Oxford University Role Playing Games Society
Inferno 1880 News
'NO-GO' AREAS IN BAVARIA
More tax-collectors have disappeared in Bavaria, this time near the remote
village of Hoch Hildesheim. The Internal Revenue office are threatening to
strike in protest unless the government acts against the murderous peasant gangs
believed to be responsible. "They're nothing but a bunch of crazy, blasphemous,
evil thugs," said a Civil Service Union spokeswoman [and the peasants are even
AUSTRIAN SPECIAL FORCES?
From the chaos of the Prussian warzone have emerged rumours as yet unconfirmed
of a solitary Austrian unit fighting against both sides in the name of a
Germanic Empire under the total control of Franz Joseph. Several outlying
villages have reputedly been slaughtered wholesale by these Austrians, whom
traumatised refugees described as taller than ordinary men and with glowing red
PRINCESS ANNABELLA DISTRESSED AT THEFT
News from Liechtenstein, where the Princess Annabella is said to be seriously
upset about the theft of an antique sword from her palace. She had only recently
purchased the sword, and despite it being kept under round-the-clock watch by
the Royal guard, a clever and ambitious thief succeeded in stealing it away in
the middle of the night. Royal-watchers had not seen the Princess in public
without the sword since she acquired it, and so are expecting her to make every
effort to have it returned. With the Princess noted for her wealth and
generosity, perhaps this is a job for a young hero wishing to make his fortune?
SYMPLASTIQUE EXHIBITION STUNS ART WORLD
The long awaited exhibition of Symplastique Art, organised by artist Mersuavin
Powers in the Crail mansion in Scotland, took place in February this year.
Several unusual and fascinating works were displayed, including a piece inspired
by the morbid poet, Mouldegrave. Although the exhibition was scorned by the
Pre-Raphaelites, the Art community as a whole has praised Powers for showing all
the way in a corrupt world through the art of the Symplastique movement.
Unfortunately Powers left the exhibition early on, minutes before constabularies
arrived to arrest him for duelling with his rival, Jarvis Longpig.
MONKEYS SEEK REPUTABLE WELDER
European climatologists gathered together this year to announce that the world
has officially entered a new Ice Age. "The succession of steadily colder winters
will continue," Professor Eugenio Prugna announced, "and we can expect to see
summers shortening as well." What will the economic effects of this climate
change be? Growers of grapes, oranges, maize and the like can expect tough
times: but the great deserts of the world may well become more fertile to
compensate. Rumours that the Sun appeared noticeably smaller and further away
were dismissed as speculative, though.
VELVET CHANCELLOR MAKES HIS PILE
The Velvet Chancellor of Prussia, Baron Brodenbach, appears to be preparing to
cut his losses and run in the face of a probable Russian victory in the war: he
has taken steps to confiscate the Prussian Colonial Office from the Von Moltke
estate, no doubt contemplating a long retirement abroad.
"ETHANOL" POWERED CARS WITHDRAWN AFTER DISASTER AT SPAMC RACE
The first race of the SPAMC season ended in tragedy after an exploding car
engines killed two drivers. The new 'ethanol' powered cars proved to be
unreliable, and explosively dangerous. Race organiser Simon London and promoter
Beerbohm Tree immediately announced their withdrawal. The race, the first to be
staged in Moscow, and the first of this year's four race 'season' was eventually
won by Malady Evans, a British Driver.
SIE IST EINE BERLINERIN [und ich sprache kein Deutsch -ed.]
There was rioting in the streets of Berlin yesterday after a stirring speech by
the mysterious Vadia Reisenburg, who denounced the concept of the united
Germanic states as a trick of a corrupt government smothering the rights and
freedoms of the honest citizens of Prussia for its own ends. Brobbies (the
Prussian police force) moved quickly to arrest the woman but she somehow evaded
capture, and is believed to still be at large.
MISREPATRIATION MUDDLE IN MILAN
Nearly 4000 Austrian POWs were stunned to find themselves forcibly deported
where they expected repatriation. The French army, in an astonishing mistake,
provided their ex-POWs with complete travel papers and transport to Switzerland.
