Too Many Long Boxes!
   
    THIS ISSUE:
  • Table of Contents
  • Bottle City of Candor
  • Letter Column
  • The Elongated and Winding Road
  • Midway City
  • Vlatava: Jewel of the Valley
  • Off The Road
  • Something of a Stretch
  • Comic Book Movies
  • Never Discuss Politics
  • Elastic Wars
  • Dixonverse Annual
  • Farewell to Dannell
  • Trivia Quiz
  • Art Challenge
  • Writing Challenge Results
  • Musee de Bivolo
  • Long Stretch
  • The Evil Stepmother's Manifesto
  • Burning Over
  • The Case Of The Really Dead Waiter
  • Half Empty Bowl, Half Full, Part 3
  • Echoes
  • Deconstruction of a Tragedy
  • Oracle's Files
  • From the Bookshelf
  • The Mount
  • If I Ran DC
  • Scattershot
  • Back Cover
  • Best of Fandom Award
  • Farewell


  • End of Summer
     

    Long Stretch

    written and illustrated by Mathew D. Rhys

    PAGE ONE (Three Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Close-up of a whiskey bottle, shot glass, and cigar (in ashtray).

    STRETCH (OP): HARRY, HOW LONG HAVE WE BEEN DOING THIS?

    PANEL TWO: Close-up of robotic hands holding a hand of playing cards

    HARRY (OP): PLAYING POKER? ABOUT THREE HOURS.

    PANEL THREE: From POV slightly behind Stretch. He holds cards in his hand

    STRETCH: NAH, PLAYING AT SUPERHERO. IT'S BEEN MORE THAN FIFTY YEARS.

    STRETCH: TWO CARDS.

     

    Page 1

    PAGE TWO (Five Panels)

    PANEL ONE: A headless robot deals out two cards. in the center of the robots chest is a speaker

    HARRY (FROM SPEAKER): WELL, I'VE BEEN A DISEMBODDIED VOICE FOR AT LEAST THIRTY YEARS.

    PANEL TWO: Stretch throws back the shotglass

    STRETCH: HA--

    STRETCH: HA.

    STRETCH: REALLY *#&^ING FUNNY, HARRY!

    PANEL THREE: Stretch sits across a table from the robot.

    HARRY: I THOUGHT YOU'D APPRICIATE IT.

    HARRY: WHAT'S GOING ON TOM. YOU SEEM MORE CROCHETY THAN NORMAL.

    STRETCH: I'M TIRED, HARRY.

    PANEL FOUR: Close-up of Stretch. He looks sullen and depressed

    STRETCH: I'M TIRED AND I'M SORE.

    STRECTH: I THINK I WANT TO RETIRE, YOU KNOW.

    PANEL FIVE: Stretch throws his arms back.

    STRETCH: I MEAN WHY AM I IN THE BUSINES ANY MORE?!

     

    Page 2

    PAGE THREE (Five Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Stretch gestures to a window.

    STRECTH: JUST LOOK OUT THERE. THERE ARE DOZENS OF NEW, YOUNG HEROES EVERY DAY. THEY'RE STRONGER, SMARTER AND MORE POWERFUL.

    PANEL TWO: Stretch sits with his head in his hands

    HARRY (OP): REALLY, TOM. THERE HAVE ALWAYS BEEN HEROES MORE POWERFUL THAN YOU.

    STRETCH: yeh.

    HARRY (OP): WHAT'S REALLY BOTHERING YOU?

    PANEL THREE: Stretch pulls his hand down over his face

    STRETCH: IT'S THAT DAMN DIBNY.

    STRETCH: AND O'BRIEN.

    PANEL FOUR:

    STRETCH: OO, THAT DIBNY GETS ME. NOT ONLY IS HE A GLORY GRABBING FINK, BUT THE WAY BLATHERS ON ABOUT HIS "PERFECT MARRIAGE." IT MAKES ME SICK.

    PANEL FIVE: Close-up Stretch pours another glass of whiskey

    STRETCH: AND O'BRIEN HASN'T AGED A DAY IN SIXTY YEARS!

     

    PAGE FOUR (Four Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Close-up of the speaker. Inset in Panel Two.

    HARRY: THAT'S RIGHT YOU RAN ACROSS THEM ON YOUR LAST ASSIGNMENT. HOW DID IT GO?

    STRETCH (OP): OH, JUST GREAT, HARRY.

    PANEL TWO: Stretch stands under the Greektown Columns

    CAPTION: AS YOU RECALL, I WENT TO CHICAGO TO ESCORT DIANA ABEL TO TEXAS TO MEET WITH ONE OF O'BRIEN'S OLD NBI BUDDIES. SHE DECIDED TO GO STATE'S EVIDENCE AGAINST HER LOVER OF TWENTY-FIVE YEARS, MOB CAPO FRANCIS DELL.

