Jump to content

SF: Legacy, a work-in-progress teaser


Recommended Posts

Our artists sometimes post sketches and WIP pieces on the art side, and at least for this portion of work, I feel I can do something similar here. This is a kind of "teaser preview" to the content I am actively working on: a small, still developing portion of a greater story. Normally this probably wouldn't work with writing, but this is a simply single character's speech, and I believe it's an impressive and intriguing read even as it is now.

If, on the other hand, it is inappropriate for me to post this here, I will make sure it gets deleted it as immediately as it is feasible to do so.


[This is a speech given by the character of Owen Phoenix, Chief Executive of the Space Dynamics company (maker of such fine products as the Arwing and Great Fox), to a gathering of business students. It's some kind of a seminar or guest speaker situation. I haven't nailed down all the fine detail work just yet; this is simply what he says in his speech to the students.]

“Business is simple. People want things, and other people provide them, but it's never that simple, is it?â€

“Often there's many people providing basically the same product, and they want you to buy their product X instead of the other's product Y. How do you entice the needy customer to go for one versus the other? How do you sell your product, and not lose out to your competitors?â€

“Well I'm sorry to say that's a heavily loaded question, and different people will have different answers. None of them are necessarily 'wrong'; you will find plenty of billionaires who put out the lowest quality products in their market, using the most deceptive underhanded tactics at their disposal, and they will tell you that if they're making money, they're doing it right. Likewise, you will also find scores of groundbreaking enterprising people with outstanding products to match their ambitions, and yet they fall flat, and their product never makes it to the customers' hands. They can be considered 'wrong' despite a clearly superior product.â€

“Here's an example: a company provides body armor for a major army. They've provided that body armor for years, they even have a contract so that the army will always buy their body armor, and it has worked well enough in that time. The troops are protected, the company makes healthy profit, and everyone is happy. Years later, firearms technology improves, the army's troops are dying left and right from it, and the company is asked to develop armor to counter this threat. However, the company has grown complacent over the years; they've used their profits to buy influence, bribing the rule-writers to tweak the rules to protect their own well being and secure their place. They are only interested in providing product insofar as it serves their ends, not the ends of the customer. Sure, they'll give the needy army what they asked for, but they'll claim inflated and exorbitant fees to cover 'research and development'.â€

“Meanwhile, another company –a younger, fresher company– claims to have already developed a body armor that counters the new threat. They've even had it rigorously tested to make sure it worked right, but there's something amiss. Another test of this new body armor outside this young company claims that it doesn't work, and the old company makes sure to point out this failed test when the needy army checks it out. Soon after, that young and fresh company failed, smothered by a barrage of attacks on their product seemingly from everywhere, and their newfangled body armor was never worn or used by a single soldier anywhere.â€

“This is the status quo of the business world, in any given market: those who are already at the top are naturally content to stay there, consolidating their power and influence, and shouting down any who dare challenge them. Yet as the actual product they're supposed to provide becomes obsolete, the company begins to fester, and stagnate, but they remain at the top in spite of it. This is because they have fortified themselves in the mightiest castles their vast wealth can buy, which allows them to withstand the most stubborn sieges set against them.â€

“I'm not going to sugar-coat it for you, the deck has already been meticulously stacked against each and every one of you from the start. The world of business dirty, mean, cut-throat, and full of remorseless cloak-and-dagger debauchery. It is not a challenge to be met by the faint-of-heart, and if you have any second thoughts about getting into business at this point, then you should save yourself the trouble and back out now while your good name is still intact.â€

“Alright. So you're still with me then? You're wondering perhaps, 'How could someone possibly dive into this harsh, merciless Hell and emerge on top?' The answer is is quite simple, yet surprisingly tricky to understand. It is the very same thing that has brought on all the greatest changes in civilized history: the answer is Innovation.â€

“It was Innovation that turned the novelty of black powder into mighty bombard cannons, which crumbled the castles of ancient feudal kings. It was Innovation that finally saw combustible fossil fuels supplanted by fusion power as the dominant means of energy production. And it was Innovation that catapulted the fledgling Space Dynamics company ahead of the pack in aerospace industry, and set the standard followed by other technology companies today.â€

“I know what you're thinking: 'Well duh, Owen! That's such a dumb and cliché answer!' Well, lets go back to the example of the young company's body armor again. Now, instead of doing what so many other companies before them have done, which is restricted mainly to controlled laboratory testing of their armor, the young company does something odd, outside the box, and controversial according to many. They take their new armor, and give it freely to people best prepared to test it in actual field conditions: independent mercenaries.â€

“Mercenaries are not bound by the stifling several-billion-credit supplier contracts as armies are, and because of their highly independent and adventurous nature, mercs are often more than willing to take a new piece of equipment or gear and put it through its paces as they do their contracts. Plus, if they don't have to cough up the credits to get their hands on it, all the better for them.â€

“This is field testing in the truest form there is. If a company is so truly confident in their product that they will bet their reputation and the lives of others on how their product performs in the real world, let them, because the end results truly are worth the risk. There are no dirty underhanded deal-sweetening favors to swing the market, and the final verdict cannot be spun or twisted by outside interpretations. What you see is what you get, and it does exactly what it does: no fine print, no sleazy smear tactics, no nothing.â€

