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Writing Prompts 
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
'Beacons' is still alive; I have an idea for the next part, if no one wants to post anything I will begin writing it in a few days.

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Sun Oct 06, 2019 1:51 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Need to get back into writing. I think I'll do with a filler piece on Beryl's side of things for now. I'd gladly leave battle strategies and politicking to you :)


Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:43 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
viewtopic.php?p=34357#p34357:
very nice, Dragoongfa! Thank you!

I love the idea of reversing the whole update patches.
"Look, as the operators and users of the last ship of this line, WE are the specialists for this line of ships. Approve our template proposals, and we will keep the ship up to date, as long as we are provided with the current communication protocols."

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Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:59 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
I have been completely glued to the Beacons story for the past week. I am enjoying it quite a lot. :D
Although I must say, some writers are clearly better in my opinion. :roll:

I have my own small contribution I'd like to add but don't really have time right now to polish it out.
Perhaps I can post it in Spoilers or PM it to someone? If Dragoongfa wants to add or incorporate it to what's currently being written.

My contribution would directly continue where this previous post left off.
https://well-of-souls.com/forums/viewto ... 655#p35655


Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:53 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Beacons doesn't have a singular parent so anyone is free to chip in :)

If time is a limiting factor for you to properly write it down, then feel free to spoiler it here and I will see what I can do.

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Sat Oct 12, 2019 12:32 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Well, time would be limiting for two reasons.
One, the fictional positioning of the situation would change and then my entire tidbit goes to waste.
Two, I don't have an idea of how to currently bridge some of the story within it. :oops:

Anyway, here it is. I'll try to format it for the forum, and for readability. If you need it in a Code block let me know.
Spoiler: show
Alex thought for a moment. If Shortleaf had, by her own standards, fulfilled her duty delivering the template file, then she was in the clear to cut and run.
If he didn't deal with her now, nobody else would.
He wasn't going to have any of that. He might actually need her for the repairs.
He needed to act fast.

He thought to himself, who would have authorization to stop Shortleaf?
Beryl? No. Fireblade? Maybe. But could she do it in time? Stillstorm? Yes, but I don't think I can reach out to her. She's probably busy.
Station Security? Certainly, but would they answer to him? Doubtful. The Loroi won't even tell me information if they're not authorized.
Think Alex think.
The thought came to him, Mizol Parat Tempo.
Dammit all.

He attempted to reach his mind out to her.
Tempo.
Nothing.
Tempo!
Still, nothing. Was she in range? Could she even sense him?
Trust her, he thought. Trust her enough to do this much.
TEMPO!

Alex felt great alarm, and some unknown clattering. It seems Tempo answered.
"Alex?! ... How are you ... What is going on?". He felt her confusion and ... relief?
"Tempo, there is little time to explain. I'm trying to deal with a situation."
"What situation? What is going-"
"Listen. I need for you to request an immediate arrest for Torret Shortleaf, and deny her staff permission to evacuate the Station." The thoughts of who they were drifted over with the request.
"Alex ... I don't understand, I don't know what's going on. I can ... deny the staff, but I cannot authorize an arrest without due cause."
"This is an emergency!" There was pure anger in his thought.
"... What emergency?"
"Jeopardizing the lives of the entire Tempest crew." The thought was stern.
"That is ... a serious accusaition. Do you have proof of this?"
"There is no time! Tempo, please, do this."
There was a moderate pause. "I will do what I can. Why exactly do you want to arrest Torret Shortleaf?"
"You will find out soon enough." He calmed his mind, retracting it away from Tempo.

"Captain Jardin? Are you well?" The question came outloud from Wavecrest.
He realized he had gone silent again.
"Sorry, I was sending again."
"To who?"
He didn't elaborate. "Never mind that. Right now we need to focus on the ship. Shortleaf will be ... dealt with, for the time being."
Antimony and Wavecrest looked at each other in confusion, but then returned attention to Alex.
"We need to get to work."

