The Alliance sets forth.

6/30/09  at 10:22 PM
Special story from HIBERNIA ON THE SKIDS journal
by Hotspur O'Toole

I had to kick my legs out to prevent from throwing over as fleet Commander Murakami burst into my office.

"Visitors, sir, Lots of them!"

Visitors? This had my interest.


We walked up the three flights to the widow's walk. sighting on the small group of three, I noted a couple of Kotestus and a Lavanco. I turned to CDR. Murakami. "Who has two Kotetsus and a Lavanco?"

Fleet signaling

CDR Murakami shrugged. "No telling, sir. Some smaller mercenary fleets, perhaps, or a collection of them... No, Wait...!"


"The Naval Forces of the New Babbage Militia, sir... they had some Lavanco and Kotetsu in combination." At that moment, the wind stirred a little and the little blue flags blew open with the air, exposing the monkey wrench on blue and white background.

"Good guess, Mr. Murakami. Go see to it that we show honors for incoming.. looks like... Visiting Commodore. Friendly"
That would be Jed Dagger's gang, then.

CDR Murakami saluted, and ran down the hill to the flag and shore battery.

I saw a seaman dip the flag once, twice... and then the saluting charge went of smartly, recognizing that a fleet of a foreign power had shown up. Even from a distance, I could see The Lady B at a dead run, grabbing as many layabouts as she could get her hands on to make a palatable line of side boys.

Rank has some privileges. A Commodore doesn't run if he doesn't have to.

I arrived at the dock in time for the lead Kotetsu, THE CHARGER, to pull up gracefully and throw out lines. The men manning the rails were all long service men I had seen here and there over time, I knew only a few by name. They appeared downcast and serious.. quite different from what I remembered. Jed keeps loose discipline, and gets back great service in return. Like a smart captain. I noticed THE CHARGER showed marks of being in a recent fight. There was a hole in her stack, obviously a pass through from an explosive shell. Many other direct hit dents and paint scrapes. Signs of small arms fire.

Commodore Jedburgh Dagger nodded impatiently at the boatswain's pipe down the gangplank, barely acknowledging the salutes. She walked directly up to me. She appeared tired and one arm was in a sling.

"Hullo, Jed. What brings your pack of Smokes* to Roatan?"

"Sir! Piracy of the worst kind."

I looked at her for a few beats. "To my office, then. Lady B, would you direct our guests' XO towards the mess hall and have Cookie put out something for the men, then come join us upstairs at your first convenience."

The Lady B nodded, and ushered out Commodore Dagger's apparent XO, a youngster named Palmer.

Commodore Dagger joined me on the roof. All military ceremony was gone, and she looked tired, angry, sore.

"Speak freely Jed. Have you been in action?"

"Aye, sir. Our own people, sad to say. And worse!"

Gradually, the story unfolded. The coup we had already known about. We had no idea the conditions in New Babbage had gone this far downhill. Obolensky's mechanical men. Beast-men Pirates. Armed goons patrolling the streets. The new puppet state of "Obolenskidonia". A turn for the worse, indeed. It took almost half an hour to tell in full.. of the takeover, the divided city.. the heroic resistance, the escape of three ships.. to come.. here. Might as well ask it up front.

"What would you have of us, Jed? Asylum? You already have that. Repairs? A hiding place? You have those if you need them. Even employment, if you want it."

"Thank you sir, but I may be politically undesirable. Obolensky IS the defacto government of New Babbage at the moment, like it or hate it. He would have the right to make complaints if you shelter us."

"Complaints to whom? The Autocrat hardly cares. Frankly, they'd have to find you first. Don't give it another thought. Stay as long as you like."

"Actually, I had in mind to return to New Babbage sooner rather than later
", she said.

"Again, what would you need from us? Repairs? Provisions?"

"Ships. Crew. I mean to attack while Obolensky does not have a consolidated hold on the people and military. He has artillery, a small fleet, and some shore guns. but nothing that we couldn't handle on water."

"How many ships are left in Babbage, Jed?"

"Twenty? Twenty Five? Mostly New Babbage heavies. He is very low on crew, though."

"Attacking that many? In a town harbor? With Gun Emplacements? We would need a least a temporary advantage of three to one for such an attack, Jed. There's not a fleet on the planet so large!"

"Aye, not in one place, no... but combined, yes!"

At that moment, Eva rejoined us with a sheaf of foolscap in her hand.

"What do you have there, Eva?"

"Aether Telegrams, sir. From the Hardtacks**, the Steelheads***, and the Steubings++. All report they have sent a contingent of ships in our direction and request port clearance." She looked up, confused.

I looked up at Jed, sharply.

She shrugged. "Don't blame me, the Clockwinder has been a very busy little man in exile."

I frowned. Mayor (in exile) Tenk presumed too damned much if he thinks I was going to drop everything at a moment's notice and send out the largest force in Wrath Fleet history as a favor. Still.

I looked Jed steadily in the eye. She stared back, grinning.

"Alright then.. and who is going to lead this monkey knife fight, as if I didn't know already?"

She continued to stare. I could feel the Lady Eva's eyes on me as well.

"ALRIGHT then. Tell the little troublemaker that the Wraths will come through for him. But he's footing the coal bill for this trip.. it'll beggar me."

