Hey creative people! Come read.
So I had a weird dream the other night, which I thought I could use as a future story/comic idea. It would have to be far into the future, since there are other things I'm concentrating on, but I still don't want to forget this. In my dream, a sentient mouse murdered a human being and was pursued by the (human) police. I don't remember how or why he killed a person, but I remember watching the news story on TV and believing that he was justified and hoping that he got away. My memory of the dream is very hazy and has left a lot of blank slate to work with.
I talked about the idea with Natalie already, but we both want to hear other creative opinions on some aspects if we ever want to turn it into a story:
1. How would a mouse be sentient in the first place? Should humans and sentient mice occupy the same world? Should this mouse be "special" thanks to SCIENCE, or for some unexplained reason? Escaping from a lab seems kinda cliche to me.
2. How/Why would he kill a human being? By accident, or on purpose? I like the idea of it being premeditated.
3. How would the police even believe that someone was murdered in cold blood by a mouse? And then, what would make them decide to actively pursue this mouse and believe him still dangerous? This part sounds the most ridiculous, and we had a difficult time coming up with something plausible. The most likely scenario we came up with was that the mouse is dellusional and believes himself to be actively pursued by human police forces, when in fact he is not. But it could be difficult to keep a story driven under that circumstance.
Those were the three biggest questions for our crazy idea. I have a sick mind.
2. I like the idea of it being premeditated too.
3. I think that if it was just a given that mice were sentient in this world, there could be some sort of clue left behind that it was a mouse, or that the murder was done in such a way that only a mouse could have killed the person.
So if all the mice are sentient, and the humans are aware enough to have their police force pursue the mouse... how are human/mouse relations? Would they still be considered pests and such?
I mean, if it is the future in the story, the idea of him being the descendant of strains of mice with artificially manipulated genes is a fine one, or something to do with cybernetic augmentation. People could have these hyper intelligent little mice for pets, (It's trendy! A smart mouse!) and he could kill a cruel owner or something. Kind of similar to the stories with robots where they are not given rights regardless of the fact that they are sentient. He is an animal slave that can't talk, but he resists and breaks free. However, humans are considered superior beings under the law, and they start to hunt him down, to kill him. They think "What could a tiny mouse, even a smart one, do against a human?" However, he uses his intelligence to get away. One of the driving factors then could be the fact that he wants to prove to the world that he is a human's equal. How does he get that message out? He's a wanted man (mouse) and he can't speak human language, although he thinks on a high level.
Possible interesting questions:
- How does a mouse, given sentience by human technology, view the mice he meets in the sewers and streets while he is on the lam? (Planet of the Apes. LOL.)
- Are you going to do it all from his perspective, or partly from the human detective hunting him? How would the police deal with this? You know, it could be an example of where the detective starts out with little respect for the idea of hunting a mouse, and then comes to know his quarry indirectly and feel sympathy for the plight of the mouse. Maybe the police use dogs that have been made smart in the same way.
- You talk about watching TV and feeling Sympathy for the mouse. Will public opinion start to sway in his favor?
- Who are his allies? Are they human or animal?
edit: Wow, there are a lot of posts.
Another scenario is revenge. How many mice are killed each day? What if those mice left behind mourned like humans?
I am really into this idea by the way. I hope this story comes to fruition.
EDIT: Also, dreams are definitely ripe fodder for stories -- it's a good idea to write them down as soon as you get up every morning, because you'll probably forget them otherwise. Bonus is that it improves dream recall in general, which may help lead to lucid dreams.
EDIT EDIT: That idea is maybe a bit too close to We3. Probably depends on how you handle it.
I actually really like Emily's idea as to how the mouse would be sentient. He'd come from a line of intelligent pets. That way, his killing of a human would be even more unheard of than if they were just two separate sentient societies. I sort of saw the mouse killing a human as something historic and almost unthinkable. I also like the idea of humans and mice -not- speaking the same language, as well as mice not speaking the same language as other animals or less intelligent mice and having a hard time communicating outside of their species (a la Watership Down).
I sorta like the Crime and Punishment route, I just don't know -how- dark and corrupt I'd want the main mouse to be. Like I said, I sympathized with him in the dream. I don't entirely sympathize with Raskolnikov's position. And I'd really rather that he not be an antagonist figure.
EDIT: Now if there were hyper-intelligent pet mice AND regular old pesky mice, it would be nearly impossible to tell the difference on the outside. I imagine that mice, intelligent or no, will not be regarded as on par civilly with humans. But would the police want to kill this mouse? Maybe authorities would want him alive for questioning (however that may be done).
I still can't help but wonder how the police would pursue a mouse. It would be nearly impossible. He can hide anywhere, and be easily mistaken for another mouse. I guess Emily's idea of intelligent dogs hunting him down could be used, but would that be the only thing at their disposal?
I don't have a feeling that mouse guns would work. I imagined a slit throat. The mouse in my dream had a tiny sword, but that's a little silly.
Natalie really wants him to have allies. I think they could be either animal or human. However, unless he met another mouse intelligent like himself who allies to his cause, it would be a distant relationship due to difficulty with communication.
I'm still psyched that so many people liked this idea.
Steve Wozniak + Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory = The Wonderful Wizard of Woz.
It was all technology and gadgets instead of candy and chocolate. I think the part that I found the funniest, was that at least 50 midget versions of Steve Jobs took the place of the Oompa Loompas.