Write A Novel With Me is an interactive writing experiment that allows you, the reader, to dictate where the story will go next. With every new chapter I write, a question will be posed to find out what should happen next (hoping your answers will be so creative, unique and off-the-wall, my creativity will need to go into overdrive to make it work). Learn more about how the whole experiment works and then start reading the current chapters to prepare yourself to answer the upcoming chapter’s question.
What’s that you say? It’ll take too long to get caught up? Well, have I got a solution for you.
The following is your cheat sheet to major characters and items, as well as summaries of all chapters that have already been written (with links to the chapter in case you’re feeling adventurous and would like to read the entire thing). If you are new to world and need a way to catch up on what’s been happening, or just need to take a quick look to remind yourself of an event, object or character to help answer a question, this is where you need to be. New chapter summaries and character descriptions will be added and updated with the arrival of each of new chapter.
Now get reading so you can join in on the fun.
An average man, living a normal, average life with his girlfriend Sawyer. Because of his mother’s unexpected death and his brother’s sudden disappearance, he spent a lot of his time as a kid taking care of his sick father and never learned to swim.
Jaden’s older brother and high school football star (and ladies man). Never quite got over his mother’s unexpected death (which caused him to fear drowning) and is infatuated with his teenage aunt, Lauren. Twenty years ago, Rick agreed to be trained as a Galaxy Gifted in order to protect his family.
Salinar (aka Sawyer)
A shape-shifter and leader of the shape-shifter faction looking to destroy the realms that make up the universe. Created a way to track the essence of the Osteris and has spent the last few years on Earth searching for it, using Jaden as a pawn in retrieving it.
The Majestrata (aka the Shadows)
Some of the oldest beings in the known universe, they are shadow like creatures who keep the millions of realms that co-exist to make up the universe from collapsing in on themselves. They created the Osteris to help bind the Galaxy Gifted into a unified entity when doing so alone was about ready to destroy them.
Jaden and Rick’s aunt on their mother’s side who’s a year younger than Rick. She’s a vegetarian who loves astronomy and has feelings for Rick that she tries hard to ignore. She hasn’t been heard from since the night Rick disappeared.
See The Majestrata.
A young, attractive police officer.
An alien chosen to be a Galaxy Gifted but has yet to find the courage to accept the final test. Her worst fear is being devoured by the jungles from which make up the majority of her home world. Appears to Rick as Lauren if she were ten years older. Has been trapped in the second Galaxy Gifted test arena “for, like, forever.”
An alien chosen to be a Galaxy Gifted but has yet to find the courage to accept the final test. Fun and lighthearted, she likes to playfully pick on Sameer. Appears to Rick as a chubby young woman who talks like a valley girl. Has been trapped in the second Galaxy Gifted test arena from somewhere between six and eight months.
An alien chosen to be a Galaxy Gifted but has yet to find the courage to accept the final test. Doesn’t talk much, but is apparently a sweetie-pie. Appears to Rick as the Hulk on steroids. It is unknown how long he has been trapped in the second Galaxy Gifted test arena.
An alien chosen to be a Galaxy Gifted but has yet to find the courage to accept the final test. Appears to Rick as an old woman.
Misc. Items and terms
The Galaxy Gifted
Protectors of the realms, the Galaxy Gifted consist of twelve individuals who share thoughts, emotions, fears and ambitions but are free to do as they please, so long as it doesn’t harm their prime directive — to keep the realms from collapsing into one another. The legion was formed to help the Majestrata when they became too weak to protect the realms and represent the bravest, most thoughtful and intelligent beings from across the universe. The number of members currently connected with one another multiplies their life force to the point of invincibility; the weaker they are, the more susceptible they are to compulsion. They are endowed with the ability to see the truth in anything.
