1697: Master of the Universe – Chapter One

Title: Master of the Universe
Author: E.L. James
Media: Books
Topic: Twilight
Genre: Drama/Romance
URL: https://ohfifty.com/downloads/MOTU_w_Outtakes_Snowqueens_Icedragon_COMPLETE.pdf
Critiqued by Angie and Lyle

*covers face* I don’t know how to defend this one, guys. I really don’t.

Lyle: *walks in with a giant bag of gummy worms*  What’s this you’ve found? *reads intro stats* E. L. James….  Why does that sound familiar….

She’s the…she wrote that super bad BDSM trilogy ‘Fifty Shades’. It’s also that movie, with like…Dakota Something and Jamie Whatsisface.

Lyle:  Oh. Her. I didn’t realize she wrote more than that.

Actually, she really didn’t. It’s the exact same story, it’s just a Twilight fic instead of something original. It’s the exact same thing as Fifty Shades, word per word basically, just with changed names.

Lyle: *looks at the bag of gummy worms and then hands them to Angie*  I’m going to need something stronger than this.   You go ahead and get started.  I’ll be back in a minute.

Oh no, Lyle. I’ve got alcohol right here. *opens cabinet built into desk* But if you must, I’ll get a head start.

Lyle: I was thinking coffee but that works, too. *grabs a bottle of wine from the cabinet, pops the cork, and takes a swig right from it.*

Well, guess there’s no use fighting it anymore. Let’s dive into the “fan fiction”, Master of the Universe.

Oh shit! But before we begin….

Let’s get started.

Chapter One

I scowl with frustration at myself in the mirror. Damn my hair, it just won‘t behave, and damn Rose for being ill and subjecting me to this ordeal.

Ah yes. The bane of every girl’s existence…bad hair days. I hate to break it to you, E.L., but this isn’t a Disney Channel Original Movie. This isn’t exactly the kind of shit I’d expect Bella goddamn Swan to worry about. But, to each their own. To be fair, this is an 850 page fan fiction, you’ve got to fill up the word count somehow.

Lyle: I’m going to have to plead ignorance about that.  I’ve never actually read the books.  Most of my knowledge of Twilight comes from fic-riffs and memes.

Take it from me, then. Kristen Stewart wouldn’t exactly give two shits if a singular hair was out of place, and certainly not any of her characters since…hell, since Zathura.

zathura

You know, that movie no one saw except me.

Lyle:  Yeah…  I didn’t see it.  I’ll leave the Twilight knowledge to you, then.  I’m mostly here for the wine and for raging at the improper depiction of the BDSM community that I know will ensue.

*breaks fingers* Hell yeah.

*looks down at broken fingers* I meant to crack my knuckles…but I mean that works too.

I have tried to brush my hair into submission but it‘s not toeing the line. I must learn not to sleep with it wet.

…something you should do regardless of whether or not you have an interview the next day. Particularly if it’s Winter. Common Sense by Thomas Payne, buddy. Pick it up at Borders. *Hiraani whispers something to me* Wait, Borders is defunct? Well, no wonder Swan hasn’t read it. Also, ‘submission’? Gee, I sense some poorly placed foreshadowing!

Lyle: I sleep with my hair wet all the time.  I’m a rebel like that.

I recite this five times as a mantra whilst I try, once more, with the brush. I give up. The only thing I can do is restrain it, tightly, in a pony tail and hope that I look reasonably presentable.

Bella looking reasonably presentable is more or less the same as Spongebob Squarepants looking like a passable human being instead of…you know…a sponge.

Rose is my roommate and she has chosen, okay, that‘s a bit unfair, because choice has had nothing to do with it, but she has flu and as such cannot do the interview she‘s arranged with some mega industrialist for the student newspaper.

Lyle: Jeebus, this lady’s thought process is like trying to talk to my 8-year-old.  Focus!

The one with the Olaf socks?

Lyle: No, that’s the 5-year-old.  The 8-year-old is the one that told me he wants to be a pianist, a robot, a mad scientist, and an astronaut.  All at once.  He’s going to invent FTL space travel and colonize Mars.  And create a real-life Spiderman.  And work at Baskin Robbins.  He’s got aspirations, that one.

Well, god damn. I’ll be lucky if I can get a job as a busboy at McDonalds.

Lyle:  Honestly, I’d just be happy if he could remember to let the dogs inside after they’ve gone to the bathroom.

So I have been volunteered. I have final exams to cram for, one essay to finish and I am supposed to be working this afternoon, but no – today – I have to head into downtown Seattle and meet the enigmatic CEO of Cullen Enterprise Holdings Inc.

You…I’m sorry, you lost me at ‘cram’.

