone, turning a bit. “Yeah, no, exactly what I said. Yeah, couldn’t find the bridge. Let me send you a pic, hold on.” He clicks off a photo with the phone, mails it. “Got it yet? Yeah? I know, right? Add it to the case studies, I guess. What’s the point of hiring an expert if you’re going to ignore the expertise.”
He rolls his eyes at the camera.
“So,” he says happily. “What’s the scoop? Anything good?”
Dr Regent has fallen into the trench. Another ten zombies topple in on top of him. He’s screaming, but it’s muffled enough that it doesn’t interfere with our audio levels.
“Nope,” says Finn. “Nope, nope, nope. Boring. Tribbles? Betty, come on, you know those are made-up, right? Next. No, wait. What was that?”
He looks towards the camera with a twinkle in his eye. He wants that shot to be part of the opening titles when we go to air, but it’s not as catchy as he thinks. I need to get my producer to veto it soon.
“You’re kidding. Fucking Austria?”
Note: bleep in post.
“Fyooking, fooking, fucking, whatever. What’s in Austria? Love their food. Moreso since the empire collapsed.”
There’s a pause, and then Finn’s face goes wide with a smile so big you can see the teeth clearly. He hangs up the phone, and heads back to the truck with a bounce in his step.
“What’s in Austria?” I ask as the camera tries to keep up.
He stops, grins at us over his shoulder, pushes his shades down over his eyes.
What IS in Austria? Help me find out... add to the chaos by clicking here!