I steady the sand bag before landing a right hook to the head of my imaginary enemy. I then practice doing an upper cut straight to the chin then dodging an imaginary left hook just like Canelo Alvarez did once which resulted in a KO. I continue and try imitating Oscar De La Hoya, Mikey Garcia, Golovkin, Myke Tyson, and even some of Maywethers footwork although I don’t like his boxing style. I do some punch and kick combinations then begin doing my push ups, squats, and sit ups.
Ever since that guy saved me two years ago I’ve been training. I finally realized I could do something with this body of mine. I could change it to at least be a little close to superhuman. Maybe I could even help people just like that guy.
That’s why I plan on being a bodyguard since college is not for me. All this free time to train is one of the best things to ever happen to me.
I end my work out in the gym by using some equipment that isolates my quads, back muscles, and abs then start heading off to do my run. It’s the most boring part of my entire workout but at least I’ve reached my goal of jogging 10km.
As I’m passing through the weight training area I see a guy lifting a shit ton of weights, at least one hundred on each side. He puts the bar back on the hooks and gets up just as I’m passing through. We bump into each other slightly and I notice that he didn’t even break a sweat.
“Sorry” I say, scooting away from the tight space between the equipment.
“Oh you’re the girl” he says. I give him a confused look.
“The girl that’s always punching the sand bag, your form is incredible”
“I’m not that good, and speak for yourself. That’s a lot of weight you’re lifting, although you don’t look as muscular as someone who could lift that much” I say pointing at the weights, he looks over at them then at his own arms.
“Okay, fair point but you also don’t look old enough to be here. How old are you anyway? 15?”
I cross my arms “No, I’m 18. And you are?”
“I’m 21. I’ve noticed you for a while now, you would be a really great fighter. Have you ever considered joining Special Forces?”
“Well that’s a random thing to say” I laugh “I’m obviously not nearly good enough to fight with super humans, plus that requires an invitation”
“Well it’s your lucky day, I work in SF and I think we could use a girl like you”
Excitement rushes through me like water “You work in SF?! Alongside super humans?” He nods with a smirk on his face.
I put a dam of skepticism up on my excitement. “Just because I’m young doesn’t mean I’m stupid. How the hell would someone like you get invited anyway?”
His smile widens as he puts a hand on his hip and leans on one of the nearby equipment “Someone like me?” He says with a laugh “let’s just say I’m more than what meets the eyes” I raise an eyebrow at him “just consider the proposition of joining my team, it’s a once in a life time opportunity.”
“I’ll consider it when I have an invitation in my mail box.”
He nods “piece of cake then, I’ll send one to where you live” he says then walks back to his weights.
I begin to leave the gym a bit creeped out. I don’t care if he’s handsome and fit, doesn’t he realize how creepy it is to say that? I comfort myself on the idea that he doesn’t actually know where I live.
The next day I don’t see the guy at my gym. I realize that I didn’t even get his name. A week passes with no sight of him.
Thinking about the conversation in hindsight made me wonder. Maybe he got up from the bench just in time to bump into me. It was also strange that when he did bump into me he was completely void of any sweat. That’s impossible for even the best body builders lifting that much weight. He also seemed to lack muscle for it too, he was too small. The more I thought about it the more I realized that every time I saw him in the gym he was doing something outrageously difficult while making it look easy.
What if he wasn’t lying about being in Special Forces?
2 thoughts on “Not So Superhuman”
You’re off to an interesting start, but there are a few things that could use some polish.
The intro is a weak start to your book. We’re introduced to hooks and uppercuts and are told that the protagonist is training because “that guy” saved her. This is means nothing to the reader because we don’t know anything about the main character. It would be stronger to start off with the protagonist reminiscing about her rescue.
It’s been 2 years since “that guy” saved me. I still have scars from that day but I’d rather have scars than be dead. Detail the event if it was particularly traumatic then cut back to her training in the gym. Then we as the reader can at least assume why she’s training.
In fact, if you start off with her rescue and take us into the gym. Without saying a word, the reader can infer that she’s training to either fight or defend herself.
This sentence: “That’s why I plan on being a bodyguard since college is not for me.” Is worded strangely. At first glance it reads like the protagonist is planning on becoming a bodyguard, but when you get to the end it turns out she’s not. In this case, consider turning it into two sentences.
“That’s why I plan on being a bodyguard. College is not for me.” OR “College is not for me. That’s why I plan on being a bodyguard.”
This paragraph can be cut. “I end my work out in the gym by using some equipment that isolates my quads, back muscles, and abs then start heading off to do my run. It’s the most boring part of my entire workout but at least I’ve reached my goal of jogging 10km.” It is not relevant to the story. Nor does it tell us anything important about the main character.
A confusing part for me is that the protagonist seems aware that there are super humans in existence. So why is she surprised when a guy who isn’t very muscular can do impossible things at the gym? Especially since the protagonist is aware that “Special Forces” works alongside super humans.
The dialogue is unrealistic. Would you say this to a complete stranger, “I’m not that good, and speak for yourself. That’s a lot of weight you’re lifting, although you don’t look as muscular as someone who could lift that much.”
Essentially, the interaction with the protagonist and the Special Forces guy feels contrived. Why would an individual in a special unit be recruiting some random teen in a gym? They would have to be desperate or the recruiter is planning something insidious, like subjecting her to illegal experiments.
Basically, if I go to the gym. It doesn’t matter how good I hit a punching bag. An operator from Delta Force or Seal Team Six isn’t going to come up to me and say, “Hey kid, you should join us.” These guys don’t want nobodies to join their team. They want the best of the best and that means being able to do more than throw a kick.
If you want to make your protagonist more active SHE should be the one approaching the recruiter. She found out he is in the Special Forces unit and she is begging him to join because she wants to do something more with her life. The recruiter would obviously turn her down and she would need to prove that she’s fit for the team. This will make your protagonist have agency and give the reader an opportunity to care.
Lastly, you need to continue developing your voice. Right now it reads more like fan fiction than something professional. So continue practicing until you develop something unique only to you.
A couple of things have piqued my interest: why does the man not sweat? and what are the Special Forces? I would like to read on to find out the adventures they will have.
A few suggestions:
*I would maybe begin the story with paragraph 2. I found that more interesting an more straight to the point. Possibly consider inserting paragraph somewhere else in the story.
*Is the guy in the gym the same guy that saved her two years ago.
*Would the fact that he saw her working out in the gym on occasions really show that she would be good in a fight situation; and would it really warrant an invitation into the SF?
I’m not sure why she thinks it’s so creepy that he says he will send an invitation to where she lives especially when she says ,“I’ll consider it when I have an invitation in my mail box.”
Continue plugging away and enjoy the process.