Lyle: If you want to get to downtown Seattle by the afternoon, you’d better hurry your ass up.  Whoever designed the streets of Seattle (3 different lumber barons creating 3 different towns, in case anyone is interested in the history of Seattle) did a piss-poor job of it.  It’s really easy to get lost because streets converge at, like, 30 degree angles and then there’s one way streets, and heaven forbid you get lost on the U-Dub campus after a full day at the zoo during pledge week with a dying phone, no GPS, and 3 hungry children in the backseat wondering when we’re going to get back to Grandma and Granddad’s house but it’s going to take something close to 2 hours to accomplish that because the on ramp was not clearly marked, goddamnit.

Lyle: What?

 

Lyle:  Hey, I got to go to the zoo.  For me it was a great day.  Until I had to find the I-5 South onramp.

Allegedly he‘s some exceptional tycoon who is a major benefactor of our University and his time is extraordinarily precious… much more precious than mine – and he‘s granted Rose an interview… a real coup she tells me… Damn her extra-curricular activities.

Yes! *slams fists on desk* Wait. What?

Lyle:  Did she turn over two pages at once?  It sounds like she’s planning on overthrowing the CEO.

I think ultimately we…few sentences back there…monkey and a trampoline…something something something jumpman jumpman jumpman.

Lyle:  Sounds about right.

―Bella I‘m sorry. It took me nine months to get this interview and it will take another six to reschedule, and you and I will both have graduated by then. As the editor I can‘t blow this out… Please.‖ Rose begs me in her rasping, really sore throat voice…

I just love the stellar use of different, equally unnecessary, little…things like —– and ||.

Lyle: I was just looking down at the chapter and was noticing all those hyphens at the beginning of sentences.  What the actual fuck is that all about?

*pulls out another bottle* An excuse for more alcohol.

Lyle:  I like how you think.  *accepts the bottle*

I stare at her red-rimmed runny eyes, her bright pink nose…

Lyle:  It’s rude to stare.

*smack-splat* Wait. *scrolls up* *scrolls back down* *walks over to my bookshelf and pulls out Divergent* *studies* *headdesk* Of course this fic would use obnoxious first person narrative!

―Of course, I‘ll go Rose. You should go back to bed. Would you like some paracetamol?‖

Lyle:  Some whosiswhats?  *le Googling*  …Acetaminophen.  Fucking Tylenol.  No one in Seattle calls it “paracetamol.”  If someone like me, from that area and with medical training had to look it up, you’re doing it wrong.

E.L. James needs to get over herself and start using first grade word choice again. Call it IBUProfen and get it over with.

Lyle:  IBUProfen is different than Acetaminophen.  Advil vs Tylenol.

Sure, but I doubt E.L. James knows that.

Lyle:  Truth.  Plus, if she’s got a head cold as bad as E.L. Meyers is making it out to be, she doesn’t need fucking Tylenol.  She needs Robitussin and a nap.

I’ve got some soup that I poured over my arm earlier this morning. Does that count?

Lyle:  Did it help you feel better?

I mean I got burned. But sure?

Lyle:  If it helped, then we can count it.

―Yes please. Here are the questions and my minidisk recorder. Just press record here. Make notes, I‘ll transcribe it all.‖

Lyle:  If she’s going to record the entire thing, why does she need to make notes?  Typhoid Mary there just said she’d transcribe the entire conversation.  Seems like unnecessary work.
Also, she’s gonna transcribe the entire thing? This isn’t a fucking interview, this is a court case.

Lyle:  “Ma’am, do you recognize the abusive prick who thinks he’s into BDSM but is really a controlling douchesilo?  Can you point him out for the court, please?”

―I know nothing about him.‖ My voice is anxious.

Lyle:  *facepalm*  That’s why you’re doing an interview.  Damnation.  We’re just a couple paragraphs in and already Bella has the brain of a grilled cheese sandwich.

Which shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. This is Bella goddamn Swan we’re talking about here, not Stephen Hawking.

Lyle: I’d say I’m curious what college she got into since she’s got the mentality of a rutabaga, but I knew some pretty ditzy people when I was at Uni.

Hell, maybe I should apply to that college. If Bella Swan can graduate there, anyone can.

Lyle:  You’d have no problems with it.  Of course, she might be graduating on her knees… you never know.

―The questions will see you through… go… I don‘t want you to be late.‖
―Okay… I‘m going… I have a long drive. Go back to bed, but please make sure you eat – I made you some soup to heat up later.‖ I stare at her fondly…. only for you Rose would I do this.

Lyle:

now-kiss01

―I will. Good luck… and thanks Bella, you‘re a life saver as usual.

I smiled wryly at her and head out the door to our room.
I cannot believe I have let Rose talk me into this. But then Rose can talk anyone into anything. She‘ll make an exceptional journalist. She‘s articulate, strong, persuasive, argumentative… beautiful, and she‘s my dearest, dearest friend.

Lyle:  

now-kiss01

Jesus Christ.

The roads are clear as I set off from Portland, it‘s early and I don‘t have to be in Seattle until two this afternoon.

Lyle:  *brain screeches to a full stop*  Wait.  She’s coming from Portland?  As in, Portland, Oregon?!  And she has to be there at 2?  On the I-5?

