Black Night: The Stolen Dragon Horn
By: Paul-Thomas L. Parnell
Treatment: April 4th, 2018
Black Night: The Stolen Dragon Horn, is a moody action-fantasy about an unlikely partnership of two police detectives – one a reckless, magic-less black sheep of a prominent mage family, the other an even tempered, fairy-folk loving half-elf mage. As they struggle to find the High Chancellor’s stolen Dragon horn, while dealing with each other’s opposing personalities, they find a budding friendship and a mutual need for each other’s strengths.
This story is set in a modern fantasy metropolis with strong noir elements. Here you may see a dwarf businessman, an elf bicycle messenger, a werewolf con-artist or any other creature living a 21st century day-to-day life. The Goblin Mafia run a section of town called the “underside” – known to be dangerous and crooked – and our two main characters find themselves right in the throws of their world while working on a “simple” case.
Detective Black and Night entering a club.
Magic spell being cast.
Goblin mob boss.
The story starts inside The Great City’s main police department where we see fantasy creatures and races of all kinds being arrested and brought in as well as doing the arresting. In other words, elves, ogres, goblins, humans, dwarfs and many others coexist in this modern world.
Detective Black, a full blood human, infamous for his reckless, though sometimes effective ways, is called into the Chief police’s office. The chief of police, a tiny but aggressive gnome, sits at his small desk on top of a larger, human-sized desk and immediately lays into Black, “You’re a real pain in my ass, Black! I’ve had it up to here with your recklessness! Your last stunt was the last straw!” The chief stares at Black trying to decide how bad to make his fate.
Black fires back, “I imagine it doesn’t take much to get there. Right chief?!” Without missing a beat the chief replied, “Think you’re a smart guy huh? Well I am transferring you to ‘Missing Arcane Artifacts’” Black pleas, “What?! Chief!” Chief continues “Don’t ‘chief’ me, your actions caused a major accident, endangering 11 civilian’s lives and damaging 3 city blocks!! Maybe having someone a little more responsible by your side will save us all some headaches. I’m assigning you a new partner and if I hear one more word from your mouth you’ll be doing meters for a month. Now wait here until she arrives.” We see Black’s eye bulge in disgust when the chief says “she”, but obediently, though begrudgingly, shuts his mouth.
His new partner walks in. Night, a beautiful half-elf mage wearing traditional elf garb, whose main job is scroll sorting in the police department’s archives and who is also well versed in many forms of arcane dialects, is both excited and reluctant to be working with Black. She is excited to finally be promoted and working with an experienced detective her first time – hoping one day to achieve her dream of becoming a big wig detective – but reluctant because she knows Black’s reputation, though he knows nothing of her. But his disgust, nonetheless, could barely be hidden. Not only was he not a fan of a female counterpart, but elves were especially aggravating to him.
Elves were well known for their skilled magic abilities, but this only reminded him of his mother’s early death that happened when he was 12 during a spell casting accident. It only made it worse that he was the caster. Since then, he hasn’t cast a single spell and wants nothing to do with magic or anyone related to it, much to the chagrin of his high profile mage family.
Night, on the other hand was well composed.
The chief matter of factly stated, “Here is your case, detectives. Find the High Chancellor’s missing ancient dragon horn, a relic from the dragon wars, in the next 48hrs. We cannot let this hit the Goblin markets. If it does we may never find it and the Chancellor will be so far up my ass he will be moving my mouth like a puppet.” The Night and Black exchange looks. Black abruptly grabs the case file, “fine chief, but maybe you should lay off the caffeine. You have this vein that pops out when you talk and I am worried about you.” Chief gives him a ‘this is your last chance look’ and yells “Get out! Get out!”
Black walks straight past Night. Several paces ahead he shouts back at her, “come on stick bug, we don’t have all day!”She looks at her staff and glances back as she follows him out of the police station.
Black and Nigh hit the streets. The Great City is massive and bustling, like rolling New York, London, Tokyo, Paris, and Egypt and all into one. As they walk down the street the shops are filled with weird artifacts, magic potions, fancy clothes, armors, and knock off designer purses.