Four entire convoys of prisoners were shipped and immediately arrested by the
Zurich police before the mess was resolved. Insiders laid the blame on clerical
error at the highest levels. The prisoners have all now been returned to
Pius IX surprised Papal-watchers up and down Europe by giving his qualified
support to the combined Neapolitan-Florentine attack, supported by the Austrian
army, on French-controlled Venice. "It is right that Italians should have the
primary voice in their own affairs," he announced in his Easter address. Sources
close to His Holiness intimate that he was favourably impressed by the Austrian
handover of authority in Tuscany to the Florentine People's Council, and with
the liberal noises Princess Annabella's new government in Piedmont has been
making. Sources slightly less close are suggesting that Cardinal Gino Baggio,
'Il Divino Codino', has been instrumental in persuading the Pope to this view.
"WE ARE NOT ALONE" - COLONEL MUSTARD CLAIM SHOCKS THE WORLD
The most sensational book to be published this year must surely be Colonel
Mustard's new work "We are not alone". Bringing together his research from many
archaeological expeditions world-wide, he has created a theory that is truly
amazing - that in the past humanity has been aimed, and civilised, by more
advanced creatures not of this world! This claim at first seems ridiculous, but
he backs it up with evidence of sudden increases in technology in many ancient
cultures, always associated with 'gods' or 'travellers'. He then proposes that
these 'gods' were in fact a more technologically advanced race of beings - and
more, that they may still exist, and could return to contact earth at any time!
Some academics have scoffed at these suggestions, but the idea seems to have
taken hold of the popular imagination, and the subject of who, or what, the
'tentacled high-technology beings' might be, and what they might offer humanity
if they returned now, has been hotly debated all year in the salons and bars of
I'M ALL RIGHT, JACK
Great British industry is stronger than ever after many prominent industrialists
have come round to the idea of improved conditions for their factory workers.
This trend was supported by Lord Tennyson's publication of a poem on the theme
of the working man who has made Britain great: and how decent treatment by
employers has lightened his step.
BAGGIO RETURNS FROM IMPRISONMENT, PUBLISHES BOOKS
Cardinal Gino Baggio has returned safe and sound to Italy, the faithful millions
will be glad to hear. Cloistered in the Royal Palace in Liechtenstein, he has
written two books, one an account of Japanese society 'from the inside', and the
other a sensational tale of his ordeal at the hands of his Nipponese tormentors.
The Cardinal comes to the conclusion that the time is not, as yet, pregnant to
bring the Lord's work to fruition in Japan: after his own faith and heart for
the benighted led him into such mortal danger. Fascination with the mysterious
land of the Orient is bound to grow, though, if only because of the curiously
formal way in which they drink tea, and the fact that their houses are made out
of paper. The Pope was reported delighted at the return of 'the divine
MEY 'TOOL OF THE FRENCH'?
In a damaging blow to the Prime Minister, Londoner Paul Flanders yesterday
delivered a moving speech in Hyde Park condemning the Government's European
policy, and in particular its seeming obedience to the French. The speech has
sparked off much debate in Parliament and, coming at such a crucial time for
Mey, may prove costly.
SPAMC CHAMPIONSHIP WON BY JAMES JONES
The final race of the SPAMC season was won by Kurt Flimran, in London this
weekend. However, this was the only race this driver had been able to take part
in this year, and so it was down to James Jones, who finished third in this race
(behind British explorer Colonel Mustard) to win the championship on points. He
was able attend each of the four races - beginning in Moscow, on to Milan,
Paris, and the finale in London - and scored consistently well, eventually
earning himself the championship. Sports fans were disappointed that last year's
winner of the British SPAMC did not show for this year's race.
JUST LEAVE THEM OUTSIDE, PLEASE
Senor de Moltke was observed arriving on business in Moscow towards the end of
the year, in the company of a large honour guard of Chinamen. What business he
had with the Tsar is still not widely known.
COMPULSORY NATIONAL LOBOTTERY?
