Probably the Smallest Competition in the World

Here it is, then: the competition to finish off the Vital Chapter saga.

It will be small.  I only do small.

The prize will be small – barely an inch wide or long.  The number of entries will be small, as my ability to publicise on social media is sadly lacking and Steampunk-Shrunk is rather, er, niche, to say the least.

However it will give you the chance to win a totally unique miniature book, which you will have helped to write, and it will be fun, for all of us.

Briefly, then:  I made a 1:12 scale room – a library – in a little case.  It was called The Case of the Missing Chapter and in the room was a very small book, containing the story of one Algernon  Cholmondeley, but with the vital chapter explaining the remarkable change in this gentleman’s fortunes carefully removed by a person or persons unknown.

Your task, dear reader, is to write that missing chapter!  Algy’s story, along with photos of the dolls, gadgets and settings I ended up making along the way, has been serialised on this website over the past few weeks.  It’s reproduced in its entirety below, to save you the trouble of hunting through the archives.

What to do, terms and conditions and all that jazz:

  • Write your own version of Chapter 4 (max 1000 words) and submit it either in the ‘Leave a reply’ box at the bottom of the page or via the contact form just above it.
  • It would also be very helpful if you would tag, share or otherwise notify one or two like-minded friends of the competition and encourage them to visit this site.  (I’m assured this is how savvy entrepreneurs drum up business.)
  • By entering, you agree that if you win or are a close runner-up, your name (real or pseudonym, as you prefer) and your chapter can be printed on this website, which is available for public viewing.
  • No copies of the winning chapter – other than the single prize edition – will be made or offered for sale and the copyright remains the author’s own.
  • Information you provide (name, email address etc.) will only be used for the purposes of this competition and will not be stored or passed on to anyone else.
  • One winner will receive a one-off printed copy of the completed book including their chapter at 1:12 scale (readable with a powerful magnifying glass).  No cash alternative, as this unique item will be, obviously, priceless.
  • Oh yes, closing date – almost forgot!  All entries to be received by Monday 21st August 2017.  Winner will be notified by 2nd September.
  • Phew!  I think that’s it.  I’m new to this sort of thing.

Should I receive any entries (told you it was small!) Olivia Libris  – the entirely fictional author of the book – will select the chapter that seems to her to fit best with the style, content and general silliness of the original and it will be printed for all to enjoy in a further post.

Here, then, is the story as it currently stands:

The Vital Chapter by O Libris
Chapter 1

Since the beginning of the year, Algernon Cholmondeley had been feeling somewhat out of sorts.

It began when his prize peacock simply keeled over and died in the very centre of the drive on New Year’s Day.  By unfortunate circumstances, many guests were due at The Grey House for a party on that very occasion.  Carriages and steam-powered automobiles had been arriving for some time.  Each driver had been forced to swerve to avoid the bird, which was lurching around and staggering about in the most ungainly manner.  The screeching of brakes and the parping of horns and claxons provided an unwelcome accompaniment to the gentle welcome offered by Algernon and his delightful wife Josephine.

At four minutes past five precisely, the peacock stood still, made a feeble attempt to confound death by opening its once-splendid tail, fell to the ground and flopped untidily on the lawn which lay at the centre of the gravelled driveway.

“Did you know there’s a dead peacock in the middle of the drive, Algernon, old chap?” asked one guest after another as they arrived at the front door.

No seasonal felicitations.  No extended hand offering a friendly shake.  Not even enquiries into the health of the host and hostess.

Some delivered the line with concern, others with wry amusement, a few with puzzlement and still more with unconcealed hilarity.

Nor did it stop there.  Once inside the ballroom, the guests continued to discuss the deceased creature with gusto.  Ladies were heard to express wistful desires for a feather or two to adorn their hats, since the unfortunate possessor of these trimmings would no longer be in any need of them.

“A few of those exquisite breast feathers would set off my new gown quite wonderfully,” one lady was heard to say.  “Just the shade of turquoise I have been searching for.  I wonder whether it would be indelicate to ask.”