Night asks curiously, “ Do we have a plan?” Black doesn’t reply. He continues walking briskly down the street then speeds up even more. Night is confused but follows suit anyway. Black carelessly tosses his coffee cup toward the garbage. It misses. He keeps going. Night abruptly stops and stares for a moment trying to decide if she should say something or ignore it. She couldn’t help herself, her inner rule nerd won over. Shouting down the street at Black, “You know littering brakes penal code 4416b and you could be fined. I could write you a ticket right now.” Black stops. Annoyed, he blinks, sighs then slowly turns around walks over and picks up the cup to deposit it in the trashcan. He gives Night a look that said it all – ‘really? Are you seriously that annal?’
Without a word they briskly start walking again. Breaking the long silence, Night finally asks, “Where are we going?” Black sighs, “I have hunch about where we can find a lead, but it ain’t going to be pretty, Tinkerbell, so stay close and don’t do anything stupid. (jeeringly) we may have to break a penal code or two.” Night, in all seriousness, “What? No! absolutely not! Why must you always find a way to break the rules?!” Black looks at her blankly then says, “When you’re a real cop you’ll understand”. Night tries to hide her hurt. They walk a bit further, then stop. They are standing in front of the RED, a well-known Goblin Mob joint. Night has a nervous look in her eyes, but tries not to show it.
A bouncer is at the door. He is a Blue Troll, 7ft tall and as imposing of a figure as you’ll ever see. Night earnestly looks at Black, subtly shaking her head no. Black ignores her and cooly walks up toward the troll, aiming to bypass him altogether and walk straight in, Night trailing behind. The Troll Bouncer forcefully stops him and with deep intimidation in his voice, “What do you want pinky? This is a nocturnal club. You know what that means.” Black, unmoved, “ Sure I do.” He flashes his standard police badge, which is inscribed with magic repelling runes, and continues to walk forward. The bouncer is unimpressed by the badge, and gets in his way again, forcefully asking, “You got a warrant?” Black, still not intimidated but rather annoyed, then sees a glint in the trolls pocket. He has a hunch about what it is, but draws no attention and continues on with his police jargon, “ I’ve got just cause. You know what that is?” Troll indignantly, “ Yeah, racial profiling. That’s what it is.” Night, feeling the escalating tension, finally speaks up, “Black, We should go.” Black, again ignoring Night, holds up his badge toward the Troll and it begins to glow a faint blue, signaling to Black and Night that there is a magical item near by. Black, “That’s what I thought. You have a license for that piece of arcana in your pocket?” The Troll is startled that he’s been found out and takes a slightly more defensive posture. All the while Night is standing back a bit, but trying to look calm and confident.
The troll tries to discretely move his left hand toward his pocket. Black calmly and almost comforting, “Take it easy buddy. Keep your hands where I can see them. Don’t do anything stupid.” The Troll quickly reaches in his pocket for the arcana. Night not sure what to do, stands back to let Black handle it. Black Pulls his gun. The troll reveals a ring with a green crystal and embers flying off around it. He aims it at Black. Black “Don’t do it! (talking to Night) We’ve got a hot arcana! (Back to the Troll) This won’t end well for you.” The Troll fires a green energy ball at Black. Black holds out his police badge which creates an energy field and deflects the energy ball back at the Troll. It hits the Troll and he freezes in place and his skin turns to stone. Black “Ahh. I told you it wouldn’t end well for you.”
To Night coarsely, ” You couldn’t have done something?”, referring to the fact that she is capable of magic and defending with it. Night dumbfounded, not sure how to react asks, “Has Your badge, has it been upgraded?” Black checks the Troll’s pockets for weapons and other arcana and responds,“No. Why?” Night curiously, “I’ve never seen a badge deflect such a powerful flesh to stone arcana.” Black, wanting to keep moving, “Sure, sure, whatever just keep a lookout.” Night, still a little shocked, walks a few paces to the building corner and scans the streets for suspicious onlookers. Black still rummaging through the Troll’s belongings, “Here we go! This is what we need.” He pulls out a necklace with a small shrunken head from under the Troll’s shirt. Night, “What’s that for?” Black, “It’s got the password for the door. Now we should be able to get in with no problem. Goblins often do this with the heads of their enemies. Something about serving them even in death.” Night, “Creepy.” Black, “Well what are you waiting for? Let’s go!”
