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March 2024 Ficlet Challenge
purplecleric
The word prompt this month is ... PURSUIT

And for the second challenge:

It's raining - anything but water!

Happy writing!
 
littlesue
Of course the first thing that came to my mind was that song by the Weather Girls...'It's Raining Men!'...hmm, now there's a thought..........Grin
Cold! You don't know the meaning of the word cold!
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of your window!!


Sue's Book Shelf https://www.mediafire.com/folder/z1xg...Zine_Shelf

Rebel Run Video https://youtu.be/8prqS-XZtLo
 
Brad
Two links looked up at the sky as a bright flash lit up the landscape.

They stared at the fading light for some time, and then, hard, shiny fragments began to fall down on them, like rain, only sharp.

From one large chunk of... what was it called, metal, yes, that was it. From one large chunk of metal came a fading voice. +I AM SORRY. I HAVE FALED YOU....+

One link asked, "What that? Some king of god?"

The other link answered, "It's raining Zen, Halleluiah!"

.
.

i.imgur.com/FuZ0Mn2.png
Cockatoo? What Cockatoo? I don't see a Cockatoo!
 
littlesue

Brad wrote:

Two links looked up at the sky as a bright flash lit up the landscape.

They stared at the fading light for some time, and then, hard, shiny fragments began to fall down on them, like rain, only sharp.

From one large chunk of... what was it called, metal, yes, that was it. From one large chunk of metal came a fading voice. +I AM SORRY. I HAVE FALED YOU....+

One link asked, "What that? Some king of god?"

The other link answered, "It's raining Zen, Halleluiah!"


GrinGrin
Cold! You don't know the meaning of the word cold!
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of your window!!


Sue's Book Shelf https://www.mediafire.com/folder/z1xg...Zine_Shelf

Rebel Run Video https://youtu.be/8prqS-XZtLo
 
Paula

littlesue wrote:

Of course the first thing that came to my mind was that song by the Weather Girls...'It's Raining Men!'...hmm, now there's a thought..........Grin


You beat me to it, littlesue!
Resist the Host




 
Cygnus Bazza
Reigning Again

“Just dropping out of the sky, they were, Avon, down there on that surprisingly but conveniently Earth-like planet with its surprisingly but conveniently Earth-like atmosphere and its surprisingly but conveniently Earth-like flora, fauna and geology…”

“OK, Vila. Let’s get this straight. You’re telling me Alexandra Bastedo just fell out of the clouds. And then William Gaunt. And then Stuart Damon…”

“Yep.”

“So it was…it was….raining Champions?”

“At first, yeah. Then it stopped for a bit. But then we had another shower. And I really do mean SHOWER! Lots and lots of highly disreputable kings, queens, emperors – that sort of thing. Down they came! There was Justinian the Slit-Nosed from the Byzantine Empire, ‘Bloody’ Mary, Louis the Do-Nothing of France, Portugal’s Peter the Till-the-End-of-the-World-Passionate, John-George the Beer-Jug…”

“John-George the BEER-JUG?”

“Elector of Saxony, according to Orac. 1611 to 1656.”

“So as well as raining Champions…it was…raining monarchs?”

“Yep!”

“Mmm. Let me see. Raining monarchs… Raining Champions. Well that's it, Vila. It's obvious! You got caught in a punderstorm...”
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
M1795537OCVirn
(For Obsidian, after the 'Breakdown' rewatch).

Pursuit

“Then are we agreed?” Servalan looked round the advisory group. One or two nodded.
“You are ordering the improved unit fitted as standard, rather than the tried and tested version?” Senator Ries asked.
“It is the normal procedure,” she returned.
“But won’t the new…feature… give the resistors more reason to …”
“Resist?” she finished his sentence, conceding, “Senator, they invent their own reasons. Perhaps I should arrange a demonstration?”
Predictably, her proposal was accepted.

On screen, Space Commander Travis heard her out and nodded. She wanted to be in at the kill? Well, it was all her idea. He was only her errand boy. Again.
“I’m to follow them?”
Servalan heard the petulance in his voice,
“Not yet,” She smiled at her aide, her latest favourite, “Are we ready?”
“The implant checks out, Ma’am.”
The Supreme Commander smoothed the ivory silk of her dress. Real, organic silk! Incredibly expensive, but the feeling of it against her skin was worth any price. With an effort, she returned her thoughts to the matter in hand. She had recently acted on a chance suggestion that the Federation’s limiter device, used to control violence, might also be primed to trigger it. In short, the carrier would go berserk, until it killed or was killed. Such an interesting possibility. And, as she’d hoped, the crew of the Scorpio had been discovered close enough to oblige with a demonstration.
“Begin the pursuit,” she ordered.