The gentlemen seemed more interested in how the bird would taste roasted with an apple and cranberry stuffing, but felt it unlikely that the cook would have time to prepare it for that evening’s banquet.
“Just drawing and plucking a bird that size would take a number of hours, I would imagine,” sighed a gentleman who looked to have consumed more than enough delicacies during the festive season, given the strain placed upon his waistcoat buttons.

Next the conversation turned to possible reasons for the creature’s demise.  The early arrivals were able to give those who had appeared more recently a fascinating account of the peacock’s final hours.  With many sound effects and gesticulations, they re-enacted the problems they had encountered during their attempts to negotiate the drive and park safely.

“Staggering about like a drunk, it was!”  announced Charlie Stammers-Bottington.  “Quite thought I was going to hit the beast.  First it veered one way, then the other, with never a glance towards my vehicle.  And you fellows must admit, it’s not an easy thing to miss.”

Others agreed readily that Charlie’s traction engine was indeed a very powerful presence on any driveway, and would be hard to ignore.

A man in a brown suit, whose brother-in-law was a veterinarian, said he’d heard the aforesaid brother-in-law speak of an outbreak of avian influenza, which had swept across the country from Prussia.  There was a general consensus that this was the most probable cause of death.
“It’ll probably spread to any other birds on the estate,” someone warned.

“Do you keep any other birds, Algy?” Henry Stuffingham called across the room.  “Probably best to have them shot and burn the carcasses.  Can’t be too careful with something like this, y’know.”

Algernon poured himself another glass of brandy and shook his head.  The conversation showed no sign of abating.  His attempts to instigate some lively parlour games fell – if not on deaf ears – on ears that were deaf to any subject beyond the accursed peacock.

Even at dinner, the subject refused – unlike its physical counterpart – to die.
“That roast bird’s a good size,” one wag remarked.  “Not a peacock by any chance?”

The raucous laughter which followed this rather weak joke was the final straw for poor Algernon.
He rose unsteadily to his feet and roared, “If anyone else raises the subject of that confounded bird this evening, they may consider themselves unwelcome in this house, both now and in the future!  Kindly do not allude to it in any way whassover – what sever – oh!  Just drat the thing, that’s all!”

He sank back into his chair, covered his face with his hand and began to weep.

There was the most awkward silence, which seemed to last for an eternity.  It was as if, deprived of their sole topic of conversation, the guests had been rendered quite mute.

Dinner was finished silently, apart from the clanking of silver on fine bone china, which sound now seemed extraordinarily loud.

As soon as was deemed prudent, first one couple then another made lame and hurried excuses for their early departure and left.  There was a veritable stampede for the door, so much so, that quite a queue of vehicles formed, waiting to leave.  All eyes within them stared balefully at the corpse of the peacock, but no lips moved.

It was unlikely that any of these people – his once dearest friends and acquaintances – would ever return, Algernon mused, glumly.  His name would, for all time, be inexorably linked to this bird.

“Oh Algernon?” people would say, “the chap with the dead peacock?”

Sniggers would follow.  He would be a laughing stock from that day forth.

 

Chapter 2

This unfortunate circumstance was, as has previously been intimated, only the beginning of a set of events which seemed to go from bad to worse.

Algernon’s mother-in-law came down with a most tiresome condition, which seemed to involve a great deal of coughing – particularly during the small hours and after lunch – and it was decided that she would have to stay at the Grey House until she was well enough to return to London.

This lady had never been particularly well-disposed towards her son-in-law.  Now that her temper was rendered somewhat shorter, presumably by her malady and lack of sleep, she became quite vociferous in her criticism and complaints about him.

“Why ever didn’t you marry that boy from the East India Company, Josephine?” she would demand of her daughter.  “Much better prospects, I would have said.” or  “Oh my dear, are you still wearing that style?  Surely your husband could afford to buy you something a little less dated?”

Josephine busied herself with bathing her mother’s forehead and preparing herbal concoctions to ease her cough, and looked endlessly miserable.

Algernon couldn’t decide whether this was because she secretly agreed with her mother and was now regretting her marriage or because her mother’s criticisms of her beloved husband distressed her severely, although she was unwilling to contradict her ailing parent.

He considered asking his wife which of these was the case, in order to calm his tormented mind, but – if truth be told – his mood was now so low that he strongly suspected that it was the former, and could not bring himself to have his worst fears confirmed.

