Redoubtable Downtown Space Abbey - Turn 5 - Ball, Book, and Candle

Typo? I saw no typo, and only feared for my finned friend. Now, what to wear to the Governor’s Ball, what to wear…


[GM Note: Turn options updated with potential dance partners. Future turns shouldn’t be nearly as complex, but the Governor’s Ball requires a little more analysis and input than usual. Choose your finest fan and select your best cravat in anticipation of the potential of the evening!]


Hieronymoose opened the door to his Paddingdown Apartment. With as much time as he’d been spending out at Abacus Racks, it may as well be Rocco’s apartment. At least the young rodent was keeping the place tidy. But it wasn’t for Rocco. It was for him and the plain walls were depressing.

This last season had gone well enough, but if he was to be truthful with himself, Weatherby did not inspire him. Where once he was the most prestigious of his band of new-comers here, his status had fallen and it bothered him more than it should have. Between that and losing the farm, part of him wanted to book transit on the next off this rock on one his offworld shipping concerns. He’d become a ghost at Levithan’s. Missed vacation season to the south. He hadn’t had a bet on a winning nag yet

He sighed. Would his father run away? Actually, yes, Father did go off to be a Space Pirate. Grandfather though? No, grandfather would have put his antlers to grindstone and kept at it.

He sighed again and looked in the mirror. A tall, well-groomed Space Moose looked back. A Space Moose with business acumen and an education from Benjamin Wheatly’s Mercantile Concern. A Space Moose with a sizeable interest in ZepEx Express and the warehouses to support such trade. A Space Moose with a valet to ensure he always looked his finest. Business would be what it would be. This was not the season to ponder over ledgers. This was the season to see and be seen.

Keys rattled in the door. Some boisterous laughter came from the hall. The door swung open and Rockford and party stood momentarily silenced. Hieron, rack held high and proud, slowly turned to face the new comers.

“Oi! Master Farnsworth, I thought you’d still be out at Abacus Racks?”

“Well, @Rockford_Julius . You were mistaken. But, you’ve come at an opportune time. You and your little friends.”

Rocco’s tail twittered nervously as he looked back at @eighth and @chewseen.

“The Govenor’s ball is coming soon as you should know I think it is high time we moved someplace more in line with my status.”

Waving his hand around the apartment. “See about packing this up. I’ll have Alphonse come over from the warehouse to see about moving these things.”

Rocco’s tail drooped. Not so much that anyone would notice, save for Hieronymoose who knew the young Space Squirrel well.

“It needn’t be now. I recognize young men on a mission. But see to it that it is done within the week. And Rocco, I need you to make time for Pierre. I want you looking your best for the Ball."

Reaching into his vest, Hieron pulled out his credit chits he used for tipping and tossed one to each of them. Rocco’s eyes widen at the unexpected generosity.

“Go about your adventures you dashing rogues. I’m off to the Levithan.”


So, the night of the Governor’s Ball approaches. The highlight of the season. Obviously, Brummell has standards to uphold; there would be no question about his dress - only the very finest will do for the most fashionable gentlesentient about town. As to dinner, Brummell gives it some thought, and decides that he will attend Ms. Fangley’s dinner. Some transport will need to be arranged, something with a little je ne sais quoi, to add a small frisson to Brummell’s arrival at the event.

And it is high time that his and Qaaaxztl’s apartments more properly reflect their situation, so it was time to move up in the world; somewhat, at least. Circumstances are not yet quite as they might be desired, but proper apartments at least can be arranged.


Sure would be nifty if we could share a surrey ride, eh, Lieutenant? Since y’know, neither of us seems to have caught the flux?


Are you in need of a escort for the evening?


I don’t think so. Though it might be a pleasant ride.

Sigh. I expect it might violate some obscure society rule. Tongues would wag.



It took some consideration, but I was able to calculate the meaning of Liv’s bizarre outburst. The quotation offered in jest was interpreted as a new statement aimed at the recipient.

You misunderstand my meaning, sir. I was merely repeating an amusing quotation by Mr. Clawrcy in Pincers and Pinchability. I meant no offense, but, it is perhaps a disappointment that in this esteemed Society I can not assume we are all well-read.

