nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Sketch: The Faultless Monster
Fandom: Pumpkin Scissors (animeverse)
Character(s): Muzé Caplan
Pairing(s): None
Rating: PG
Word Count: ~1400
Warnings: Mentions of suicide and medical/psychological experiments
A/N: This character sketch of Muzé Caplan has been sitting on my desk in draft for years. I had intended it to be longer and include a version of her canonical meeting with Oland, but that got stalled in development. Looking it over, however, I decided that what I had managed to write could stand on its own. Concrit welcomed with psychological evaluations.

There is something at work in my soul which I do not understand. I am practically industrious — painstaking, a workman to execute with perseverance and labour — but besides this there is a love for the marvellous, a belief in the marvellous, intertwined in all my projects, which hurries me out of the common pathways of men, even to the wild sea and unvisited regions I am about to explore.

— Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

Muzé Caplan slit open the embossed envelope with the same swift efficiency (if but a fraction of the interest) she brought to a dissection. The three flimsies hardly seemed worthy of the rag paper and red wax seal that enclosed them, but she was Caplan now and such courtesies were deemed her due. She often thought that the ancients should not have dismissed the philosopher who defined man as a featherless biped by showing him a plucked chicken. The Institute, the military, the imperial court: how little different they were from a fowl run in the energy their inhabitants devoted to creating and maintaining a pecking order.

Read more... )
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Sketch: Something Ere the End
Fandom: FMA (manga or either animeverse)
Character(s): Gracia, Elicia
Rating: PG
Word Count: 500
Warnings: Offstage character death.
A/N: Finally getting 'round to posting this here; it also won co-first place in the weekly FMA Fic Contest for the "just one more thing" prompt about a zillion years ago now. (Talk about positive reinforcement!) Concrit welcomed with a funeral-baked meat.

      "In here, ma'am," says Sergeant Bloch.

Read more... )
nebroadwe: (Books)
Madoka is a cheerful middle-school student, despite the ominous dreams about the end of the world. Then she discovers that the suicides and disappearances that plague her hometown are actually caused by witches, which is bad. And that the witches are opposed by heroic magical girls, who gain their powers from a cute animal mentor in exchange for a wish, which is ... worse?

There's no way to summarize this fascinating, Faustian deconstruction of the magical girl genre without spoiling its best features. Let's just say that if Stephen King had written Cardcaptor Sakura and Madhouse had outsourced the production design to Tim Burton, you might have gotten something like Puella Magi Madoka Magica. The fact that Kajiura Yuki is responsible for the soundtrack doesn't hurt, either. Recommended.
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Ficlet: The Honey of Earthly Joy
Fandom: FMA (manga or Brotherhoodverse)
Character(s): Miles, Scar
Pairing(s): Set post-series, with all the spoilage that implies.
Rating: G
Word Count: 250
Warnings: None.
A/N: This 'fic ended a nearly year-long writing drought and also won first place in the weekly FMA Fic Contest for the "sugar" prompt. (Talk about positive reinforcement!) Concrit welcomed with an ISO standard cup of tea. Crossposted from [personal profile] nebroadwe to [community profile] hagaren and [community profile] fm_alchemist.
Dedication: For Katie, by whose recent success it is dwarfed. :-)

How sour sweet music is
When time is broke and no proportion kept!
-- William Shakespeare, Richard II


      The nameless man takes his coffee black; Miles, with a spiral of cream. Read more... )
nebroadwe: From "The Magdalen Reading" by Rogier van der Weyden.  (Default)
I'm hoping my subconscious is gearing up for another round of creativity (please, oh, please!) because for the past couple of nights I've been dreaming fanfiction. Yesterday evening, I was wandering through Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan series (and am now rereading Behemoth, whee!); t'other night, the mental drive-in fired up ... Neon Genesis Evangelion? Which I haven't even SEEN, for heaven's sake, except for the Rebuild movies and a trailer or two. Nothing makes you readier to face the day than the realization that it won't have Shinji in it, though.