Following the invention of new scientific technology, a conspiracy of powerful
politicians from all parties in England are planning the introduction of a
compulsory "National Lobottery". This scheme whereby brain samples will be
removed from citizens who are then entered into a draw to receive new, extra
pieces of brain, has been revealed as a devious plot for the politicians and
scientists involved to make themselves and their allies much more intelligent
using the excess brain samples, while the general populace becomes stupid and
degenerate. In the run up to the next General Election, the public are crying
out for an explanation from the Government, who as yet refuse to accept
AND THE SECOND PRIZE IS TWO OF THEM
New racing dromes are in construction in Rome, Berlin and Peking, and Senor de
Moltke has also announced the institution of the WorldLink World Cup, the
coveted prize for which will be a 2 foot high solid gold Helmut von Moltke
RAID ON HIMMELBURG
Early last night the Prussian fortification just outside Himmelburg, well behind
the front line, was hit by a highly damaging surprise attack. Initial reports
seem to suggest that a troop of Russian troops disguised as Bavarians penetrated
the camps defences and struck from within.
CARDINAL DELLA ROVERE TOURS CHINA
Rising star of the Catholic faith Cardinal Ernesto della Rovere completed a
successful tour of China this autumn, making many converts among the peasants of
that huge land. Vatican-watchers are already talking of this charismatic young
man as a possible rival to Cardinal Baggio as successor to Pope Pius IX.
Eyebrows are being raised, though, over the way della Rovere persistently
portrayed Juan Fernandez de Moltke as a 'soldier-saint of Christ' in his
DISASTROUS VENETIAN CAMPAIGN
The Austrian army has suffered a tremendous setback in their campaign to
recapture Venice; although the French have been driven out of the city proper,
lack of supplies and manpower have proven to be nearly as devastating as the
deadly French artillery that sank most of the equally ill-supplied Austrian
navy. It appears that the ultimate winner of this campaign may be Giuseppe
Garibaldi, the Italian nationalist whose flag currently flies over the Palazzo
MOLTKE PARTY MISSES THE BOAT
A tragedy for Teutonic democracy as the Moltke-financed Prussian People's Party,
whose policies included voting rights for women, withdrawal from the
Netherlands, alliance with Britain for effective defence against Russia and
improved social welfare arrived on the political scene just in time to see their
country collapse under a simultaneous Russian invasion and popular uprising.
In a tragic twist of fate it seems that the attack on Prussian forces at
Himmelburg last week was in fact carried out unknowingly by Bavarian forces.
Military commanders on both sides are blaming the catastrophe on Sergeant
Schultz, who led Bavarian forces on the raid. It is believed he died in the
INVITATIONS TO ALIENS - PLEASE COME BACK
In Berlin we hear of a new society that has been formed: "The Society for the
return of Higher Races'. Inspired by Colonel Mustards recent claims that a
'higher race' aided humanity at key points in its development, M. Wolfgang
Shrewda has got together a large number of like-minded individuals to attempt to
"contact the race which has been so beneficial in the past, and persuade them to
return to us." At a recent public meeting he went on to say "We are all aware of
the many difficulties that face us in the world at the moment - we are beset by
war, poverty, and sickness. If this race does exist, as we believe, surely now
is the time for them to return to us, and bring with them the advantages of
their great technology? We intend to make use of every means at our disposal to
contact this race, and ask them for their aid. We ask for everyone who has the
best wishes of humanity at heart to join us, and aid us - and to prepare a
greeting for our great visitors when they arrive."
PRINCESS BUILDS MILAN LIBRARY
A great public library has been set up in Milan through the benefaction of new
governor Princess Annabella. It will contain every book printed in Europe.
ITALIANS CALL FOR PIEDMONT PLEBISCITE
President Garibaldi and the Florentine People's Council have jointly called for
Princess Annabella to conduct a plebiscite among the people of Piedmont, the
former Grand Duchy of Milan. They should be offered the options of staying part
of France, being independent under her rule, or gaining autonomy as a People's
State, like their fortunate Tuscan neighbours - who currently enjoy the most
socially enlightened and forward-thinking governance in Europe.
SQUIDS IN AT 'STARGRAVE'S'
Londoners flocked last night to the opening of 'Stargrave's', an exclusive new
'psychedelic bistro and Jazz cellar' in London's West End which could well
become one of the town's most popular late night venues. Guests were somewhat
surprised by the menu which, to mark the opening night contained copious
quantities of the rare delicacy calamari.