In February – in fact on February 14th – the parlour maid and Algy’s favourite groom eloped together.  Algernon was furious at the inconvenience caused by this selfish action. Why should servants run off to enjoy a future together without a second thought for those they left behind?  Now he would have to find replacements for them and the new staff would need to be trained in how matters were conducted at the Grey House.

None of the aforementioned events could be called catastrophic, but together they created a most unhappy state of affairs for Algernon and he became extremely downhearted. He took to hiding away in his study for long hours and even chose to have his meals there on frequent occasions.
“Algy, dear, please don’t punish me so!” entreated Josephine.  “I know mother can be rather tiresome and I understand that you are not in the best of humours, but I do miss your company at dinner.”

Alas, Algernon was deaf to the pleadings of his beautiful wife.  He simply became more introspective and silent.

Chapter 3

Image may contain: 1 personOn a bright morning in early spring, Harvey’s hot air balloon crash landed in the vegetable patch.  He’d been aiming for the meadow, but a sudden gust of wind in the final moments of descent blew him off course.

Harvey was Algernon’s younger brother.  Josephine had summoned him back from the Congo as her alarm at Algernon’s state of mind continued to grow.  If anyone could cheer her husband, it would be Harvey.

“What in the name of thunder is going on?” screamed Algernon, racing out of the French doors to inspect the damage to his property.

“Who the deuce has landed that damned contraption on my land?”

He grabbed his steam-powered plasma gun and was about to fire a volley of shots into the basket when he heard a jaunty “Hulloo” in the unmistakable tones of his brother.

That gentleman emerged rather unsteadily from the basket, pulled up his goggles to reveal a tanned, soot-smeared face and raced over to embrace Algernon, who had – fortunately – dropped his weapon and was standing and blinking in disbelief.

“My dearest boy!” Harvey exclaimed, grasping his brother’s hand in both of his own and pumping it up and down as if trying to start an engine.

“But Harvey…” stuttered Algernon.  “After all these years!  How?  Why…?”

At this moment, Josephine rushed up and warmly embraced her brother-in-law.

“Dearest Harvey, how wonderful to see you again.  Do come inside and have a cup of tea.  We’d just love to hear about all your adventures, wouldn’t we, Algy?”

“Um, indeed,” her husband responded weakly, absent-mindedly removing a broad bean tendril from his brother’s greatcoat.  “Yes, of course.  Do come inside.”

 

Half an hour later, they were sitting, sipping tea, around a blazing fire in the drawing room.

Harvey had brought with him a battered map of the diamond mine he had bought in Africa.

“Amazing potential!” he was exclaiming.  “Stunning gems in there.  Worth a king’s ransom!  By Jove, Algy, you should come out there with me.  We could run the place together.  Lord, you should see the engine I’ve got set up for the extraction process.  Such a beauty!  It simply can’t fail.  We’ll make millions!”

Josephine glanced at Algernon.  This was not quite the way she had anticipated that the discussion would go.

Algernon sat listening passively as his brother extolled the virtues of life in Africa.  It was difficult to read his thoughts from his expression.

Finally, he spoke.

“Oh such adventures are just fine for a young fellow like yourself, my dear Harvey.  Nothing to hold you here, no family or obligations to consider.  I’m delighted for you, old boy.  Wouldn’t do for me, though.  There’s this old pile to keep up, the staff to consider, all the horses… and I couldn’t ask Josephine to up sticks and adjust to such a difficult climate.”

“Pah!  Loads of lovely ladies over there!” returned Harvey.  “They have a whale of a time.  As for this old place – sell it up and start afresh.  You’ll make your fortune.  Nothing to lose.”

“Well I’ll give it some thought,” Algernon replied, and promptly left the room and headed back to his study.

“Glad you sent for me, old girl,” Harvey told Josephine.  “I see what you mean.  He does seem rather out of sorts.”

“Oh Harvey, I’m so worried about him!” Josephine cried.  “It is so good of you to have come all this way.  I’m sure it will cheer him up to have you around.  Perhaps you could go riding with him tomorrow, if you’re sufficiently rested.  He’d very much enjoy that.”