I entertain the suspicion that my subconscious is in revolt against me reading the manga Cross Game, a slice-of-life baseball story, heavy on the slice of life. (If Princess Nine is baseball as melodrama and Big Windup is baseball as baseball, Cross Game is sort of in the middle: the baseball is there, but so are the human relationships, minus all the Sturm und Drang.) Mind you, my conscious mind loves Cross Game, so my subconscious can grump all it wants -- I'm not giving it up. Perhaps we can compromise on ATLA or something?
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Ficlet: Nian Nian You Yu
Fandom: FMA (manga or Brotherhoodverse)
Character(s): Mei Chang, Xiao Mei
Pairing(s): None.
Rating: G
Word Count: 250
Warnings: None.
A/N: Very slightly (as in one word) revised version of a 'fic submitted to [ profile] fma_fic_contest for the "fish" prompt. (It actually won -- ye gods and little fishes!) Since water is one of the essentials of a Chinese garden and ponds with goldfish a common design element, I had yet another excuse to stud a 'fic with foreign words and idioms. Concrit welcomed with tartar sauce. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to Höllenbeck (i.e. [ profile] hagaren_manga, [ profile] fm_alchemist, [ profile] fma_gen, [ profile] fma_writers and [ profile] fma_fiction).
Dedication: For Renee, who reminded me that it's too long since I wrote something. Congrats on the successful defense!

      One by one the goldfish in the pond beneath the willows die until only the goggle-eyed grandfather of them all remains. Read more... )
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Ficlet: A Very Pine-Apple
Fandom: FMA (manga or Brotherhood version)
Character(s): Roy, Riza, Master Hawkeye
Pairing(s): None. (Again, for obvious reasons ...)
Rating: G
Word Count: 350
Warnings: None. Set pre-series.
A/N: I was going to submit this to [ profile] fma_fic_contest for the "canon couple" prompt, but sadly it turned out not to fit the criteria. Ah, well. The title is taken from a line in Richard Sheridan's comedy of manners The Rivals ("He is the very pine-apple of politeness!"), which also gave us the immortal Mrs. Malaprop. Concrit welcomed with cordwood. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to Höllenbeck (i.e. [ profile] hagaren_manga, [ profile] fm_alchemist, [ profile] fma_gen, [ profile] fma_writers and [ profile] fma_fiction).
Dedication: For [ profile] kanja177, who always studies hard and never gets into trouble. Ever.

      Roy Mustang is as precocious a charmer as he is an alchemist because he's clever enough to notice that charm opens doors power and even wit can't force. Read more... )
nebroadwe: (Books)
High-schooler Kenji just missed representing Japan in the Math Olympics, so this summer he has nothing to look forward to except working as a low-level moderator for OZ, the nation's premiere virtual reality social, business, and governmental networking site, with his friend Takashi. That is, until his classmate Natsuki persuades him to accompany her to her great-grandmother's 90th birthday party at the family's run-down country house, where he is unexpectedly introduced to the clan as her fiancé. Against his better judgment, Kenji goes along with the story, but matters take another unexpected turn when he solves a tricky math puzzle sent to his OZ account in the middle of the night. Next morning, he discovers that his account has been used to hack dozens of others, including those of government officials, with dire real-world results. But as Japan descends into chaos, Natsuki's great-grandmother picks up the phone and begins making calls to her own social network ... and her family once again finds itself on the front line of war ...

Spoilers ho! )
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: What Weighs Upon the Heart
Fandom: Cybersix (animated version)
Character(s): Lucas, Cybersix, Data-Seven
Pairing(s): Lucas/Cybersix
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2185
Warnings: Spoilers for the finale.
A/N: Everyone on my f-list wrote for NaNo, but I celebrated a break in what felt like a near-terminal case of writer's block with this short story, because the final scene of episode thirteen must surely have led to a very interesting conversation. Concrit welcomed with genetically enhanced editorial skills. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to [ profile] cyber6.
Dedication: This is for L and N, who noticed that there's always a full moon over Meridiana.