Night, gaining a small bit of courage, catches up with Black and they walk up to the entrance of club RED. It has a stone face that moves and looks at them when they approach. The Face, in a low untrusting voice, yet unable to discern who is actually at the door, “What’s the password?” Black holds up the head and it speaks the password in goblin tongue. The door slowly opens on its own.
As they enter the dark, forbearing club, trying not to attract any attention, they see all sorts of Goblins of various sizes and looks as well as other dark, strange creatures. A group of cute human girls are circled around an attractive male vampire in a corner a few tables down. A dark wooded Tree Ent serves drinks from his branches to patrons in the main area of the room. The light from outside creeps in briefly, causing some to look up and take notice of the newcomers and causes one unfortunate creature sitting too close to the door to scream and smoke a little. He glares furiously at Black. Black, in his usual fashion, could care less.
Black to Night, “You wait here. I’ve got this handled. This isn’t a place for your kind.” Night indignantly, and also a little nervous about standing around by her self, “What! No way. I’m your partner. We are supposed to stick together.” Black sounding more authoritative and commanding than usual, “Seriously, either wait here or outside, I don’t care much which.” Black moved on. Night, left standing, fuming, yet managing to hold it under the surface mutters, “Arrogant Human.” She takes a seat in an empty corner close to the door- just in case.
Black walks briskly up to the Vampire in the corner, Alucard, and shoos the girls away. “Ok ladies, I know he’s cute, but just wait till he’s hungry and you all look like milkshakes.” Alucard, baring his fangs, “By the ancient fires of hades! What the hell Black! ” Black not shaken, “Alucard, just the type of deviant I was looking for. When did you get off on parole?” Alucard’s eyes turn black and he snarls, “there’s not a prison in this realm that can hold me!”
Night is looking around at all the nocturnals that are now staring at Black and is feeling very uncomfortable. After a moment the room settles back into its rhythm and Black quietly but sharply shoots back, (sarcastically)“Yeah, I’ve never heard that before. (seriously) You know those were under age human girls.” Alucard defensively, “I had know idea, honestly, they look old enough.” Black, “You know the rules from the uprising and the eternal minor act. You Vampires are only aloud to turn humans after age 35. And only with consent.” Black stares Alucard down, feeling like he now has the upper hand. Alucard, “I wasn’t hurting them. What do you want anyway?”
Night slowly meanders over at the sound of a possible code violation and boldly states to Black, “I too, would love to know why we are here in this cesspit.” Black points to the file then shoos her away. She sits back down in her corner. Black pulls the case file out and tosses it open on the table in front of Alucard, revealing photos and information about the ancient Dragon Horn. Black, “I need information on this. Who would buy it, who could sell it. Anything you know, Vlad.” Alucard fires back, “First off, that’s just hurtful.” He picks up the picture of the Dragon horn. “How’m I supposed to know anything about this?” Black “I know how old you are. I’ve seen your files. Not pretty.” Alucard “ I’m a peace-maker, I never fought in any of these wars. I don’t know anything about this Dragon Horn.” Black, “Come on, stop wasting time. I know you know about this. Just tell us the information so we can get out of your hair.”
Black puts his silver badge on the table. This makes Alucard nervous. Alucard thinks carefully, then concedes, “Fine.” He leans in close. Black leans in too. Alucard points, “It’s just, they’re all watching.” Black turns his head and looks around. It’s gotten very dark in the room. All you can see are the intimidating red eyes of the patrons. As Black is distracted looking around, Alucard tries bite into him. Black, completely caught off guard, barely keeps him from sinking his teeth in. He shoots a ‘do something’ gaze at Night who is watching. Black reaches for his gun, but Alucard is much stronger than Black and he throws him across a section of the club breaking a table on his landing. Now the room is involved and erupts in a strange laughter.