There, that ought to settle the displeasing air between us!


After a few moments, a hot flash of oil rushed to my face and condensation started to form on my forehead as I realized the gaffe I had just made, mis-stating which Jane Clawston book Mr. Clawrcy is a character in. In my defense, it is hard to keep track of the Space Lobster-themed titles. However, nobody seemed to have noticed.


[GM Note: Several questions have been asked about this turn over in The Players Handbook. The Turn Options have been updated to rectify some omissions and offer some clarifications. Detail-oriented players may wish to review the questions and answers that have been asked to see if their own questions might be answered.]


[ETA: Additional dance partner options added above]


[ Rounder tries on his finery for the ball, looks in the mirror, is terribly impressed with what he sees ]


Dick, look, look, come look, see, Dick, isn’t that tailor wonderful?


[ Dick enters the room and stops short upon seeing Rounder’s new outfit ]

I… well…

[ Coughs, clears throat ]

What a unique suit that tailor has created for you.

Oh. My.


The night of the ball:

The ballroom is already abuzz by the time Liv arrives, one could say fashionably late, if the truth were not considered a priority. Everybody in their finest – True Citizens preening and subtly comparing themselves to their companions, most assuming that they come out on top. The chosen pretenders do the same, if with a little less confidence, knowing that a success here means a new, more privileged life than the one they know. A murmur swells through the crowd as he enters, no doubt some piercing commentary on his tardiness or his unheard of absence from any of the evening’s earlier events. Well, to Hell with them.

He seizes a flute of champagne from a passing silver tray, noticing the slight tremor that causes the fluid to vibrate just enough to see. What is he doing here? He looks down at the card in his hand, as yet unfilled. Grand March. Quadrille. Waltz. He stares for a while, unmoving. Suddenly, he drains his glass and sets it on the nearest table then tears the card into little pieces before turning on his heel and walking out the door at a far brisker pace than he came in. His face betrays nothing, but if anyone could hear his heart, they’d have even more to wag their tongues about.

The only question remaining is where he’ll end up. Leviathan’s? No, he’s pretty sure he saw @Rumpthwaite among the servers – at least the Governor is willing to hire the best. The apartment? No, of course not.

He is about to change direction when he spots the seller set up on the corner, probably killing time in hopes of catching a post-ball crowd, later on. He buys a bottle of each of the Whipweed tonic, Merrimoose’s Syrup and the Colloidal Seryl. He’s got nothing else to do tonight, so he might as well entertain a flight of fancy.

He crosses town to the paper office – there’s only one other person here but Skrrish doesn’t seem surprised to see her boss coming in on one of the biggest nights of the year. That doesn’t surprise him: he’s had a feeling for a while now that she’s worked a few things out. She says nothing, however, as he heads to the kitchen to boil some water before taking a cup into his office to steep with some tree-bark for his headache. This medicine he trusts – it’s been around and been effective for centuries.

He takes out each of the bottles in turn and examines them, taking care not to disturb the contents. Using a magnifying glass, he examines the seals. This is probably a dead-end, but he’s got nothing better to do tonight. A proper analysis will have to wait until he can get them to a lab, but this will at lease eliminate anything obvious. It’s thin. So thin that it’s practically transparent, but it beats a stuffy room full of stuffed shirts.

He lines the bottles up to the side and turns his focus to a sealed bag of papers. The trash crew did a great job with these – it’s amazing how much you can learn about someone from the things they throw away.

He feels much better, the tea working its magic. Let those “better” than him stress and worry about impressing each other with their witty banter and fancy steps, let them prance about talking about honour – he’ll spend his time chasing down justice. Not just for the few who can afford to buy their own, either.