I would like to give you the silver
branch, the white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center.

-- Margaret Atwood, "Variation on the Word 'Sleep'"

"Let me help." Rhymes with "I love you," right?
-- Lois McMaster Bujold, Barrayar

      Taking the stairs two at a time, Lucas finds himself winded, as usual, midway up the third flight. He staggers onto the fourth-floor landing, hands braced on his knees as he gasps for breath. He needs more regular exercise; the walk from home to school and back isn't enough, not even with the detour that brings him past what till tonight was a darkened window.

Read more... )
nebroadwe: (Books)
Strange game is afoot in the city of Meridiana. Upright citizens are kidnapped off the streets by hulking, green-skinned goons; monstrous creatures lurk in the subways and the sewers. So when Lucas Amato sees a woman's caped figure silhouetted mid-leap against the moon, he does what any curious high school biology teacher would do: he follows her, catching up just as she defeats one of the aforementioned goons in combat. She flees without identifying herself, leaving Lucas to witness the evaporation of her fallen foe. As evidence of his adventure, he rashly pockets a glowing green vial he finds among the goon's discarded clothes and with that makes himself the quarry not only of the goon's fellows, but also of their master José and of the mysterious woman whose cognomen is Cybersix. Despite the danger, Lucas isn't quite ready to take the advice of his colleague Adrian Seidelman and give up the vial ... not until he can discover what's going on and who Cybersix really is ...

This animated series ran all too briefly as part of the FOX Saturday morning lineup in the mid-1990s, where I saw and enjoyed two or three of its thirteen episodes. Adapted by a Canadian production team (led by Hervé Bedard) from an Argentinian comic book (written by Carlos Meglia and Carlos Trillo) and animated in Japan (by TMS/NOA), it was clearly doomed to failure in its time slot: Cybersix maintains her secret identity by cross-dressing as a man, a disguise sufficiently convincing to attract a teenage crush; her archnemeses, the scientist Von Reichter and his son José, are goose-stepping closet Nazis; and the narrative's forward momentum is provided by the romance which develops between Cybersix and Lucas amid their monster-of-the-week adventures. IIRC, Cybersix was pulled from U.S. television with a few episodes left unaired, but Teletoon in Canada ran the series in its entirety. A keep-circulating-the-tapes version of the Canadian broadcast is the only one currently available in English,* which is a shame, because this story deserves more love.

Read more... )

*A French dub, without subtitles, was released on DVD in region 2; copies are still available from resellers.
nebroadwe: (Books)
Mihashi Ren loves to pitch, but his middle school baseball team lost every game with him on the mound. Convinced he's a failure, he transfers to Nishiura High School with no plans to play ever again. Nishiura's new baseball coach, Momoe Maria, however, ropes him into her all-first-year team in spite of his protests, pairing him with ace catcher Abe Takaya. Abe discovers that Mihashi's lack of speed is more than outweighed by his pinpoint control. The fledgling team, with guidance from Coach Momoe and faculty adviser Shiga (an amateur sports psychologist), then begins the difficult double task of restoring Mihashi's confidence and preparing for the summer baseball tournament.

Read more... )I'm used to baseball stories where the protagonist's superpower is that s/he's Randy Johnson, so it's a nice change of pace to discover one in which s/he turns out to be Jamie Moyer. Unfortunately this gem is such a niche product that its 13-episode second season is unlikely to make it across the pond; I'd also be astonished if anyone picked up the manga, despite its popularity in Japan. Still, if you know any dual fans of anime and baseball, send them over to the Funimation website to give this one a try. They may well be as captivated as I am.
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Ficlet: Snake Oil
Fandom: FMA (anime or manga version)
Character(s): Ed, Al
Pairing(s): None.
Rating: G
Word Count: 200
Warnings: None.
A/N: Written in response to the prompts "genuine" (provided by [ profile] artemisrae) and "glisten" (provided by [ profile] evil_little_dog) for the Just One Word meme. Concrit welcomed with a patent remedy guaranteed to cure what ails ya! Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to Höllenbeck (i.e. [ profile] hagaren_manga, [ profile] fm_alchemist, [ profile] fma_gen, [ profile] fma_writers and [ profile] fma_fiction).