Avon studied Orac’s results and felt the hairs on his neck rise. Rescuing General Aeril had been a mistake, but would the others understand?
On the flight deck, Dayna was retelling her part in escaping from Travis, to excited congratulations from all but Vila, who poured himself another drink.
“And then they –,” Dayna stopped as Avon approached.
“Send her back,” he interrupted bluntly, "Now."
The others stared at him blankly. Before they could argue, he continued, “Orac’s analysis confirms it: Aeril is a plant. It was too easy.”
“Don’t be ridiculous!” Aeril herself sprang to her feet, “I’m – “
“When the Federation arrested you last month,” Avon interrupted, “Instead of deportation or execution, they implanted a limiter and released you.”
“Because our protest was peaceful – “
Vila roused himself,
“Not to the Feds. Broadcasting rebel propaganda merits a death sentence,” he shook his head, “I’m with Orac. Send her back."
“My regrets, General,” Avon explained, “But according to Orac, the new limiters have offensive capabilities. However, if we time it right, between us we'll make the Federation regret weaponizing you.”

Travis viewed the remains disinterestedly.
“It didn’t work, then?” he asked, trying not to grin, “A near thing, though.”
“It’s a work in progress,” Servalan answered grimly. Two lives lost! Aeril’s unexpected and unwelcome appearance aboard had proved a point: the adapted limiter could provoke violence, but in an inexperienced subject, the effect was short-lived. Limited, in fact.
“Mutoid, clear this up,” Travis ordered, as the young aide’s blood continued to flow, adding, “Made a mess of your frock, too.”

Wink
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A TRIVIAL KIND)

“Right! Let’s have a bit of hush! QUIET! OK, I declare Liberator’s inaugural Classic 1980s Boardgames Night…OPEN!!! Now what are we going to play first?”

“Is this going to take long, Blake?”

“It’ll take just as long as it takes, Avon. I’m pulling a three-line whip on this one. It’ll be good for us all to bond over a nice, friendly game of Trivial Pursuit, don’t you think? Get the old grey matter working…”

“My grey matter never stops working, Blake. And I fail to see how delving into an asinine, so-called ‘classic’ quiz-based boardgame is going to help in that department. Oh, go on then. Ask me one of the questions…”

“OK, just let me grab a little card. Right. Think pink, I always say. It’s in the category ‘Entertainment’. Here goes. For a wedge. Ooh – a two-parter. Exciting! Ready, Avon?

“Just get on with it…”

“Right. Listen carefully: ‘What eponymous hero of a British sci-fi TV show died in its fifty-second and final episode; and what was the name of the crewmate and arch-rival who killed him?’”

“No idea. But I know whose side I’d have been on! How about you, Vila? You seem to be having fun with the Junior Scrabble.”

“Well, I’ve just thought of a great word for you, Avon. A four-letter one, as it happens. Rhymes with hun…”

“Yes, that’s quite enough of that. What about you, Cally? What have you got there?”

“I’m reading the rules for a game called ‘Cluedo’. The scenario sounds a bit like what happened on the Ortega…only not quite as good. Crikey! There’s a ‘Miss Scarlett’ here who looks a bit like Jenna! And look, Avon, there’s someone called ‘Plum’!”

“Well, we’ll give that one a miss. Got quite enough plums here already, thank you very much. And how about you, Jenna? That game looks marginally less uninteresting than the others…”

“Sorry, Avon. Miles away… Just thinking about that Trivial Pursuit question… This one? Yes, it seems to be called ‘Guess Who?’. Yes, ‘Guess Who? – Special B7 Edition’, whatever that means. What’s ‘B7’ when it’s at home?”

“Could be a water-soluble vitamin. Or an isotope of boron. Sounds dull as ditch water...”

“No, I don’t think it’s either of those. Look. It’s got lots of little pictures of people’s faces on little flippy-flap things. Blimey. Look at this ugly mug! Wouldn’t want to meet him in a dark alley! What do you reckon, Cally?”