Black looks over again for a little help at Night who watches, unmoved and emotionless. Alucard readies his claws and marches aggressively toward Black to strike. Black now shouting to Night “A little help here!!” Alucard is steps away and WHAM! he gets hit in the face by a bright light beam! The room gets frantic and rushes toward Black and Night, but not before Night steels herself and releases another bright shining light from her staff. The whole room is illuminated and every creature, except the ent, is squealing in pain and smoking a little. Alucard shrinks back but still attacking Black. Black hits him in the face with his silver badge, which causes him to sizzle. Alucard lets go of Black, but Black continues pressing his badge on Alucard’s face. Alucard screams, “AHHH!!! HOT!!” Roughly, “It’s too late. You’ll never find it! I don’t know anything.”
The light from Night’s staff starts to wane. Alucard gets some of his strength back and grabs Black’s hand, moving it off his face, slowly showing that Alucard is back in control. Alucard snarls, “If it wasn’t for your dad, I would put you down right here.” Black, “What?!” Alucard, “Ah what the hell! you only live twice!” Alucard gets ready to put his hand through Black’s chest and end him when a green flash hits Alucard in the back. Black drops to the floor and next to him Alucard turns to stone. Black looks up at Night, is confused, then back at Alucard. With a confused rage he starts smacking stone Alucard, “What about my dad?! What you toothy bastard?!” The club stares a moment and Night quickly moves to Black’s side and firmly whispers, “We need to go, Black. Right now.” Black still zoned in on Alucard, “Come on you ancient whole punch, show me what you’ve got!” The room is recovered from the light beam episode and starts to move in on them again. Night, exasperated, smacks Black in the face. Shock! He snaps out of it and notices his surroundings. Black, “Damn it Night! We need to move!” He rushes past her and kicks a couple of goblins out of the way that were trying to attack them. Black and Night manage to fight their way out of the club.
It’s now nightfall and the streets around club RED are filling with all sorts of nocturnal creatures. Night walks up to Black with some cold drinks in her hands. “Sorry that was a bust. And still no clue where the horn could be. If only I had a small piece of it I could do a scan.” Black, holding his drink to a small cut on his brow, “I wouldn’t say it was a total bust.” He holds out a phone. Alucard’s face with some young girl is on the lock screen. Night responds “It’s his phone.” Black, “Yep!” Night, “You sneaky…” Black, “You didn’t think I would get that close to a vampire without a good reason did you?” Night smirks, “I wasn’t sure. I literally thought you were insane. I guess I was wrong. I’ll have to tell the guys back in archives you are smarter than the reports let on.” Black scowls then smirks, “ Thanks. That was a good move grabbing the ring off the Troll.” They continue walking. Night, “It’s protocol. He didn’t have a license so we needed to confiscate it. I was just doing my job.” Black, joking with her, “Is using it part of the protocol?” Night,“Well, ummmm, noooo, I guess you may have rubbed off on me a little. I must need a bath.” Black has a look of surprise that she just made a joke. Night, “What. I can joke.” Black just smiles. Night continues, “It’s cause I’m Half Elf isn’t it.”
Black looks at the phone, then stops, “no it was just a bad joke.” Night shakes her head. Black smiles, “You ready to be a real cop?” Night, “What do you mean?” Black shows the phone to her. It has google maps on it and they had reached their destination. “This is Vlad’s Arcana supplier.” Night, “That’s racist. What’s the plan? You want me to wait out front?” She looks a bit distraught. Black smiles “ You know dwarven right?” “Yeah” “Then you take the lead.” “Really?” “Yeah, I suck at dwarven, plus the little bastards hate me for some reason.” Night tosses the ring to him “It still has 3 uses just in case. I don’t know why they wouldn’t like you?“ They enter the building. Night first and Black following her lead. We dolly back revealing the florist shop they entered. Creatures, Elves, Dwarfs and many other races are walking the streets. We keep dollying back until the whole magnificence of the Great City is visible. Fade To Black.