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Tuck 123 [message #4876] Sat, 16 December 2006 05:19 Go to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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It's up!

Back after I read it.

- Erin
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4877] Sat, 16 December 2006 06:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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Tuck eats lasagna and goes back to school. Smile

This is mostly seeing stuff from Tuck's angle, things that have been happening while Tuck was off center look different with the main character back in place.

Some of Ellen's sly gags go by quickly and I don't mean the ones where she says, hey look a funny, so keep your eyes open for a giggle or two. Smile

- Erin
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4878] Sat, 16 December 2006 07:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rachel.greenham  is currently offline rachel.greenham
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We keep hearing about the Knights, but even though Tuck has read about what all that is by now somehow I think we've missed out on it. Or is it just the between-classes escort rota thing? Got the impression it was more than that.


Rachel
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4879] Sat, 16 December 2006 11:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Sir Lee  is currently offline Sir Lee
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Interesting point: the phone call by Debbie is probably the most civilized conversation Tuck and Debbie had in months. Which means... despite both of them resenting the Pack for the forced encouter, well, it kinda worked.

Sir Lee


Don't call me Shirley. You will surely make me surly.
geeking on threat ranges [message #4880] Sat, 16 December 2006 14:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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Tuck would have objected in any case but the timing was particularly bad on the first day back at school after a murder attempt. None of the pack really understands the depth of Tuck's fear of confrontation and agoraphobia, not to mention chronic and situational paranoia.

Tuck isn't crazy, there really are people out to get him and Debbie really is dangerous. Tuck's sense of proportion may be askew but pushing it like that was insensitive; Kathy et al should have talked that over with Mike, who could have arranged a smaller gathering away from crowds, with a ready exit and Mike or Da Boyz as backup.

This really hurt Tuck's ability to trust Kathy's judgement.

Who does Tuck trust? In order, I think, with estimates.

Mike - nearly always 100%
Bill - 98%
Susan - situational 90+%
Bryan - situational 90+%
Sarah - situational 90%
Da Boyz - most of them 80%
Travis - before the apparrent betrayal, highly situational 80%
Amy - 70%
Jill - 70%
Kathy - before this 70%
Dobson - situational 70%
Doc - situational 60%
Sheila - highly situational 60%
Kelly - situational 60%
Rachel and The Pack - 55%
The Parkers - before the recent problems 55%
Debbie - recently back up above 50%

Mike or Bill alone are reliable backup in almost any situation, Susan will do in a pinch or even Bryan or Sarah or Da Boyz as a collective. I know what I mean by this chart but I'm not sure it's clear without a lot of explanation.

The ratings are measures of reliability, dangerousness and congruency of will. Thirty points available in each category with up to ten bonus points for things like history, family, training and willingness to use deadly force. Minus points are in there too for similar things.

For instance, Amy is reliable and congruent but not very dangerous. Bryan is reliable (in a pinch) and dangerous but not always congruent. Mike tops out in all three and Bill only fails the congruency by a little. He's off the scale in dangerousness but that doesn't makeup for the fact that his intentions may not match Tuck's sufficently.

Before the attack and the recent problems in the relationship, Travis ranked high on reliable in most situatuons but Tuck would not have felt comfortable with depending on Travis's willingness to use deadly force when necessary, a combination of dangerousness, congruency, training and personality.

Kathy just lost points in congruency and maybe some of her bonuses for history. She's still reliably dangerous and congruent enough for backup to Tuck's backup but she had been heading toward a possible primary backup role. If Jill were more dangerous, she would rank with Da Boyz but Tuck may be underestimating her.

At congruency ratings below 10%, dangerousness becomes a negative so there is a huge gap there and negative ratings are certainly possible resulting in preemptive attacks if no escape is apparent. Debbie's dangerousness just stopped being a negative, partly because of Kathy's actions.

Let the argument begin. Smile

- Erin
Re: geeking on threat ranges [message #4881] Sat, 16 December 2006 15:54 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Ellen Hayes  is currently offline Ellen Hayes
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Erin Halfelven wrote on Sat, 16 December 2006 19:40

... the depth of Tuck's fear of confrontation and agoraphobia, not to mention chronic and situational paranoia.


Well, actually, Tuck doesn't have "agoraphobia". Closer to "demophobia", fear of crowds. But even Sheila The Clueless (as Tuck would call her) would admit that this isn't a PHOBIA, an irrational fear; he's almost sanely afraid of what could happen to him, that almost did happen to him twice in quick succession.


As for those trust ratings... well, for a one-dimensional measurement, they're okay; but a 2D would show better what Tuck thinks. His parents, for example; he doesn't trust them with some things, but if (say) that bunch of assailants was chasing him AND he had time, he'd be perfectly confident about calling any of his family for help in routing them. Debbie can be trusted financially, especially in fulfilling a contract (whether you should have AGREED to that contract is another matter; she wouldn't mind selling ice to Inuit or sand to Arabs). Kim can keep secrets like Tuck-dating-Travis, but probably not very good in a fight... etc. etc.
Of course, making a set of 2D graphs of this would be A Serious Pain In The Ass, and I really don't recommend anyone go to the work...