“As you can imagine, this method drives the stubborn old fat-cats in the industry crazy to no end.â€

“This is the key policy of Space Dynamics's R&D and marketing departments, which has shot this company so far ahead so quickly. With our products already out there in capable hands, anyone in the market for a large-scale supplier need only look to the small-scale successes. When they see that our products work with outstanding results, there is little hesitation or anxiety on the buyer's part, because they know they're getting a product that works with proven and honest results.â€

“It's just like I said: business is simple.â€

[And that's the end of the speech. Like I said, I still have to dress it all up with narration, description and other such whatnot, and then place it in the context of the rest of the story. This is basically a single night's worth of writing for me.]


Well, that's what I got, and thanks for making it this far. Feel free compliment, comment, critique and criticize whatever you feel the urge for.

Take care!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Who gives the speech? like it so far

[This is a speech given by the character of Owen Phoenix, Chief Executive of the Space Dynamics company (maker of such fine products as the Arwing and Great Fox)

Owen Phoenix is a progressive industrialist, heavily inspired by the real-life figure Howard Hugues, and a few others.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

This is the opening scene for the ninth chapter (vol. II) of Star Fox: Legacy. It introduces a minor, somewhat reoccuring character. The main purpose of this scene is to act as a smooth, clean transition from the previous chapter into the real meat of chapter nine. It hasn't been finalized yet, but in my book it's pretty close to publishing state as it is.


The agents of Central Intelligence were always peculiar clients.

They paid well, and the most they ask in return, other than the services for which they paid, is discretion. It's very dull most times, when they just need you for redundancy purposes, but on those rare occasions when it wasn't, it was always fascinating, and often frightening as well.

This was one of those times, and Captain Otto Jäeger wasn't entirely sure what to make of it.

The agent, Cooney, had the privateer vessel Schwarzwind layover at Farbound station for some time, prepared to depart at a moment's notice. He wouldn't say what for, just that “If we need you, we'll let you know.†As it came to pass, he let Otto know, and the agent had a curious collection of tag-alongs with him. They were anxious, restless, some may even say 'shellshocked', but not Otto. The odd group was dominated by a relentless driving intent, and a suppressed sense of dread they tried so very hard not to acknowledge. Perhaps they wouldn't say outright what their purposes were, but it doesn't take a genius to conjecture a plausible scenario.

There'd been talk of the escalation of pirate raids, with the Sojourn gone missing, and now the Amity –the surviving refugees were nothing if not vocal. Something out there went wrong with a mission, horribly wrong; that much was evident in these ragtag men. And so the agent called upon privateer Captian Otto Jäeger and Schwarzwind to help set it right, or at least pick up the broken pieces.

Whatever the case, the agent and his restless cohorts gave Jäeger a set of coordinates to take them to: Venom. Specifically, it was an area of gravitationally stability a short ways beyond the orbit of Venom, its outer Lagrange point. When asked what he expected to find there, Cooney simply answered, “I don't know, but be prepared for the worst.â€

So prepared for the worst he did.

Schwarzwind exited the warp jump at complete combat readiness; shields up, weapons primed, crew at battle-stations, Captain on the bridge.

“Situation?†Jäeger prompted to one of his bridge crew. The Captain was a slick-furred otter, dressed in a maritime-style overcoat.

The view outside Schwarzwind's bridge viewport offered little. Venom's outer Lagrange point landed itself at the exact point where the planet eclipsed the sun. There was no sunlight, no other light at all besides the fickle glimmer of distant stars, and the eerie white glow creeping around the darkened planet Venom, courtesy of the location's eternal eclipse.

He didn't like it.

“There's nothing here.†the crewman at the sensory station informed, “I'm not picking up any signal transmissions, heat emissions or...†he stopped, and puzzled over his instruments.

“What is it?†Jäeger questioned.

“Something metallic, with a scan profile of a small to medium sized ship.†the crewman answered, “It's cold, but seems intact enough –no debris or signs of gaseous discharges.â€

It stank of trouble, and it was the sort he'd come to expect from Intelligence. No doubt that's what Cooney was after out here.

“Bring us closer, and see if we can get some light on the damned thing.â€

“Of course–â€

“Keep on alert though.†Jäeger reminded, “I've seen this tactic used before as an ambush.â€

As per the Captain's orders, Schwarzwind made the approach on the drifting object, still at full battle-readiness. Aside from the thrum of thrusters, there was little change outside, nothing visual to suggest a sense of movement. Even when the ship's searchlights were activated, there was no change. With nothing for the light to strike and bounce off, it makes shining even the most brilliant light into the darkness seem hopelessly futile.

Then it happened.

A gray shape emerged in the distance, advancing upon the Schwarzwind while remaining completely still. Captain Jäeger squinted at the expanding shape, then his eyes shot wide open when he realized–

“Gods alive...†he exclaimed on a ghostly breath, “I know that ship.â€


From there I move into the main focus of the chapter, which involves the ship.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...