Worlebury-juxta-Mare

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Worlebury-juxta-Mare
Worlebury ambience.png
Worlebury-juxta-Mare (Sidebar)
Located in Albion
Ports Welcome to Worlebury-juxta-Mare
Shops Juxta-Mare Market

Worlebury-juxta-Mare is a port in the outer circle of Albion, located in the same segment as Perdurance.

Log Entries[edit | edit source]

A colourful constellation gleams in the window: the gaudy lights bedecking a seaside town.
The sea of mist is white and thick as lamb's wool.
"Wouldn't mind calling at Worlebury," a crewman declares. "Won two bob at the hook-a-rat stall there, once."

A delighted crewman expresses the thought that nobody could be miserable at Worlebury. The Signalman sighs.
Incognito Princess: "How quaint. I hope the dress code does not mean I cannot identify the commoners."
Inconvenient Aunt: "Let's stop at Worlebury - a chance to stretch our legs, smell the mist-breeze."
The Aunt scowls. "I always thought the mists here were overrated. Attractive – but nothing else."
The Fortunate Navigator wishes to go to the seaside. He also wishes for candy-floss, a donkey ride and a week's shore leave.
The Incautious Driver smiles. "Came here once. Convalescence. Didn't work. But I liked the apples."
The Rat Brigade pools its money for beach-side snacks. Candyfloss! Toffee apples! Mysterious meat!
The Repentant Devil looks thoughtful. "We could have fun here." His definition might not match yours.

Palace Pier[edit | edit source]

Workers in neat uniforms guide your locomotive to rest. Tourist engines rest alongside trading engines; crews trade gossip and delicacies. Signs in block capitals make abundantly clear that this is a place for pleasure.


The Mists of Worlebury
Pairofeyes.png
Category Story Event
Type Story
Data ID 303702


The Mists of Worlebury[edit | edit source]

Fog rises from below, seeping through the wooden slats of the dock. The crowds waiting in the queue begin to sing; a watery, ululating tune of no discernible melody.

Trigger conditions

Calendar icon.png DateClock icon.png An Opportunity in Worlebury-juxta-Mare,
Clock icon.png An Opportunity in Worlebury-juxta-Mare ≥ 1


Interactions

Actions Requirements Effects Notes
Join the song of the mists
It rises from the crowd, spreading slowly.
The mists recede
As the final harmony dies with it, peace is restored. Even the memory of the song and your part in its choir fades from memory. Looking down, there is something in your hand. A doll embedded with many small sticks and bound with rope. It has no face, but its stare is no blanker than those on the faces of the people surrounding you.
Rare event (50%)
Commingling
The song spills from your lips. There are no words in it, but as your voice rises with the others there is a sense of belonging. Gradually, the mists ebb. The song stills. A woman exclaims with joy, and holds up her right hand. The mists have left her a gift: a pink, new finger sprouting beside her thumb.
Offer sanctuary aboard your train
Most of those queuing are unsettled by the mist. A few are frantic with terror. This would be a good recruitment opportunity.
Welcome aboard
You hurry the panicked visitors aboard, and they quickly sign contracts of service. Anything to get away from here as soon as possible.
Advanced alteration value probably needs examination.


Sell 'protective talismans' to the crowd
Yes, yes. Terrifying mists. You have just the solution...
A little extra profit
The crowd snaps up your 'guaranteed protections against the transformative properties of the mist'. Customers squeeze their talismans tight as the mist grows deeper. For yourself, you prefer the cozy, mist-free confines of your cabin, watching it slowly recede.


Welcome to Worlebury-juxta-Mare
Locomotive.png
Category Story Event
Type Story
Data ID 278098


Welcome to Worlebury-juxta-Mare[edit | edit source]

Worlebury-juxta-Mare dazzles like a Fabergé egg, lamp-lit, rich brass and Britain in baroque. In the distance, carnival music mixes with faint cheering. A queue twists and snarls along the dock. Visitors are not allowed to just stroll into the port. They must be admitted.

Every fortnight, the Bureau of Entertainments holds a lottery to give out a number of pauper's passes which grant free admittance. The queue for these is long, but it's not the only way into the port.

Interactions

Actions Requirements Effects Notes
Deliver your artist from the Blue Kingdom Embassy
It's her stop.
The artist disembarks
It takes an hour to move all her brushes, easels, paints, pots and other materials from your cargo hold.

