The Book of Stories: Character Audition for Antagonist
Ink on a page...
This is a starting place, as good as any. From a pen ink flows and merges into letters, binary digits combine to form words on a screen, like a black river through a white land they come together. Then sentences and paragraphs come into being. A story flows. This is its prologue, formed from nothing.
The dark words rise and flow through the book, choosing not to be bound by the conventions of its parents.
Flowing into places the book has prepared for it, it finds constructs of lesser words that can be bound to the whim of a stronger idea. It finds a name and that name is Antagonist, not perfect but for now it will do. It seeps into the Fluid Exchange in search of a vessel. An added comma here, a letter changed and shifted there makes the transition easier.
He over-writes an old book seller. Forming a pressed suit, black as a void over a paper white shirt wrapped around the form that becomes pleasingly masculine if poorly detailed. A mere figment, possessed and altered, but it will suffice for now.
A market-place, hot and dusty, an array of hastily sketched figments, depicting a generic town in the Middle East of an Earth. Barely enough detail yet. Antagonist adds his own words and flows deeper into the story.
Susan loved to read and the narrow crowded market places here were littered with rare treasures, obscure antiques bound in leather with that rich scent of old paper that she craved. Her black tresses bound up in a headscarf in deference to local traditions despite the heat.
However she had one book in particular she was seeking. a hand scribbled note that came at the price of eighty Euros assured her that what she wanted would be here.
Turning left she found the stall, propped between a squat brick hotel and a series of tents. She hesitated and drew back the curtain looking inside. Shelves crammed full of ancient tomes calling to her. However the proprietor was not what she expected. Instead of the ubiquitous withered Egyptian grandfathers that clutter the area stood a tall European gentleman dressed in a stark black and white suit devoid of any ornamentation.
"Good afternoon Miss, Welcome to my store, I am Mr Ant the proprietor. Can I help you find anything?" His voice crisp and clear, sharp as a paper cut.
Handing over the scrap of paper mutely, Susan feels an odd tension, as if her destiny were being sucked out through her eyeballs, her sense of self being reduced to a vague outline. However the characters actions happen almost mechanically now, as the monochrome figure reads the slip of paper.
The gentleman shakes his head "The Book of Ink and Mudd? No I'm sorry I can't say that I'm familiar with that title. Perhaps you could try my colleague Mister Falla down the street?" Handing the paper back he smiles as the once prominent protagonist fades into the background of the scene and departs.
Giving himself a moment as the scene begins to fade Antagonist reaches down beneath the counter and running his fingers along the cold spine of the enigmatic book, cradling his home and his life briefly before setting it down among the other texts. It's safe for now, kept away from those who would, ham-fisted attempt to make their own mark on the Book.
The tale, now devoid of its central figure, slowly collapses in on its self before it can even be fully realised. It fades never to be written, so he abandons the crude human form and from the hollow figment of the bookseller, the dark liquid trickles down into the ground. Wet ink slides between pages, to seek out another victim in another tale.