“Let’s see. Ha, ha! You’re right, Jenna… BRU-TAL! Ha, ha! Hang on a moment… Doesn’t that face look familiar? Gan! Gan! Just turn this way for a minute… OH. MY. GOD. It’s Gan! That picture’s of Gan! What do YOU think, Avon?”

“Has it got a dent in its head? Let me see. Those slightly vacant eyes. Mildest hint of a Neanderthal forehead. Yep. That looks like Gan, all right. Quite a coincidence. And look at that one! Ha, ha. What a miserable-looking bar steward… Clearly considers himself far too good to be included in a soppy little boardgame like this… And what about THIS joker, with the Kevin Keegan scrunch perm and something of the self-destructive Messiah complex about him…”

“Oh…my…days…”

“What is it, Cally? You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”

“Avon, don’t you see it? This one’s a cartoon of you. And this one’s a cartoon of Blake! This whole game…it’s us!”

“Don’t be ridiculous. There must be two dozen characters here…”

“Well, look at this one. That’s ex-President Sarkoff! And here’s Clonemaster Fen! And this one’s Vargas! Must be him – he’s got his mouth wide open! Blake… Blake! Come and see! Blake! Blake? What’s the matter? You’ve gone deathly pale!”

“Just read the answer to that Trivial Pursuit question. Looks like I’m a dead man walking. And as for my assassin. Oh…A…von…”

“What ARE you blathering about, Blake?”

“I think I’ve just seen the future. I know the identity of the man who’ll eventually kill me..."

"Well let's have a name, then!"

"No... Guess who…”
Edited by Cygnus Bazza on 15-03-2024 09:56
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
M1795537OCVirn
Another idle moment for the Professor? Nice one, Bazza!
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
 
Anniew
Great fics both of you. I weep for the organic silk M! And I love the cartoon descriptions Bazza
Play the hand fate deals you.
 
Cygnus Bazza

M1795537OCVirn wrote:

Another idle moment for the Professor? Nice one, Bazza!

Fortuitously, you catch me between proofs!

And TVM for that, Annie!
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A PHYSICAL KIND)

ARE YOU A LIBERRRATORRRRRRRR!?

Con-ten-der, READDDDYYYYYY! Lib-er-ator, READDDDYYYYYY!

Three, two, one…and they’re off!

And they’re back on again. Thank God for that. This is no time to remove your 50/50 mix leather-and-Lycra trousers, Avon… Well, this re-boot of everyone’s favourite ’90s sports-based game show ‘LIBERATORS’ has been a rip-roaring success, hasn’t it? With classic games like ‘Duel’ and ‘Powerplayball’ dovetailing effortlessly with new additions like ‘The Web’ and pushing our contenders’ raw nerve and dumb muscle to the very limits of endurance. And yes, it’s everyone’s favourite man-we-love-to-hate-and-hate-to-love, Avon, in hot pursuit. But enough about his private life – how’s he getting on catching our contender, who seems to have made it halfway through The Web already? Looks like a tight squeeze, Avon. And no, no…didn’t think so! No way Avon could get his ego through such a tight space. Well, my, my! THAT was cheeky! He’s teleported to the other side of the hazard instead! Crafty old fox! But oh… For fox sake… What’s he doing NOW???

This isn’t good… Dear oh dear. The last time I saw Avon in this sort of mood, the contender left the arena in bandages! Yes, poor old Shivan. Mind you, he’d turned up in bandages in the first place… But, oh, oh – yes, Avon seems to have got our contender in some sort of headlock… Careful, Avon… Don’t apply too much….pressure…oops, too late! His head’s come off. Dearie me…. Yes, our contender’s been well and truly Mullered… And the crowd don’t like it! No, they don’t like it one little bit! And what’s this? Yes, Avon’s taunting them now… What’s that, Avon? The crowd response – you think it’s a load of what? Oh, THAT! Sorry, I thought you said “load of Molochs”.

Oh and now Avon’s mouthing something at me… What? You want me to do what? Sark off? Oh. Nearly. Well, let’s draw a veil over that and head off to our next game – it’s another new one and it’s called ‘Sarcophagus’. Not sure about this, to be honest. Takes an awful long time to get going. And then it sort of tails off a bit before petering out altogether. But one thing I CAN guarantee - we'll be needing another great big load of those Molochs...
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A CONVENTIONAL KIND)

“We’re picking up a distress signal from the ship we’re pursuing, Avon.”