Jed grinned some more as the first shouts from the look outs heralded the arrival of the Hardtacks coming from the direction of the Lost Sea. Behind them, the plucky little Steelhead Naval Service fleet, Mixed Taos and Apache class ironclads. No sign of the Steubings yet. The White Fleet was late to the party.

By midday, the Emperor of Steeltopia himself (who I have and will always call "Blue" because it annoys him), Commodore Peterman (standing, quite worn out, she being ill at the time) and various officers from the Rats ++ and Smokes clustered around a wall map. With the last Steelhead ship came a familiar, albeit diminutive, figure. Wounded, grim, and very much still game, down the ramp strode the Clockwinder of New Babbage, every pugnacious inch of his 3 foot 5 frame looking ready to strike someone. I stared at him solemnly, and saluted. Military ceremony isn't the Clockwinder's forte, but he knew he had a moment to rise to here, if he wanted the cooperation of this room of squabbling, egocentric naval officers. He came to attention, and acknowledged my salute. I nodded in the ensuing quiet. The room erupted into cheers as the crowd parted for the little Mayor of New Babbage, his face flushed from all the attention, as he strode up to the war plan table.

"Greetings, Hotspur. So you've done it."

"Me? I woke up this morning fighting one war, not two. I'd say it was YOU who did, it Tenk."

His face split into a rare grin. "Ah, yes.. I have been busy. Taking the helm of the operation?"

I gave him an exasperated look.

"Yes, I did know you would. Yes, I owe you one."

"You'll owe me one if we win. This is a nasty business, Tenk. A nasty business."

"Acknowledged. I will provide what intelligence there is. We'll need submarines, if you have them.. and enough power to breach the Obolensky retaining wall.. And Enough of a landing party to get the resistance started..."

The Alliance Fleet

Tenk pulled a crate up to the table, climbed up on it to speak to the planners assembled, and the serious work began. Down in the shipyard, the welding and riveting commenced, as various damaged fleets sought much needed repairs.

Three days later: Eastward approaches to the Vernian Sea

I handed Tenk the spyglass.

New Babbage Navy Heavy

"Tenk, I've been in these waters before, many times, at night and day. And there never was a sandbar here before. Would you care to explain this?"

His eyes scanned the horizon.. "There! See? Some form of autonomic dredging machine. Something of Obolensky's. He's dredging the center of the channel to build an artificial sandbar. Hmmm. Elegant. He doesn't need nearly the manpower to defend the Eastern half of the city, does he? Damnably clever."

Commodore O'Toole surveys the approach

I could make out a large digging machine, half submerged, in the center of the channel.. pouring watery sand from the beach out into the center, where it poured out to settle in the water.

"This isn't good, Tenk. Not at all. We can't get our heavy class ships over this bar, or dredge it ourselves, in time."

"Are we scuppered?" he asked, frowning.

"Didn't say that. I'm saying an already complicated action has just become more complex. We'll need to anchor the Fear Endjin, the Babbage Mammoth, and the other heavy class out here, right up against the bar, and someone will have to sight the bombardment for us, from inside the city. Using semaphore. The rest of us, in particular, the subs, will be able to pass over the bar. WE have several Hollands with us to make the infantry landings in town. If he doesn't have a net out, we should have the element of surprise going for us. God help us if we get caught in a sea-net and he has shore artillery."

Tenk nodded, suddenly looking quite gray in the face. "H... I don't want to get these boys slaughtered if it's hopeless. Should we about face out of here, before we're detected?"

"It won't be easy, but it's not hopeless. If we wait much longer, the resistance will not grow any momentum and Obolensky has it won. Mayor Tenk, it's your call. We're going to take some casualties, I can't hide that fact. But if we are fast enough, and hit hard enough, and can land some marines in the right place to make a sudden snatch and grab... well, we can make this happen."

Again, he considered this. "Let's go, then."

I hauled up the signalman and gave him a message for the captains of the heavies to fall back. The Submarines were loading with marines trying to get their Lee-Enfield rifles through the hatch of the Hollands gracefully.

Loading Holland Submarines

The mortar men on the Tyrans and Hardtack Defiant class ships were laying out and trimming the fuses for their mortar bombs to various preset lengths. I waved at CDR Comber on the DEUCALION. We'd need the tall Texan today..

Wrath Mortar Ship, Submarine in background

The last of the marines were on board the Holland subs and they moved out to submerge quietly, advancing into Babbage. Suddenly, the silence was broken..

AIRSHIPS! THREE OF THEM! Advancing full speed.

Indeed, I could make out the silver grey skin of some fast moving lighter than air ships, clearly heavily armed from the slow manner of their turns. We were spotted, and they were coming this way.

I collapsed my scope in grim satisfaction.. NOT this time, my lads, not this time.

I had the Babbage officer next to me signal to Captain Somme on the LADY CALLI, the fleet communications ship.

B-R-I-N-G-(space) J-O-N-A-S (space) U-P

Signal acknowledged.

A far off thrumming sound grew steadily discernible behind us as we approached the New Babbage bar. The far off airships appeared to be fighting a headwind, but were making slow progress. One by one, our smaller ships slipped over the sandbar, heading into the outreaches of the Vernian Sea. Overhead, Jonas, the last commander of the Fleet Air Arm of Middlesea, surged forward in my very own Black Maria Aether Frigate, which had been found in a warehouse in Caledon. It had taken two months and a small fortune in lindens, but she was here, surging over us low to salute and then rising up to engage three of Doctor Oblensky's airships. I laughed to myself. I'd never go into battle without decent air cover again. I waved up at Jonas's ship in futile fashion and stood off while the combined force entered the Babbage waterways. We might pull this off yet.