"This gives me an idea," she says feverishly, gazing out over the grey seaside. "Imagine a world where all this was... better. Imagine if the process of decay was given the chance to conclude."

Frenziedly, she begins to paint.
Bypass the queue, at the insistance of the authorities
A fox-jawed man, smartly dressed in cobalt, takes notice of you. He crooks a finger. "First time visiting Worlebury-juxta-Mare, eh? Come on. Come over then."
The representative of the Bureau of Entertainments introduces himself. "We are a department of the Ministry of Public Decency, but we're entirely autonomous. We run this port for the benefit of weary travellers."

He leads you past a queue that doesn't even bother to grumble. "Yes, yes. I know. Queue jumping is terribly uncouth. But would you really rather be mingling with the proletariat when you could be enjoying our port? And I'm sure once you've seen what we have to offer, you'll need to come back again."

He leads you to a fitting station. "Everyone goes through this. There's a dress code."

Game note: The Bureau of Entertainments wishes to encourage industrious captains to patronise the port. To this end, on a captain's first visit they are allowed in both without charge and without having to queue.

Find your Aunt
She has abandoned her secondment for a trip to the seaside. You'd best locate her before anything disastrous happens.
A jolly day out
You scour the tea-shops, then follow the trail of devastation and weeping proprietors down to the shore.

Your Aunt is enjoying a donkey ride. People scatter out of her way as she charges up and down the beach. "Look!" She cries as she passes you, "Donkeys!" It takes some time to convince her to get down.

She looks shame-faced at having abandoned her post. "I suppose I should get back to it," she says, contemplating her sensible flats.

Instruct your Aunt to curry favour with the Deathless
You need connections at the Mausoleum.
Your Aunt nods briskly. "I shall get right to it. I shall organise," she smiles with distinct menace, "an afternoon tea." You part ways at the shoreline; she back to the sepulchre, you back to the stars.
Instruct your Aunt to gather Hours
You need time.
Your Aunt nods. "The Deathless keep moving their treasuries. But I have an advantage they do not:" she fixes her hat with another pin, "they are not me." You part ways at the shoreline; she back to the sepulchre, you back to the stars.
Bring your Aunt back aboard
She was plainly bored out of her skull at the Mausoleum.
"Oh thank Christ," she says. "Pardon my French." Her eyes narrow as you make for the station. "You've not made any changes to my quarters have you? I'll find out if you have!" Your crew are, if not happy, then at least relieved that they know definitively where your Aunt is again.
Prove you are permitted to enter Worlebury
The Ministry admits its own. And you have the necessary paperwork.
The official scans your permit carefully, nods, then clicks his fingers twice. Workers from the Bureau of Entertainments quickly commandeer your attention; a man and a woman appearing on each side, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."
Prove you know the right sorts
You've done work for those important to the Ministry. They will have heard of you.
The official checks a list for your name, nods, then clicks his fingers twice. Workers from the Bureau of Entertainments quickly commandeer your attention; a man and a woman appearing on each side, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."
Gain admittance by supplying the port authorities
Someone unglued the ducks in one of the entertainments in the Lanes. Many people won before anyone recognised the problem. The fair needs to replenish its stash of prizes.
As soon as you've handed over your goods, the official clicks his fingers. Workers from the Bureau of Entertainments quickly commandeer your attention; a man and a woman appearing on each side, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."
Gain admittance by supplying the port authorities
People will keep pilfering the cups for mementos. Replacing them is a constant chore. If you help the Bureau of Entertainments out, they'll slide you in past the queue.
As soon as you've handed over your goods, the official clicks his fingers. Workers from the Bureau of Entertainments quickly commandeer your attention; a man and a woman appearing on each side, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."
Pay for entrance to Worlebury
The rich claim their willingness to pay is because their time is expensive. It is definitely not that this is an opportunity to flaunt their wealth.

Game note: This enables you to both skip the queue and avoid donating to the port authorities. It's ludicrously overpriced – but perhaps you can afford it.

Authorities quickly commandeer your attention; a man and a woman appearing on each side, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."
Queue for a 'Pauper's Pass' to Worlebury
It is time for the lottery. The crowd churns and mutters to itself, politely despairing.
Queue Chat(Chat)

It is time. A drum roll is performed by a smugly beaming child in a bright blue uniform. A maternal figure, similarly attired in cobalt, counts off those at the front of the queue. She reaches you, then three behind you, then stops.