“Not surprising, Vila. Is it an SOS?”

“Hard to say. They’ve encrypted it using an obsolete cipher system called…let me see…yes, called Inspector Morse Code.”

“That’s Morse Code, you lemon. Inspector Morse was a TV detective back in the days of the old calendar. Lived in Oxford. Handy for Steventon. Probably knew a pub called The Fox rather well.”

“Where? The Fox? That……..”

“Well, in Steventon, obvs…”

“No. I meant: Where? The Fox? That……..that…….that sounds rather nice. Sorry. A bit distracted trying to decrypt this message. Just seems to be a collection of dots and dashes.”

“What do YOU think, Chris?”

“Cut it out, Avon. It’s Del, not Chris. But I’d prefer it if you just call me Tarrant. Keeps things nice and businesslike, don’t you think? And since you ask, I know a lot about Morse Code. I know a lot about EVERYTHING. As you know. Yes, SOS would be dot-dot-dot, dash-dash-dash, dot-dot-dot.”

“Dot-dot-dot… So like an ellipsis, then… That sounds rather…dramatic… Vila, crack that signal! Is it dot-dot-dot? Is it? Dash-dash-dash…”

“I’m going as quick as I can! Actually, it’s...it's...dot-dot-dash-dot, dot-dot-dash-dot, dot-dot-dot... Any ideas, Tarrant?”

"Ask Orac. I'm off to do a spot of male grooming..."

"Anyone we know?? Orac, what does this significant signal signify?"

“Well, it should be evident, to anyone even of mean, mode or median intelligence, what the signal represents. In Morse Code, dot-dot-dash-dot is equivalent to the letter ‘F’ in the Roman alphabet. So the message just transmitted by the ship you’re pursuing isn’t ‘SOS’. It’s ‘FFS’ dot-dot-dot. Apologies, I mean, it’s ‘FFS’…”

Avon pursued his lips. Sorry, that should be: Avon pursed his lips.

“Is that it? Is that all? ‘FFS’? Oh, FFS! This is hopeless! Vila – are we picking up anything else?”

“Yes, yes, FYI…”

“That would be dot-dot-dash-dot, dash-dot-dash-dash, dot-dot…”

“Yes, thank you, Orac… There’s another encrypted bit at the end of the message, Avon. The full thing reads: ‘FFS. Why are you pursuing us? Just…’ And then it lapses back into more Morse.”

“More Morse?”

“Yes, more Morse. Two letters. Dot-dot-dash-dot, dash-dash-dash… You can work that out for yourself, Avon…”

“Sounds a bit rude. OK, Vila. Tell them we’re in pursuit of them because we’ve heard they’ve got something very, very rare and very, very, very, VERY, very, VERY valuable on board. Yes… An NHS dentist! And I’m hoping they can help with our temporary oral hygiene problems… Blimey, when we agreed to let Chris on board, we really should’ve insisted he bring his own supply of teeth-whitening toothpaste with him. He’s cleaned us out. So to speak… Transmit that message, Vila!”

“Transmitting now, Avon! But you still haven’t told us the name of this NHS dentist…”

“Apologies. An oversight on my part. You see, I trust this will be a case of her doing exactly what it says on the tin. Yes, I believe she goes by the name of….Dr Plaque-stun…”
Edited by Cygnus Bazza on 15-03-2024 10:12
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
M1795537OCVirn
What happened to your longship?
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
 
Cygnus Bazza

M1795537OCVirn wrote:

What happened to your longship?

Undergoing repairs at L'Anse aux Meadows. Seaworthy again soon.
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Cygnus Bazza

Cygnus Bazza wrote:

M1795537OCVirn wrote:

What happened to your longship?

Undergoing repairs at L'Anse aux Meadows. Seaworthy again soon.

All ship-shape again. I love a good rivet.
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A TELEVISUAL KIND)

Date: Autumn 1975

Scene: A meeting-room at BBC Television Centre

Present: Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (CommEd); Deputy Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (DepCommEd); Assistant Deputy Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (AssDepCommEd); Secretary/Minute-Taker; Deputy Secretary/Minute-Taker; Assistant Deputy Secretary/Minute-Taker; Someone Else.

CommEd: Let me speak frankly, Mr Someone Else. Very frankly indeed. Here at the BBC, times are tough. Budgets are tight. Resources are stretched. Questions are being asked. Reputations are on the line. Futures are in the balance.