“Riding?” asked Harvey.  “You mean horses?  Oh no.  What Algy needs is some adventure.  Give me a day or two to get the balloon sorted out and I’ll take him for a trip in that.  That’ll do him the world of good. You see if it doesn’t.”

Chapter 4: MISSING

Chapter 5

Algernon lifted his telescope to his eye and scanned the horizon.  Just one small smudge of grey over Middlesex.  It was high in the sky.  A less practised eye would have missed it altogether, or mistaken it for a wisp of cloud.

“Pirates at four o’clock,” he called.  “Prime the machine.”

Sure enough, as they moved closer, the unmistakable shape of a steam galleon became clear – smoke belching from her filthy funnels.

“Machine’s primed and ready, Sah!” barked a voice from below decks.

“Good work, Mister Capon.  Keep tracking them.  I’m going to turn her around so they can’t see our profile.  Wait for the order to fire.”

“Aye, Sah!” came the same clipped voice.

Like the rest of the crew, Edwin Capon was proud to serve under Admiral Algernon Cholmondeley.  Their airship was the envy of the fleet and the scourge of the pirates who had, for far too long, held the airways to ransom.

 

Too late, the commander of the pirate vessel – one Sydney Strangefellow – saw what lay ahead.

“Put her about, boys!” he croaked, his fear only too obvious to his crew.

“A trap!  That’s the Algernaut!”

“God save us!” screamed one of the men – an optimistic fellow with a high regard for the generosity of his Maker, since he and his shipmates had spent their lives ruthlessly terrorising the high skies.

Panic broke out on the vessel and men ran helplessly hither and thither.  They knew – every black-hearted villain of them – that nothing, let alone their old rust-bucket of a ship, could withstand the weapon now fixed of upon them.

 

“And … FIRE!” shouted Algernon.

There was a flash of turquoise blue as the plasma gun loosed a volley of shots towards the pirate vessel.

The end was quick.  An explosion of blinding white light and then – nothing.  Not so much as a nut or a bolt remained of the incinerated galleon.

A cheer went up from the crew of the Algernaut and a door opened from a cabin below decks.

“Why the cheers?” asked a soft, sweet voice, as Lady Josephine emerged.  “Have you clever boys destroyed another pirate vessel?”

“We have indeed, your ladyship,” smiled the midshipman, bowing his head deferentially.  The Admiral spotted it miles off.  They didn’t stand a chance.”

“Well jolly good show,” smiled the lady.  “I’ll go straight away and prepare some tea for all hands.  And I’m sure I can find some particularly delicious cake as well.  You boys certainly deserve it!”

“You spoil us, my dear,” said her husband, who had come below to share the good news with her.

“Not at all,” laughed Josephine.  “Thanks to your splendid invention and your excellent crew, the skies above London have never been so safe.”

“Three cheers for the Hadmiral and ’er ladyship!” barked Edwin Capon, and the crew’s enthusiastic cries could be heard far below, in the city that owed its safety to Algernon Cholmondeley.

Do please enter and encourage your friends to do likewise.  You can use the ‘Leave a reply’ box under this post, or here’s a contact form, if you’d like to keep your entry just between ourselves…

A Letter for Gertie

Did I hear a squeal emit from your lips, Gertrude?

“Yes, you most certainly did!  And with good reason!  I’ve just received the most extraordinary letter.”

Have you now?  Do tell us more.

“It’s from a lord!  A genuine lord!  It has his coat of arms at the top and his name and address (a very prestigious address) in curly writing embossed beneath it.  And – oh! – he says the most astonishing things about me.”

I think you’d better share the contents of this letter with us, Gertie dear.

My dear Miss Jekyllton-Smythe,

No doubt you will be somewhat surprised to hear from me.  Allow me to introduce myself:  I am Horatio, the fifth Lord Backgammon, of Charlton Regis.  I have a rather interesting project, with which I would be most honoured if you felt able to assist me.

You came to my attention through a friend who dabbles in temporal transportation – a ‘time traveller’ in common parlance.  His favourite era is the first half of the twentieth century, upon which he has become something of an expert.  Henry tells me that in that time, you are a lady of some renown.  In fact he says you are the most sought-after garden designer in this nation of ours and have published some quite excellent books on the subject.  Obviously, this will be news to you, since we have not had the privilege of visiting the future, but no doubt you will greet the information with some delight.