++ Steubing: A Caledonian Naval Oficer
* Smoke: A New Babbage seaman
*** Steelheads: A member of the Steelhead Naval Service
+ Rats: Wrath Fleet Crews
** Hardtacks: Steelopian Empire ship (a play on the word cookie)

For a good reference on naval terms, usage and customs, visit this page.

Reading between the lines

  at 3:33 PM
In recent days this correspondent has noted new signs of tension in the uncomfortable balance of power that holds overlord Obolensky in power.

Around the town, small notices, are appearing on official looking stationery and yet seem somehow wrong.
They are appearing across the city and seem to be calling for a cessation of all anti-regime rumours.

However, this correspondent sees undertones in these, and reading between the lines, there is perhaps more than meets the eye in these posters, there are worrying times ahead for the rulers of Obolenskidonia. As if to underline these fears the regime is stepping up its campaign of intimidation, iron warships are beginning amass in the Vernian.

A public  announcement:-

To the hard working and loyal citizens of
Obolenskidonia, who refute the past name
New Babbage. Please take heed your
overlord, Doctor Obolenski has denied that
Clockwinder Tenk is alive and returning
All rumour mongering is to cease completely
by the end of this week
or the overlord will demonstrate his enormous
power to the citizens.

Cracks appearing in Obolenskidonia

6/29/09  at 5:00 AM
Rumour is rife and the streets are buzzing as the City comes to believe that the leadership of Obolenskidonia are failing to maintain their grip.

This correspondent has observed first hand the increasingly frequent acts of sabotage by the militia, the band of fighters who form the core of the Babbage resistance.

Militia propaganda published at the weekend recounts an audacious attempt to capture General Kuroe, and whilst the attempt itself failed it has provided an enormous moral boost to the movement.

Furthermore signs that the Clockwinder mayor Mr. Tenk may have returned are increasingly reported, whispers in the cafes and coffee houses, bars and shops. It seems everyone knows someone who has seen a sign.

Doctor Obolensky has been quiet in recent days, a warning was issued regarding the appearance of milk bottles on the doorsteps of households around Obolenskidonia, since then the self proclaimed overlord has been notably absent.

This correspondent senses a real change in the atmosphere, one of hope rising out of the misery of recent weeks.

your faithful correspondent
Beq Janus

Revolutionary Art in New Babbage

6/28/09  at 2:12 AM
Our Art Correspondent (Miss Saffia Widdershins) writes:
One fascinating and hitherto little explored element of the Upheaval in New Babbage is the Street Art that has emerged.

We should, perhaps, explain that for the citizens of Babbage, the idea of Street Art is not new. More commercially motivated, perhaps, than other communities such as Caledon and - in addition - possessing a superfluity of bare brick walls, the citizens of New Babbage have been in the custom of adorning (although some less artistically or commercially inclined minds might say 'defacing') the aforementioned walls with posters advertising events or business opportunities of one kind or another.

It was perhaps in this tradition that the earliest images of the changed government of New Babbage first appeared. The style we might term as "Ministry of Information"; simple, bold colours and messages were expressed, reminiscent of images employed by governments in times of emergency, such as the legendary "Kitchener" poster, or "Keep Calm and Carry On".

The messages contained in these posters did, however, raise some disquietude among the citizenry of New Babbage. "Peace and Security Corps depends on you! Inform on your friend, it is the right thing to do!" might be memorable as a crude piece of doggerel (its scansion is exreable, though), but it is hardly likely to induce a sense of security and well-being in its readers. The message directed at children is even more chilling: "Join the Youth Movement! Be Strong Like Dr O. Free Clothes. Some Food. Warm Floor. Bonuses for the Arrest of Rebels. Parents Double".

On the whole, it is not surprising therefore that the earliest examples of Resistance Art should take the form of defacement of these images - either in the form of the symbol internationally recognised as "No!" - the red-barred circle, or later by the use of messages exhorting the citizenry to support their cause: "Citizens of Babbage Stay True! Our Leader will oneday return!" which was inspiring, if a little optimistically vague (and mis-spelled).

The next move appears to have been the revolutionaries themselves adding their own art, in a style that might be described as in part traditional revolutionary, with heroic imagery:

And in part owing more to neo-realism:

It was, of course, not long before these images were in turn defaced. At first the cocophony of mutiple images occupying a small space became a cacophony of symbolism, some of which was obscure.

And sometimes, as in the increasing presence of the sombre and menacing Black Rabbit, it has the power to become, like the situation in New Babbage itself, decidedly sinister.

Interview with General Kuroe of Obolenskidonia

6/27/09  at 1:20 PM
On my first day back I was lucky enough to meet with the General Kuroe. This former pirate now effective head of security in the newly established state of Obolenskidonia present a complex picture of life in power. I had arranged to meet the general in Loki's ansinthe bar by the canals and he arrived some 15 minutes late, appologising for the fact that his work had detained him. He slumped into a soft seat opposite your correspondent and poured himself a glass of Absinthe. The "man" looks drawn and haggard, tired of the conflict, worn down by power and yet by turns his eyes flicker with an energy, a delight in antagonism.