Bull fucking shit she’ll be there by lunchtime!

Lyle:  She’s going to get stuck at the Du Pont exit outside Lewis-McChord, then again near Tukwila.

Keep reading this fic, and I’ll learn everything I need to know if I ever go to Seattle.

Lyle:  Let’s put it this way, it’s going to take her at least 5 hours to get there.  Google says it’ll only take 3 hours, but it’s not taking into account the usual local backups at places like the army base, and the I-5/I-90 interchange, and the S-curves of Tacoma where everyone turns around and drives with their asses.  Why the fuck aren’t they just doing a video conference interview?!  Or, hell, do it over the phone.

Or even get a Discord. I don’t fucking care.

Fortunately she‘s lent me her car. I‘m not sure my old truck would be up for the journey.

…IT’S FUCKING WASHINGTON. YOU’RE NOT GONNA BE GOING VERY FAST. UNLESS YOUR CAR IS THE LARRY THE CABLE GUY TOW TRUCK, I’M PRETTY SURE YOU’LL BE FINE.

Well it is the least she can do – I frown into the rearview mirror – but I have to say her sporty BMW Z4 is so much more fun to drive than my truck and the miles slip away as I put my foot down.

Oh, bullshit, you need a BMW. Unless you want to look like even more of an asshole.

Lyle:  The fuck is a college journalist doing with a BMD Z4?  Someone’s at school on daddy’s dime.

I’m getting some Legally Blonde flashbacks here.

I do love Legally Blonde, to be clear, but Jesus Christ.

Lyle:  We’re half a chapter in and already Stephanie E.L. here is partaking in some wish fulfillment.

Not only that, but we’re half a chapter in and Angie’s reconsidering one of her favorite movies. Which is…I don’t know…rude, or something.

It‘s cloudy, but at least it‘s not raining as I make my way into the city. The Seattle traffic is heavy, but I have an hour to go and I‘m feeling fairly confident that I should be able to find somewhere to park…

Lyle:  Bwahahahahahaha!  *takes a deep breath*  AAAHHH-hahahahahahaha!  *snorts*  Ha.  No.  Welcome to Seattle.  If you’re lucky, his building will have a subterranean parking garage.  Otherwise, welcome to finding a parking complex that costs less than $20 a day.  And if you’re anywhere within twenty blocks of the sporting arenas on gameday, don’t even bother.

Or a needle. Whichever comes first.

Thank heavens for the Sat Nav on the Z4 otherwise I‘d be royally screwed.
My destination is the headquarters of Mr Cullen‘s global enterprise.

*BLARING ALARMS BLARE*

Lyle:  Well, shit.  Did you bring any weapons?

I brought Baby, but she probably won’t do much. The worst she’s done is irritate SC’s eye for a few seconds.

Lyle:  Hm.  I think this might work.  *types in a few things and the loudspeaker system starts up*

Huh. Go figure.

It‘s a huge thirty-storey office building,

Lyle:  For Seattle, not that huge.  The biggest building in Seattle is 76 stories tall (The Columbia Center) and is the 3rd tallest building this side of the Mississippi.  There’s another skyscraper in Seattle that’s about 50 stories, but most hit around the 30 story mark, so saying it’s a huge is an understatement. Especially since they’re all clustered together so this Cullen’s Phallic Symbol is probably next door to the Columbia Center and is, thus, dwarfed by it.

Jesus. Alright.

Lyle:  Regretting bringing me into this riff yet?

Nah. I just occasionally close myself off until you’re done ranting.

Lyle:  Fair enough.

all curved glass and steel, an architect‘s utilitarian fantasy with Cullen House written discreetly in steel over the glass front doors.

vacationDoubted.

It‘s a quarter to two and I feel an immense sense of relief that I‘m not late as I walk into the enormous, frankly intimidating, glass, steel and white sandstone, first floor foyer.

To this author’s credit, I’ll admit I can perfectly imagine this place. Which is…no.

No, I’m saving these cookies for myself. Fuck off.

Lyle:  You brought cookies?

Redemption cookies. But I didn’t think I would need them.

Behind the solid sandstone desk

Lyle:  “Indigenous to this fine region.”  Jesus, that desk sounds completely impractical and pointless.  Sandstone is incredibly soft.  It would be a horrible material to use for a piece of furniture that’s sure to see heavy use.

Also, is everything made of sandstone in this building? I’m surprised the doors are glass.

Lyle:  Maybe Cullen should have built himself a pyramid instead of a skyscraper.

God, I can’t wait until we meet our juvenile.

a very attractive blonde haired young woman smiles pleasantly at me. She‘s wearing the sharpest charcoal suit jacket and white shirt I have ever seen… she looks immaculate.
―I‘m here to see Mr Cullen. Isabella Swan for Rosalie Hale.‖

This fic suffers from some of the worst OOC bullshit I’ve ever seen. And I’ve read The Girl.

