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Lion's Den

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  #1  
Old 12-09-2013, 10:27 PM
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Default Lion's Den


Just an idea I've been playing with. Not sure if I should expand or not. Let me know! -RJPR



Mr. Dallas Anderson sipped his mineral water contently. He watched as his colleagues drank and chatted loudly with one another. He was pleased to say the most. They had just landed an important account while back-handing their competition. A small smirk flitted across Anderson’s lips. Who cared if he had to use a little underhanded trickery? Who cared if he spent a few thousand dollars in bribes and blackmail?
Whatever happened was of no consequence to him.

His eyes passed over a quiet blonde woman sitting next to his assistant, Jackson. He chuckled softly to himself. She was a bigger fool than he thought if she really believed that he hadn’t noticed her staring at him all through dinner. Jackson, of course, was oblivious to his lady friend’s wandering eye. Anderson leaned back in his seat. Let’s have some fun.
He leaned over to the man seated next to him.
“Martin. What’s the name of Jackson’s date?”
The older man chewed his steak and thought a minute.“Hmm? Delilah I believe. She’s a college intern. Works in public affairs.”
“I see,” replied Anderson, never taking his eyes off of her.
Martin glanced over at him. “Like what you see?”
Anderson smirked.
Martin snorted. “Well, it’d behoove you to leave well enough alone.” He returned to his steak.

Delilah looked up and met Anderson’s gaze. She blushed, looked away, and looked back again. He smirked and gave her a wink. She looked away giggling. Waiters began appearing, clearing plates and bringing checks. Anderson checked his watch: a beautifully polished Rolex. It read 9:30. Show time.

He stood up from his seat, straightened his tie and strode over to Jackson and Delilah. Jackson was leaning close and kissing her neck while stroking her hair, unaware of Anderson’s presence.
Jackson was whispering in her ear, “Maybe you could join me this evening? Hmm?” She giggled.
Anderson's eyebrow twitched in annoyance and he cleared his throat loudly. Jackson and Delilah snapped to attention and exchanged guilty grins.
“Oh! M-Mr. Anderson! I-I didn’t hear you come up behind us!” stuttered Jackson.
Anderson nodded curtly. “Jackson. I need you to run down to the office tonight. There are some papers that need to be sorted and filed immediately. You’ll find them on Mrs. Cleary’s desk.”
“But Mr. Anderson, it’s a Saturday night and I need to take Miss Jacobs here home,” he protested.
“Jackson. You’ll do this. Tonight. And as for your lovely date,” Anderson placed a hand on Delilah’s shoulder. “I’ll see that she gets home safe. Personally.”
Jackson looked back and forth between Anderson and Delilah, realization creeping across his face. “Now see here, Mr. Anderson! I don’t think—"
“Jackson,” snapped Anderson firmly. “I don’t pay you to think. You will go back to the office tonight and you will see that that work is completed. Do I make myself clear?”

Jackson gaped at him angrily, mouth opening and closing repeatedly.
“Do we want a repeat of last quarter, Mr. Jackson?” Anderson hissed.
The rage in Jackson’s eyes evaporated and his shoulders slumped. “I’ll go immediately, sir.” He stood up, straightened his suit jacket and walked swiftly out of the restaurant.

Anderson helped Delilah out of her seat and placed his hand on her low back. His lips grazed her jawbone as he took in her intoxicating perfume. “Shall we, Miss Jacobs?” he breathed. She nodded slowly, speechless. He smirked as a crimson flower blossomed across her cheeks and together they stepped out into the night.

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Old 12-09-2013, 11:55 PM
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He was pleased to say the most.
I think you mean "to say the least"?

They had just landed an important account while back-handing their competition.
This reads strangely to me, I had to parse it twice. It might just be me.

A small smirk flitted across Anderson’s lips. Who cared if he had to use a little underhanded trickery? Who cared if he spent a few thousand dollars in bribes and blackmail?
Whatever happened was of no consequence to him.
I think your tenses are weird here- "who cares if he had had to use..." etc would read better, I think.

The not about consequences seems strange, as if he doesn't care about anything at all. If that were the case, why would he be happy? I think I know what you're going for here but try finding a different way to say it.

His eyes passed over a quiet blonde woman sitting next to his assistant, Jackson. He chuckled softly to himself. She was a bigger fool than he thought if she really believed that he hadn’t noticed her staring at him all through dinner. Jackson, of course, was oblivious to his lady friend’s wandering eye.
I don't like the use of "quiet" - show, don't tell. Quiet isn't a visual characteristic. How can Anderson tell she's quiet?

Additionally, "She was a bigger fool..." seems needlessly convoluted. And why does he think she's a fool? If Anderson thinks all attractive blondes are fools there's probably a better way to express that.

I've cut the rest but I'd like to say that we don't get a very clear picture of who Delilah is. She's apparently been looking at Anderson all night but seems surprised when he notices her. She keeps giggling and blushing to Anderson AND Jackson. I just can't get a read on how she's meant to come across. Anderson is a sleazy asshole, Jackson is a flunky, but Delilah seems undefined.

Just my thoughts. If you feel like you have a story to tell here you might as well go in with it.
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Old 12-10-2013, 12:38 AM
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When it comes to a story that you want to know whether or not you should expand, I don't think that you can really ask anyone's opinion. A story idea is a personal thing, and if you have to force it out to expand on it then it isn't worth your time.

A good story flows out of your mind without wondering whether or not it should be expanded. If you like the idea, screw everyone else and everything they think.

So in other words. So long as you want to expand the story, you should go ahead and expand it.
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Old 12-11-2013, 05:22 AM
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I like it. It's a window into what it's like to have unquestioned power. I like to picture this guy as a banker or politician who doesn't give a fuck what he does or who he does it to. He probably has a band of sleazy cronies too who, as Rose so aptly put it in Titanic, like to 'congratulate themselves on being masters of the universe'. Delilah comes across as being a 50s broad who lets the highest bidder take her home. There's room for some deep and interesting character development there.
The story reminds me of a news story in Ireland this year. There was a property developer who faked his own kidnapping, showing up after months of being missing with "Thief" carved in his forehead, acting discombobulated and amnesiatic. They worked out pretty quick that it was a hoax but never told us what circumstances brought this man to that place.
I think you have great leeway here to veer off into something dark and unexpected, as is hinted at by Dallas' blatant stealing of his employee's girlfriend. Keep it up!

Just one thing, putting his hand 'on the small of her back' rolls better than 'her low back' but that's only technicalities, I'm sure you'll pick that up anyway.
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Old 12-11-2013, 11:08 AM
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Thank you so much everyone! You've all given great suggestions and now I have a lot to think about
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