The Primgraph (TP): General, on behalf of the Primgraph may I say how pleased we are that you agreed to give us this interview. May I start by checking how you would wish to be addressed for the purposes of publication?

Ashiko Kuroe (AK):
To be honest I care little about the title so much as after I say 'By the  authority granted me by Obolensky' people do what I say and General does seem fitting...

TP: So is it fair to say then that in Obolenskidonia, the new administration supports freedom to choose? You seem to tolerate the anger of certain elements.

Kuroe sighed, slumping onto the table.

AK: I have people with guns shooting at my men...I would rather focus my attentions towards them.
TP: You must forgive my ignorance in these matters, I have returned today and I am still catching up with rumours and news.

The general's mouth curled into what might have been a smile, his cigarette holder bobbing.

AK: Obolensky disposed of the horrible drunkard of a Mayor... and shipped in his clanks or robots or what have you...And... of course hired myself and my fleet to oversee the dismantling of the militia and securing of the skyways. I nodded, sc
ribbling frantically We set at once to taking the former militia headquarters... there was resistance but superior weaponry and a well placed gatling cannon shoed the lot off...

TP: Were there many casualties?

AK: I suffered a shot to the shoulder...and another was slashed badly. Oh... Oh you mean for the resistance? We didn't count anything... just dumped what we could in the canal".

The general seemed unmoved by the talk of such fighting, his jaded eyes barely focused.

TP: So the Obolensky regime is holding fast now?

AK: Obolenskidonia is holding strong.

TP: Are there any plans that you are able to share? This report wil be read by many of your citizens.

AK: Aside from the scone factory?

TP: The scone factory. Gainful employment for the childr
en as I recall?

The general nodded.

AK: A charming endeavour...personally... I would rather see the militia heads stand trial and the rest of the lot shipped off to... oh I haven't a clue some slave labour.

TP: But, yes, beyond the scone factory, what plans can the doctors' favoured general share.

The general looked about as if to confer something secret

AK: Well such things... are a tad bit secret... but I can leak it out that the aether program is well underway.

TP: The aether program? That sounds ambitous indeed.

AK: Well our proud nation is forming alliances and rivalries every day... we must do something. And if... said something happens to expand our borders... well... all the more better.

TP:May I ask why the Doctor picked the city of Bababge?

AK: Opportunity presented itself? I cannot entirely speak for the man. I can say why I have returned to New Babbage... or Obolenskidonia as it is now called... but the Doctor...the man's mind is as a steel trap...

TP: Then I put the question to you directly. We have after all met in other circumstances. What is it that brings you back here?

The general grins and self-consciously touches his prosthetic eye.

AK: Revenge, of course... During a previous visit... I had lost my eye.

TP: And this revenge, do you feel it is now
met, through your elevation to general, your status in the city?"

AK: Oh my status? I am a pawn in the grand scheme of things...

TP: A well rewarded pawn, I would anticipate

AK: Yes my coffers in Armada are swelling... but to be perfectly honest with each poster defiled and each scribbling on the wall I must confess... it is a tad grading...

TP: Loyalty does not come cheap, the doctor must recognise this?

AK: Yes... but I do take liberties in my power... Taxes for wearing mismatched socks. and the like.

And so we leave the general with thoughts of sartorial taxation and scones. What does the future hold now for Obolenskidonia. This correspondent hopes soon to find out.

your faithful correspondent

Beq Janus

Giant sent to calm rebels

6/25/09  at 4:48 PM
This evening in the Palisades your correspondent noticed a large object dominating the skyline. As I approached it became clear that this was an extraordinarily large "clank", it purpose while unstated seems clear, it stands over the city, defying those within to rise up against it.

"I think they looks silly", claimed one onlooker. Silly or not, this mehanical servant of the overlord means business and little would seem able to stand in its way.

The Doctor has made statement. This correspondent feels it will not go unanswered but fears the escalation.

Life in Obolenskidonia

6/24/09  at 5:18 AM
This correspondent has spent some time assessing the impact upon the lives of the residents. Many of the social leaders have been removed or have gone into hiding, there are no official numbers being given for civilian/militia casualties with the regime showing scant regard for those who rebel against them.

"We didn't count anything... just dumped what we could in the canal... and yes Obolenskidonia is holding strong.", claimed General Kuroe when questioned about the attack on the HQ of the militia.

Yet in many quarters life is carrying on, the urchins are still at large, they are a constant thorn in the side of any authority democratically elected or otherwise so for them it is business as usual, however, this correspondent fears that the cost to those who push their luck too far may be somewhat higher than a spell in the school house and a clip round the ear.

There are still social gatherings, and the bars and coffee shops are still busy though suspicions are rife and the hushed tone of whispers is more common now than the raucous laughter familiar to those who have lived here for some time. The regular popular balls held by Miss Breezy Carver are still taking place despite the occupation and the difficulties that that imposes, some guests it is said were deliberately becostumed in order to conceal their true identity.