------------------------

<Brief scene involving Tempo>
<Making her own preparations for the ship>
<comicly dropping everything she's holding when Alex sends to her>
<Tempo ponders filling out the paper work, but then reconsidered alex seemed angry and serious. This was urgent.>

She focused her Sanzai. "Soshret Stillstorm."
"Parat Tempo. What do you want?" Stillstorm managed to reply. She seems agitated?
"Do you have a moment?"
"No, but be brief."
"Captain Jardain has called for the arrest of Torret Shortleaf, and wants to deny, or at least postpone, evacuation for her staff aboard the station. I wanted to get your authorization to proceed."
"Curious, ... Shortleaf ... Why does that name sound familiar ..."
"Torret Shortleaf is currently in charge of systems security for Nezel's docks."
"Ah ... yes. That one. Uugh. ... I'd rather not deal with that nightmare again." Tempo could feel the groaning coming from Stillstorm.
"He seemed urgent, do you know why?"
"I put him in charge of overseeing the ships repair. It appears he found something."
There was a brief moment of pause. "You are authorized Parat Tempo, proceed."
"I will need to file the paperwork later with your signature-"
"Yes, yes. Dismissed." Tempo felt a dismissive hand wave motion.

Why would Stillstorm put him in charge of the repairs? She pondered.
No matter, now she needed to contact station security.

------------------------

<Scene involving Tempest ship repairs> ???
<Even if they managed to update the files, they cannot continue without Shortleaf's help?>

------------------------
<Time passes.>
<Scene involving Tempo, Shortleaf, possibly Antimony and Wavecrest if they have returned since updating the template and petitions, and some security staff escorting Shortleaf, clearly under arrest.>
<Possible timing during the process of the ship being under repair.>
<Alex is notified that shortleaf has been detained, and her staff will be required to return here to help.>

Tempo was followed by Shortleaf, who was unmistakably being held and escorted by two security staff.
Tempo was leading the group toward him.
"Well, that was quick." Wavecrest commented.
"I didn't expect to see her in restraints." Antimony said with light surprise.
"It seems she got the short end of the branch." Wavecrest chuckled.
"Hah! Good one."
"Quiet." Alex said clearly agitated.
Antimony and Wavecrest looked at each other, the mood had changed. The tone of his voice, ... this was serious.
They didn't say another word, as the group finally reached them.

[Tempo and Alex talk, [about the outdated template files , requesting new templates and petitions for authorization. and knowingly giving outdated updates.], Shortleaf gives vocal agitated comments.
"Tempo, hold on a moment." Alex flatly said.
Alex walked up to Shortleaf, and hit her, square in the jaw.
This Gives everyone surprise and alarm, with audable ghasps.
"Alex?!" Tempo said alarmed.
"You ... You hit me?" Shortleaf said in disbelief.
"And I would do so again, and again, and again! Until you understood the seriousness of your actions!" The anger was rising in him.
"I gave you what was needed!" Shortleaf snapped at him, but that was clearly a mistake.
"You gave me NOTHING! You have done NOTHING! This template is outdated and you know it!" Alex threw the datacoin at her feet.
"Your incompetence and cowardice would have hindered, if not outright crippled the Tempest flagship. Doing so in such a critical battle situation, would have cost the lives of many invaluable personnel, certainly more valuable than you! At such a time when we are just discovering ways to counter the Umiak Lotai, all would have been lost! In effect, I dare say, to cause the Loroi to lose this war, and by extension humanity."
The realization dawned on all of them.
Without warning, Alex grabbed her by the throat. Everyone was shocked. In an instant, the two security guards acted on instinct as if to stop him, but hesitated, conflicted. Tempo rose her hand in silence to give pause.
"You, utterly, disgust me." The anger he voiced pierced right through Shortleaf.
A brief moment passed, and he pushed her away, back into the security staff.
"Get her out of my sight!"
Tempo had the feeling he Sanzaied to Shortleaf, but couldn't be sure.