DepCommEd: Yes, Mr Someone Else, frankly, well – we’re under the cosh. The barbarians are at the gates. As you can see, we’re down to a skeleton staff. Senior executives have even been told to restrict themselves to four long liquid lunchbreaks a week.

AssDepCommEd: Actually, it’s nine a fortnight…

DepCommEd: My mistake.

CommEd: Bottom line is, ITV are wiping the floor with us in the JICTAR ratings. Benny Hill carries all before him with his end-of-the-pier, dirty-old-man, cleavage-fixated guff; The Sweeney’s riding high with all that biff-baff-bosh-you’re-NICKED-sunshine malarkey; even Crossroads – wobbly sets, clunky dialogue, Emmenthal-like plot holes – has secured a place in the hearts of the nation.

DepCommEd: Here at the Beeb, meanwhile, it’s a sorry old story. All we’ve really achieved is a cornering of the so-called ‘quality’ end of the market. Elizabeth R, The Six Wives of Henry VIII, The Pallisers – all the critically acclaimed stuff people only pretend to watch, when actually they can’t stop themselves switching over for a dose of Des O’Connor…

CommEd: Frankly, Mr Someone Else, we’re looking for someone else to help us pursue a fresh approach. That’s why the Slightly Naff Drama Department has been set up, in pursuit of a very clear mission: to ditch all the worthy-but-dull costume-drama nonsense and come up with some output that’s…that’s…that’s…how can I express it?

DepCommEd: Flawed but fun. Creaky but compelling. Lightweight but lovable. A show where you embrace the characters, get sucked into their world, become fixated by their relationships, buy into the story arc – not despite the cheapo-cheapo special effects and all the dumb, disjointed stuff, but because of it. Where all of it – wobbly sets, clunky dialogue, Emmenthal-like plot holes – is simply part of its inherent, distinctive, unique and enduring charm.

CommEd: So you see, Mr Someone Else, that’s the context in which your letter reached us. The letter where you describe your idea of…what was it again…let me see…ah yes, here it is…mmm…”The Magnificent Seven in Space”…

DepCommEd: Yes, this really could be exactly what we’re looking for – if we lower our sights just a little. Budgets being budgets, and all that kind of caper. So maybe not quite so much “The Magnificent Seven in Space”. More “Crossroads in Space”…

CommEd: You look a tad discomfited, Mr Someone Else. Or should I say ‘unconvinced’. Let me put it another way. Think of a music album you really adore – even though it’s got a couple of naff tracks hidden away on Side Two. Let me think of an example…how about Pink Floyd’s Atom Heart Mother. Yes, that’s it! Granted, it’s a largely unfocused splurge of creativity. OK, it’s a bit of a white-knuckle ride. But that’s all part of the fun! Part of the magic! Part of the journey! And it makes for a vastly more challenging, more interesting listen than other, more fêted albums. I mean, who needs all that ‘Great Gig in the Sky’ whiny bullcr*p when you can have ‘Funky Dung’ and ‘Alan’s Psychedelic Breakfast’?

DepCommEd: Spot on, CommEd! Yes, Mr Someone Else. We want you to deliver us Atom Heart Mother in Space…

And the rest, as they say, is television history…
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A TELEVISUAL KIND, AGAIN)

Date: Autumn 1975 (think of this as a kind of ‘Later, That Same Evening’ moment)

Place: A meeting-room at BBC Television Centre

Present: Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (CommEd); Deputy Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (DepCommEd); Assistant Deputy Commissioning Editor for Slightly Naff Drama (AssDepCommEd); Secretary/Minute-Taker; Deputy Secretary/Minute-Taker; Assistant Deputy Secretary/Minute-Taker; Someone Else.

CommEd: Apologies, Mr Someone Else. But I’m really struggling with this. I must have misheard you. You’re proposing that the main villain – and I repeat…THE MAIN VILLAIN…ruthless; relentless; in pursuit of our fugitive zeroes-turned-heroes through space, time and space-time; basically a concatenation of multiple unresolved neuroses accentuated by more than a whiff of clinical psychopathy – is a… is a… is a…. No, I can hardly bring myself to articulate it…

Mr Someone Else: A woman.

