The prize: a whole bunch of Max Payne 3 loot. The task: to watch the above trailer and tell the story of the gold watch. The winner? Read on to find out!
For those who need a re-cap, this is the competition that Mark announced last week:
Kindly watch the above trailer. Right at the end of said trailer a man pulls a gun. That man is wearing a gold watch. For the competition I would like you to tell the story of that gold watch, and how it came to be on that man’s wrist at that moment in time.
Remember that scene in Pulp Fiction, when Christopher Walken tells a young Bruce Willis about his Father’s watch, and the difficulties he went through to deliver that watch? That’s the kind of epic tale I’m looking for!
But there’s a catch. You must reference at least two moments from the above trailer in your entry! And you must keep it less than 500 words. Best/funniest/most creative entry wins! And please try and keep it relatively clean!
We received some fantastic entries, all of which can be found in the comments of this post. But before we announce the winner of the prize, we have some honourable mentions.
The first honourable mention goes to Jonmokoko, who won big points for his "pass the time" play on words when he wrote about bowels.
21/02/2012 Diary, Busy, busy day in the OR today. I barely had time to prepare correctly for most of my operations. Seems we are getting more gunshot wounds than ever before. Today I had a guy on the table that’d had several rounds tear through his bowel. He claimed it happened while he was cleaning his gun, but seriously if this guy wasn’t a criminal who got shot up in a deal gone wrong I’ll eat my scrubs. Took over two hours to patch up the damage he’d had done to him.
Also, had a couple of teenagers come in. One of them had shot the other in the patella with a crossbow trying to recreate something called a “meem” or some such. Seriously, I think kids need to have their internet usage more strictly regulated if this is the kind of thing they think is actually funny.
PS. On a slightly more concerning note… I seem to have misplaced the watch that Jennifer gave me for our last anniversary. I told her that I had just left it in my locker at work. However, I have a very bad feeling that I may have lost it in a patient. God I hope it wasn’t the guy with the bowel reconstruction. If it was him he’s going to have to “pass the time” in a most uncomfortable manner (gallows humor, I think I really missed my calling as a stand-up comedian).
The second honourable mention goes to Blaghman, who impressed us by telling the tale from the watch's perspective and having a stellar opening and closing.
This story started how it ended, with a bang.
I was production built, steel underlay, gilded to look like gold. A cheap adornment for those who wanted to look rich. I’d been bought by some party-goer, part of the “night life.” Life was cushy. Fairly boring though. I was cleaned occasionally, usually just when some broad would chuck her drinks. So once or twice a week at times. I don’t think I’ll ever understand the appeal of that life. But it all came to an end.
One night, some classy party, some low class gatecrashers. Guns blazing, they burst in, after some broad. My owner gets in the way, some worthless attempt at chivalry, and *bang*, I’m down here. São Paulo, a perfect place for this guy. Some thug for some gang or another, I don’t really pay much attention. Life’s still not that interesting, his shoes are involved in kicking some men for money, his dick’s involved with some street whores, but his hands only seem involved in hitting his wife, so that’s all the action I got. Flecks of skin, the grime from the street, dirt, they all caked me. That all changed yesterday.
Some guy was causing problems, shooting his way through the town. I think he was after that party broad, though I can’t say I’m sure. He ran at this thug, all I can do was tick over, as the life seeped out of his body. A gun pointed at his head, a yelled question, and his body goes limp. Time passes. Three hours, twenty-eight minutes, and sixteen seconds, if we’re going to be precise. His wife is there, well, widow now, I guess. She cries a lot, more than she did, even as he beat her, which is surprising. The gang wants the body, but she takes me. I don’t really know why, all she does is take me to the boss. A tearful request, and I exchange hands yet again.
He cares more about me than the last guy, surprising, given he seems to be far richer. Once he gets me, he pulls me apart, takes a look inside. Normally I’d mind, but his hands are gentle, they caress my insides. I’m cleaned, put back together. I haven’t felt like that in a long time. That was yesterday. The guy’s been found. It didn’t take long, a trail of corpses will at least lead you somewhere quickly. The guy puts up a fight, but he’s outnumbered. The lead in his body begins to weigh him down, until its just him, and my owner.
“Oh Max,” I hear, my owners voice filled with mock pity, “I told you this city was dangerous.”
And it ends, with a bang.
And the third honourable mention goes to Shane, whose gift for writing really shone through.
It was just another day at the office.
At least that’s how it started.