RANDOM TERRORISM HITS EUROPE
A wave of seemingly unprovoked terrorist acts have been occurring all over
Europe, but particularly in England this year. Government buildings and the
residences of prominent politicians have been vandalised by bright graffiti, and
several politicians have suffered drastic colour changes in attacks reminiscent
of an earlier affront to purple-haired Lord Tennyson. The only group which has
come forward in connection with this assault on the political world call
themselves the "Sons of Symplastique", and claim that random art is the only way
to prevent the systematic indoctrination of the masses by corrupt governments.
When friends of the movement in Paris were asked to describe the group, one
commented, "The Symp-Sons are here to show us that you can have more fun wearing
a spiky yellow wig and painting your neighbour's fence blue than you can by
following the orders of a pompous, over-rated, and above all corrupt system of
government. Be random, and all will be revealed."
CROWN SPIRALS DOWN
Despite Friedrich Von Ardsburg's new currency scheme, inflation in Austria is
still rampantly out of control.
YOU TOO CAN DRIVE A STEAM-POWERED CAR!
Mathen Motors - the constructors behind many of the most successful SPAMC cars -
has announced the production of the Model M: a Steam Powered MotorCar. They are
using the most advanced production techniques to produce the MotorCar cheaply
enough that they may become common on the streets of Europe. Traditionally
play-things of the very rich, perhaps Steam Powered MotorCars are the way of the
NEW NAPOLEON SPOTTED?
We have recently received a number of bizarre reports from Southern France
suggesting that a madman posing as Napoleon has been rousing the peasants into a
patriotic crusade against England. However, surely people will not be easily
swayed by such an obvious lunatic.
HUBRIS RAISED HIGH
During the expulsion of the Prussians from Holland, no Dutch resistance member
showed himself as charismatic or competent as one Gerhard Hubris, who on the
recommendation of the French Marshal Joffre has been elevated to the position of
Commander-in-Chief of the newly reformed Dutch army.
NAPOLEON INVADES CORNWALL
Villagers in the tiny seaside town of Mousehole in Southern Cornwall were
stunned last night after a small fleet of French sailing vessels docked in the
port, and, under the leadership of a short man claiming to be Napoleon
Bonaparte, demanded the town's unconditional surrender. French peasants have
barricaded all roads leading into the town and appear to be prepared to defend
their tiny foothold against British forces.
PAPAL STATES TO VOTE?
Under the industrious urging of Giacomo Donavelli, the idea has been mooted of a
plebiscite in the Papal States, offering inhabitants the chance to form their
own People's State along the lines of Tuscany and Naples. His Holiness is
believed to be open to the idea, which would leave the Vatican as a separate
NEVER MIND THE QUALITY
Marshal Joffre demonstrated his adoration for his princess bride by sending her
50,000 red roses on the occasion of her birthday. Their fairytale romance has
made them the social darlings of Europe.
DONAVELLI SCHOLARSHIPS ANNOUNCED
Giacomo Donavelli has announced that he is personally funding three scholarships
to the University of Florence, in the sciences, the arts and the social
sciences, for gifted students too poor to attend otherwise, as part of his
commitment to the future of Italy. "Donavelli is sparking a new Renaissance!"
the University's Bursar proclaimed joyfully.
PRUSSIAN FLEET SURRENDERS!
Admiral Hornblower for the Royal Navy and Marshal Joffre for the French Army
were aboard the H.M.S. Ark Royal to accept the surrender of Admiral Graf von
Eugen on behalf of the surviving ships of the Prussian first fleet, following
the lopsided naval defeat in the Inner Sea. Hornblower and Joffre are now
heading to Paris and London to accept the accolades that are so justly their
...BUT TWO LOOKS LIKE CARELESSNESS
As if to heap a Pelion of idiocy upon the Ossa of daftness already observed this
summer, another short man claiming to be Napoleon has sprung into action in
northern France, trying to rouse the peasantry of the area into making war upon
Spain. Puzzled French police forces are trying to track down the unfortunate
DUTCH QUEEN RETURNS
Queen Wilhelmina of Holland returned to take her place upon the Dutch throne
this autumn after more than a decade of exile.
MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH IN WAR AGAINST PROSTITUTION
Scotland yard has announced the capture of a key individual in the organised
prostitution that has plagued London in recent years. Jack Salter confessed to
many counts of living off immoral earnings, and keeping houses of ill repute,
after being found on the steps of Scotland Yard, apparently 'gibbering with
fear, and wishing to tell all'. The police have no idea which public spirited
individual persuaded him to turn himself in, but hope this will see an end to
the recent underworld dispute.
NOT SO POPULAR?
Sources close to the Florentine People's Council report that all is not as
harmonious as it should be between the Tuscan state's leading political figures.
While Giacomo Donavelli tours Italy pushing his dream of a self-governing union
of states, Arachne d'Asti has taken to signing herself 'Governor of Florence and
Leader of the People's Council', and appears to be working for a purely Tuscan
nationalism. Meanwhile former governess Ariadne de Triora, quietly continuing
with her highly successful programme of social and educational reform, is being
painted as a puppet of the Austrians - a claim to which she can only have lent
strength when she announced this year that the replacement for 'David' was to be
a representation of Joseph in his many-coloured coat. "An ideal symbol for the
new Florence - a stuck-up farmboy who bonked his boss's wife, framed his brother
for a theft, and had strange dreams," commented one cynical citizen.
PIMP PULLED IN
Following Prime Minister Mey's announcement of a clampdown on the organised
crime in the capital, today's arrest of one of the city's most powerful pimps by
police at Scotland Yard can only help his campaign to forge a more decent and
PEREZ WARMS HEARTS
General Xavier Perez's brilliant campaign in support of the Dutch people has
made him the hero of the Spanish press, at a time when the civilian government's
public image is at a low ebb due to Spain's domestic problems.
NEW HEADACHE CURE
Minotaur Commodities has announced the development of "Twinfish Headache Powder"
- "For When Your Head Feels Like It's Been Hit By a Dead Fish".
LORENZO DE'MEDICI THE YOUNGER DIES
The death was announced early this year of Lorenzo de'Medici the younger,
formerly heir to the Grand Duchy of Florence. Known to have been deeply
depressed for some time, he died after falling from a high window: doctors are
treating the case as suicide. His recent bride Lady Apollonia was reported
DAVCHENKO 'AS GOOD AS NAPOLEON'?
General Davchenko's command of strategy and tactics has been described as
phenomenal by experts studying reports of his Prussian campaign. "Probably even
more brilliant than Helmut von Moltke, and on twice as many fronts
simultaneously," enthused one professor. A serialisation of Davchenko's
campaigns is proving popular in the European press.
DAME BRENT COMMITS SUICIDE
Dame Agatha Brent, a well loved member of the nobility, committed suicide last
week following what members of her household have described as a hideous
violation to her person by the prosthetist, Dr Andrew Hatchet. Last year Hatchet
replaced Dame Brent's missing leg using his new surgery techniques. Her butler
claims that after the operation, the leg behaved in a highly unpredictable
manner, making her run several times a day through the garden maze, and
collapsing whenever she tried to wear her favourite orange dress. He said, "When
she got her toes stuck in the mouse trap again on Tuesday, I think it was the
last straw. The poor woman threw herself off the mansion roof. Personally, I
smell a rat. That Hatchet ought to be struck off."
SCOTS SAY 'HOOTS MON' TO MEY
Feelings in Scotland towards the forthcoming elections were particularly intense
this week after a series of moving rallies and speeches calling for an end to
the oppressive English rule in the country. As the election looms closer, the
situation can only grow worse, and many Englishmen living in Scotland are
remaining locked in their homes for fear of violence.
BIZARRE BATTLEFIELD APPARITIONS
The Russian army's morale was greatly improved by their patron Saint Cawrdav
making a physical appearance on the battlefield. A muscular Scandinavian was
also sighted charging at Landfortresses brandishing a large sword. The Khiron
Commission has issued a formal statement condemning the use of hallucinogenic
vapours as a weapon in modern warfare.
TENNYSON PUBLISHES 'ANNABELLIAD'
Alfred, Lord Tennyson has written an epic poem describing the life of Princess
Annabella of Liechtenstein. The Annabelliad, published on St Valentine's day,
tells how she rose from humble beginnings as an obscure, fantastically wealthy
princess to her current eminence. The couplet most eagerly seized on by lovers
of romance concerns the poet's musings on how such a small state as
Liechtenstein could produce such a beauty: "I've measured it from side to side /
'Tis three leagues long by two leagues wide."
