Thursday, May 6, 2010

Bad Girl Blogfest – Viola

Bad Girl Blogfest – Viola

Viola 1 BIO – Viola

  • Name: Viola Willimante
  • Novel: Steam Palace
  • Role: Ally, Mentor, Sidekick
  • Created: 2009
  • Setting: Alternate History New England, 1901
  • Name, Aliases or Nicknames: Vi
  • Nationality: New Britannian
  • Position: Dome Girl on the Steam Palace
  • Age: 23
  • Synopsis: Viola carries a secret that links her to a woman whom she has never before met. She plots that woman’s ultimate destruction: to bring her into the horrid sorrow of Viola’s life, a quagmire of humiliation, self destruction and abuse, and soul-crushing wickedness.


September 28, 1901, aboard a mechohorse-drawn wagon on the River Trail.

Viola eyed the poor woman hiding under the bench. Such an innocent flower, Sophia wouldn’t last half an hour aboard the Steam Palace. She had an attraction about her, an irresistible cuteness that sickened her. Curly red locks, a button nose, freckles, and a wide smile would make her a quick favorite among the men—until one of them used and broke her like every Palace Girl, and she became as black as Viola.

Viola smiled and rubbed the woman’s knee. Men of wealth and women of high repute populated the wagon as it rumbled along the river trail. She was perhaps the only woman of lesser repute aboard, although she dare not openly show it. She winked at a man who caught her eye, and he blushed. His golden chains and silver buckles intrigued her. What might such a man might offer her for a night of pleasure? More than that, she shivered at the thrill of seeing poor Sophia’s reaction if he were to advance. The girl crawled back up on the bench, her face tinged green. Viola slid next to Sophia and threw an arm around her, all the while staring at the man. She rubbed her lips, then licked a finger. He approached as she expected, his hat in his hand.

“I—I don’t exactly know how to do this,” he said, “I’m not familiar with the proper—intercourse—for this type of arrangement.”

Ahh, another Steam Palace newcomer. The women next to her stared at the man without comprehension. Viola declined to explain, enjoying the man’s incoherent turpitude.

He sat down on the other side of Sophia and leaned in. “Pardon me. You see, this is my first visit, and my friend over there,” he nodded to another man dressed in a similar manner, “claims that you are Palace Girls.”

“What is he talking about,” mumbled Sophia, trapped in the middle, holding her stomach and sipping water.

“We are no common Palace Girls. We are Dome Girls, the finest women upon the Steam Palace,” said Viola, ignoring Sophia’s query. Let her squirm. “Both of us for you? Or to share? Do you have a preference? Ten Royals buys your every dream come true.”

Sophia’s face turned a satisfying shade of black and she clutched Viola’s ruffles. “Tell me you did not just sell my services to this man—”

Viola turned to her. “You owe me, and you will repay it exactly as I say.” The woman didn’t respond, she only bent further at the waist. “Sorry, sir, she’s new.”

“Well I don’t have ten royals,” said the man, his gaze glued to Viola’s bosom. “What can I get for a fifty-crown?”

Fifty measly crown? For a Dome Girl? Viola beamed at him. “It’s what we call the ‘backseat special.’ Follow me to the rear of the wagon.” She rose and took the man by the hand.

Sophia tugged at Viola’s dress. “Please don’t do this. Don’t leave me here alone. I’m feeling most dreadful.”

“Be quiet!” Viola snatched the coin from the man, placed it inside her corset, and led the man to the back, to a small platform behind the luggage compartment, out of sight of the passengers. She reached up and held onto a bar. “Now pull your pants down, just down to your ankles. Good. Now close your eyes.” Once ready, Viola lifted herself up by the bar, swung her feet to the man’s chest, and kicked the man right over the rail. He landed heavily in the mud of the trail and rolled to a stop. Viola screamed every epithet in her vocabulary at him. “You vile dog! Don’t you ever touch a Dome Girl!” The nerve of some people. He jumped to his feet, pulled his pants up, and gave chase to the wagon, but the mechohorse outdistanced him. He fell to his knees screaming and waving his fist. A fifty-crown? Really?

She watched the landscape slip by, slowed her breathing, and then returned to the front. The man’s friend peered behind her. “Where’s Frederick,” he asked. “I thought I heard something.”

“Oh, he’s recovering,” she replied, sweet as molasses. “Why, is it your turn?”

The man pushed Viola aside and headed to the rear.