CommEd: No. Sorry. Sorry. Just not picking you up at all. Sounds like you said a ‘wom---anne’. ‘Wom----anne’…. ‘Wom----anne’…. Nope, still not getting it. Help me out here, DepCommEd…

DepCommEd: Well, yes…if I may interject for a moment, CommEd. Perhaps it’d be helpful if we could refer to her not as a ‘woman’ but as a….......‘box-ticker’.

CommEd: Oh! Oh, I see! You mean a GIRLIE! Oh, I get it now! Well, it’s a very creative idea and all that sort of hokum, Mr Someone Else, but it's maybe a touch too radical. And I just don’t see how it’d work in practice. I’m not even sure she’s available.

Mr Someone Else: Not even sure who's available?

CommEd: Felicity Kendal. The Beeb’s best, brightest and bubbliest box-ticker!

Mr Someone Else: With all due respect, I wasn’t thinking of Felicity Kendal. I was thinking of someone just a little more…a little more…abrasive…

CommEd: What, Penelope Keith? Mollie Sugden? Yes, Mollie Sugden! That could work! We could pad out your script with a few double entendres, a nice big dollop of androcratic sexism and possibly just a soupçon of casual racism, to keep the Love Thy Neighbour fans on board. Perfect! Let me see now… In fact, maybe we could suborn the entire cast of Are You Being Served? and move them across to our new venture as a job lot! Let’s face it, sci-fi’s a bit camp at the best of times and I’m sure John Inman would absolutely JUMP at the chance to play this…this…let me check my notes…yes, this ‘Avon’ character… Just imagine. “Are you free, Avon?” and he could reply, “No-one’s REALLY free, Blake… Except John Otway".*

DepCommEd: I think we may be heading down a bit of a cul-de-sac, CommEd. Maybe we should focus, just for the moment, on the main villain. I wonder whether this role might benefit from a touch more…a touch more…now what’s the word I’m reaching for here… Yes! Glamour!

CommEd: Yes, yes, DepCommEd! I LIKE that! Apologies. I was getting just a little carried away. Secretary/Minute-Taker! Give the Top of the Pops office a quick tinkle. Check what Pan’s People are doing next Tuesday. See if Babs is free…

Mr Someone Else (thinking): This could be a VERY…long…afternoon...

* If you ‘got’ this joke, you qualify for one of Horizon's BIG CASH PRIZES! Please PM the Management (a.k.a. M1etcetc) for further details.
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
Paula
Cygnus Bazza- what ideas, what scope! It will never work. Anyway- you made me laugh out loud. Well done. And you should be!
Resist the Host




 
Cygnus Bazza

Paula wrote:

Cygnus Bazza- what ideas, what scope! It will never work. Anyway- you made me laugh out loud. Well done. And you should be!

Thanks for that, Paula. Much appreciated! And yes, I should be. Indeed, yes, I have been.
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
M1795537OCVirn
Nobody who plays the theramin can ever be truly free, CB.
"You're not sulking, I hope?"
 
Cygnus Bazza
PURSUIT (OF A TELEVISUAL KIND, AGAIN, AGAIN)

Memo retrieved from BBC archives. Had been filed under ‘D’ for ‘Dodged a Bullet’.

Re: ‘Atom Heart Mother in Space’ – working title now ‘Blake’s 7’

Date: 18/12/75

Some initial thoughts on casting. Focus is on ‘safety first’ selection of actors/actresses with high level of name/face recognition among target audience* we’re pursuing:

Blake: Dennis Waterman**
Avon: John Inman
Vila: Richard Briers
Jenna: Michelle Dotrice/Sally Thomsett (no preference)
Cally: Wendy Craig/Yootha Joyce (no preference)
Gan: Geoff Capes (if Giant Haystacks unavailable)
Voice of Zen: Sid James/Bob Monkhouse (no preference)
Servalan: Felicity Kendal (if Babs from Pan's People unavailable)
Travis: Windsor Davies/Fulton Mackay (no preference)

* Detailed market segmentation analysis reveals initial audience likely to comprise primarily: (i) adults lacking energy/resolve to cross living-room to change channels; (ii) children/young teenagers simultaneously engaged in geography homework.
** If too busy, could check availability of that bloke earmarked for Children of the Stones.

[Signature illegible]

AssDepCommEd - Slightly Naff Drama Dept
On behalf of CommEd/DepCommEd (absent, liquid lunching)
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
littlesue
Well here goes...but after Cygnus Bassa's foray into prompt land...that's going to take some beating.
Anyhow, I'm off to hospital tomorrow, so I thought it best to upload me little efforts whilst still compus whatchme callit.....

