Bubblegum Cross

By Andy Skuse ~ askuse7@hotmail.com

A Bubblegum Crisis Fanfiction (C) 1995-2000
Based on characters copyrighted by Youmex, AIC, Artmic

Author's Notes - May 10th 2000 - Chapter 20. "The Body Electric"

What can I tell you about Chapter 20 that you haven't already just read? Well for one, I changed the title at the last minute. How come? The chapter you just read is only half of what chapter 20 originally started out as. It has since grown into 2 distinct chapters as inspiration paid me a pretty generous visit and deposited a lot of new ideas to help bring this story into the home stretch. What were those ideas? Well, I can share a few...

The title itself is another song title, again by the band Rush, if you hadn't spotted the trend already ;) In this chapter electricity in varying forms was explored, from an unexpected romantic touch on the arm, to electric guitars, to the charge of an exciting hunt! Electricity is all around us everyday and motivates us, yet we tend to take it for granted a lot of the time. It was fun to see how it snuck into this chapter time and time again ;)

Also, a romantic involvement was accelerated to an honest-to-goodness bedroom scene, a first for this author *^_^* The point of Priss and Blackie's night alone together was to first of all move their relationship into high gear, but also to briefly mirror Blackie's nasty dreams of "the voice" with someone that has been haunting him ever since Priss told him about him - "the man she once loved". No, they are not the same person. If you were thinking they were, then you fell into the trap ;)

Truth be told, the seed for this idea was borrowed from another series I just finished watching, Maison Ikkoku. Kyoko and Godai faced the exact same problem near the end of MI, and it occured to me as I was finishing the chapter that I could maybe use their guidance to help Priss and Blackie. I am very satisfied with how this chapter ends because of the change! It remains a high point for me in this story, as I have read that section over and over again soaking up the meaning. And as always, I have placed a metaphor in there as well. Did you spot it? Priss has asked Blackie to put her old flame out of his mind, but he has trouble doing that at first, like many of us would. But just as the rain washed away the dust from the windows, Blackie clears away the past and finds the strength within himself, and in Priss's assurances, that he is all she is thinking about when they make love. It's all about believing in yourself and your partner.

What else can I tell you? Well, there was a metaphor of course (couldn't do without those!) but did you notice the change in the style? Right from the beginning this chapter was constructed to be almost entirely free of lengthy setting descriptions and atmosphere. I wanted the characters and the story to establish the mood for a change. Let them make me feel something instead of a beautiful landscape or setting sun. I found that as the story progressed I became a lot more focused on the story itself, and what the characters were saying and doing. As a result, this chapter creates a fresh feel for the story, and I will continue to explore this style change until the story demands I return to the "heavy atmosphere" of previous chapters.

I'm really proud of this chapter. I hope you like it! Chapter 21 should be available very soon, so stay tuned!
- Andy

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