Tempo turned to the two security and gave a quick nod to dismiss them, taking Shortleaf with them.
"Captain Jardin", Tempo began, but stopped to realize Alex wasn't responding. Did he shut out her Sanzai again?
The silence was palpable. Tempo waited until they were out of hearing range before continuing, outloud.
"Captain Jardin, while I commend you for taking quick action, I advise you to be more careful in the future. This will certainly cause a diplomatic incident, if not a minor one."
"Careful?! Minor?!" He raised his fist toward her, pointing. Then stopped, regained his composure as he breathed in. Tempo realized his anger was mostly for Shortleaf, and not her.
He continued, still clearly agitated, "The Loroi cannot afford to be making such careless mistakes, especially not one like this! There is too much at stake. On behalf of Humanity, I cannot allow this to continue."
"I thought the Loroi to be more disciplined than us, it appears I was wrong."
"What do you mean by this?" Tempo questioned.
"Everything you do now, everything your warriors do should be driven to help win this war."
"What do you think we have been doing?"
"Soldiers should understand, to have a do or die mentality, not saving their own ass!" Alex's voice raising.
"That, is dangerously close mentality of the Umiak."
<need transition dialog here?>
Alex continued, "Need I remind you how dangerous it is to send scouting ships. Suffice to say, I volunteered for the Bellarmine's mission. My life is irrelevant!", Alex lashed out.
"You are not!", Tempo retorted back.
"My life, in the grand scheme of things, means nothing. If I die in the line of duty, then at least I'll have given them hell for it! If that's what it takes to win this war, then so be it."
"Even one person can make such a large difference! You have done more than many! Certainly, you know this!" Tempo tried to reassure him.
Both of them let an awkward silence sit. Both clearly agitated, but not at each other.
"I ... need to report this to Soshret Stillstorm."
"And I have work to do." Alex begain to walk, Antimony and Wavecrest quickly followed.
Tempo watched as Alex walked away. There was quickness in his step, but then he stopped, and turned slightly.
Thank you. He sent, then continued on.


Sat Oct 12, 2019 1:01 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Well, here are my two cents on how (with your permission), would incorporate the core of your idea into my next part.

Spoiler: show
The idea to delay Shortleaf was something I was toying with, her arrest however would be on the extreme side, there is no 'cause' for her arrest; she has 'fulfilled' her part of the legal procedure even if that is not in line with the spirit of her station and orders. What I would do was go with 'bullshitting' delays and a Mizol of Tempo's caliber would easily find plenty of bullshit reasons for properly authorized delaying action. Also, it would be funny and in line of Alex getting back at Shortleaf on his own if Tempo does it as a 'favor' with the promise of having her request for his time approved on the spot.

The idea of having Alex telepathically contacting Tempo though, that's more than a little 'lore breaking'. Human telepathy needs intimate trust to function and Alex's trust towards Tempo is still bruised,she needs to scratch his back a little for that which sets the foundation for a great character development scene.

Finally, Alex is in no position to get physical no matter his anger, that's an assault and even if there are no charges pressed his diplomatic position would be weakened if he allows his anger to get hold of him. Dealing with Shortleaf has to be done in a 'humiliating' way that is fully in line with the military mindset and code of justice. I was thinking of having her take an 'apprenticeship' position on Tempest to learn from a 'proper team of authorized system developers'.

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Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:08 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Yeah got ahead, I'm eagerly awaiting more story.
The, ahem, main outsider comic has gotten very dry as of late.
Spoiler: show
My feelings as to how Alex has been portrayed in the last 3 or so chapters seems very OOC for his intelligence.


Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:30 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
novius wrote:
Need to get back into writing. I think I'll do with a filler piece on Beryl's side of things for now. I'd gladly leave battle strategies and politicking to you :)



My dude.... your piece of the pie was excellent. Very excellent.

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Tue Oct 15, 2019 7:14 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Indeed.
Excellent.

Thank you.

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Tue Oct 15, 2019 7:51 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Excellent writing from both Dragoon and Novius, please do go on, you're the best!

However, I'm noticing how Alex is becoming rather aggressive, irritable, short tempered, even violent in his thoughts towards the average loroi clerk and too vengeful. I'm not sure being told to f*ck off by a clerk warrants such violent and graphic thoughts... He's thoughts sound like those of someone who'd start a fight with a fellow driver who cut him off, or shoot up a store because his card expired, not so much like those of an intelligent and capable officer.


Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:30 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Somehow Alex turned out quite unlikeable. A little tyrant really. It also doesn't help that everytime he's having even a minor issue, several influential Loroi are at attention to help him.

The humiliation of Shortleaf can turn around completely if she simply states at the right time a variation of the following:
Spoiler: show
" He's asking me to sign off on millions of lines of inofficial, untested code, of which I haven't seen a single line. I'm not programming our patches myself, they're coming from teams of people numbering in the thousands. There's a strict workflow to follow here or we're practically guaranteed to compromise system security. Risk your own ship, but don't expect me to sign off on any of it."


Alex should be a bit more measured in his reaction and maybe not immediately escalate to public humiliation.