A curved sheet of glass with twelve small jewels encrusted in a pattern that represents the Osteris sun. It binds the Galaxy Gifted together to protect the realms from collapsing. Whoever possesses the Osteris can track and control the Galaxy Gifted, able to brainwash them when there are less than six connected to the Osteris at one time. When used correctly, it can also hide the truth from the Galaxy Gifted. A war was fought between the Galaxy Gifted and the shape-shifter faction after the shape-shifters stole it. Once recovered, the Majestrata created a way for it to jump randomly from realm to realm, object to object and avoid detection. No one knows what or where the Osteris currently is.
Term the Majestrata use to describe Earthlings.
A planet in the Helifar quadrant where a massive war between the Galaxy Gifted and the shape-shifter faction took place.
The site of Salinar’s shooting on Earth.
Chapter 1 (1228 words)
Jaden officially proposes to Sawyer, his girlfriend of over two years when he slips the engagement ring she had asked for onto her finger during a dinner at a fancy restaurant. They then celebrate with a walk along the river.
QUESTION: What happened to Sawyer?
WINNING ANSWER: Suddenly Jayden sees a bright red spot appear on Sawyer’s shirt. She has been shot — by whom or why is unknown.
Chapter 2 (2154 words)
Sawyer is shot by a long-range rifle and falls into the river. Jaden jumps in after her but can’t find her. When the police arrive, Cartera questions Jaden and then takes him to the station for further interrogation. Jaden is released, a after a long night mindlessly walking the streets, he returns home and reminisces about his life with Sawyer. The doorbell rings.
QUESTION: Who is at the door?
WINNING ANSWER: Jaden opens the door and sees his long lost brother Rick. Rick says, “I have something to tell you about your fiancé, Sawyer. She is not who she says she is.” He go’s to explain, “She is a foreigner not of this world.” Jaden says, “What are you talking about? I haven’t seen you for 20 years and this is what you have to say to me!” Jaden then asks, “If she is not of this world then what is she and how would you know?” Rick says, “I have been tracking her for many years and she is known as a shape shifter on her planet. She has come here for the greatest treasure in the known galaxy.”
Chapter 3 (1396 words)
Standing at the door is Rick, who instantly checks the apartment without ever being invited in. He then blacks out the window and grabs a snack before telling Jaden all about where he’s been for the last twenty years, who Sawyer really is, and reveals he was the one who shot her. Jaden is furious (and skeptical), but Rick convinces him to listen to his story about what happened the night he disappeared to try and convince him it’s all true.
QUESTION: What happened to Rick and Lauren at the park?
WINNING ANSWER: Lauren is their very young Aunt (the same age as Rick and it’s their mother’s sister) in which Rick became infatuated with. When they were on their late night picnic, a mysterious creature appeared out of nowhere and took Lauren hostage. Rick had to go with these creatures in order to keep Lauren, Jaden and his Dad alive.
Chapter 4 (1984 words)
Rick takes Lauren to the park for a sweet sixteen picnic under the stars. This is where they kiss for the first time. They both know it’s wrong, but they can’t help themselves. Soon after, a shadowy creature appears and abducts Lauren. The shadow tells Rick it will return her and leave his family alone if he agrees to accept his destiny as a Galaxy Gifted. Rick has no other choice but to agree. The shadow returns Lauren and envelopes Rick.
QUESTION: Where did the shadow take Rick?
WINNING ANSWER: TIE — Rick fell unconscious when the shadow enveloped him and when he awoke he was in what appeared to be a hospital room with six other people. They helped him up and they all told of their stories of how they got there. — The shadows kept a close eye on Rick as they traveled through several worm wholes. They didn’t want Rick to find his way back to soon. After the shadows made it to their great castle, they threw Rick into a room. Rick woke up and to him it only felt like 24 hours went by, but he had traveled many light years away. Rick looked around at his new home and found out that he was not alone. One shadow told him to prepare himself for his first challenge
Chapter 5 (2978 words)
Rick travels through an otherworldly tunnel, experiencing a bevy of images, thoughts and memories (including that of his mother) that help open his heart to his destiny. He wakes up in an empty hospital room. His first thought is to find answers, so he opens the doors to discover a bright light that pulls him into another room, this one a fishbowl full of water. As he begins to drown, he notices several other people unaffected, coming to the conclusion that the whole thing is an illusion, which allows him to finally breathe. He then meets Sameer, Johson and Frensessa, who fill him in on where they think they are. They believe there is one final test, which when passed, will finally allow them to begin their training. It is a test of courage and involves alking back through the blinding light of the doors. He doesn’t hesitate to do just that.