Lyle:  Given that I have no true knowledge of the source material, I can’t say if that’s true but I’ll take your word for it.

Not that the source material was good at all, but at the very least it had very set rules for the characters that absolutely no one could fuck up. Unless you’re E.L. James.

Lyle:  E.L. James ore just about every other fanfic author in the Twilight fandom…

―Excuse me one moment Miss Swan.‖ She arches her eyebrow slightly as I stand self-consciously in front of her.

Lyle:  Quotation marks?  What are quotation marks?!

Fuck quotation marks! In this fic we’ve got – and ‖. How about we add in another guest riffer?

-Julie said no.

What a good friend.

Lyle:  Can’t say I blame her.  I only do this because apparently I’m a masochist.

I am beginning to wish I had borrowed one of Rose‘s jackets rather than wear my navy blue peacoat.

Hmm. Seeing as you exchanged your truck for Rose’s BMW, it only makes sense that you would exchange your pea coat from Goodwill in exchange for something from Abercrombie and Fitch.

Lyle:  I got a peacoat from Savers.  It’s warm.  I also found a full length dress trench jacket thing from there.  I hummed and hawed for a bit before buying it because it was marked at $30 and I don’t like spending that much for one item at a thrift store, but it was pretty much brand new (it didn’t look like anyone had ever worn it) so I ended up getting it.  After I got home, I looked it up online.  It was a $400 jacket.  Boom.

I have made an effort and worn my one and only skirt. It‘s brown, and I have sensible brown knee-length boots and a blue jumper. For me… this is smart.

Is this fic on speed or something? We’re suddenly pretending that this is the Bella from Twilight, but by that logic, shouldn’t it be so that Bella already personally knew Edward before this interview?

Lyle:  Logic and fanfiction have no place together.

I guess so.

I tuck one of the escaped tendrils of my hair behind my ear as I pretend she doesn‘t intimidate me.

*headdesks numerous times* SEE WHAT I MEAN, THOUGH?!

―Miss Hale is expected, please sign in here Miss Swan. You‘ll want the end lift on the right, press for the 30th floor.‖ She smiles kindly at me, amused no doubt as I sign in.

Lyle:  Amused by what, exactly?  Are you using a pen shaped like a penis?

Or did you just decorate your hair to look like the penis lady from The Last Airbender?

She hands me a security pass that has VISITOR very firmly stamped on the front… personally I think it‘s obvious that I‘m just visiting, I don‘t fit in here at all…

Lyle:  It’s exactly because you don’t fit in there that you have to wear the badge, Cupcake.  If you’d wandered in off the street looking like you don’t belong there, and you don’t have the visitor pass, someone is going to be promptly escorting you from the building.  It’s called safety precautions and procedures.  Dipshit.

You didn’t do that when you dragged me into the Library. Taco almost did, but you didn’t.

Lyle:  We have other safety precautions in place, such as ninja, dinosaurs, and rabid honey badgers.  We don’t need badges here. You’d look more suspicious if you had a visitor pass.

*glances over at Crunchy munching on a Manila folder* Alright.

nothing changes, I inwardly sigh… I thank her and walk over to the lifts, past the two security men who are both far more smartly dressed than me in their well-cut black suits.

Lyle:  Security guards typically wear law enforcement style uniforms.  What you’ve described is body guards, or secret service.  And if the security is supposedly so tight in this place, why hasn’t her purse been searched? Where are the metal detectors and x-ray bag scanners?  If she looks as much like a hoodlum as she seems to think she looks, they’d be making sure she doesn’t have a switchblade shoved up her hooha before letting her anywhere near their boss.

*continues looking at Crunchy* Well, I think I’ve got an idea of it.

The lift whisks me with unseemly haste to the thirtieth floor.

That’s because it’s an elevator.

Lyle:  Unseemly haste.  Unseemly.  Apparently in Alt-Seattle, elevators move half the speed of smell if this one is moving with “unseemly haste.”

The doors silently fly open and I‘m in another large foyer, again all glass, steel and white sandstone. In front of me there‘s another desk of sandstone and another young blond woman dressed impeccably in black and white, who rises to greet me.

Cleopatra?

Lyle:  I thought she had black hair.

That’s true.

So was it Cleopatra?

Lyle:  Let’s say yes.  It would make this fic gobs better.

Plus it would make more sense, seeing as we’re basically in a pyramid right now.

―Miss Swan, could you wait here, please?‖ She points to a seated area of white leather chairs. Behind the leather chairs is a large glass-walled meeting room with an enormous dark wood table and twenty dark wood chairs around it, beyond that a floor-to-ceiling window with a view of the Seattle skyline, looking out through the city towards the Pacific Ocean. It‘s a stunning vista. I stand and admire it, momentarily distracted before I sit.

Lyle:  OH MY FUCKING MORONIC SHITSTICK.  NO.  NO NO NO NO NO.  You utter and complete moronic twat.  Have you ever actually looked at a motherfucking map?!