Now to the purpose:  I have, in my grounds, a small piece of land known as ‘The Board’.  It was laid out by my great-great-grandfather to the dimensions of a backgammon board (a pun on the family name, obviously).  Since his time, it has fallen into disrepair and I recently had it cleared.  I enclose a photographic print for your perusal.  Each of the two sections measures 8 x 17½ foot and is enclosed by a low wall, approximately one foot high.  I would be delighted if you would agree to design and oversee the construction of a garden in this area for me.

The brief is as follows:

  • The layout of the original backgammon board is to be retained, in deference to my ancestor.
  • There will need to be a lake or pond of some kind, to house a pet of mine.
  • I should like a small glasshouse or orangery, since I am most partial to exotic fruits.
  • Mechanical systems should be incorporated wherever possible for watering, grass-cutting etcetera.          I will gladly undertake to design and manufacture these elements myself.

Please contact me at the above address, should you feel willing to undertake this project.

Yours very sincerely,

Backgammon

“Just imagine!  I’m to become famous!  And successful!  And – well certainly it’s a very small space – but what an exciting proposal.  So much more entertaining and creative than designing red, white and blue bedding plant displays in municipal parks, as I do at the moment.”

Certainly it is an interesting project, Gertie.  Congratulations.  I wonder what sort of aquatic pet his lordship owns…

 

 

Mr Pettigrew’s Apothecary Shop

Good day, Sir and Madam.

You are most welcome to my humble establishment and, may I add, you are indeed my very first visitors, since the shop was only opened this morning.  I had intended to be up and running at the end of last week, but unfortunately there was a problem obtaining leeches.  As you see, though, there are now plenty in the jar, so all is well.

I have to say, I’m delighted with my small emporium.  Don’t you just love the medicine cabinet?  It was a generous gift from my dear friend Lady Grace and is ideally suited to my storage and display needs.  Oh, pray do not touch the scales, Madam.  They are most carefully balanced with a potion I was preparing for her ladyship when you arrived.

I’m very pleased, too, with my counter, which I put together myself from some iron and wood my cousin Amelia had left over from building a steam engine.

Now, how can I be of service to your good selves?  I notice – if I may be so bold as to mention it – that you have a slightly windblown appearance and are both somewhat pale of countenance.  Would I be correct in assuming that you have recently travelled in the dirigible just in from foreign parts?
Ah, I thought as much.
And would I also be right to suggest that Sir and Madam are perhaps feeling the effects of motion sickness? I understand that it was quite an eventful flight, one way and another.

Allow me to prepare you a tincture, Sir, which will have you restored to your accustomed vigour in no time. And for Madam – perhaps a small bottle of Mrs Mayhue’s Bitters. It is a most efficacious blood purifier and will return the bloom to your cheeks within a matter of hours.

No, no, the pleasure is all mine.

Is there anything else I can get for you?

Not wishing to alarm you in any way, my dear lady, but as you are newly arrived in this town, you may not yet be aware of the foul beast from the dark realms that roams the streets after nightfall.  It can break through solid walls and seems quite unaffected by the weaponry our citizens have at hand.

I have concocted a rather powerful substance which, when sprinkled around your dwelling place, proves highly effective at repelling this monstrous apparition.  It may be prudent to purchase a small vial for use during your stay.  I certainly sleep easier knowing that I and my home are protected in this way.

Certainly.  I’ll mix you a potion straight away.  And perhaps some smelling salts for Madam?

 

Ralph Pettigrew’s compact apothecary’s shop folds into a small case, complete with carrying handle, measuring just 25cm by 17cm and only 9cm deep when closed.  However there is ample room for customers when the front is folded down. (That’s 10 x 7 x 4 inches for those who use such measurements.)
Should you be in Glastonbury, Somerset on April 29th, do call into the Town Hall, where you can meet Ralph and inspect his premises for yourself.

