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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Write in the ADVENTURE genre (05/24/07)

TITLE: Lander’s Landing
By Shari Armstrong


Lander sat in the darkest corner of the pub, watching. He watched the people, he watched the door. Watched people going in and out of the door. He watched his life fading away. The door was never going to open to show the right person coming through it. She was long gone, like the wisps of smoke swirling around in the dim light hanging above his head.

“Want another one, hon?”

The waitress stood close to him. He could smell the mix of her perfume and drinks that had been spilt on her. He glanced at the empty cup. “Nah. If I drink any more coffee, I’ll never sleep tonight.”

”Could put a shot of whiskey in it?”

”You know I don’t touch the stuff. I only come here ‘cause you have the best food in town. That and your smile. What do I owe you?”

She smiled. “It’s on the house tonight. Tips were good.”

“Thanks.” He tossed a few bucks on the table when she wasn’t looking and slipped out the back. He pulled his collar up against the chilled night air and began to walk home.
He rounded the final corner, and heard a scream. Chills ran down his spine that weren’t from the night air. He followed the voice, jogging down the street.

He peered around the corner, seeing two shadows standing near another shadow huddled on the ground. Putting his hand in his pocket, he poked it forward. It worked in the old movies, it was worth a try. “Step away from her!”

“Heh! Getta load o’ th’ hero.”

“What do ya say, Walt? Think you can take ‘im?”

The one shadow made his way toward Lander. Before his features were clear, the world went dark.

He awoke, with an ache in his head and a dry mouth, reminiscent of his misspent youth. Trying to move, he felt ropes cutting into his wrists. He could hear someone else breathing behind him. Probably the woman he failed to rescue. So much for being a modern knight in a drab trench coat.

“Lady? Are you a’right?”

“No thanks to you.”

“Well, ain’t that gratitude for ya? See if I try to save you next time.” He could feel bile rising, but it wasn’t from her attitude. The floor moved under him. He swallowed to keep from throwing up.

“I guess I don’t deal well with being mugged then kidnapped.” She sighed. “Guess it could have been worse.”

”So where are we?” Lander tried to find enough saliva to wash away the bitter taste in his mouth.

“I’m not sure. They through a bag over my head after they clocked you. I heard loud birds when I woke up.”

“Do you know what kind of birds? Maybe we could figure out where we are.” He really had to stop watching those old movies.

“They were loud and annoying.”

The floor tipped again and he heard water. “I’m going to take a stab at this. I think they may have been gulls. I think we’re on a boat.”

The door opened and one of their captors came in with a tray. “Thought you two love birds could use somethin’ to eat.” He set it on a table and untied Lander’s wrists and he turned to finally see his companion. She was slim, but athletic with long blonde hair… like her.

“It’s about time you brought us something.”

Any similarities to her ended there. This woman had the personality of a badger.

“We’ll make land in a few hours. Captain will decide what to do with you both then.” He left, locking the door behind him.

“So…” Lander looked at her. “I’m Lander. And you are?”

”Ready to get out of here.”

“Me, too.” He gave up making small talk and ate his meal of bread, cheese and water in silence.

The door opened again a few hours later. Two men came in, binding their hands behind their backs. They were shoved roughly out onto the deck of the ship.

A modern day pirate stood before them, eye patch and all. “Well, we’ve made land, and we’re going to dump you here. There is quite a bit of… traffic through here. We’ve made quite a profit off them. You’ll be rescued soon. We’ll even leave you some food water.”

One of the crew lowered her into a boat.

Lander looked at her, looked back at the captain. “Take me with you, please!”

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This article has been read 1134 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Pat Guy 05/31/07
Yes, I loved the humor through out! It ended quickly with some questions but it kept me going all the way through. Great dialogue that showed the character of your characters! ;)

I thoroughly enjoyed this adventure! Wished I'd thought of it!
Amy Michelle Wiley 05/31/07
Fun entry! I didn't quite get the ending and there were a few grammer issues, but otherwise solid story with a bit of humor. Good job!
terri tiffany06/01/07
Good voice! (through should be 'threw') Nice pace and great action - I didn't get the ending too well - did you mean the woman reminded him of an old girlfriend he didn't like??
Jess Godwin06/02/07
LOVED the sarcasm!! I was hooked from the beginning.
Kate Grey06/04/07
I liked this! Did have some questions, but it kept my interest. :) Very fun story.
Jan Ackerson 06/04/07
This is great, atmospheric--I can see it as an old film noir...and the twist ending just cracked me up! Good job!
Joanne Sher 06/04/07
Great description, and I love the ending too. This read as "seat-of-your-pants" as you wrote it (and that is a good thing!).
Benjamin Graber06/04/07
This is another great read; I enjoyed it! I just think you needed another couple thousands words! :-)
Janice Fitzpatrick06/04/07
Nicely done. Loved the humor and how you brought the reader through the alleyways and aboard a ship with your descriptions and dialogue. The ending is a suprise and I don't blame him a bit.:0)Grin. God bless your talent.Keep up the writing!Janice
Loren T. Lowery06/04/07
Not sure if you're familiar with Douglas Adam's work, but this reminded me a bit of that. Tongue-in-cheek humor is the way this amusing adventure came across to me. Your writing style and dialogue kept my interest the whole way through.
Verna Cole Mitchell 06/06/07
I absolutely loved your adventure--would be interested in the sequel. Of course, they have to fall in love! The humor here is delightful.
Betty Castleberry06/06/07
This was fun. I like the fact that you gave your MC a not so common name. Makes him stand out. I also like the subtle humor. Nicely done.
Kristen Hester06/06/07
I felt like I was there. I would read this book!
Sara Harricharan 06/06/07
Cute title and nice character. Lander is very interesting and I love his dry sense of humor, especially at the end. Very well done. ^_^
Jacquelyn Horne06/06/07
Loved this. Especially the ending. Great job.
Dee Yoder 06/06/07
Love the old black and white detective movies of the '30's and '40's and that's what your story reminds me of...I'd like to "see" the rest of the movie!
Rita Garcia06/07/07
Love it, from the great title to the perfect ending!