*Lyle pulls her chalkboard from the closet and starts drawing*

*Angie sits back in rolling chair, spins around in it while Lyle lectures*

not-ocean

Lyle:  As you can clearly see by my map, Seattle is not on the fucking ocean.  It isn’t even close.  That big body of water you see in movies and shit?  That’s the Puget Sound.  It’s a GIANT ASS BAY.   You cannot physically see the Pacific Ocean from Seattle!  It’s like saying the Gulf of Mexico is the Atlantic Ocean.

Not even if you’re at the top of King Tut’s pyramid, which is what I understand so far, can you see it.

Lyle:  Exactly.

I get the feeling geography isn’t her forte.

Lyle:  I honestly don’t think she has a forte.

I don’t think she tries neither.

I fish the questions out of my satchel and go through them,

Your satchel?

Your man-purse?

Lyle:

vacation

inwardly cursing Rose for not providing me with a brief biography. I know nothing about this man I am about to interview.

Lyle:  Did it ever mention how much notice she had that she’d be doing this for Rose?  Because this is a terrible way to be prepared, in that she doesn’t even know who this guy is.

She has question ideas, that’s not nothing. But it’s not exactly a lot to go off, either.

He could be 90, he could be in his 30s… My nerves are beginning to kick in – I am uncomfortable with this one-to-one stuff.

Poor little introvert. I’d feel bad for her if she was an interesting character at the very least.

Lyle:  But I just love how she’s showing us this instead of just, ya know, internally monologuing her faults in a transparent attempt to get us to relate to her.

I am much better in a group scenario…

*porno music blasts over the intercom*

Lyle:  …That’s probably going to be getting a lot of use during this fic.  Although I can only imagine Swenia and Syl’s rage at the false portrayal of BDSM.  I know it makes me angry and I’m only somewhat of a kink.

*looks up pictures of Lyle on the internet*

kink

Huh. Guess you’re right.

Lyle:  That was during my professional modeling stint.  I thought they really captured my eyes in that one.

preferably not asking any questions… sitting somewhere in the back. Well, judging by the building – all clinical and modern – he‘s probably in his thirties… fit, tanned, blond, to match the rest of the personnel.

Fit, tanned, blond….

minion

Oh goddamnit. I should’ve known.

Lyle:  *snort-giggles*

Another elegant, flawlessly dressed blond comes out of a large door to the right. What is it with all the immaculate blonds? It‘s like Stepford here…

Lyle:  Yes, notice how every one of the Stepford wives are blonde:

stepford

Lyle:  Accurate references:  You’re doing it wrong.  Besides, if it were really like Stepford, the secretaries would have brought you a pie.

Take it with a pinch of salt that E.L. James probably saw one episode of West Wing and assumed she was all caught up on the television craze.

I take a deep breath and stand up.
―Miss Swan,‖ the latest blond asks.
―Yes…‖
―Mr Cullen will see you in a moment. May I take your jacket?‖
―Oh please.‖ I struggle out of my pea coat.
―Have you been offered any refreshment?‖
―Err – no…‖ Oh dear, am I going to get Blond Number One into trouble?
She frowns and eyes the young woman at the desk.
―Would you like tea, coffee, water?‖
―Glass of water would be lovely thank you.‖
―Jessica, please fetch Miss Swan a glass of water.‖ She says sternly to the young woman at the desk. Jessica scoots up immediately and walks to a door on the other side of the foyer.
―My apologies Miss Swan, Jessica is our new intern. Please be seated. Mr Cullen will probably be another five minutes.‖
Jessica returns with a large glass of iced water.
―Here you go Miss Swan.‖
―Thank you.‖

Lyle:  Wow.  That was… uhm… riveting… Thrill as the intern forgets her manners!

I didn’t even bother reading that. Strained my eyes, that one did.

Blond Number Two goes and sits at the sandstone desk at her station and they both continue their work.
Perhaps Mr Cullen insists on all his employees being blonde… is that legal?

Lyle:  Depends if it could be proven that non-blondes are discriminated against during hiring.  It could also be coincidental.  About ever 1 in 20 Americans is naturally blonde, and many dye their hair blonde.  Unless she’s inspecting their roots, how can Bella know for certain that they’re naturally blonde?

Lyle:  Also, blond is for males, blonde is for females.  It would appear E.L. Meyers is using them interchangeably.  Personally, I don’t care if you want to use “blond” or “blonde” as a catch-all for the fair haired, but stick to one unless you plan to use it as it was intended.

Also, I can’t wait for the future of the fic if our characters are named ‘Blonde Number Two’ and shit.

I have really weird nit picks.

Lyle:  Blonde Number One is my favorite character.

I‘m wondering idly, when the office door opens and a tall elegantly dressed, rather beautiful black man exits. I have definitely worn the wrong clothes. He turns and says through the door,
―Golf, definitely, Cullen.‖
I don‘t hear the reply. He turns, sees me and smiles kindly. Jessica has jumped up and called the lift.

Lyle:  Called it what, exactly?