Industry however has been diverted. A look out upon the docks sees a fleet not of mercantile clippers and trading ships but of threatening ironclad war vessels. Indeed the port, in the past a ribald and lively part of the city, is all but deserted. In a recent open letter to the citizens of Obolenskidonia, The overlord announced that productivity in the factories was up by 7%. No information as to what was being produced and how this increase was achieved is available. The Primgraph can reveal however that the new regime has plans however with an ambitious scheme to create a pioneering new factory producing scones, on the site of the old town hall. A more ominous prospect, the Primgraph can exclusively reveal is the secretive "Aether" project,
which will apparently expand the borders of Obolenskidonia.

I will report more on the trials and tribulations of life in Obolenskidonia in coming days but for now this correspondent is gonig to return to a bar, for research purposes.

your faithful correspondent

New Babbage, New name, Welcome to Obolenskidonia

6/23/09  at 9:57 AM
New Babbage, the independent city state, that has stood out for is brash rebuffal of past attempts at political and military interference has fallen under the control external forces.

The Primgraph, your ever diligent news journal has asked this correspondent to report from the city and relate events as they unfold. News has been slow to emerge, with fears of control measures to kerb the freedom of the press and yet, since my return to my home city, yesterday, I have not found evidence to support these claims, indeed a full interview with general Kuroe will follow in the comings days.

As this correspondent has herself been away from the events I shall first attempt to briefly capture the events that have brought us to the present situation.

What happened to this once proud City? Who is the new ruler?

The City Of New Babbage was last in the headlines earlier this year with the hotly contested election of a new Mayor. An election that was concluded with a democratic majority voting for Mossoveno Tenk. Mr Tenk assumed office In late February but in recent times rumours of weaknesses, an over indulgence in a certain alcoholic beverage, have persisted with alleged photographic evidence being published in the more popularist journals such as the Canal Street Snitch.

For a long time the mercantile strength of New Babbage has been an attraction to both Merchants and Brigands and it was not long before the apparent weakness of the new leadership saw in increase in the number of incursions into New Babbage Territory. These were rumoured, but never proven, to be linked to one Doctor Obolenski, an eccentric and fanciful character, with an inclination towards theatrics.

The local militia, an ill-prepared band of citizen soldiers, was assembled in April with no real expectation that they would be required to act. What else could be expected of a state whose unofficial motto is the ever optimistic "What could possibly go wrong"? Yet with typical Babbage pluck the militia has rebuffed many attacks, including bombs, gas mines and mortars. However, on no occasion was the leader, a pirate known locally as Ashiko Kuroe, successfully apprehended and detained.

Finally in early June, it seems, the odds tipped in the aggressors' favour. Mr Cleanslate, the mayor's deputy, left town around the 3rd of June, publicly stating that he was heading on diplomatic business to the steam lands and the neighbours of Babbage. The aggressors saw their opportunity with the sober deputy otherwise engaged a mechanical army was seen to descend upon New Babbage overnight on June the 9th. Supported by Captain Kuroe and a cohort, Capt. Lupindo, the army was triumphant. The very next day a new state of Obolenskidonia, ruled by the Overlord Doctor Obolenski was announced to the nation through aerial paper drops, martial law was imposed and the new regime took hold. Captain Kuroe, was hailed as General of the air corps, with Captain Cadmus Lupindo, put in charge of the naval blockade, both sharing the overall policing of the state. the metallic soldiers, known locally as "clanks" now patrol the streets.

The fate of the mayor had remained unknown but a few days later propaganda started to appear claiming that the Mayor's addiction had been his downfall. He was it is clear abducted and his fate is as yet unconfirmed, though the propaganda of the new state claims that he was seduced by his addiction, sealed in a bottle and set afloat on the currents of the Vernian sea.

In the days since the occupying forces made their presence known, there has been a growing underground movement, a resistance. Initially this was confined to misdemeanour and high profile protests, with the iron clanks being dressed in garlands of flowers and cuddly toys alongside other statements of a typically Babbagian nature, such as protest notices in the form of street graffiti.

In more recent days the protest has escalated, in one audacious assault Miss Mara Razor and an as yet unidentified white haired co-conspirator were seen to make an attempt to assassinate the overlord, but their bows and arrows proved powerless and they are now sought as enemies of the state.

The resistance is not limited to just these two, as an increasing number of assaults would seem to support. Indeed, General Kuroe admitted openly that this vexes him.

"I have people with guns shooting at my men. I would rather focus my attentions towards them."

I can, through my own observations confirm that gun fire can be heard ringing out from the streets at night, and many citizens are left stranded in their houses.

The apparent triumph of the new rulers is beginning to look somewhat tarnished.

Your faithful correspondent - Beq Janus

A Frontier Fourth: Deadwood City in the Dakota Territory, Celebrates the Birthday of the Republic

6/22/09  at 11:48 AM
above is an image of an actual 19th century 4th of July parade in a Western mining town

On Saturday and Sunday, July 4-5, the citizenry of Deadwood City will be commemorating the birth of the United States in the traditional manner of a frontier community of the 1870s. These are commonly known as the “Three B’s”--Booze, Beasts, and Bombast.

The role of alcoholic libations--the “Booze” in the equation--requires little explanation in a town that has roughly one saloon for every 39 residents. The “Beasts” are involved either for riding or eating. On the frontier, 4th of July activities commonly include horse races, bull riding, and some form of barbecue (most likely after the bull riding competition has concluded).

Please visit for more information, which will most likely be forthcoming as things get sorted out (check the calendar or the 'events" section of he forum ).

The Midsummer Grand Tour - for RFL - The Thrilling Conclusion!

