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Deus ex machina

published: 2009-05-26

Lightning spilled out over the city. A storm always chooses night ensuring itself full dramatic effect. But there was something different about this one. Its thunder didn’t crackle or howl, instead it rumbled. However, it didn’t swell the way an earthquake rumble would. Its roar would quite suddenly announce itself, scream in one long monotonous tone, and then leave abruptly. Only to return. And return again.
I lay in bed thinking about how a Shakespearean storm (the kind where nature turns against itself) usually introduces a deadly twist of fate. 
This morning, nothing had changed. People went to work. They were as rushed and stressed out as they always are at 8.45 am. Still, somewhere, in someone’s home, tragedy is about to strike. I am convinced of that. 
Generally speaking, we modern European authors tend to write novels that hinge on individual responsibility. Honestly though, when it comes down to it, we’re powerless if any exterior force decides to sweep us up into its arms of death. So personally, I love a good deus ex machina. In my first novel, the forces of nature played an influential role. Initially, the story ended with a hurricane called Gloria that rolled in and sunk the entire island my novel was set on, killing all the characters. That scene never made it to print.

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