      Sometimes the Elric brothers know a lead's worthless, like an advertisement for Genuine Philosopher's Stone Chips peddled out of a medicine wagon, offering Relief For The Thousand Natural Shocks That Flesh Is Heir To (headache, earache, indigestion, constipation, arthritis, colic, and, er, female complaints) by Stimulating The Body's Natural Alchemy. Read more... )
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Drabbles: Angles of Reflectance
Fandom: Pumpkin Scissors (anime or manga version)
Character(s): Alice, Oland, Oreldo, Lionel
Pairing(s): Canon 'ships.
Rating: T (Oreldo doesn't go any lower)
Word Count: 300
Warnings: None. Takes place during the duel at the ball.
A/N: Written for a fandom that needs more love -- unfortunately, I think I need more canon before I can start imagining my own plots, but given that the anime concluded with the ball arc and Del Rey's release of the manga is proceeding at a glacial pace, that ain't going to happen any time soon. The fun here was writing character haiku: taking the existing concepts and paring them down to essentials in the appropriate voices. Concrit welcomed with three hots and a cot. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to [ profile] pumpkinscissors.
Dedication: For Laura Mulvey, for obvious reasons. ;-p

1. Narcissus

      When she stumbles, awkward in the silks and manners her sisters graciously affect, Lionel catches her -- his lovely pawn, advancing rank by rank toward her apotheosis, ignorant of the game's subtleties. He woos her in clichés because he sees her thus: chess-piece, princess, callow maid.

Read more... )
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: So Long at the Fair: A Story in Drabbles
Fandom: FMA (anime or manga version)
Character(s): Ed, Al, Winry, Pinako
Pairing(s): None explicit.
Rating: G
Word Count: 1400
Warnings: None. Takes place after Ed and Al's Big Mistake, but before the story really gets going.
A/N: Written for the 2009 Fire and Ice Challege Contest -- wherein I am proud to say it made it to the tie-breaker -- and revised to the extent of changing one adjective to an adverb. Concrit welcomed with a day pass to the midway and a certificate for one (1) free ice cream cone. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to Höllenbeck (i.e. [ profile] hagaren_manga, [ profile] fm_alchemist, [ profile] fma_gen, [ profile] ed_winry, [ profile] fma_writers and [ profile] fma_fiction).

      The first train to Riesenbuhl leaves East City in the dark before dawn. Read more... )
nebroadwe: (Bear)
Many people of a certain age (i.e. mine) in the U.S. got their introduction to anime through Star Blazers, an English dub-and-edit of Space Battleship Yamato. It hasn't aged well, IMO, but I remember it fondly: it was my introduction to progressive serial narrative (they went somewhere and came back to solve the plot problem! people even DIED! OhEmGee!). So when I saw this:

... well, let's just say the SQUEE! factor was pretty darn acute. Given all the licensing hassles surrounding this property, I doubt I'll see it unless I import it, but still ... my inner twelve-year-old is settling down on the couch in the t.v. room and humming, "'Our Star Blazers!'"
nebroadwe: (Books)
Studio Ghibli is planning to film The Borrowers by Mary Norton and release it next summer. I first got wind of this yesterday, here and here. They won't be doing it as period piece; evidently the setting will be early-oughties Tokyo, right around the corner from some Ghibli offices. Hmm, opportunities for meta? The director, Yonebashi Hiromasa, is the youngest man ever to helm a Ghibli feature, so perhaps he's down with self-referentiality and other such hip concepts? :-) It's also his first time in the Big Chair, having worked as assistant animation director on Gedo Senki after serving his time in the animation ranks at various levels (including as a key animator on Serial Experiments: Lain). I had no problems with the animation of Gedo Senki -- it was the story I felt was lacking -- so this is potentially hopeful news.

