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Entry 7

THE COMING STORM

A young noble, long exiled from her homeland, must return to reclaim the throne stolen from her family and find the true meaning of her birthright. Through her journey, she will travel the world in search of friends and allies, discovering secrets of history long forgotten, witnessing unseen conflicts and invisible battles, gone unnoticed by the rest of the world.

INTRODUCTION

The player selects a name, gender, and physical appearance. Random choices include;

Male; KHALID, NASER, FAHD, ABDULLAH, ABDEL-GHANI, ABDEL-HAKIM, ABDEL-WAHAB, YUSEF
Female; SABRAH, SABIYAH,
ZARIA, ZULAIKHA, SUKAINAH, SHIRIN, NAJIA, MAYSUN

For now, the player will be female with the name “Zulaikha.” Conversations and story elements vary depending on gender.

Underlined text signifies gender-specific dialogue.

Bracketed text signifies dialogue spoken in Arabic.

THE VISION

TUTORIAL(movement and action) – The Vision

The game opens in a haze; the world seen and heard as though through a dense fog.

Sounds of gunfire. Screaming. Running through the halls of an amazing, ornate palace; its former beauty obliterated by shattered glass and rubble. Walls decorated with expensive tapestries, now stained with blood. Distant explosions light the sky, through the broken windows.

A voice whispering desperately in Arabic, all the while. Escaping the palace, as men clad in black storm into every entrance. The moon looms in front of you, benevolent at first, then suddenly oppressive, dominating the view, blocking out all other senses.

The voice halts abruptly, falling, falling. The wind tosses you through the air, into a forbidding sea. Cold water, from all sides, slowly enveloping, numbness.

Void.

(The player may not experience all of this; if they ‘die’ before it ends, the sequence will abort early.)

-

ZULAIKHA wakes up in a sweat. Her grandfather is beside her.

RACHID
You’re going to be late. Those nightmares again?

ZULAIKHA
Yes... I'm sorry, grandfather.

RACHID
It's all right.

ZULAIKHA
Strange… I can remember it some now. Just bits and pieces. Nothing that makes sense.

RACHID
You could write them down. Keep a diary.

ZULAIKHA
I don’t know if I want to remember things like that, grandfather. I just wish I knew... why it happens the same way every time.

RACHID
Well, get dressed. Check-in at the college starts at ten. I’ll drive you.

ZULAIKHA
A> Thanks, grandfather.

B> I can drive myself.

A>
RACHID
Come on, then. We’ll pick up something to eat on the way there.

B>
RACHID
Permit an old man his indulgences. I know you’re a big girl now.

TUTORIAL(map navigation) –
Brisbane Morning

-

FACTOID - Galt Petrochemical leads exploratory oil drilling efforts across the world.

TIME COMPRESSION – The player is introduced to ZULAIKHA’s environment; her apartment where she lives with her grandfather, and the city of
Brisbane, Australia.

RACHID
Remember this training, Zulaikha. It will give you the strength and will to succeed in dire times.

ZULAIKHA
Grandfather, when will I ever need this? I want to be a doctor, not a soldier.

RACHID
Discipline brings health to the body. The mind. The spirit. Remember that next time you behave disrespectfully around Imam Aneef.

-

FACTOID - King ABDUL SALAM was widely credited as the man who forged a lasting peace in the
Middle East, ending the Israeli-Palestine conflict once and for all.

TIME COMPRESSION – We now see ZULAIKHA at the local university and learn a bit more about her daily life.

ZULAIKHA is a 19-year-old uni student in a premedical program. She is cool, calm, and collected. Her stoic manner can only be disturbed by blatant incompetence or interference with her class standing. Her demeanor has not won her many friends here.

ZULAIKHA’s physical appearance depends on choices made in the beginning of the game.

Her fellow students include MATT, a history concentrate, and SUN, an art concentrate. [u]Interactions with each character are dependent on gender.[/u]

Apparently there is a new student in one of her classes.


TUTORIAL(combat) – Useful After All

A group of thugs accosts ZULAIKHA as she leaves from the library late at night.

-

TIME COMPRESSION – The new student is not who he appears. He is an assassin, a wolf in sheep’s clothing. His motives are not yet clear.

In short order, there is a confrontation; this student has found who he is looking for; and he’s brought friends…


-

FACTOID – Zulaikha has a keen mind. She can learn many techniques not written in books or taught by trainers.

DARK GUNMAN
Where is the son of Abdul Salam?

[u]SUN
I… I don’t know who you’re…[/u]

The DARK GUNMAN tosses her aside, and gestures to one of his men.

DARK GUNMAN
Where is the professor? [Get me the roster!]

DARK STUDENT
[He’s over here.]

PROFESSOR
Now look. I don’t know what this is about, but we can all be reasonable.

[u]MATT (whispers)
No. No, they can’t.[/u]

DARK GUNMAN
There is a student in your class. He will be coming with us and none of you will interfere. Is that understood?

-

TIME COMPRESSION – When ZULAIKHA struggles against the oppressive grasp of one of the gunmen, she slams him into a desk. The gunmen all turn on her, but their leader stops them; he suspects something.

DARK GUNMAN
Where did you learn that?

ZULAIKHA stares silently at him.

DARK GUNMAN gestures to one of his men. They flick off their safeties.

DARK GUNMAN
There’s no need to be difficult. We will find out. Make it easy on yourself.

ZULAIKHA
[Go to hell.]

DARK GUNMAN
[That is a technique of the Ikhwan alone. It is not taught to women. Who trained you?]

ZULAIKHA


The dark gunman nods imperceptibly to the dark student. The dark student puts away his weapon and approaches her from behind, on the left, completely silently. Suddenly, he whips around and attempts to kick her in the throat from the right.

ZULAIKHA instantly, almost effortlessly, reverses the strike with one hand, planting the gunman face first into the ground.

DARK STUDENT stands up and dusts himself off.


DARK GUNMAN
<So one of them still lives. You have made a mistake, [u]little girl[/u].>

ZULAIKHA
<Who are you people? What do you want with me?>

DARK GUNMAN (smiling morbidly)
<[u]Not a son… a daughter.[/u] He had us fooled this whole time. And it almost worked.>

DARK GUNMAN (gesturing to the DARK STUDENT)
<If [u]she’s[/u] trained by the Ikhwan, it’s not worth the effort to attempt capturing [u]her.[/u]>

DARK STUDENT(shakes head sadly)
<Doesn’t even know what [u]she[/u] has. Too bad.>

The DARK STUDENT pulls out his pistol and aims it at her head –

[u]MATT[/u] suddenly dives at the DARK STUDENT, who fires, reflexively –

ZULAIKHA screams –

The DARK GUNMAN turns towards [u]MATT[/u] –

ZULAIKHA gasps. The sound of the missed shot rings in her ears

[u]MATT’s[/u] eyes bore into ZULAIKHA as the dark gunman cuts him down –

ZULAIKHA looks back, and runs for the door –

Another DARK GUNMAN guarding the entryway aims at her –

ZULAIKHA charges into him and strikes him in the neck, sending the back of his head on a one-way trip to the floor, bullets flying past, running into the hall, running for her life –