6/20/09  at 7:25 PM
And the tour ends on Sunday 21st June with four final exciting events ...

10:30 am Sunday 21st SLT - Farmer's Market in Giverny
Soliel Snook and Kaye Robbiani will be hosting an old-fashioned Farmer's Market with music, face painting, typical market fare, dancing if you like, and more.

In addition, feel free to explore the village and Monet's gardens, or take a boat ride down the Seine River, visit the musee d'art Americain, browse the art galleries, or just sit and sip wine, and visit with friends.

12:00 noon Sunday 21st SLT - Steelhead Airship Ceilidh
We will be celebrating the Tour with the first Steelhead Airship Ceilidh. Dancing, refresments, and a RFL benefit auction aboard the Airship Ballroom, moored above Steelhead Harborside.

Music provided by Radio Riel presenter Otenth Paderborn.

Steelhead City is a Steampunk/Victorian Town set in the late 1800's in the Pacific Northwest, Washington Oregon territories.

1:30 pm Sunday 21st SLT -Waltz Night At the Wunderbar Ballroom!
Wunderbar co-owner ha Tenk will host " Waltz Night" at the Wunderbar Ballroom

Dresscode: Ladies, gown; gentlemen, tuxedo

3:00pm slt Sunday 21st SLT -The Duchess' Closet: Dance and Gown Sale
As part of the Summer 2009 Grand Tour...

The Prim Minister of Edison Gabrielle Riel cordially invites all lovers of fine ladies' fashions to The Duchess' Closet Dance and Gown Sale.

All proceeds go to Relay for Life Team Caledon
(get ready for Grand Tour IV!)

Thank you to Miss Annechen Lowey and Herr Baron, KlausWulfenbach Outlander, for being truly wonderful ambassadors and Conductors for the Grand Tour III.

The Midsummer Grand Tour for RFL!

6/18/09  at 3:55 PM
The weekend keeps rolling with exciting early Sunday morning events:

4:30 am
Principality of Fauve Welcomes You!

Our stop on the Grand Tour will be a nature inspired Haiku and freeform poetry reading and composition opportunity where you can take your ease Sunday at dawn in our lovely Ochaya (Teahouse)...formal Asian dress encouraged :)
Visit the Fairytale sim of Fauve where we realize our dreams in SL at an interactive playground, sea, land and sky, art and nature and lots of fun! Mirrors are Teleporters around the sim points, feel free to explore and enjoy :)

6:00 am slt
Celebration of St. John's Eve, Congo Square in New Toulouse

In the old city, they would gather in Congo Square, those dragged from their homes an ocean away. They would tell the old tales and dance the old dances. Miss Marie was there, in the shadows with her wisdom and her potions and her knowledge of the old ways, the voodoo. On St. John's Eve, when the spirits were very close, they would dance the whole night long. Those who came to watch and jeer found themselves drawn into the dance, and their lives were never the same.
In New Toulouse of the 1920s, they say, some still gather on the shortest night of the year, down by the river. They come up from the bayous and down from the fancy houses because they know: on this night, the spirits are with them.
Join us, Grand Tourists. Come in the bright colors that please the spirits. Come with an open mind: come to watch, come to dance, come to remember how it was, back in the day...

7:30 am
V is for Victory! the fight against cancer,and that is what we're hoping to have. Welcome to the USO dance stop on the RFL Grand Tour!! Come dance with us while listening to Big Band, Swing, and a smattering of jazz spun by the Caledon RFL Captain, Kiralette Kelley.
We will be gathering high above Caledon Rothesay on a specially created dance floor. We will have liberty bonds for sale, and the dj will play anything you wish, for a small donation to RFL!
Come dressed in your best 1940's duds, bring your best guy, gal, or pal, and dance those feet off while helping a great cause!􀀎

9:00 am
ROMA PRO VITA's Apollo's Masquerade

Come dance in Imperial Rome in your best mask and toga
on the day when Apollo shines on us the longest
and help us raise funds to defeat cancer for good.
Roman classical dress preferred, any formal dress welcome
To be held in the beautiful Imperial Throne Room, ROMA

The Midsummer Grand Tour - For Relay For Life

6/17/09  at 8:21 AM
More incredible events that you don't want to miss for the June 20th through 21st Grand Tour!

Saturday, June 20, 2009,10:30 pm slt ~ Ole! for Life Party with Joaquin Gustav!
Al Andalus invites you to continue this special evening with Flamenco and other Latin music and dance to the fabulous spanish guitar of Joaquin Gustav, Second Life's best latin musician.

The Al Andalus Sims recreate the beauty of the Moor Alhambra and 13th century Granada, Spain. Spanish and Arabic costumes are appropriate and look especially wonderful with the many latin dances, but all manners of dress and costume are welcome. Al Andalus is pleased to announce its upcoming merger with the Confederation of Democratic Sims, the oldest democracy in Second Life, celebrating 5 years this year!

12:00 Midnight SLT ~ Trance Revolution
Emperor SteelCobra Calamari brings to you the wonderful sounds of trance. The very best from DJ Tiesto, Alex Megane, etc.

The event theme may be trance, but the Steeltopia sims are anything but trance-like! This is a 19th to early 20th century themed area with a emphasis on steampunk and tesla electric power.