Ellen
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Re: geeking on threat ranges [message #4882] Sat, 16 December 2006 19:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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I forgot that they split agoraphobia into two or three divisions; used to it meant fear of crowds as well as fear of open places, or at least was used that way in the first sources where I ran across the word.

And yeah, a two or three dimensional trust/threat profile would be the way to go, I just outlined a simple one-dimensional one as an example. I'm a numbers geek, what can I say. Smile

I can actually see Tuck getting into programming this into a graphic-spreadsheet type program as a useful tool for finding out how to evaluate friends and acquaintances for different sorts of threats. Smile Of course, Tuck doesn't have the interpersonal skills to do a good job of estimating the less physical numbers but Mike could help.

Except Mike would likely just slap Tuck upside the head for going off the deep end in geekiness. Smile

- Erin
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4883] Sun, 17 December 2006 05:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Eric  is currently offline Eric
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Erin's right; not that much new information in this chapter, though Tuck's perspective on things is instructive, as is the extent to which he's really not physically ready to return to school.

The new data on Debbie's dance makes it look even weirder, unless she's found some way to put a positive spin on coming out as lesbian herself -- which doesn't seem to me to be possible. Not all the dance attendees will be gay, of course, but by making this dance so clearly her personal production, the seemingly gratuitous inclusion of gay nonstudents ought to set off alarm bells among McAllen students (invited and otherwise), even more so since Debbie's sexuality has been called into question in the past.

Given Tuck's current state of mind, I'd guess he's planning to stay in his control room all of Saturday night, relatively safe from attack behind the improvised taser system he brought last time. But I doubt that Ellen will let him get away with it.

(I suppose Lisa could "helpfully" invite Travis and Anne to the dance, if they really are, or seem to be, a couple. On the other hand, talk about Least Likely to Be At a Freaks Party...)

Nor do Tuck's plans to stay inside on Halloween night figure to work out. He still has to take Jill home, or to his house, since she's not going to the school dance. I don't believe Sabrina usually gets tutored on Friday nights.

Then again, Tuck may be off the hook there if Jill gets Fridays off from work. (We know that she works a weekend day, but I don't believe we've ever learned whether she works five days a week or six.) Still, if that's the case Val may yet get dragged into supervising Ricky's trick-or-treating.

(Either way, after a full day at school and work, Tuck will hardly be in ideal shape to react should something happen.)

Random notes:

If young Valerie gets involved with Mike and stays connected with the Pack, I wonder how long it'll take for her to learn about her namesake.

Once Mike starts dating someone other than Kim, that'd make Tuck fair game for Kim without Tuck's loyalty to Mike getting in the way. But what (I think) she really wants is Val, without the complications of Tuck's defensive instincts, communications security and geek quotient. And none of that's going away, even if Kim were somehow to win the same conditions that Travis had, with Tuck relating to her only as Val when they're together (at least, outside of school). It doesn't seem to me that it would take long before she'd be as exasperated with Val as she's been with Tuck the past two or three weeks.

Clever of Ellen to come up with a relatively neutral context to give us Tuck's positive take on the general question of a junior dating a freshthing. That would seem to open up the possibility of Tuck/Val and Kelly getting together sometime later in the year.

Could Miz Parker simply have been uncomfortable with Valerie showing her "male side" by FXing Ricky's costume? It seems possible that everything like the self-defense, juggling, and tech stuff that Val demonstrates is going to remind her that something's wrong there. If so, the situation may remain unsteady for some time without the Parkers trying to remove Val, until either Tuck or Beth Parker decides that the discomfort's too much to deal with.

(And of course Tuck will keep going as long as he can because he needs the income, unless he can get his parents to rescind his fines -- including whatever they add on when they find out he had sex with Travis -- in exchange for his taking the family out of danger of litigation by getting a legal release from the Parkers and quitting the job.)

Clever solution by Tuck to the advisor-for-the-GLEE-club problem, since they can't handle it the way they did with Rachel, by hiring an outsider.

How many people have Tuck's cellphone number? I had the impression that only Mike and the family (and maybe the Parkers) could contact him that way. As his employer (or as the one who helped save his life in the last emergency), Debbie could probably get it from one of them. Anyway, Tuck didn't seem surprised that Debbie had it.

Eric

[Added one sentence to the Travis paragraph, on further thought]

[Updated on: Tue, 19 December 2006 02:30]

Re: Tuck 123 [message #4885] Mon, 18 December 2006 16:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
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Sir Lee wrote on Sat, 16 December 2006 08:55

Interesting point: the phone call by Debbie is probably the most civilized conversation Tuck and Debbie had in months. Which means... despite both of them resenting the Pack for the forced encouter, well, it kinda worked.

I think the Pack members that forced this encounter somehow think that Tuck and Debbie will get back together again. From the Packs' perspective, Tuck defending Debbie at the Mall, and Debbie getting Mike to hospital and influencing the staff to let Mike control the emergency treatment which was going south if he hadn't, must have given them this interpretation.
Eric wrote on Sun, 17 December 2006 02:34

Random notes:
If young Valerie gets involved with Mike and stays connected with the Pack, I wonder how long it'll take for her to learn about her namesake.

