I'm a part-time writer, and I have come up with a story line for a sci-fi/Fantasy story, similar to "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court." The plot is, a Russian or German mercenary from the present day is brought back in time through the witchcraft of a Celtic shaman. When he was taken back in time, he was still holding all of his weapons, and a backpack full of ammunition. When he gets taken back in time, the Celts ask him to lead their armies against the Viking hoards who keep raiding their villages, taking women, gold, killing men and children, and burning their homes. When he refuses, the shaman tells him that he'd send him back to his own time if he'd help them. In short, he does (in the meantime running out of ammunition), he falls in love with a Celt woman of the time, the shaman tries to send him back, he doesn't want to, and in the famous way of "fairy-tales." They get married and live happily ever after.
Please tell me if this seems to be a good story line, unalike enough from "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" to not be considered a clone. If it sounds interesting to you, or if you have any suggestions please post to this.
May 7th, 2006, 04:05 PM
There's nothing wrong with the idea, Aelden. I'm sure it could work. A lot would depend on the telling.
A couple thoughts you may want to address:
(1) If you have a shaman powerful enough to send a warrior through time, why can't he solve his own problems?
(2) What weapons would this character have that would make him more useful against a horde than the regular villagers? A single machine gun can only do so much.
May 7th, 2006, 04:34 PM
Although the initial concept is similar to ACYIKAC, you can make the story your own.
If you're familiar with the whole story of ACYIKAC, just make sure you don't follow it. Intentionally avoid the scenes in that story while writing your story.
May 8th, 2006, 12:57 AM
Thanks for your replys and suggestions, I was thinking the shaman could be more of a druid than anything and therefore doesn't use his magic as a weapon. I suppose there are other ways to solve the problem. And as far as the single machine gun goes, I was thinking, if he were to have grenades or something similar, he would be able to sink their ships easily, or a whole squad of mercenaries could be transported back in time, although that might make it too easy. His weapons aren't the only thing he's bringing to the battle, if you will recall, true guerilla warefare wasn't truly used until the American Revolution so his tactics would be just as valuable as his weaponry. I dont know, it's not all that much to work with, i definitely need to work out the bugs in it. There's no way I expect it to be anything like "ACYIKAC" but truly, I just want to see how well it would do. It seems to me true novels are non-existent, and although this isn't totally novel, it is novel in a few ways.
May 8th, 2006, 01:03 AM
And as far as the single machine gun goes
A thought I had on this was that the people he would be fighting in a world that is not familiar with guns. If he whips out the machine gun and kills just 5 or 6 enemies from a considerable distance and in a very brief span of time (seconds), the rest of the enemies are going to think twice about approaching him. They would have no idea what that "barking black stick" is or that it requires ammo or anything like that. For all they know, the "barking black stick" could quickly kill them all.
He wouldn't have to shoot many people before most of them were afraid to appraoch him.
May 8th, 2006, 11:40 AM
To push that point even further, although it is a little bit of cliche, civilisations that come into contact with much higher levels of technology than their own often fall back on superstitions /religious influences to explain it - sorcery/magic/witchcraft/devil's work etc so how that influences your mercenary's position in the society would be intriguing. Would the Celtic shaman and his people be in awe/worship of him or ostracise/fear him for what he can do. Hell what would they make of grenades :D
May 8th, 2006, 11:44 AM
Hell what would they make of grenades :D
Hmm ... what about a flame thrower?! He might be viewed as a dragon-man.
May 8th, 2006, 01:24 PM
A sub-plot and minor character in Donaldson's "Mordant's Need" fulfills this role.
And as mentioned before perhaps the most dramatic impact of this in real life was the Spanish Conquistadors, who with their superior technology, accidental germ warfare and the religious awe they inspired, destroyed two empires in very short order.
May 8th, 2006, 05:15 PM
Hey thanks alot for your suggestions, although i'm intrigued by the fact that there is a character similar to him in another book, please tell me more about it. Grenades I think would be as much of a psychological weapon as a physical weapon. The flamethrower idea is excellent, and would definitely be a psychological weapon. The Celts/mercenary relationship would be similar to the relationship of the moria orcs/balrog in the Lord of the Rings. The celts would worship him and fear him in equal measure. As far as i'm concerned he could be from the future as well, using a laser rifle which runs on solar power, keeping him from running out of ammunition. I'm curious, do you think he should die at the end, or just keep living until he would as if he hadn't been transported back in time, like until say 2035 or something, and become, in fact, a god to the celtic tribesmen. I'm not real sure which to do with him, because both would be "cool." I'm not real sure what weapons I should give him, other than a primary weapon, a pistol of some sort, maybe an alternate primary weapon (such as a flamethrower) and several grenades or c4 charges, mines might even be good because he could put them on the beaches where the Vikings would land, giving him an advantage before he has to fire any shots.
May 8th, 2006, 05:26 PM
I think you have to make him defeatable. If he has a laser rifle with unlimited ammo, he might not have much of a weakness against the barbarian hordes. If he's got 500 rounds of ammo, 6 grenades, 2 mines and a gallon of naphtha, he's got an awesome arsenal. However, he still has to be careful with it and use it sparingly. Once he's out, if someone calls his bluff, he's in trouble.
Even a WWII soldier with the above munitions would be god-like to technologically impaired medieval Celts. But he would have his limitations and he would have to watch himself to stay within them.