Downpour


“So they had a report that there was still ample deposits to be mined here?” Blake asked, viewing the mine entrance from his vantage point.
“And as the Federation has need for such a valuable deposit, they came immediately.” Avon replied.
“You know,” Vila murmured,”if they keep filling that cargo carrier with all that stuff, there won’t be any room for those poor people brought here to mine it.”
“You mean, they’ll be killed?” Blake asked.
“Usual Federation tactic,” Avon pointed out,”and no witnesses either.”
“Well we can’t have that and we certainly can’t let the Federation take all that cargo.”
“So what do you suggest?” Avon asked, already knowing the answer.
“Jenna and I go and make sure those people don’t end as as yet another statistic and you, Cally and Vila go and make sure that ship doesn’t leave here.”
“It might even be prudent for Orac to let the Federation know that the original mining report about this deposit was faulty.”
“You mean lie?” Vila asked bemused, “it won’t like that.”
“I know, just get Avon to use his charm...”

In the Liberator’s Teleport section Orac was indeed very indignant.
+I wish to point out that lying is not part of my programming...+
“Just do it,” Avon’s voice crackled over the intercom.
“Oh come on Orac,” Gan said, “Would it matter, just this once? Then we can get back to my lessons.”
+Oh, very well.+

Blake and Jenna’s arrival at the entrance to the mine could not have come at a better time. The Federation Guards had ordered the mineworkers to sit on the ground, hands on heads, as a prelude to shooting them.
The guards turned round at the sound of the stone being kicked in their direction.
That was the last thing they did.

“They told us there was no room on that cargo carrier,” one of the men said.
“We were promised a reward for coming here. Freedom for instance,” another enjoined.
“Well, hopefully, you will get rewarded,” Blake said, as Avon, Cally and Vila approached the mine entrance.
“I thought it wise to get under cover,” Avon announced, “We’ve arranged a small explosion once that ship takes off. It won’t get far, maybe a few hundred feet, but it should look spectacular.”
“And the Federation?”
“A minor mishap.”
One of the workers spoke up, “But won’t they come and find out what happened?”!
“For a load of worthless rock?” Vila replied, “I doubt it.”
“But we were told that the stuff in that rock is valuable. That’s why we agreed to come.”
“Yes, but since then, they have received a revised mining report,” Avon explained.
“So, Orac agreed to the deception?” Blake asked.
“After a bit of persuasion,” Cally smiled.

The ship’s automatics cut in and it slowly rose to the air and then exploded in a fireball.
Rocks rained down all around.
It was a spectacular sight.
Vila grabbed one of the rocks as it rolled towards the cave entrance.
He held up the ore and turned it to the sunlight.
“Diamonds, anyone?”
Cold! You don't know the meaning of the word cold!
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of your window!!


Sue's Book Shelf https://www.mediafire.com/folder/z1xg...Zine_Shelf

Rebel Run Video https://youtu.be/8prqS-XZtLo
 
littlesue
And now for the next prompt

Hot Pursuit


“I sometimes wonder if it’s worth trying to remember exactly what memory is real and which isn’t,” Blake confided to Jenna.
“Instead of pursuing the past,” she said, “just pursue the present or the future.”
“I suppose you’re right.”
//Attention. Sensors indicate that there is a stationary craft off our port bow//
“Thank you Zen,. Put it on the main screen please.”
The screen lit up to reveal the space craft. It showed no signs of damage.
“What do you think?” Blake asked Jenna.
“Well, we’ve had this happen before, but it wouldn’t hurt to contact it and find out exactly what the trouble is...”

“The trouble is, young man, is that everything has stopped working.” The elderly, eccentric gentleman was most forthright.
“Any idea...”
“Of course I haven’t. But everything stopped working just after I came out of that asteroid field.”
“I see.”
“You do? Well I’m glad about that.”
“Didn’t your sensors indicate...”Jenna began.
“My dear young lady I was too engrossed in my latest specimen to bother about such matters. As it is, I really need to get moving.”
“What’s the hurry?” Blake asked.
“I’ve been in pursuit of this rare specimen and its been spotted on a nearby planet. I really must get to it. It will be the star of my collection.”
“What specimen?” Blake enquired.
Just then Avon appeared on the ship’s small flight deck.
“I think I have the found the problem.”
They were all staring at him.
“Oh dear, they must have escaped from the holding cage,” the elderly gentleman sighed.
“They?” enquired Jenna.
“Yes my dear, I’m a Lepidopterist.”
“Butterflies,” Blake smiled.
“Oh you know about that?”
“I do, apparently, but Avon doesn’t.”
“What makes you think that?” Avon asked.
Jenna stifled a laugh,” There’s one on your head....”