HER MAJESTY SUPPORTS FEMALE SUFFRAGE
Queen Victoria has given her public support to the Votes for Women movement.
"Albert assures me that it's a splendid idea," she announced in her speech. Can
this progressive measure be far off, now the highest in the land has spoken for
A PROBLEM FOR A NEW AGE - DRUG USE INCREASES IN LONDON
We are sorry to report an increase in the tide of immorality in London - as if
opium dens were not enough, the police report a new drug is becoming increasing
popular in both London and Paris. Few details have emerged, but it seems that it
is no longer confined to the 'Bohemian' set of these cities, where one might
expect to find a certain amount of corruption, but is now spreading to the
under-classes. Notorious for their desire to lose themselves in the abuse of
alcohol, the lower classes have naturally taken to this new form of self abuse,
and pour what little money they have into self-indulgence rather than care for
their families. Police fear that this may only be the beginning of a much larger
problem, and are already turning to the government for new legislation and help
in battling this new social evil.
BALKANS GOING CHEAP - ANY OFFERS?
The military merry-go-round continues apace in the Balkans with English troops
apparently prepared to support any revolutionary faction that wishes to
overthrow a local government. Bulgarian terrorists are the latest to receive the
complete backing of English troops: surviving local governments have made a plea
for any military or political assistance that will stem this tide of anarchy.
CHRIDGE FINISHED AT LAST
There was much celebration mid-Channel in November as the final rail was laid to
complete the Channel Bridge. Doctor Peter Tavener, the project's designer,
praised the efforts of the many who had made it possible. He pointed out the
many and various security and safety systems in place to a crowd of curious
journalists, and seemed particularly proud of the huge big guns which, in groups
of three, stud the length of the bridge. Britain rules the waves again!
NEW GUESTS FOR BOERS
English troops have landed in South Africa to announce the good news about the
Prussian defeat to the Dutch colonists there. They have refused to leave "in
case the Prussians try anything at the eleventh hour".
GUNBOATS SHELL AMERICAN COASTLINE
Our American staff inform of us an amazing event - unknown gunboats shelled the
American coast in a surprise attack. Casualties are said to have been
surprisingly low, but damage to property is extensive. However, recent advances
in American weapons technology meant that an immediate counter-attack could be
launched, disabling and sinking the attacking ships. Prisoners were taken, so we
expect an announcement very soon as to who was behind this attack.
MORE POWER STATIONS ON THE WAY
Power Station technology looks set to be here to stay - we have reports that
these great symbols of technical innovation are soon to be seen in Hungary,
Bavaria, Prussia and Austria. England remains second only to Russia in its
current utilisation of this technology, which certainly seems to be the way of
NORSE CULT CONTINUES TO GROW
The massive resurgence of interest in the old Norse Gods is rapidly expanding
beyond the confines of Iceland and permeating much of Northern Europe. The
strange prophet Odinsson has been travelling between the various cults,
preaching to them and allegedly performing miraculous feats.
ENGLAND, SWEDEN ALLY
A full treaty of co-operation has been signed between England and the King of
Sweden. It seems that the Scandinavian Alliance will be a force much more to be
reckoned with than their ill-fated Germanic counterpart.
ICELAND TO BE FREE?
Only last week the leader of the Asatru, the prophet Odinsson, travelled to
Sweden to declare Icelandic independence, and warned of dire consequences should
these demands not be met. Unsurprisingly his requests were scorned by Bjorn
Slippi, Minister for Icelandic Affairs. However, yesterday, in a bizarre
accident, the minister was struck down by a bolt of lightning as he left his
offices in Stockholm. His successor, Knut Krakers, is said to be reconsidering
the request on political and military grounds. Odinsson has also demanded that
the Norwegian capital Christiania be returned to its former name of Oslo: this
has met with some sympathy from Norwegian nationalists.