Not saying that Shortleaf is in the right, or not an asshole. Just that Alex can get burned pretty hard in these situations.


Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:29 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
I didn't intend for Alex to seem so bloodthirsty, angry towards a Torret (the equivalent of navy Captain) that willingly decides to not help with the proper running of a warship, how much a flagship, is for granted. Remember that Tempest is the ship that he and everyone he cares about lives on so he is invested in keeping it running as best as possible.

Werra wrote:
The humiliation of Shortleaf can turn around completely if she simply states at the right time a variation of the following:
Spoiler: show
" He's asking me to sign off on millions of lines of inofficial, untested code, of which I haven't seen a single line. I'm not programming our patches myself, they're coming from teams of people numbering in the thousands. There's a strict workflow to follow here or we're practically guaranteed to compromise system security. Risk your own ship, but don't expect me to sign off on any of it."


Alex should be a bit more measured in his reaction and maybe not immediately escalate to public humiliation.

Not saying that Shortleaf is in the right, or not an asshole. Just that Alex can get burned pretty hard in these situations.


That's more or less what I planned for Shortleaf to say when everything would come home to roost.
Spoiler: show
The problem is that Tempest has been running on such an electronic environment for years, the template for the patches is outdated which makes the patches themselves outdated by default, in short the 'update' package that she gave Alex would result in a compromised warship in terms of electronic warfare by default. By willingly denying even to consider alternatives she failed her duties and the reason she did that wasn't because it was the proper and legal thing to do but because she wants to run away, not her whole department but she alone. She is a ticket puncher who rose and holds her position due to nepotism, is willing to get bribed in order to keep doing whats 'right' (Stillstorm gifting her male visitation rights so she wouldn't make a fuss) and is negligent in her duties due to cowardice.

If she was acting so because of being prim and proper to a fault Alex wouldn't be so angry. Annoyed surely but not so angry.


The solution to the problem is for Stillstorm to take full responsibility for Tempest and its crew, it's her flagship after all and she was its Captain up until now. The Tazites and her staff signing off on it is mere formality, as it would have been for the previous Soshrets to write down that 'due to the uniqueness of the situation Lashret Stillstorm assumes full responsibility for Tempest'. The Military likes its red tape and for it to be properly followed but things are far more fluid in times of war, the only reason a solution to the 'Tempest' question wasn't given earlier was because some people up high (including Duskcrown to a degree) wanted to bring Stillstorm to heel.

Things are different now however, Stillstorm is now a Soshret due to both merit and necessity but she is extremely busy at the moment to realize and use the full authority for her rank.

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Tue Oct 15, 2019 10:16 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Thing is, humans are a quite violent species. It is just a thin veneer of civilization that keeps us on the narrow road... well, most of the time.

I'm pretty sure almost everyone had his or her moment with an obtuse clerk, clueless cashier or (the horror!) customer support service where one plays out fantasies featuring said clerk and, say, a rusty, nail-studded stick or whatever device one would choose to inflict serious harm or rather humiliation. Let me give you an example - internet isn't working, and the telco customer support just rattles down the usual "Did you reset your computer? Did you reboot the router? Is it plugged in?", and you just WANT to scream (or maybe did) "Listen guy, I've done EVERYTHING I could on my side and more, the problem HAS to be on YOUR end!"

That was Alex's moment, and perhaps these "I'm just doing my job by the books" type of officers could be that singular red button one should never push, especially since Alex has a penchant for thinking outside the box, as demonstrated, but said Loroi didn't just push said button, but figuratively sat on it.

So, yes Alex did fly off the handle a bit, and this could be yet another lesson for him to realize that his private thoughts are not that private any longer.


Tue Oct 15, 2019 11:57 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
I'll admit that for the situation, the violence I wrote in that off scene might be a bit over the top. At least the punch.
At the least I put it in spoilers and is up for critique and re-writes, as it's an incomplete piece.

Referring to only the cannon story, I think Alex can be quick to anger or at least easy to agitate.
He is shown to be almost enraged at the sight of the Bell wreck (understandable), and gets agitated/annoyed with Tempo and Fireblade.

Given the narrative in this fanfiction, he is currently in a position to stop Stillleaf from 'abandoning' her duty. Given the circumstances and the jeopardy she would put everyone in, I think some form of anger is warranted.

I am interested how that might be incorporated.