I’m calling it Christopher Walken. Because why not.

Lyle:  It must be a walk-in elevator then.

math

OH I GET IT.

―Good afternoon ladies,‖ he says as he departs through the sliding door.

Lyle:  That makes me think he opened one of those glass sliding back doors, stepped through, and is now stuck on the balcony instead of getting into the elevator.  He might be pretty, but he ain’t smart.

―Mr Cullen will see you now, Miss Swan. Do go through,‖ Blond Number Two says.
I stand rather shakily, collect my satchel, leave my water and make my way to the partially open door.

Lyle:  That reminds me… why did the intern get her a full glass of water?  Wouldn’t a giant corporation, especially one in Seattle where the water tastes like ass, have just given her a bottle of water?

It’s to show that Cullen is one TALL GLASS OF WATER. HA HA.

Lyle:  … Okay, we’ve obviously been riffing this for too long if this is the level our jokes are getting to.

Rude.

Lyle:  Hey, I’m not doing any better.

We’re just lucky there’s only one more sentence to go through.

Lyle:  Oh, thank fuck.

―You don‘t need to knock – just go in,‖ she smiles at me, and I push open the door and stumble through, tripping over my own feet as usual and falling head first into the office.

Lyle: … Oh, right.  “Utterly clumsy” is supposed to make her relatable and flawed.  And again with the internal monologuing of showable information.  If she’s really that clumsy, she would have gotten her hair stuck in her brush in the first scene, gotten the hem of her jacket caught in the car door when she parked, and pushed at the front door instead of pulled, smacking into it.  That is how you show someone is clumsy.  Not this “I’m always doing shit like this har har har” bull crap.

*eyes widen. Angie looks down at the manuscript, taps the papers on the desk so as to make them even* So uh. *clears throat* That was chapter one of Master of the Universe. About five pages worth of eight hundred and forty. Including handy pictures. How did it hold up, sir?

Lyle:  840 pages… This thing is 840 pages?!  Dear god… we have our work cut out for us, don’t we?

At least it’ll get me to the one year mark? There’s something to that, you know?

Lyle:  I’ll have to have Crunchy install a wine aqueduct next to my tea aqueduct so we can get through this thing.  Until next time, Patrons.

Angie, signing off. And Lyle…probably drowning in barbiturates and vodka.

Lyle: Toodle pip!

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68 Comments on “1697: Master of the Universe – Chapter One”

  1. BatJamags says:

    I have tried to brush my hair into submission but it‘s not toeing the line. I must learn not to sleep with it wet.

    First of all, your tenses are all over the place. Second of all, “toeing the line” makes no sense there.

  2. AdmiralSakai says:

    Title: Master of the Universe
    Author: E.L. James

    OH MY GOD…

  3. BatJamags says:

    ―Bella I‘m sorry. It took me nine months to get this interview and it will take another six to reschedule, and you and I will both have graduated by then. As the editor I can‘t blow this out… Please.‖ Rose begs me in her rasping, really sore throat voice…

    *Winces*

    That… is not how quotes work. Though to be fair, I’ve read a legitimate published novel that refused to use quotation marks at all. That was a pain in the ass to read. I wouldn’t have bothered if it wasn’t assigned for a class.

  4. AdmiralSakai says:

    The only thing I can do is restrain it, tightly, in a pony tail

  5. AdmiralSakai says:

    No, that’s the 5-year-old. The 8-year-old is the one that told me he wants to be a pianist, a robot, a mad scientist, and an astronaut. All at once. He’s going to invent FTL space travel and colonize Mars. And create a real-life Spiderman. And work at Baskin Robbins. He’s got aspirations, that one.

    Have him send in an application! I could use an assistant!

    • GhostCat says:

      I mean, it’s not like it would be that hard for a mad scientist to turn themselves into a piano-playing robotic astronaut. That’s one tragic backstory from becoming a comic book supervillain.

  6. AdmiralSakai says:

    time is extraordinarily precious… much more precious than mine – and he‘s granted Rose an interview… a real coup she tells me… Damn her extra-curricular activities.

    Yes! *slams fists on desk* Wait. What?

    Lyle: Did she turn over two pages at once? It sounds like she’s planning on overthrowing the CEO.

    That would make the ‘fic far more interesting than it is.

  7. AdmiralSakai says:

    my minidisk recorder

    Her what now?


    Party like it’s 1999, I guess.

  8. AdmiralSakai says:

    I cannot believe I have let Rose talk me into this. But then Rose can talk anyone into anything. She‘ll make an exceptional journalist. She‘s articulate, strong, persuasive, argumentative… beautiful,

    So why aren’t we reading a story about her?

  9. AdmiralSakai says:

    Lyle: Let’s put it this way, it’s going to take her at least 5 hours to get there. Google says it’ll only take 3 hours, but it’s not taking into account the usual local backups at places like the army base, and the I-5/I-90 interchange, and the S-curves of Tacoma where everyone turns around and drives with their asses. Why the fuck aren’t they just doing a video conference interview?! Or, hell, do it over the phone.