He barely even notices as evening turns to night and then into dawn. Only when his eyes begin to close uncontrollably does he think to even put his head down. He takes a notepad and pen with him as he moves to the couch in the corner. Just a few minutes, he thinks, then back to it. He lies down, not even thinking about the mess he’s making of his new clothes or the money now wasted on their purchase. Just a few…



How do you do, fell-ow sentients? The winter months are coming to a close and dance cards are filling up! I must remind:

Cmdr Damerl Capstanturnbuckle @pogo
Aaaakzeee St-Patrick-Hartbrooke III @nimelennar
Cmdr William T. Piker @fintastic
Lady Jane @penguinchris
Dr. Heinz Franksenketchup @old
Elizabeth Mary Farnsworth VI @hadley
<pleasing hum> @manwich
Julius Rothschild Karekin @David_Falkayn
Jean-Rhys Witherspoon Wilhelmina Winnifred Rodchaser née Westingham @mrmonkey
Eudaemonia Betalinda Ponsonby-Britt. @nightflyer

that only 24 hours remain to submit your intentions for the. Ball. Please take a mo-ment to visit the Public Ledger at your convenience.



St-Patrick-Hartbrooke is lying in bed, his dressings having been freshly replaced with clean, sterile ones. He knows, knows, that the Doctor is going to be demanding bed rest from him for the foreseeable future, and he will probably have a much easier time convincing him that the Ball (and preceding dinner) are necessary exertions if he preemptively shows good judgement in avoiding unnecessary ones.

The Space Griffin is still re-living the whole event uneasily. It should not have, should never have been allowed to go that far. The threat of a duel was supposed to be a means of exerting social pressure, of enforcing the proper bounds of polite society. The goal is not to fight the duel itself, except as a very last resort.

Especially after that ill-timed plea to the crowd, St-Patrick-Hartbrooke is tempted to blame his second, Mr. Karekin for the fact that this duel came so close to being a fatal one, but he simply cannot, under the circumstances. First of all, it was a mark of the Taaa’keee’s own disturbing lack of judgement to appoint as second someone so close to the matter; a second should never have an interest in the duel continuing, and St-Patrick-Hartbrooke had chosen Karekin explicitly because the financier’s own honour was at stake as well. Even under the best of circumstances, he could hardly blame his second for not having sought a quick end to the duel.

More than that, though, these weren’t the best of circumstances. <pleasing hum> had not appointed a second until after the moment for negotiation had past. With no opposing second to try to bring the matter to an honourable conclusion with before the date of the duel, Karekin could hardly be blamed for not doing so.

No, if there was any fault in this matter, it was St-Patrick-Hartbrooke’s own, for engaging in a matter of honour in someone so woefully unfamiliar with the custom. It is with horror that he looks back upon his own actions, and how close the matter came to outright murder. This should never have proceeded so far, and it is entirely his own fault that it did so. He only hopes that this dissuades <pleasing hum>, and any of the members of Leviathan’s, from such untoward behaviour in the future. A worthy goal, to be sure, but the price paid — no, almost paid, thank God for it — was far too high.

Should he be challenged, he will, of course, give answer as honour demands, but he will not offer any further challenges to his peers. The risk that they might not respond properly to it, as unthinkable as he would have imagined it a few scant seasons ago, is far, far, too high, and the idea that the ultimate penalty could be paid for nothing more than ignorance… No. No more, not again.

That resolution in his mind, the Space Griffin finds himself more relaxed and at peace with himself, and is even starting to drift off to sleep when his physician enters the room. He pulls himself slightly-more-upright and beckons the Doctor over, who delivers the latest news in hushed tones.

Suddenly, St-Patrick-Hartbrooke is wide awake again. He stares at the Doctor in alarm.

“He did WHAT?!


@Wisconsin_Platt Dear cousin this is always my least favorite part of a party. The part when everyone is just arriving and waiting around for the ball to really get going. Do you think I made a mistake in not arriving in a nicer transport?
Oh look there is Tom Ratchet @Pogo. He’s so dark and mysterious, always lurking into the shadows smelling faintly of smoke. How I would like to dance with him.
But don’t not worry. Grandmother remind me of my priorities of establishing my place in Weatherby.
And I did, wink, wink put a certain squirrel on my dance card.
Oh look there is the dutches @gwwar


Dear cousin, you look fetching tonight.

It is just the worst. Everyone trying to arrive not too early, but not too late. “The Grand Entrance” everyone strives for.

Oh, I see St-Patrick-Hartbrooke @nimelennar. He’s looking better than one would expect after that event at Levithan.