Chase: Found And Lost — Part 1

A couple of years ago I had an idea for a comic book that I guess I would describe as “pulp fantasy noir” — Raymond Chandler meets J.R.R. Tolkien, or if Dashiell Hammett was ever to have been a Dungeon Master. I wrote the script for the first issue of what I’m tentatively calling Chase, but of course being a pulp detective story it gets a sub-title, so I call it Chase: Found and Lost. I’m not sure if it’ll ever see the light of day as a published comic book, so I thought I’d share it here.

PAGE ONE (3 Panels)

1 – EXT. STONEPORT STREET – DAY – ANGLE ON CRISPIN CHASE
as he maneuvers through the regular bustle of the mid-day crowd of one of the realms largest cities. It is a “classic” mid-evil fantasy setting. Peddlers are hawking their wares. Soldiers are keeping an eye on things. Farmers coming into the city to sale their crops and buy supplies. While there is plenty of activity going on, the street is not too crowded. And, not everyone is human. The city of Stoneport is populated by other races as well — such as elves, dwarves, gnomes, even the occasional ogre. While other races are present, humans still clearly outnumber the other races. Most of the population is lower or middle class — no real upper class types to be seen. The skies are dark with clouds and it’s apparent that it has recently rained with the cobblestone street filled with many puddles. Most of the citizens on the street have their cloaks pulled tight around their bodies to protect themselves from the chill.

Now, on to Chase… He is a half-elf — half human and half elf. Being half human he is not quite as thin and fair as most elves, but some elfish features are still apparent — such as slightly pointed ears. He has a slight grimace on his. He is standing on a boardwalk in front of a general goods store.

CAPTION:
Some days just are not worth waking up for.

2 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he steps off of the boardwalk and onto the street. His foot lands directly into a deep puddle with a splash. His grimace intensifies.

CAPTION:
I had a feeling that today was going to turn out to be one of them.

3 – EXT. BURNT CORK TAVERN – DAY – ANGLE ON CHASE
with his back to us as he crosses the street for the tavern. The establishment is displaying a sign signifying it as the Burnt Cork Tavern. There are plenty of paned windows on either side of the tavern’s two large double doors –- though no real details can be scene through the windows –- they’re too smokey. But, it is obvious that there are patrons within the tavern –- some with drinks hoisted to their lips.

CAPTION:
I had scheduled a meeting with a Mr. Fellows at the Burnt Cork. He was looking for an investigator to confirm his suspicions of his wife’s possible involvement in extracurricular relationships.

PAGE TWO (5 Panels)

1 – INT. BURNT CORK TAVERN – DAY – CHASE’S P.O.V.
Like the street outside, the interior of the Burnt Cork have all the usual characters and trappings of the “classic” fantasy tavern setting. The tavern is full of all sorts of patrons of various races –- elves, dwarves, gnomes, but mostly humans. We can see adventurers –- warriors, rogues, a wizard or two maybe –- having just returned from a dungeon crawl or preparing to strike out a new adventure. There are local farmers escaping the drudgery of their farm life. A couple of “shady” characters are deep in discussion off to one corner.

At the far end of the tavern is a large bar with numerous hefty-sized barrels ready to dispense ales and stouts on the wall behind it. Wiping down the bar with a rag is Ahlmier -– the tavern’s barkeep. Even from this distance we can see that is glaring at Chase.

CAPTION:
He was referred to be by his mistress.

2 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he slides onto a stool and slumps onto the bar with a sigh. He is already throwing up one finger to get the barkeep’s attention.

CHASE:
Pint of ale.

3 – ANGLE ON AHLMIER
who looks less than thrilled to serve Chase anytime soon. He has draped his rag over his shoulder and has crossed his arms across his chest. He’s a middle-aged man that looks very tired by having been a barkeep most of his adult life.

AHLMIER:
Ah, Mr. Chase. It embarrasses me to remind the good sir that his current tab is well overdue.

4 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he straightens up on his stool and glances around the establishment like he is looking for somebody.

CHASE:
Yeah, about that… Look Ahlmier, I’m meeting a client here, and I’ll be able to settle up before I leave.

5 – ANGLE ON CHASE AND AHLMIER
as they glare across the bar at each other. It looks like it’s a standoff that they’ve both experienced numerous times before.

AHLMIER:
Business has been slow?

CHASE:
You can say that.

PAGE THREE (4 Panels)

1 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he sits at the bar sipping on a mug of ale. There are various tavern patrons in the background behind him going about their usual business of drinking, eating, and conversing.

CAPTION:
I spent the better part of the day waiting for Mr. Fellows. He never showed.

2 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he is looking about the tavern to his right. To his left, a Serving Wench is placing a plate of bread and cheeses on the bar in front of him. He doesn’t acknowledge the server. The crowd of patrons behind him has changed. While they’re not the same crowd as before, they are pretty much doing the same drinking, eating and conversing.

CAPTION:
If he and his wife were able to come to some sort of reconciliation… Well, good for them. But, reconciliations were bad for business.

3 – ANGLE ON CHASE
who is now sitting at the bar with a few empty mugs scattered about along with the now empty plate save for a few crumbs.

CAPTION:
I should have left after my second pint. I had enough silver in my pocket to cover at least that much. But, against my better judgment, I had hoped that this Fellows guy would actually show up and turn out to be a paying client.

4 – ANGLE ON CHASE AND AHLMIER
as Ahlmier is removing a mug and the plate from the bar. Chase shows the slightest sign of being uncomfortable.

AHLMIER:
So, Mr. Chase… Your friend never arrived?

CHASE:
No. No he didn’t.

Chase: Found and Lost © 2007 Dan Taylor

So, there you have the first three pages from the first issue of Chase — the pulp fantasy noir detective comic book. I’ll post a few more pages shortly so stay tuned for more. If you’re an artist (or know of an artist) looking to do a pulp fantasy noir detective comic book drop me a line.

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