“These things...” Avon began.
”Butterflies,” Blake interrupted.
”....Butterflies, have managed to get into the main component board, which has caused the problem. You’ll have to get rid of them...”
“No!!!” Came the response from the other three.
“All right,” Avon conceded,” Then someone had better hunt them down, collect them and return them to that holding cage.”
The old man reached inside a cupboard and produced a number of butterfly nets.
“We’d better get started, there are lots of them!”

For once, even Vila was enjoying himself pursing all these little winged creatures and returning them to the holding cage.
“I think I’ve got them all, even that one that took a liking to Avon’s head.”
Avon was not amused.
“These butterflies, sir, they must be special?”
“Indeed they are. I, and many like minded people, would pay a small fortune for an unusual specimen.”
“They would?” Vila asked, trying not to sound over enthusiastic.
“Yes they would, my lad. You keep that net. You never know, this could be a while new pursuit for yourself.”
“And a profitable one as well,” Avon pointed out, grateful that the butterfly that once adorned his head was now safely back behind bars.
“Profitable?” Vila mused,” I hadn’t even thought about that!”
Cold! You don't know the meaning of the word cold!
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of your window!!


Sue's Book Shelf https://www.mediafire.com/folder/z1xg...Zine_Shelf

Rebel Run Video https://youtu.be/8prqS-XZtLo
 
ellen york
Lovely work, Sue. I especially like the thought of Avon with a large butterfly on his head Grin And I am hearing the eccentric lepidopterist as sounding rather like Ensor.
 
Cygnus Bazza
Nice one(s), littlesue!

PURSUIT (OF A TELEVISUAL KIND, AGAIN, AGAIN, AGAIN)

Found on file: transcript of rare audio recording of initial script-reading session, dated 18/04/76

[Hubbub of noise – mumbling voices, slurping of coffee, nervous laughter, scraping of chair legs, then the sound of one person clapping their hands]

Producer: Right… Let’s crack on with getting through this pre-pilot script. We’ll have a quick zip through the scene on page...page thirty-three. This is…yup…it’s a four-hander. So Blake (that’s you, Dennis), Jenna (that’s you, of course, Michelle), plus you, Mr Inman, as Avon and…yup…right at the end there’s just your little bit as Travis, Windsor… So…away you go, then, Dennis!

Dennis W: Before we start, do you want me to go full-on Sweeney with this bit, or rein it in just a tad?

Producer: Whatever you’re most comfy with, Dennis. After all, you’re the arrrr-teeeeest… And that goes for all of you, of course. At this stage, it’s more about tempo than precise characterisation. Let’s just feel our way with the material… Yes, do feel free to paraphrase and extemporise. And…….‘ACTION’, so to speak…

Dennis W: The Federation? Bet that’s a nice little earner. Right bunch of ’erberts. Geezers done up in black clobber, like a Johnny Cash lookalike convention… Little bird tells me in the old shell-like that you mess with those clowns you end up with a boot up the Aris. If I get nicked I’ll be looking at a ten stretch, or end up brown bread. Capeesh, Jen?

Michelle D: Oh…..Frank… I mean…oh…..Blake… I’m afraid I’ve absolutely no idea what you’re talking about…

Dennis W: Just sayin’, Jen, blimey, it’s bang out of order! Before you know it, we’ll all be doing bird. And singing like canaries. They’ll make old lags of the lot of us. Even now, who can say they’re truly free?

John I: Well, I’M free…

Windsor D: Not for long, sunshine.

Dennis/Michelle/John: Travis! You’ve tricked us! You've tracked us!

Windsor D: Oh dear. How sad. Never mind. Glasshouse for you, lovely boys. And girl. Shoulders back. Show ’em off, show ’em off. Fine pairs of shoulders. You…bunch…of…pooooo…

[Tape ends there, mercifully…]
Quark, quark now...it goes quark, quark...quark now...
 
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