Come as you are, no pressure, but bring your neon and sparklers! (no nudity or bdsm wear please!) Don't forget to see the train station!

Sunday, June 21, 2009, 3:00 am slt ~PUNCH OUT CANCER!
The Justice League Unlimited welcome you to the Grand Tour. Join us for music, a demonstration of our special powers, a tour of the Adventurers' Club facility, and a Q&A session.

Music by Edward Pearse of Radio Riel

The Midsummer Grand Tour - For Relay For Life

6/16/09  at 6:54 AM
A continuation of wonderful events to attend and enjoy on Saturday, June 20.

Marzipan Tearoom Midsummer Ball

The theme for the Marzipan Teahouse Grand Tour Ball will be Midsummer Night, for pixie, faerie, sprite, woodland folk, and, of course, humans. It will have an open air feel, with a warm breeze full of the scent of summer flowers and a hint of peat. The music, by Radio Riel, will be all period music with a hint of the wild abandon of summer and merriment. There will be dances in the garden, for the enjoyment of the warm summer night and gifts of summer flowers for the ladies' hair and boutonnieres for the gentlemen.

The Midsummer Grand Tour - for RFL: The Illusions - White Theme Ball

We've got magic to do... just for you
Hearts to warm, as we go along our way.
Music by the Amazing Mister DJ BATS
Sponsored by House of Rfyre, Capalini Fine Furnishings, Black Opal Designs, and Hatpins.

The Midsummer Grand Tour - for RFL: Circuits and Relays Ball

Please join us in Steam Sky City to celebrate all that has been Wrought by Man.

Robots, Mecha, Jaegers, Clanks, and all other creations are invited to come and Celebrate the Wonders of Science!

And as a special treat, the winner of the Duchess Sandwich Auction will be announced and will be treated to the attentions of two of Caledon's Naughty Duchesses....

So shine up your Brass, oil your Gears, and come Relay for Life!

The Midsummer GrandTour - for RFL: Winterfell Solstice Fire Dance

6/15/09  at 3:33 PM
For the third event of the Grand Tour, the pace changes again, as we head to the mysterious haunted sim of Winterfell and the Winterfell Solstice Fire Dance!

Miss Serra, Senechelf of Winterfell invites you to join her and her residents for a traditional bonfire dance in the heart of WInterfell, Taure En Lor at 3pm SLT.

Winterfell is a dream fantasy region inspired by the magnificence of medieval castles and the romantic elegance of Victorian manors basking in the splendor of twilight, designed and inspired by stories, dreams and creative interpretations of reality.

This event will be medieval casual but you are invited to come as you are to enjoy some lively music and friendly company!

The Midsummer Grand Tour - for RFL: Ascot Ball in Victoriana

  at 11:43 AM
After the Germanic Oktoberfest, we move across the Channel for the event of the Grand Tour - the Ascot Ball in Victoriana!

Orchestra leader Benton Wunderlich was playing tunes from "My Fair Lady" on the piano; female guests were attired in the finest gowns and the most glorious hats, and everyone was nibbling on cucumber sandwiches and smoked salmon and sipping champagne.

No, it wasn't a garden party in the country in merry old England. It was the Ascot Ball in Victoriana!

Held this year on Saturday June 20, at 1:30pm SLT, it is certain to be the social event of the season, it's an event you won't want to miss.

The Annual Victoriana Ascot Race will be held beginning at 2pm, so enter your favourite horse & jockey before the race. Entry fees are donated to RFL.

In addition, there will be fabulous auctions and the art exhibition Victoriana Views by Callipygian Christensen in the Town Hall.

The Midsummer Grand Tour - for RFL: Event 1: A Taste of Oktoberfest!

  at 1:02 AM
The Grand Tour of the Vintage and Associated sims is back! And it is happening this comming weekend - starting with a traditional German celebration in Neufreistadt, starting at 11:30 AM SLT on Saturday 20th June.

A Taste of Oktoberfest!

The Confederation of Democratic sims starts the party with A Taste of Oktoberfest! The Tiroler Eck Show Band Music will bring its mixture of Bavarian and Austrian schlager and traditional music. The band consists of 11 live musicians all playing together. Wear your lederhosen, dirndls or whatever you wish, but be ready to smile! You may find yourself dancing polka in the streets!

Neufreistadt "New Free State" is a typical medieval Bavarian village in a cloudy mountaintop. If the "fog" bothers you, touch ctrl, alt, shift and the minus sign, all together, and it will be turned off.

CDS celebrates its 5th year of Democracy in Sl this year and is proud to participate in the Grand Tour III.

Two one-of-a-kind items up for auction to benefit RFL

6/13/09  at 5:42 PM
The Illusions White Themed Ball at Piermont Landing, Wheatstone Waterways [] will bring glitter and dazzle, beauty and illusion to New Babbage and the steamlands, beginning at 6pm on June 20.

But the main event will also (for two lucky bidders) mean the joy of victory and (for the rest of us) the agony of defeat as two one-of-a-kind items go up for auction to benefit Relay For Life.

Silent bidding began June 12 on both Ms. Kembri Thompson's stunning Shepherdess Gown

and Ms Canolli Capalini's amazing Resignation Music Box

and bidding will continue through Saturday at 9pm SLT, when the winners are announced. 

I'd love to finish this post, I really would, but I need to get to Piermont [] and sit on a silent auction vendor.  See you at the winner's announcement!