Many of the advertisements and bottle labels displayed in the shop have been purchased from the excellent Chocolate Rabbit online shop, for which the link is here:  https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/chocolaterabbit

As always, many other OOAK steampunk characters and accessories are available from: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/SteampunkDollsHouse , including the delightful Lady Grace and Ralph’s cousin Amelia.

 

Diary of a Tinkerer – Part 3: Firestarter

I recall that last time I penned an episode of my adventures as a one-twelfth scale explorer, inadvertently lodged in the year 2017, my normal sized assistant and myself were pondering a method of combustion for the steam engine we were building, to allow me to power up my Machine and escape to my own dimension – in every sense of that word.

By a piece of great good fortune, I myself was able to solve that particular conundrum.  It occurred when I noticed, in a nearby city, an establishment named Whitherspoons.  It had a most favourable external aspect and, hoping that I might have stumbled upon a high quality gin palace, I eagerly made my way towards it.  No sooner had my foot alighted on the threshold, however, than I was pushed backwards by a person carrying a cage almost as large as himself and being propelled from the building with considerable force by a burly and irate landlord.  The language which passed between them convinced me that this was in no way the kind of establishment I had anticipated, so I turned my attention instead to the evicted individual.

“Honessly,” he was mumbling, “it was only a puff o’ smoke.  Nuffin’ to make a fuss about.  This no smokin’ rule is ridickilus.”
I assisted him to his feet and righted the cage which, I then noticed, contained a greenish yellow reptilian creature with a baleful expression.
“It’s ‘er fault!” the man said angrily, gesturing towards the animal. “Reached out an’ grabbed a bit o’ coal from the scuttle by the log burner, didn’t you!”
The creature attempted to slink further down the cage and averted its gaze.
“All I wanted was a quiet pint! Wos a bloke s’posed to do, eh?”

“What manner of creature is it?” I enquired.
“She a fire starter,” he replied. “Twisted fire starter. Best sort. They fit better in the cages, see? Cost me an arm an’ a leg, she did. But that’s the nature of the beast, innit? Give ’em a bit of coal and they start a fire, don’t they?  An’ when they go nickin’ coal that’s been left lyin’ around in scuttles, well, stands to reason she’s gonna start smokin’, don’t it?  An’ wot wiv pubs all bein’ no smokin’ hestablishments these days, little madam only been an’ got me slung out, didn’t she?”
“I understand your predicament,” I responded.

That was when I had my enterprising idea.
“I don’t suppose you’d be willing to allow me to take her off your hands, would you? I can promise her an excellent home and plenty of coal.
He regarded me solemnly. “Well,” he began slowly, “Like I said, she cos’ me…”

At that moment, though, the door of the inn opened and two exceedingly merry gentlemen emerged, bringing with them a distinct odour of cheap ale.  The temptation was too great for my companion to resist.
“Go on then.  Take ‘er, an’ welcome.  Jus’ don’t feed ‘er unless yer want a fire startin’.  She’ll try anythin’ to get round yer.  ‘Arden yer ‘eart, mate.  Don’t say I didn’t warn yer.”

And without further ado, he handed me the cage and returned to his beverage, while I headed back eagerly to my assistant’s cottage with my new acquisition.

 

Henry’s Engine Room, including the twisted fire starter, will be on display at the Steampunk-Shrunk! stall at Glastonbury Town Hall on Saturday 25th March 2017. 

Diary of a Tinkerer – Part 2: Fire

A new day dawns, and if I can permit myself a brief moment of nostalgia for my – temporarily – lost world and stature, I shall temper that with enthusiasm for the construction of my engine room.  This is progressing well.

Yesterday my enterprising assistant was able to help me to construct the furnace for the steam generator.  True, in her dimension it is a small box coated with some strange, shiny substance, but for my present scale (one twelfth of my accustomed size) it provides a sturdy and robust firebox, particularly as much of it is lined with copper.

“We can use one of these to make the fire, Henry,” she announced, producing a cylindrical appliance of oriental construction, which utilises something she calls a ‘battery’ to produce a flickering flame in a small translucent bulb.
“It’s a battery tea light,” she continued, as if all should then become clear to me.
“Madam, I applaud your ingenuity,” I responded. “And a cup of tea would be most welcome, by the by.  However, I should feel more comfortable if I were able to use a more traditional fuel for my engine. We will need a large quantity of coal and a means with which to ignite it.”