    Or even get a Discord. I don’t fucking care.

    That’d certainly make this ‘fic more interesting!

  10. AdmiralSakai says:

    It‘s a huge thirty-storey office building,

    Did Mexico pay for it?

  11. AdmiralSakai says:

    You‘ll want the end lift on the right,

    These characters are about as likely to be from Seattle as Renee Kilburn is to be from Los Angeles.

  12. AdmiralSakai says:

    Well, judging by the building – all clinical and modern – he‘s probably in his thirties…

    That… doesn’t make a great deal of sense. It’s not like CEOs have a headquarters constructed the day they are born.

  13. BatJamags says:

    This isn’t a fucking interview, this is a court case.

    Defendant claimed to be well-written. Prosecution objected. The claim was stricken from the record.

  14. Leider Hosen says:

    Title: Master of the Universe

    Isn’t that…

    Author: E.L. James

    It FUCKING is. Oh, this is gon’ be a good one.

  15. BatJamags says:

    Thank heavens for the Sat Nav on the Z4 otherwise I‘d be royally screwed.

    I’m getting Heroes and Villains flashbacks.

  16. BatJamags says:

    thirty-storey

    I have no idea why, but that’s the funniest thing I’ve seen in a while.

  17. BatJamags says:

    Lyle: Maybe Cullen should have built himself a pyramid instead of a skyscraper.

    That’s not a bad idea. When I’m a rich CEO or whatever, I’m going to work in a pyramid.

    No, a castle!

    No, a palace! Like Versailles!

    Hm… Or I could have a giant golden colossus of myself that’s hollow and has rooms and floors and stuff inside it.

    Yeah, I like that one.

    • GhostCat says:

      I’ve been playing Subnautica, so I’m a bit partial to secret underwater lairs right now – underwater lairs with lots of bioluminescent plants around. (But no Reaper Leviathans. Fuck those assholes.)

  18. BatJamags says:

    E.L. James ore

    The new update to Minecraft is weird.

  19. BatJamags says:

    Lyle: Amused by what, exactly? Are you using a pen shaped like a penis?

    That’s the problem with Pen Island, isn’t it?

  20. BatJamags says:

    Cleopatra?

    Lyle: I thought she had black hair.

    That’s true.

    So was it Cleopatra?

    Lyle: Let’s say yes. It would make this fic gobs better.

    Plus it would make more sense, seeing as we’re basically in a pyramid right now.

    Yeah, yeah that does make the fic better.

  21. BatJamags says:

    I take a deep breath and stand up.
    ―Miss Swan,‖ the latest blond asks.
    ―Yes…‖
    ―Mr Cullen will see you in a moment. May I take your jacket?‖
    ―Oh please.‖ I struggle out of my pea coat.
    ―Have you been offered any refreshment?‖
    ―Err – no…‖ Oh dear, am I going to get Blond Number One into trouble?
    She frowns and eyes the young woman at the desk.
    ―Would you like tea, coffee, water?‖
    ―Glass of water would be lovely thank you.‖
    ―Jessica, please fetch Miss Swan a glass of water.‖ She says sternly to the young woman at the desk. Jessica scoots up immediately and walks to a door on the other side of the foyer.
    ―My apologies Miss Swan, Jessica is our new intern. Please be seated. Mr Cullen will probably be another five minutes.‖
    Jessica returns with a large glass of iced water.
    ―Here you go Miss Swan.‖
    ―Thank you.‖

    I could read all of this, but I’m too enraged by the logic-free quotation mark substitutes.

    • BatJamags says:

      blond

      Ah ah ah, author. “Blond/blonde” is a gendered word for some reason. When you write in English, you’re supposed to play by the rules, no matter how arbitrary and random they seem.

      • Leider Hosen says:

        Too be fair, that extra “e” for use in gendering a FUCKING HAIR COLOR is something I only recently learned from the Library, and I consider myself an above-average author at the very least.

        Not that it detracts from the obvious assassination of the poor quotation mark.

  22. Leider Hosen says:

    To be fair, this is an 850 page fan fiction, you’ve got to fill up the word count somehow.

    lolWut? And I thought my bad FanFiction masquerading as a novel was long, Jeebus.

  23. BatJamags says:

    Lyle: It must be a walk-in elevator then.

  24. BatJamags says:

    About five pages worth of eight hundred and forty.

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

    :batjamags.exe has stopped working. Windows is checking for a solution to the problem.:

  25. Leider Hosen says:

    Lyle: No, that’s the 5-year-old. The 8-year-old is the one that told me he wants to be a pianist, a robot, a mad scientist, and an astronaut. All at once. He’s going to invent FTL space travel and colonize Mars. And create a real-life Spiderman. And work at Baskin Robbins. He’s got aspirations, that one.

    And now I want to see the kind of FanFiction he would write, It’d be infinitely more creative and intelligible than the stuff we review here.