Issue 6 of The Primgraph now available!

6/7/09  at 9:32 AM

Issue 6 of The Primgraph is out now – and it’s our most steampunk issue ever!

We’re visiting the region of New Babbage, a collection of seven (soon to be eight) grimy, sooty, exciting areas, dominated by tall smoking chimneys and narrow brickwork alleyways, with canals and harbours that offer as rich and as vivid a life beneath the waves as they do above it.

Through the writings of Miss Ceejay Writer, Miss Elegia Underwood and Sir Edward Pearse, Duke of Argylle, you’ll encounter mad scientists and disreputable urchins – and a fair mix of respectable folk going about their everyday business of invention, adventure, and making sure the clocks run on time – particularly important in a place that owes so much to steam and clockwork.

We learn from Miss Poppy Ratzzi (the epitome of the inquistive lady reporter) how Mosseveno Tenk, the new Mayor of New Babbage, has spent his first 100 Days, as well as meeting some of the citizens, and hearing a tale of New Babbage too from Mr Aeolus Cleanslate.

And there’s an account of the sort of event that can only happen in an unexpectedly flooded vaudeville theatre in Babbage Square – a performance by a troupe of mermaidens dancing a synchronised ballet – with tool wrenches. Don’t miss the pictures of that event!

We have a new and exciting innovation in the form of our own web comic – The Quest for the Golden Prim.We are intending to feature an episode in each issue of The Primgraph – and more material will be appearing on the new dedicated aethernite site.

Read it and enjoy as the mystery opens… a quiet library in Caledon – what secrets could it possibly hold?

Read the first episode … and you’ll begin to find out!

In fact, this issue is something of a trailer – because we want YOU to play a part in this. That’s right – we’ll be holding auditions for the cast of the web comic – so if you want to find fame (though probably not fortune) as the hero, the heroine or the dastardly villain/ess of a web comic, now is the time to apply!

You’ll find more information through our amazing new aethernet sites, created by our aetheric engineer, Miss Viv Trafalgar at  From here on our aethernet blog you can find out all the latest from the vintage and steampunk worlds – and The Primgraph – not to mention keeping abreast of the Quest for the Golden Prim on a special dedicated site!

Frau Annechen Lowey is once more on hand to advise on ettiquette in the Steamlands, and this month she tackles the knotty question of how to pay a formal call on the local mad scientist – and associated matters. Meanwhile, our Lady of Propriety offers advice on the issue of alternative personalities.

News from around the vintage and steampunk grid provides information on various projects and plans: Mr Julian Beeswing describes the re-creation of the Maison Horta, while Miss Viv Traflgar describes the fascinating Aethernet Salons held in Babbage Palisade. There’s also a fascinating account by Miss Ceejay Writer of the recent Homes and Gardens Expo held in support of Relay for Life.

And there’s news of Relay for Life events too – including an update on the planned Grand Tour.
We have style and fashion fashion reports from Miss Viv Trafalgar, who has some interesting advice for the Lady who wishes to dress for the steampunk regions, while Miss Edwina Heron discovers the joys of steampunk with the aid of her devoted manservant Nigel. And Miss Kembri Tomsen provides a fascinating guide to the changes of clothing needed throughout the day by any Lady who Aspires to Fashion.

Sir JJ Drinkwater supplies an account of the Deadwood libraries – two branches of the Alexandrine Library that cater for the Western sims, while Mr Jvstin Tomorrow has given us a review of an aetheric graphical novel and moving picture. We have more of our classic serial, The Mysteries of London, and details of new acquisitions from the library as well as another extract from that fascinating documentary record: Henry Mayhew’s London Labour and the London Poor, building up a detailed picture of Victorian life in a great city….

So, with no shortage of fascinating articles and beautiful illustrations supplied by our brilliantly talented team, we welcome you to this sixth issue of The Primgraph.

How do I get my copy of The Primgraph?

Well, there are various ways to get The Primgraph!

You could buy a copy from xStreetSL to be delivered to you inworld.

Best of all, you can join our Subscribe-o-Matic group, which will deliever the magazine to you automatically when it is published. The Subscribe-o-Matic kiosks are located in historical and steampunk sims across Second Life (for example, you’ll find ones at all the Caledon infohubs). And if you can’t find one in your favourite sim, why not ask the owner to install one?

You will also find them at the Prim Perfect offices in Oliveto.
But if you prefer to read the magazine online but not inworld, there are choices too. Firstly, there’s the wonderful Calaméo system, which allows you to moves smoothly through the pages, giving you the feeling of reading a real magazine. You’ll find Issue 6 here – and please do leave a comment!

But, if you like to download your magazines to read as you commute to work, or in the bath, or wherever, you can also obtain a standard pdf for downloading and printing.

So, really, you have no excuse for not reading The Pimgraph. In fact, why aren’t you reading it now?


And join our party too!
Celebrate the launch of The Primgraph #6 Press Launch – June 7, 1 – 3pm with a party at The Lotus, Vernian Sea, New Babbage

Please join the citizens of New Babbage, the Belly Up Mermaids of Armada-Breakaway, and the staff and fans of The Primgraph, as they unveil the new issue with a gala party at Breezy Carver’s Lotus of the Sea Gallery, Vernian Sea.

With music by  Elrik Merlin of Radio Riel and Designing Worlds