    CAPTION: I MET HER AT THE COLUMNS IN GREEKTOWN.

    PANEL THREE: Tall panel, Head to toe, Diana stands in a black dress and hat, looking a bit like an older Audrey Hepburn

    CAPTION: I'M TELLIN' YA, HARRY...

    CAPTION: SHE WAS A REAL LOOKER

    PANEL FOUR: Stretch holds the door of a long white sedan open for Diana, who steps in.

    CAPTION: I RENTED A WHITE SEDAN TO DRIVE US DOWN. I FIGURED IT WOULD BE LESS CONSPICUOUS AND HARDER TO TRACK.

     

    PAGE FIVE (Six Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Strech and Dianna duck as bullets crash through the windows.

    CAPTION: BOY, WAS I WRONG.

    PANEL TWO: The sedan spins of the road. Two cars pull up behind the sedan.

    CAPTION: WE WEREN'T TEN MINUTES OUTSIDE OF THE 'BURBS WHEN WE WERE AMBUSHED BY A CREW OF GOODFELLA'S

    PANEL THREE: Three mobsters walk up to car

    PANEL FOUR: Overlaying the page, Stretch elongates his arm and knocks out one of the thugs.

    PANEL FIVE: Grabbing a tire iron, Stretch knocks the guns from the other two guys

    PANEL SIX: Close-up of Stretch punching of panel to right.

     

    PAGE SIX (Four Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Long Panel. The sedan, bullet holes and all, stops at a road block made of two beat-up trucks.

    CAPTION: AFTER THAT, I THOUGHT WE'D BE SCOTT FREE. THEN WE HIT THE OZARKS.

    PANEL TWO: Large panel. Stretch and Diana are outside the sedan. A hillbilly runs at them with a baseball bat. Others step up from behind carrying crow bars, shotguns, etc.

    PANEL THREE: Half-inset in Panel Two. Close-up on speaker.

    HARRY: MERCENARY HILLBILLIES? YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING!

    PANEL FOUR: Other half inset. Close-up of Stretch, looking depressedly over a hand of cards.

    STRETCH: I WISH I WERE.

     

    Page 6

    PAGE SEVEN (Six Panels)

    PANEL ONE: From POV looking to Stretch and Diana, the pair stand in a darkened alley. They look around apprehensively. In the background, a dozen ninjas prepare to attack

    CAPTION: AND WHEN WE FINALLY GOT TO DALLAS, THERE WERE THE NINJAS.

    PANEL TWO: A ninja lunges toward the reader with katanna posed for attack. Note: ACTION LINES!

    CAPTION (ELECTRIC): NINJAS?

    PANEL THREE: Stretch stretches out to hit one ninja in the belly with his elbow and another in the face with his fist.

    CAPTION: YEP.

    CAPTION: NINJAS.

    PANEL FOUR: Stretch reaches out grabs one ninja by the shoulders. He smashes his fore head into the ninja's face, while simutaneously extending his eldows and tripping up two others.

    PANEL FIVE: Stretch smashes the two tripped ninjas together. He cranes his head around to see Diana being grabbed by another ninja.

    PANEL SIX: Stretch throws his fist toward Diana, but bends it around her and hits the ninja.

     

    PAGE EIGHT (Four Panels)

    PANEL ONE: Stretch leans back in his chair and holds high his cigar.

    STRETCH: ...SO I GOT THE BROAD TO THE NBI WITH A MINIMUM OF TROUBLE AFTER THAT.

    HARRY: IT SOUNDS LIKE QUITE AN ORDEAL, TOM.

    PANEL TWO: Stretch leans forward and points at the robot

    STRETCH: DAMN RIGHT IT WAS, HARRY.

    STRETCH: WHY THE HELL DIDN'T YOU PICK SOMEBODY ELSE FOR THIS JOB ANYWAY?

    PANEL THREE: Stretch looks pleasantly shocked.

    HARRY (OP): BECAUSE IF THERE IS EVER ANY THING THAT NEEDS DONE RIGHT I CAN TRUST YOU.

    PANEL FOUR: Stretch lens back, his hands behind his head, and smiles wide with his cigar in his mouth. The robot shuffles the cards.

    HARRY: HOW ABOUT ANOTHER HAND?

    STRETCH: THAT'D BE SWELL.

    FIN

    Page 8

    The highly odd Mathew D Rhys is an obsessive storyteller and family man whose wife graciously allows him to prattle aimlessly, and gives him no end of joy in life. He hopes to one day write comics his son can read. You can read his original character fiction at dreamerpress.cjb.net.

     
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    This piece is © 2003 by Mathew D. Rhys
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