    • "Lyle" says:

      He’s already showing writing creativity. He had to write a short story for class and he chose to write about going to the Amazon and all the adventures he had there. At the end he wrote “And then I closed the book and went home.” He did a total “lost in a book” story. No idea where he got that from.

      • Leider Hosen says:

        Oh! He’s got great potential, that one. I remember by the time I was twelve my imagination was running in overdrive constantly and that’s what moved me towards fantasy and writing, so I relate to that a little.

        Always warms my heart to hear imagination and clever storytelling isn’t dead.

  26. Leider Hosen says:

    Bella I‘m sorry. It took me nine months to get this interview and it will take another six to reschedule, and you and I will both have graduated by then.

    Wait wait wait wait wait hold on. So (going by the snarks of the movies, never read the book but anyway) Edward has ample time to literally fuck around in his sex dungeon and creep on Bella all hours of the day… but it takes a year and a half to get an interview with him if it needs to be rescheduled due to anything going wrong?

    The fuck is he doing that makes getting face-time with him that damn hard-

    Oh! Silly me, answered my own question a few times over already.

  27. Leider Hosen says:

    Oh, bullshit, you need a BMW. Unless you want to look like even more of an asshole.

  28. Leider Hosen says:

    Lyle: Hm. I think this might work. *types in a few things and the loudspeaker system starts up*

    …As an Audiophile who runs my headphones at 70% volume 24/7, I regret opening that video. I need to cleanse my everything.

  29. Leider Hosen says:

    Lyle: E.L. James ore just about every other fanfic author in the Twilight fandom…

    E.L. James and every other fanfic author in the Twilight fandom is made of metal? …*gasp*

    Twilight FanFiction is really just a plot by the Borg to assimilate and destroy all other fanfiction until there’s nothing left but masturbatory wish-fulfillment smut! Those fiends…

  30. Leider Hosen says:

    Or did you just decorate your hair to look like the penis lady from The Last Airbender?

    FUKN SHAMALLAMADINGD0NG *tableflip* Why did he have to do it! Why did he have to make ATLA, one of the best animated series of all time, stupid and Memetastic!

  31. Leider Hosen says:

    Lyle: *snort-giggles*

    *buries face in Bleach Pool* I DID NOT CONSENT TO THAT MENTAL IMAGE.

  32. Delta XIII says:

    Lyle: Some whosiswhats? *le Googling* …Acetaminophen. Fucking Tylenol. No one in Seattle calls it “paracetamol.”

    *raises hand*
    We call it paracetamol in New Zealand.
    Or Panadol, but that’s the brand name version.

    • GhostCat says:

      I think it’s called that in the UK and some places that used to belong to the UK. Many of the author’s word choices (and failure to understand how our cities and traffic work or how frickin’ big the US is) make me think she’s from the UK or somewhere with similar colloquialisms.

  33. GhostCat says:

    Not even if you’re at the top of King Tut’s pyramid, which is what I understand so far, can you see it.

    Especially since Tutankhamun was buried in a tomb cut into the rock of the Valley of the Kings, a location not known for its stunning panoramic vistas.

  34. Delta XIII says:

    Oh shit! But before we begin….

    I see your He-Man and raise you an Undertale!

  35. mattmanthecomet says:

    What the heck are those || things?!

  36. KittyNoodles says:

    Lyle: If she’s going to record the entire thing, why does she need to make notes? Typhoid Mary there just said she’d transcribe the entire conversation. Seems like unnecessary work.
    Also, she’s gonna transcribe the entire thing? This isn’t a fucking interview, this is a court case.

    I really, really hate to defend E. L. James…

    When I worked for Workforce Development, they made me take notes during meetings even though we had a recorder – and a good thing, too, because the quality wasn’t great and sometimes people elaborated with slides or hand gestures. Even in a one-on-one interview, with brand-new(?) equipment, it’s better not to trust the technology to give you a clear, complete recording. You never know when the stupid thing will malfunction or fry itself. And what if the recording is deleted for whatever reason (like, say, Bella’s canonical clumsiness/tendency to overthink and fuck everything up), at least you’ve still got the written copy.

    Plus, when you’re noting down anything – an interview, a meeting, etc – it’s nice to have as much information as possible so you don’t lose track of context by cherry-picking buzz words. Sure, you still cut most of it, but if “Rose” is one of the rare media writers who wants to be accurate and honest, she’ll want to go through the whole interview rather than trust that Bella didn’t give her out-of-context juicy bits that could get her into huge trouble (especially if this is for a class…)

  37. DasCheesenBorgir says:

    Master of the Universe

    Please be Skeletor

  38. NavarroBootcampBlues says:

    Jamie Whatsisface

    Dornan

    He works for a living you MOOOOOAAAARRHHHHON

  39. HEYYEAYEAYEAYEA says:

    if it could be proven that non-blondes are discriminated against during hiring

    Should be fine as long as you’ve got four non-blondes.


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