I see a setup for a comedy of errors here. Mike sending intimate notes to Valerie the frosh and everyone outside the innermost circle thinks it's to Tuck. Mike and Tuck go out to dinner after Tuck's babysitting and they are treated as if they're on a date by acquaintances that know only of Valerie. Mike and Tuck are clueless for a while of the funny reactions they're getting... and then it dawns on them what's happening. They look at each other and go "Ewwww!". They work on damage control at that point... Smile

[Updated on: Mon, 18 December 2006 16:51]

Re: Tuck 123 [message #4886] Mon, 18 December 2006 22:02 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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Heh. If Ellen doesn't do something like that, it might be worth a short fanfic. Smile

- Erin
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4887] Tue, 19 December 2006 12:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
maltor  is currently offline maltor
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I have a bad feeling about Friday night. I mean, not only is it Halloween, but it is for all practical purposes, Valerie's birthday. Given what the pack did in this chapter, I wouldn't be surprised if they are throwing her a surprise party. Of course, it's the last thing Tuck/Val wants at this point, but I'm sure they'll get their wish. Given how 'helpful' Bill and Sarah have been in the past with the girls springing Tuck for a night out without asking for his input beforehand, I don't think they'll object.

Tuck, however, I think will object -- loudly and with weapons -- if anyone tries to take him out of his room since not only is it Valerie's birthday, it's also the anniversary of meeting Travis.
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4888] Tue, 19 December 2006 15:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
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How about this scenario? Valerie is asked to escort Ricky to a kid's Halloween party hosted by family friends of the Parkers. Valerie does so thinking in her mind that it may thwart any subversive thoughts by the Parkers to get rid of her. She takes him there and guess who else is at the party...Travis... hanging with another girlfriend who is helping her folks host the kiddie party. One can imagine the many reactions Valerie might have...and the relationship with the Parkers that result from it.

Different subject...
I would guess that most everyone at McAllen knew it was Tuck that was attacked that fateful day. I recall that at one time Tuck mentally narrated that 90% of the students were "civilians" or neutral to the conflict regarding the geeks and the jocks. It's just that usually when a student returns from a traumatic event like Tuck had, a lot (not all) of these students would provide positive encouragement upon his return, in the classroom or the hallways. Granted, we are seeing this from Tuck's perspective and he may be ignoring what he thinks are verbal platitudes he is getting from his "neutral" classmates and thus not part of the current narration. I just thought it odd he didn't notice this, or possibly Ellen is painting a very apathetic school environment.

[Updated on: Tue, 19 December 2006 20:09]

Re: Tuck 123 [message #4889] Thu, 21 December 2006 21:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erik  is currently offline Erik
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The action seems to be slowing down. Nothing from Travis. No news on the prosecution of the assailaints. No news on what the school authorities have decided to do. The school has to do something or else face charrges of negligence. Lots of setup...

I think the past several chapters are Ellen setting the scene.

Tuck is going back to school. That's a big statement on so many levels!

Ricky has a halloween party.

The Knights are starting up at the School.

Travis must be doing something we don't know about.

Val (Tuck) has jumped to conclusions about Travis based on one incident that could have all kinds of innocent explanations. Is the Travis apartment the family guest house? It used to be his big brohters' apartment before it became Travis's room. Does this imply that Travis still has a room at home? After all he is a high school student. I assume he has a home life that we don't know about, just like Travis does not know anything about Valerie's parents. (He's only meet Susan and Amy.)

Debbie is being social. (At least she is not being the enemy that Tuck keeps imagining.)

Kelly is developing her real character.

Little Valerie is a new character.

The Tucker family is getting more heavily armed.

I add all of this together and come to the conclusion that BIG excitement is comming in the next chapters.

Erik
Golden, Colorado


You are not paranoid. We really are out to get you.
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4890] Sat, 23 December 2006 09:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Ellen Hayes  is currently offline Ellen Hayes
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Erik wrote on Fri, 22 December 2006 02:27

Little Valerie is a new character.


No, she's not. This is the Little Sister of Sabrina, the one with the last name I can't remember.

Erik wrote on Fri, 22 December 2006 02:27

The Tucker family is getting more heavily armed.


What? Where?

Erik wrote on Fri, 22 December 2006 02:27

I add all of this together and come to the conclusion that BIG excitement is comming in the next chapters.


Oh, ho ho ho! You've no idea!

Luckily, I do. =)


Ellen
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Re: Tuck 123 [message #4891] Sun, 24 December 2006 02:58 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Erin Halfelven  is currently offline Erin Halfelven
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It's sort of like watching all the characters crowd into Groucho's stateroom in "A Night at the Opera". Smile You just know Margaret Dumont is going to open the door any minute.
Re: Tuck 123 [message #4892] Mon, 25 December 2006 06:10 Go to previous message
Eric  is currently offline Eric
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Erik wrote on Thu, 21 December 2006 18:27

Ricky has a halloween party.

Not that I know of -- just (presumably) the customary dress-up at school. What he's doing after that remains to be seen. (Or perhaps not, if Val really does leave early.)

Eric
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