Nothing daunted, the redoubtable lady collected a sheet of extremely thin and pliable aluminium from her kitchen.  It apparently has some culinary purpose which I am unable to comprehend.  Having screwed it into a lump, she proceeded to spray it black.  I have to admit, it certainly resembles a coal heap and the good lady assures me it will serve as such.  I trust that she is not merely humouring me.

“I’m not sure how you would be able to light it, though,” she remarked, dubiously.

I am pleased to say that I provided a solution to that difficulty.  However I am too fatigued by my day’s exertions to record the details now.  It will have to wait for another occasion.

 

Steampunk Explorer 'Henry' Dollshouse Scale 1/12thShould you wish to become better acquainted with Henry, do visit him at the Steampunk Dolls’ House.  He’d enjoy the company.  The link is here

 

Bertie Brimthorne vents his fury

20170301_152615I am livid, madam, absolutely livid!
How dare you subject me – Lieutenant Bertie Brimthorne of the 2nd Company of the Ordnance Survey Battalion to this indignity?  I have my reputation to consider!  I am a gentleman, ma’am, but you are no lady.

I presume, Bertie, this outburst has been triggered by your discovery that I printed a few, um, photographs of you on my Facebook page.

‘A few photographs’ you say?  Will you attempt to deny that one of these images showed me completely unclothed, woman?

20170301_095233Well, yes, certainly one does depict you au naturel, Bertie, dear, but it’s only there to show the followers the transformation that occurred as you took on your current resplendent form.  I’m quite delighted with your present appearance, and so should you be.

Followers?  Who are these followers?  You mean others are able to view this dreadful photographic image?  Madam, you are quite shameless!

In my fearless journeys through the darkest and most impenetrable parts of the planet and beyond, I have – on several occasions – encountered indigenous persons in a certain state of undress.  However, I would never sink so low as to obtain visual images of such people, far less to broadcast them to all and sundry.  I only wish you had seen fit to afford me similar courtesy.

Well I apologise for any embarrassment my actions have caused you.  I’m afraid the workings of my dimension must feel quite alien to you, Bertie.  Social media has rather taken over here, in much the way that steam and clockwork have taken over where you are from.

20170227_162205Well to my way of thinking, you’d be far better off with steam power and our ingenious mechanical devices.  Fiddling endlessly with those strange little glass boxes of yours – it isn’t healthy!  I trust that your photographs for this piece will be of a more appropriate nature.

Of course they will, my dear Bertie.  And unless any readers take it upon themselves to visit that Facebook page, they will be none the wiser.

Hmmpf.  And what are you doing now?  Why have those three words there turned blue?  What mischief are you up to, woman?

Just fancied a change of colour, Bertie.  Black can be so dull.  Now why don’t you share some of your daring exploits with our readers?

No time.  I’m off to Mongolithania first thing tomorrow morning and I need to check my supplies.  I’ll bid you good day, madam.

I haven’t yet broken it to Bertie that he will probably end up for sale at the Steampunk Dolls House.  I may need to broach the subject rather cautiously.  Meanwhile, feel free to head over there and meet some of the other characters: http://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/SteampunkDollsHouse

 

All change at the Steampunk Dolls’ House

Two of the gentlemen from our collection – img_20160804_092230-1Alex, the young adventurer whom regular readers last met on an airship journey (here, for anyone who missed it) and img_20160712_175139James, a debonair gentleman carrying a telescope and sporting a very unusual monocle – are about to embark on a new adventure.

They are leaving our Shropshire stock room, to begin a perilous journey via the postal service, to their new home.

We hope they won’t find the journey too traumatic (What am I saying?  These gents live for adventure!) and that they will be thoroughly appreciated by their new custodian.

Meanwhile, new stock will be arriving any day in the shop, as we branch out to include a wider range of items and prices to suit every pocket.

Alex and James are unique, one-off creations and won’t be replaced, but there are plenty of other characters there and new ones will arrive in due course.  If you’d like to visit the shop, please click this link.  Our range can also be seen here at Steampunk Junkies.