It's commented early on in the Main story that Alex inadvertently causes trouble for others, which may be why he is alive in the first place. Perhaps he does something to this effect toward Stillleaf?


Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:36 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Ahhhhaaaa.. more Beacons Brain Candy/Crack... love it!

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Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:10 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Thanks to everyone who worked on Beacons, I am loving it so far! (I haven't started reading New Frontiers yet, but it also sounds like I'd enjoy it.)

For the Umiak strategy (warning that I am terrible at strategy), is the intention that they are bypassing Azimol Citadel and only leaving a defense force in Leido Crossroads to allow for the reinforcements and resupply to pass thru to Enedd/Nezel and onwards unmolested? I'm trying to get inspiration for my own fanfiction, but I suck at reading the strategic situation (spent the past three days thinking that from the current comic page, the Barsam would have a chance to take the fearsome foursome to Azimol before realizing how close to the jump point the Gora Relay was :().


Sat Nov 16, 2019 7:38 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
In Beacons the Umiak Strategic objectives in general are three fold:

A) Defeat the Union.
B) Stabilize the Hierarchy.
C) Profit from the war.

An in depth military penetration at one of the core industrial sectors of the Loroi is a war winning maneuver, made possible by the ability to finally outmaneuver the Loroi via their newfound Lotai. Bypassing static defenses and heavily fortified 'citadel' systems is par of the course of such a penetration as it would preserve important military assets. The Umiak now have seized the strategic initiative and are in a position to hurt the Loroi war effort in its most fundamental levels. The Loroi will have to go above and beyond to turn this around, buying time with everything that they can throw at the Umiak is par of the course in order to marshal their forces and attempt to mitigate the damage inflicted on them while still keeping an avenue of reinforcements and supplies open.

Ending the war will allow the Umiak to stabilize the Hierarchy. Their client races are certainly chaffing under their whip after such an expensive and hard fought war. The Umiak can certainly stamp down any rebellion with ease but the problem with rebellions is that they tend to destroy strategically important infrastructure and populations. Glassing planets and populations that are in open revolt due to being pushed too far is like chopping off parts of one's limb. Fighting a ground war against a revolting population on a planet ill suited for the average Umiak is prohibitively expensive. In short the Umiak need to loosen the lease a little in order to maintain their empire.

So the Umiak are eager to end the war but that is only possible by winning it since the Loroi will not sign any short of ceasefire or armistice after all that has happened. To do that they will still need to keep throwing money and resources at their military in order to capture and occupy all of the Union; occupation, even extremely harsh occupation, is expensive and the money and resources required to do all this need to come out of someplace but if the Umiak client races are to have their obligations lessened then someone else will have to foot the bill. The Umiak are certainly looking to exploit the Union to the fullest extent possible so they will be looking to capture territory, infrastructure and (non Loroi) populations as intact as possible in order to exploit them and thus 'Profit' from the war effort and help lessen the burden from their client races.

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Sat Nov 16, 2019 2:36 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Anything happening with Beacons?
Last commit was in October ;)


Thu Dec 26, 2019 6:36 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Working on it, continuous writing block and RL problems from my part.

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Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:03 am
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
And there, finally sat my ass down and soldiered through the final part.

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Sun Dec 29, 2019 3:42 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
dragoongfa wrote:
And there, finally sat my ass down and soldiered through the final part.

Nice chapter! It's great being able to read another prompt with Alex interacting with Loroi.


Sun Dec 29, 2019 6:02 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Any chance of Echo appearing on next update? Or will you wait for her to appear in the comic first?


Sun Dec 29, 2019 6:04 pm
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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Onaiom wrote:
Any chance of Echo appearing on next update? Or will you wait for her to appear in the comic first?

It may help to know that Echo is from a later period in the timeline. She probably isn't born yet in 2160.

Spoiler: show
Echo is one of the characters from "Project Forward," which is the code name for the sequel to Outsider. While she does technically appear in Outsider, her date of birth is probably sometime after 2162. Her bio is not yet finalized and the details are subject to change.

And yes, I know it may seem crazy to be planning a sequel at this point, but that's what I do. The two stories are intrinsically linked.

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Post Re: Writing Prompts
Ohhh, now you make me horribly curious.

Spoiler: show
Does the current storyline end with the birth of Echo?
And who are her parents?

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Sun Dec 29, 2019 11:59 pm
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