QUESTION: What is the test of courage?
WINNING ANSWER: When he passed through the doors, he looked around and his first thought was “I’m back at the park.” It seemed he had come back to where the nightmare had begun. Then he heard a scream coming from the woods and ran to see who it might be. Could it be Lauren? He ran in the direction of the screams, but it didn’t seem like he was making any progress. Then he saw her hanging from a branch over a ledge; but it wasn’t Lauren it was Sawyer.
Chapter 6 (2890 words)
Rick finds himself back at the park where he was taken. It’s fuzzy at first, but the more he investigates, the more he remembers, including Lauren. He then hears a scream in the distance and chases after it. When he reaches the edge of a river he finds a lynched woman dangling from a tree branch. Before he can do anything, he meets Salinar, who tells him he’s a coward for not fighting the shadows when they came for him, and that all he has to do to stop the madness is save the woman, who he learns is his mother. He quickly climbs the tree, but soon realizes that none of it is real, and allows his mother to drop into the river. But because of his courage to let go of his past, he becomes a Galaxy Gifted. Jaden can’t believe that’s the end of the story, but believes everything else and accepts the fact that Salinar is looking for something Jaden has some attachment to.
QUESTION: What’s the treasure Salinar/Sawyer is looking for?
WINNING ANSWER: It’s a weapon that would help the Galaxy Gifted protect the universe and locate other gifted warriors to join the fight. If the weapon were to fall into the hands of the enemy, they could locate all of the Galaxy Gifted and kill them before they could be trained to fight, or turn them to fight for the other side.
Chapter 7 (3191 Words)
Rick fills Jaden in on the story of the Osteris, and that Salinar has somwehow figured out how to track its essence. They come to the conclusion that the Osteris must be the engagement ring Jaden gave to Salinar the night before. The reason she didn’t just take it the moment he bought it is because it has to be gifted with love in order for her to access its power. Just before leaving to find Salinar, Cartera arrives to arrest Jaden for Sawyer’s murder. But before she takes him, she asks to search the apartment. As she does, Jaden notices she’s wearing the ring and calls her out, which prompts her to blindly attack Rick’s supposed hiding place. Rick fights back, sending Salinar flying into the kitchen. As Rick follows to finish her off, Jaden rises from his own hiding place to seek Rick’s death.
QUESTION: How does the standoff end?
WINNING ANSWER: Salinar is Jaden at this point. And Salinar’s ability has increased since she has the ring — way more powerful than before. Rick cannot risk his life as well as his only brother’s. Rick does the only thing he can — he puts his gun on full power and says, “Salinar, if you leave now without harming my brother, you will live. If not, you’re life is over!”
Chapter 8 (2478 Words)
Rick makes the choice to dive into the kitchen (avoiding the gunshots from Jaden) and kill Salinar. Only the “corpse” in the kitchen is also Jaden. Unsure of which is the real Jaden, he shoots the corpse in the shoulder, causing the other to scream in pain and jump from the window. Rick decides to patch Jaden’s wound instead of going after Salinar, and then drags Jaden to his ship, which is hidden in the caves on the outskirts of the city. He then calls the Majestrata to update them on his progress, at which point he’s asked to return home. When he goes to light up the engines… nothing happens.
QUESTION: Why won’t the engines start?
WINNING ANSWER: It won’t start because the Osteris is linked to Jaden. Jaden cannot be on a different planet than where the Osteris is. Which means, Salinar is still reachable.