Posts Tagged ‘God Help Me I Love Descriptive Words’

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Clive Cussler Remixed Vol. 1 – Douglas Adams

March 25, 2010

"Have the printers add 20% more boat and shove it on the shelves."

As many of you are aware (or will be, once I finish this sentence), Clive F. Cussler has a bevy of cowriters, all working diligently to ensure he is credited for their work. While the names Paul Kamprecos and Jack DuBrul are hardly household names (thanks to their 10-pt appearance on book covers, sandwiched between a boat and CLIVE F. CUSSLER), some other authors have been approached for possible co-author duties.

This new series will deal with some that never made it off the cutting room floor, to mangle analogies. Presented below is a small section of Clive Cussler’s work and the resulting piece.

This volume features sci-fi humourist Douglas Adams’ contribution to the Cussler canon. Enjoy.

The original work:

“Sandecker flashed a barracuda smile, but an icy coldness crept into his authoritative blue eyes as he prepared to rip Tingley to shreds.”

From Douglas Adams:

As Sandecker stepped into the hall, the lights came on automatically, a positive sign that meant things were indeed Working, in a way that most things he had encountered so far were not. He continued down the extremely lengthy hallway as did the lights, brightening as he approached and dimming as he passed.

At the end of the hall was a door covered in indecipherable symbols.

Sandecker flashed a barracuda smile that edged briefly towards “wolfish” before jumping completely out of the animal kingdom and into “puzzled.” This is where it stayed.

He gazed at the door, regarding the strange symbols, odd smoothness and lack of handle or hinges, roughly in that order. He shifted his weight as he puzzled over the impasse, and the lights shifted with him in equal puzzlement, attempting to guess his next movement.

Soon a popular tune crept through the air, synched to the now strobing lights. Sandecker hummed along, despite his puzzlement and even began to dance a little.

The door opened briefly, assaulting Sandecker’s ears with the cacophonous wails of a million damned souls seeking relief from their torment. Sandecker screamed too, although it was not until the door slammed shut that he realized it. He kept it up for another minute or two just to assure himself that he was the only one still screaming. The door remained closed.

He felt something behind him and froze. Sandecker struggled to contain his fear and panic, finally subduing them with promises to let them run wild in the near future, quite possibly in the next few seconds.

He turned around and levelled an icy glare at the interloper. Or rather, he attempted to level it. His icy glare which, despite years of intermittent practice in the bathroom mirror (frequently after watching gangster films), had failed to coalesce into something intimidating.

In fact, rather than conjure up images of a frosty demeanor and preternatural calm, the gaze reverted to its usual form, which tended to remind those on the receiving end of a cold mist or the type of heavy, slushy snow that, within moments of touching the ground, absorbs its weight in auto exhaust, soot and the surrounding dirt and soon resembles nothing more than a weak and possibly rheumatic stone that would erode to nothing during the next rain or be hurled casually into the street by passing schoolchildren.

Sandecker’s slushy gaze went unmet. There was no one there.

He blinked heavily, trying to dislodge the remains of his icy glaze, which had dissolved nearly immediately into pools of tepid and non-threatening water and the beginnings of a headache. He weighed his options slowly, taking into account his fear and panic, both now pacing in the foyer of his psyche and threatening to urinate right on the expensive Oriental rug of his better judgement.

On one hand he had a million damned souls with only a door between them. On the other, he had an unknown, invisible force and the hollow comfort of a strangely familiar pop tune and the now-irritating strobing lights.

He mentally flipped a coin, called it in the air and promptly forgot whether he had chosen “heads” or “tails.” He flipped again. Heads. Through the door.

He reached out to touch the symbols, feeling the sudden warmth of fear and panic relieving themselves before heading to the living room to tear up the expensive leather sofa of his instincts.

The door opened and the screaming began. As he stepped forward, the nothing behind him promptly tore him to shreds.

-CLT

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