Check out the pretty picture here.
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Drabble: With Weeping and With Laughter
Fandom: FMA (anime or manga version)
Character(s): Ed
Pairing(s): None.
Rating: G
Word Count: 100
Warnings: None.
A/N: Written in response to [ profile] evil_little_dog's Don't Forget Challenge. Unbeta'd and likely to mutate in small ways before it goes to archive. Concrit welcomed with scenes from my anecdotage!

When young and old in circle around the firebrands close;
When the girls are weaving baskets and the lads are shaping bows ...
With weeping and with laughter still is the story told,
How well Horatius kept the bridge in the brave days of old.

-- Macaulay, Horatius

      Forget homunculi -- these days, when Ed visits Central, children ten times more persistent hound him. Tell us about the monster on the island! Tell how you lost your watch in Rush Valley! Tell about the battle on the train! Reticence fires their imaginations; rebuffs fall on selectively deaf ears. Ask your father. Ask your mother (and I didn't lose it -- it was stolen). Ask your uncle -- no, not your Uncle Roy! All right, listen, here's what really happened ...

      Time has already cast its glamor over his youth; his best hope for theirs is to transmute legend into wisdom. Listen. Listen.

[Acknowledgments: Fullmetal Alchemist (Hagane no Renkinjutsushi) was created by Arakawa Hiromu and is serialized monthly in Shonen Gangan (Square Enix); two anime of the same title were produced by Studio Bones. Copyright for these properties is held by Arakawa Hiromu, Square Enix, Mainichi Broadcasting System, Aniplex, Bones, and dentsu. All rights reserved.]
nebroadwe: (Books)
From's coverage of the New York Anime Festival (to which I would've gone, if I hadn't bought the car, argh) comes the following news regarding Funimation's dub of FMA:B:
Funimation has also announced the English dubbing cast for the ongoing Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood television series version of Hiromu Arakawa's fantasy adventure manga. Bryan Massey will play Isaac, J. Michael Tatum will play Scar, and Maxey Whitehead will play Alfonse Elric. The other characters will have the same voice cast from the earlier 2003-2004 Fullmetal Alchemist television adaptation. Alfonse Elric's former voice actor, Aaron Dismuke, will have a "big role" later on. Caitlin Glass and Mike McFarland are the ADR directors for the English dub.
My bet's on Dismuke returning as Ling, heh. Maxey Whitehead did a reasonable turn as the young Antonio in Romeo x Juliet, so no worries there. Must get around to putting the dub of the FMA OVAs in the player to check out Tatum's Scar, since I quite enjoyed Dameon Clarke's take. The original FMA dub is one of my favorites, so I'm pleased by the return of the rest of the cast (FMA, along with Princess Nine, Full Metal Panic and sequels, Death Note, Spirited Away and Porco Rosso, is one of the few anime I'm as likely to listen to in English as in Japanese). If Glass and McFarland can pull performances of similar quality out of their VAs this time around, they'll have another winner on their hands. (Can't hardly wait for the scene in the alley ... oh, I'm so preordered on this one ... :-)
nebroadwe: Write write write edit edit edit edit edit & post. (Writer)
Title: Learner's Permit
Fandom: FMA (anime or manga version)
Character(s): Winry and Pinako
Pairing(s): None.
Rating: G
Word Count: 100 (3300 in the whole series)
Warnings: None.
A/N: Incipient car ownership is eating my life, so I figured I might as well get a drabble out of it. Crossposted from [ profile] nebroadwe to Höllenbeck (i.e. [ profile] hagaren_manga, [ profile] fm_alchemist, [ profile] fma_gen, [ profile] fma_writers, and [ profile] fma_fiction.
Dedication(s): Happy incredibly belated birthday, [ profile] artemisrae! Someday I'll finish that Avatar 'fic I was working on, but in the meanwhile ...

As soon as Winry can reach the pedals and still see over the dash, her grandmother teaches her to drive.


nebroadwe: From "The Magdalen Reading" by Rogier van der Weyden.  (Default)
The Magdalen Reading

August 2014



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