ARIADNE DIGITALIS ARRESTED
Prominent scientist Ariadne Digitalis has been arrested by the Austrian
government and charged with treason. All of her laboratories and assets on
Austrian soil have been confiscated, and she is still being held for questioning
by the authorities. It is believed that there is evidence she has been selling
arms to at least three different enemy powers. Public outcry has been strong,
particularly in London, which this year benefited from a trial water filtration
system she devised to cut down the danger of cholera, and also saw free handouts
of Total Vodka. Sales of her new perfume 'Eau de Rita' are markedly down,
though: "who wants to smell like a traitor?" asked one fashion journalist,
rhetorically. Supermodel Elizabeth Siddal's management are believed to be
reconsidering her association with the product.
AMERICA DECLARES WAR ON GREAT BRITAIN
President Grant of America last night called a press conference of all
journalists in Washington. His announcement amazed all present, and has created
consternation throughout the diplomatic community. It seems that the ships
recently responsible for shelling the American coast have been positively
identified as being British ships, full of British sailors. More amazing still,
the captain of one ship has confirmed that the orders for this mission were
given by Prince Albert in person - and that these orders included "sinking as
much of the American Fleet as possible". President Grant then went on to say "In
the light of this totally unprovoked, and unjustifiable, attack from the very
heart of the British Empire, we see no option but to declare war on Great
MEY CRASHES OUT
A personal disaster for Prime Minister Mey as, only two weeks before polling
day, photographs of him engaging in the lewdest of practices with a prostitute
were circulated to all the major papers in England and the police. Most
respectable papers refused to break the story of these "obvious fakes designed
to smear a respectable politician", but a couple of more sensationalist journals
were not so honourable. Their report declared the photographs to be quite
genuine, revealed that the prostitute in question was the subject of an unsolved
murder investigation, and brought forward a female witness who was willing to
swear under oath that Mr Mey regularly performed vile deeds upon her friend
while under the influence of hideous drugs.
In the light of Mr Mey's publicity problems, it was decided that he should step
down as head of the Conservative party and allow his second to stand in his
place. The election was a victory for the Conservatives, but by a vastly smaller
majority than expected, and lack of confidence from the voters allowed several
seats to be taken by minority candidates such as Mr Swinefleet for the
MOLTKE HOLDINGS SEIZED
The Austrian authorities have confiscated all holdings belonging to Mercosur
Atlantico within their borders, on account of Senor de Moltke's English military
activity against Austria's Prussian allies.
'SARAH AND LIZZIE' FLICK-BOOK ON SALE
Pioneering entrepreneur of the arts Beerbohm Tree has published a flick-book of
Polaroid pictures which, when rapidly passed under the thumb, tell the tale of
'Sarah and Lizzie' - a somewhat overblown melodrama in this newspaper's opinion,
in which Miss Bernhardt and Miss Siddal (rather shown up by the comparison with
a real actress) flee the police in a stolen SPAMC after Lizzie kills her loutish
husband (Charles Hawtree). Beerbohm Tree himself takes the part of the police
chief who watches open-mouthed as the two lovelies plummet over the White Cliffs
of Dover. It is hoped that in due course of time and given the invention of the
appropriate technology it will be possible to turn this artistic tour de force
into a 'moving picture'. Surviving props were exhibited at Beerbohm Tree's
VERNE CANNONS BLAST OFF
The French Verne Cannons have been fired on both London and Madrid, causing
horrific carnage in residential districts. The French government maintains that
unknown saboteurs stormed two Verne gun installations, forcing the guards to
co-operate before pitilessly slaughtering them, but diplomatic relationships are
understandably strained. Marshal Joffre will certainly be reprimanded for this
unconscionable lapse of national security. In further military confusion
elsewhere, French ships were seen to bombard Channel ports in both England and
ENGLAND TURNED UPSIDE DOWN BY ELECTION RESULT
The result of this year's General Election has changed the face of England's
political structure, following the scandal involving former Prime Minister
Robert Mey's activities with various farmyard animals, and rumours of a
governmental plan to introduce a compulsory National Lobottery which have
disturbed the nation. Like salt in the Conservatives' wound, even the newly
formed Symplastique Party, led by Mr Swinefleet and backed by the acclaimed
artist Lord Crail, has gained a seat in the House of Commons, pushing a
manifesto which supports random voting and the enjoyment of art instead of
GUBBINS BRANCHES OUT
The first expansion pack for 'Technology: the Gubbins' - 'Screws and Spinny
Bits' was released this week after months of intense public anticipation.