It’s hard to pinpoint the exact moment when everything went to hell, but it was definitely too late by the time I realised what I’d gotten myself into. Rodrigo Branco was not the worst boss I’d ever had, but he seemed to have a particular knack for getting the people around him into trouble too big for them to handle.
Being kicked awake was not my idea of a pleasant way to be roused, but it was fairly typical for me to sleep through my alarm, especially after a rough night like the night before; sometimes after work, all I’d want to do is crawl deep into my bottle and stay there.
“Wake up, you drunk. Boss wants to see you.”
Groaning with pain not caused by the steelcaps, I rolled over and hauled myself up off the floor; the Sao Paolo sun hit me like a tonne of bricks, but I managed to squint my way to the boss’ office.
I had only been here once before, the day I moved down here from NYC, a disgraced mercenary looking for a second chance. My story was no different from most of the white folk in South America; the land of second opportunity was loaded with folks shuffling off the shame and regret of their past lives, their mistakes forgotten and transgressions forgiven. Branco had taken me in and given me a low-level job keeping an eye on his infrastructure.
Why I’d been summoned here this morning, I had no idea… but I was given a hint before Branco even turned to face me.
“We’re bringing in a new man,” Branco said, still looking out the window to the crowded streets below. “Max Payne.”
I flinched; couldn’t help it.
He was still facing away from me, but his head turned slightly in my direction. “You’ve heard of this Payne.”
It was not a question.
“Yeah, I ran into him once in New York. Some years ago now.”
“If he’s here, we’re all dead. Pretty much what happens to anyone he comes near, whether loyal to him or not.”
At this Branco nodded once; he gestured with one finger and his heavy stepped forward towards me. I flinched, suddenly acutely aware that I was unarmed and completely unprepared to defend myself. When the thug reached into his inner jacket pocket, all I could do was half-twist away in some pathetic instinct-driven desire to at least look like I was trying to save myself.
Branco’s eyes never left mine. “This is what we have heard also.
“You are one of the few men who have survived an encounter with this man. So we are reassigning you.”
At this last, his thug clicked something into place around my wrist.
It was the golden watch. The contract.
I knew what I had to do.
But there can only be one winner, and that winner was chosen for his ability to tell an interesting story in an engaging way that also referenced the trailer. I was hooked from the very first sentence through to the end. The winner is... Don Danbury! Here is his entry.
In Sao Paulo if you’re not eating caviar you’re eating dirt. No other city in the world do you look out of your $20 million mansion and see the rolling hills of favelas, the slums, the shit of society. It’s ironic really that the best real estate in the city, the highest ground, the best views have been taken by the poorest people in the city, but in Sao Paulo that’s how it works. When there is no way to ever earn anything in life, when the government, the whole system is against you, you can’t wait for life to improve; you take what need and take what you want.
As a child my uncle always told me the government and the corporations had raped our country of its resources and its wealth, so anything we took back was simply evening the score. I started working with my uncle and his friends when I was 12 years old, my mother was a whore, my father who-the-fuck-knows, so I was never missed. At first my uncle would get me to beg from foreigners, steal radios, Walkman’s anything we could get cash for. After a year or two my uncle always needed more ‘firepower’ he said, that was the key to taking this town back from the oligarch. When we got the guns, things got easier but at a cost, armed robbery, extortion, murders, my uncle was making more money in one week that I’d ever seen in my entire life, but we’d all committed unforgiveable sins. My uncle explained the Holy Father would forgive us our trespasses as we were simply taking back what was rightfully ours.
Years went by, my uncle, myself and his 60 or 70 ‘freedom fighters’ continued to rob, kill and rape anyone that got in our way, and my uncle continued to espouse his rhetoric of fighting the broken system. But this confused me, often it was not the politians or the corporate CEOs that my uncle robbed or tortured, it was our own people, the weak and the unprotected. I even saw my uncle at the club drinking and gambling with police officers, ex-military men, people of power and influence. That is how I met Rodrigo Bronco. He told me he needed protection work, I was sick of my uncle’s hypocrisy so I agreed.
I was making less money than I would working with my uncle, but for the first time I was fighting for something I could see, Favina Bronco. After protecting her for 4 months I was shot and killed in her kidnapping; the last thing I remember before taking my last breathe was the feeling of a man sliding my watch off my wrist. I had bought the watch with the money Bronco had given me, the only real thing I’d ever earned in life and some puta was prying it off my dead body. But that’s how it goes in Sao Paulo and I should know, I had 32 other men’s watches at home.
Congratulations, Don Danbury! And well done to everyone else who entered — your entries were awesome and it took a long time to narrow them down. Don — we will be in touch with you soon.