Mlucas MC Throughline Exercise Sept 2018

Apologize for the length of the fourth signpost … by the time I got to #4 I started to really see this thing as a story so potential bits of other throughlines started to filter in there. (The sister introduced in the fourth signpost would probably be the IC.)

Having a sudden idea
Fourteen-year-old Abby Crumley was born into a strictly religious family. But watching Netflix’s The OA late one night (against her parents’ wishes), Abby gets the sudden idea that the world is not what we have been led to believe. In a spark of revelation, she sees that God, Satan, everything she’s been taught are all just the wool pulled over her eyes, masking the truth. In fact the very world before her – everything her senses tell her is real – is all but shadow…

Pretending to be blind
Unable to keep these ideas to herself, Abby gets in trouble at school. First her teachers, then her parents and even her friends come to believe she is psychologically disturbed.

Abby realizes that she’ll never have the freedom to seek the truth unless she convinces her caregivers that she’s not insane. She struggles to convince her parents and the school-appointed psychologist that she’s okay, that her strange episodes are past. Pretending to be blind like this is the most difficult thing she’s ever had to do. But it begins to allow her some freedom, and in secret, she starts researching her ideas further.

Planning to escape
For months Abby searches the internet, occult bookstores, strange gatherings where like-minded people go. She gains not only allies but strange abilities, for her insight into the truth is a powerful thing. Prescient glimpses of future events and clairvoyant dreams begin to haunt her existence.

Yet as Abby tries to grasp what’s behind these new powers, she grows frustrated. All of it points to SOMETHING ELSE, a greater MORE that exists beyond our mundane world. She works and works to figure out a way to escape to that elsewhere, but she has so few pieces of the puzzle, and none of them fit together properly…

Being changed by someone
Her parents discover her research, evidence that her insanity is worse than ever. They immediately lock her in her room while they determine how to institutionalize her. It is the lowest point in Abby’s life.

A prescient vision comes to Abby then. Abby’s sister Janice, who is constantly doing drugs and hanging with bad crowds (yet always managing to escape their parent’s notice), is about to be assaulted – raped and maybe killed. Abby screams to be let out of her room, and when her parents don’t answer, she breaks through her two-storey window and jumps. Dressed in her pyjamas, blood streaming from her shoulder where the glass cut her, she rushes across town to find her sister.

Abby’s vision was accurate. At the back of the school by the woodlot, she finds Janice cornered by two men, one wielding a knife. Abby yells at the men to leave her sister alone, but they only laugh at her. What is this weird, skinny girl in her nightgown going to do to them anyway?

In a flash of insight Abby sees the escape to MORE she has desperately sought. DEATH is the answer, the tunnel out, the way to lift the veil. She charges forward and impales herself on the surprised man’s knife, holding it in. The men flee.

“I’m okay now,” Abby tells her sister, dying.

“How did you know? How did you find me?”

Abby smiles. “I told you before. The world is not what you think it is. It’s not what our eyes see … but oh! I can see now…” Her words trail off, and still smiling, she dies.


I get a definite sense of the story and I like where it’s going, but I’m not clear on what the conflict is. Does she not want to see this, or is it a struggle for her to accept? Does it create a divide between her and her religious family? I can sense some of that coming, but it’s missing from the description.

I really like just this part for Pretending to be blind. Her failure to pretend to be blind to the truth causes her to get in trouble and for her teachers, parents, and friends to see her as disturbed. That alone is enough to illustrate this Sign Post to me.

1 Like

[quote=“Greg, post:2, topic:2042”]
I get a definite sense of the story and I like where it’s going, but I’m not clear on what the conflict is. … Does it create a divide between her and her religious family? [/quote]

Funny, the part you you liked so much in Signpost 2 was originally in Signpost 1, showing how the conceiving led to trouble. I’m not sure why I moved it, though like you said it does also show a failure to Be.

I think if I was writing it, the conceiving-trouble would begin in act 1, as people begin to find her weird etc.

1 Like

Ya know, I didn’t even notice, but yeah, that works nicely for SP1.