Collectors are eagerly snapping up the new cards in an attempt to obtain the
extremely rare and powerful new cards such as 'Mox Cog', 'Mox Widget' and 'Valve
Lotus' which apparently have game-winning powers. The artwork on the new cards
has been lovingly crafted by famous Symplastique artist Mersuavin Powers, and
has also proved a highly appealing aspect of the game. Can the success of the
game have gone to inventor Klaum Krohne's had, though? He is on record as saying
that he invented the game while negotiating peace between France and Bavaria -
two of the very few European countries that have never actually been at war with
AUSTRIA INVADES LIECHTENSTEIN
In a move military experts are calling 'completely bizarre', Austrian troops
have invaded and captured the tiny principality of Liechtenstein. Although of no
strategic value of itself, it is a historic ally of Austria's enemy France.
'VICTOR MARK III' LAUNCHED
Wizard of clockwork professor Hugo Victor this year announced the development of
the Victor Mark III (also known as the Row Of Keys Machine Initiation Automation
through Manual Application of Dextrous Energy Under Slave conditions, or ROK MI
AMADEUS), a revolutionary winding device which allows many workers to pool their
energies and contribute to winding up one huge key, thus removing the necessity
for steam power on which the key at Victoriaport, for example, is currently
dependent. The first Victor Mark IIIs have been seen in use on the Chridge's
squid-protection spiked pillars, among the many safety devices which this great
engineering project now boasts.
ANOTHER DEATH AT THE BRITISH MUSEUM
Professor Winkle, probationary Curator of the British Museum since March last
year, was discovered dead in his office yesterday morning by cleaning staff.
Police have been called in to investigate the body, and initial evidence seems
to indicate that the professor's death may have been the result of an opium
PLAFOND CLUB FOUNDED IN LONDON
Plafond continues to spread in popularity, and with rule clarifications and
strategy suggestions being published every few months by the innovating
Vanderbilt, its success seems set to continue. After the recent success of a
Plafond society, a club dedicated to Plafond is being set up in London - this
will be a small affair at first, but the organisers hope to be able to run
tournaments, as well as using the club's influence to ensure the rules of the
game are completely formalised and understood by all players.
EGARTS TO HEAD BRITISH MUSEUM
Following the release of his critically acclaimed text, 'The Evolution of
Platonic Philosophy to Modern Times', Augustus Egarts has been appointed new
Curator of the British Museum.
ARDSBURG NEEDS THERAPY
Austrian diplomat Felix von Ardsburg appears to be suffering from ailing health
lately. Arriving in Britain shortly before the elections to meet with Mr
Gladstone, the leader of the opposition, he collapsed in a spasmodic fit only
five minutes into discussion of a potential future treaty between England and
Austria and was forced to excuse himself.
PROMISING YOUTH PLUCKED
Sad news from Oxford, where promising undergraduate Will Powers was found dead
in Queen's Lane after apparently trying to leap across it from one roof to the
other. A stunned friend said of Powers, who was Captain of the New College boat,
"I can't understand it - Will was always fond of derring-do, but surely he'd
never try something so completely daft as this!"
SCANDINAVIAN CONFEDERATION FORMED
A Scandinavian Confederation has been formed between Sweden, Norway and Denmark,
and the soon-to-be-independent Iceland has been invited to join. Count Charles
Piontkowski offered his estimable services as a negotiator between the nations.
PEASANTS LISTEN IN
More disturbing news from Bavaria, where there are reports that outlying
mountain villagers have found a new hero - a lad proclaiming himself the true
King of Bavaria. He addresses them through a speech transmission device in each
village, and has promised to remit all taxes on peasants - bound to gain support
among these hard-pressed folk. When is Queen Irena going to do something about
her troubled realm?
PRUSSIANS WANT OUT
After the failure of the Germanic Alliance to protect the Prussian peoples from
foreign invasion there has been popular clamour to break all links with Austria,
accede to reasonable Russian terms of surrender, and seek a future as part of
the Scandinavian Confederation.