Friday, January 25, 2008

Ghostopia (Chapter 1)

The re-writening is finally upon us, folks! After nearly 3 years since the world first saw Ghostopia Chapter 1, here we go again. Of course, it's worth noting that I haven't done any story-writing for 6 months. So, what has changed? I've been doing a fair bit of dusting off my old material, and one thing becomes evident: I need to stop making my stories well-written, well-structured or any self-gratifying nonsense, and first of all ENTERTAINING. A couple of years in advertising have been rather helpful in this aspect, I venture. If you've read the first Ghostopia, enjoy the fun of spotting characters and plots I've killed. And if you haven't, just enjoy it anyway.

It's taken three years, but it'll be worth the wait. I promise. =)

Ghostopia: Chapter 1

"Welcome to the afterlife."


"In case you haven't realised yet, you're dead, my friend."

Darren clutched his side. It hurt. Where was he, and who was this strange man?

The man stared silently at Darren for almost a minute. Finally he spoke.

"I'm Mortie."

"Mortie," Darren nodded unsurely. "Who are you, and where am I?"

"You died this morning in a car accident," Mortie clasped, then unclasped his hands. "And you are now at the borders of the afterworld - or Ghostopia as we call it - where I am the gatekeeper."

"You gotta be kidding me."

"Afraid not," Mortie sniffed. "5.44am on the State Express Highway, 6th mile. Headlong crash with a stalled lorry. Died on the 13th minute to the hospital."

"No. No."

Mortie gazed at him grimly. "I'm sorry. Sometimes these things just happen."

"No. That was...a dream."

Mortie shook his head. Darren started shaking uncontrollably.

He put a hand on Darren's shoulder. "Get up."

"N-no," Darren whimpered. "I-it was a dream."

Mortie, still stone-faced, strode to his desk and picked up an eight-by-eight-inch box.

"What's done is done. Take this and live well in your new home." He offered the box to Darren.

Darren pushed his hand away.

"Maybe I should come back later." Mortie sighed and started walking away.


"Feeling better now?"

Darren had been lying there motionless for days. Weeks, maybe. One thing about being dead is you never feel hungry, tired, bored and all those trivial things that living people feel for no reason.

"Listen here, Darren," Mortie retrieved the box and passed it to him again. "You may think yourself unfortunate for dying so young. And perhaps you are right."

"But suppose you were today given an opportunity to become the luckiest man alive. Or rather, make that luckiest man not alive."

Darren glared at him with a look that spoke Not Funny.

"In 14 days, the Great Ghostopia Escape shall commence. And I am extending you the offer of a lifetime to join me."

Darren turned away, uninterested.

"You should be paying more attention, really. Let me tell you where we're escaping to."

He leaned closer forward.

"The world of the living."