“Get ready,” Viola told Sophia who now lay on her side. “Cause I kicked little old Frederick from this land train.”

Sophia swallowed. “What? I thought you were—”

Viola pulled Sophia back to a sitting position and approached so close their noses almost touched. “Who exactly do you think I am, Stratton? I’m a Dome Girl, not some cheap gutter wench. That man insulted me, and he paid the price.”

Her companion rolled herself up in a ball, holding her knees. “Whatever.”

The man returned, his face red and spittle-ejecting. “What have you done with Frederick?”

Viola smiled and shrugged. “I guess he got off at the wrong stop.”

“Why you—” the man charged, his hands reaching for Viola’s throat.

Viola whipped out a thin knife and waved it in the man’s eyes. “Come one step closer and I’ll gut you.”

The wagon jerked to a halt. A shotgun-wielding man catapulted from the cockpit of the mechohorse and ran back to them. “Drop that weapon and get the hell off my wagon! Now! Both of you harlots!”

This is from a scene that is slated to be deleted because it is very similar to another scene. But it will live on here forever. Viola has a strange sense of pride about being a Dome Girl and loves embarrassing Sophia whenever she can.


  1. Now, Viola I like. Blake Synder in his marvelous book on screenwriting, which in essence is much like novel writing, insists that we have to make even anti-heroes "likable" in some sense.

    He mentions the two hit men in the beginning of PULP FICTION. If Quintin T. had made them souless hit men, the audience would have been turned off. But he gave us a hilarious conversation of French term for fast food. He made killers funny, bringing the audience in sync with the the perspective of the killers.

    In like manner, Andrew, you did that with Viola. She has pride and a code -- and a grudging affection it seems for Sophia. Great job, Roland

  2. Blake Synder's book, by the way, is SAVE THE CAT. Roland

  3. That book is on my list. It's a problem I've identified with my novel, that I need to get readers behind my characters.
    Thanks again for commenting on all of're a trooper! I'll definitely get your name up on the blog.

  4. This is certainly the cleanest scene in the bunch. Like Roland said, Viola is likable despite her despicability, and she's tough and gritty, with a sense of pride.

    The backseat special was well-done. It's tough to nail humor, but you got it.

    I also like that you used the third-person past-tense standard, without going experimental with the voice or tense. This girl and this story sound downright marketable.

    - Eric

  5. @Eric: We have another winner! Thanks for commenting on all of these. I agree there's something more human about Viola than all the other characters I posted. She has no special powers or skills or training or anything. She's just a girl trying to use whatever assets she has to get by in a world that is cruel and unforgiving, especially to women from her sorry background.

  6. Ha! I like Viola, methinks. Vindictive, a bit cruel, but has a sense of herself and her worth. Poor Sophia. I hope she finds her feet and figures out a way to give it back to Viola a bit. :)

    Nicely done, good sir!

  7. Oh, I like Viola! This was my fave of all the scenes. Very well written :)

  8. @Simon: Thanks. Don't worry about Sophia, she's about to turn Viola's life upsidedown. She just has a bit of motion sickness.

    @Tara: Ding! Ding! We have another winner! Thanks for commenting on these. It totally makes my blogfest. Now hurry up and read the other 40 entries! :)

  9. Yeah right: read the other 40. I'm bushed and have loads to do this weekend; starting with my day job in about 5 hours.

    I like Viola for a bad girl- but she feels sort of cliche to me. The hooker with a heart and a strong business sense.

    Was it Carrie I liked best? I don't remember. I've been reading too long, and I'm tired. And I think I missed one: Ellie. I don't remember her at all.

    Oh well; can't win them all.

    These were all great women Andrew. Thanks for sharing them, and hosting the blog fest.

    Have a wonderful weekend with all your wicked ladies.


  10. Andrew - I always read all the entries if I participate. I saved yours for last this time, since there were a handful :)

    I actually enjoyed it so much, I posted a follow up scene today, lol.

  11. @Donna et al: How did I make Viola sound like she has a heart?? She's taking Sophia to the Steam Palace with the explicit intention of turning her into a Dome Girl...and all that entails...and lying to her about what the Dome Club really is. If Viola is being nice it's certainly not genuine.

    @Tara: WTG! I'll check it out.

  12. Yeah, I like this one probably best, too. Not much of a comment, but I'm wearing down. :)

    Thanks for hosting--this has been a fun contest!

  13. @JAS: Another winner! Thanks for looking at all the entries...I really appreciate it.


Constructive comments are welcome.
OpenID Required.