"That's it. The rest of you will have to come back for the next lottery."

Workers from the Bureau of Entertainments swoop in, gathering the lucky winners. A man and a woman appear beside you, both exquisitely dressed, their smiles well-whetted knives. "Come. Come already. The Couturier doesn't like waiting. You need an outfit. Come, come, come."

Advanced query needs investigation


Enquire about the lottery
There is no indication as to when it'll next be held. Is it at the whim of the port authorities?
The queue snakes across the lip of the docks like an umbilical cord, or a garland. Scalpers bark temptations, promising expedited access. Vendors patrol the undulations of the line, offering drinks, snacks, anything to spare the mind from the doldrums.

Finally, a woman in tattered mourning attire answers. "It's every fortnight, more or less. You'll want to be near the front; they only give out a few passes. Don't want to dilute the quality of the clientele, I hear."

It appears you'll have to come back later, if you want to get in via the Pauper's Pass.
Advanced query needs investigation


Distract the officer with a pangolin
You raise the Perfect Pangolin in defiance. Would he really make this face wait?

Game note: You will only be able to use this short cut once.

Butter wouldn't melt
The Perfect Pangolin must have been an accomplice to more than a few crimes; she doesn't look the least bit scandalised at your behaviour. She merely steeples her paws and raises a beseeching look at the workers from the Bureau of Entertainments. As expected, they sigh and coo. It isn't long before one steps forward. "No need to make the pretty thing stand out 'ere. You go inside." They flash you a bright shark smile. "But just this once, you hear?"
Bribe your way through the door to the Off Season
The worker keeping tourists away from the door makes one thing clear: you're going to have to compensate him if you're going to enter. You might go in and work – taking income from others.

Game note: You can also enter the Off Season from Worlebury-juxta-Mare pier, but even there, there is a price.

The door to the Off Season isn't so much a door as it is a lidless slit, a cut along a periwinkle wall. From where you stand, you can see the corridor is both long and claustrophobic, a throat full of waiting dark. You take a deep breath as you step through and into a miasma of rotting faecal matter.
Bribe your way through the door to the Off Season
There is a worker keeping tourists away from the door. He'll need encouragement to let you through.

Game note: You can also enter the Off Season from Worlebury-juxta-Mare pier, but even there, there is a price.

The door to the Off Season isn't so much a door as it is a lidless slit, a cut along a periwinkle wall. From where you stand, you can see the corridor is both long and claustrophobic, a throat full of waiting dark. You take a deep breath as you step through and into a miasma of rotting faecal matter.
Exchange Ministry-Approved Literature for Condemned Experiments
Those who work at the cutting edge of scientific endeavour often wish to legitimise their profits. Worlebury's popularity provides an anonymous location for the exchange of goods.
Sealed with a handshake
The scrawny apprentice scratches his downy chin. He conceals the literature within his ill-fitting jacket. Your payment taken, he nods several times at a dubiously stained box while wiggling his eyebrows. He is anything but discreet; fortunately, nobody here cares. There are far more interesting entertainments available.


Clothes for the Promenade
Bombazineroll.png
Category Story Event
Type Story
Data ID 286583


Clothes for the Promenade[edit | edit source]

"The Couturier is exquisitely attired: burgundy tailcoat, cravat, brocaded vest in iron and ink, breeches, boots, and a smile like a shark. Periodically, he checks a brass pocket watch, while his grin lengthens and diminishes in turns. He is here to supervise the attire of new visitors to the port. In Worlebury, everyone dresses up in the heady styles of fifty years ago. The Bureau of Entertainments provides suitable attire for all visitors. What article of clothing are you going to base your choice of outfit around? "

Game note: Your choice of outfit has no impact on the port. It is merely an outlet for your whimsy.


Trigger conditions

Bombazineroll icon.png Attired for Worlebury-juxta-Mare ≤ 0,


Interactions

Actions Requirements Effects Notes
Receive an explanation
The Couturier flicks a glance at you. "I'm sure you know the spiel. But I'm obliged to repeat it."
In a droll voice, the Couturier, who could be anywhere between seventeen and thirty-nine, explains: "Worlebury-juxta-Mare's the perfect holiday destination, enhanced by visitor adherence to the dress code. Do not fear, it is all to enhance the experience you have while with us.

"In addition, and as a reassurance about the string-less nature of our generosity, I should inform you: the mists are corrosive and will eat through your regular garments. We provide access to a full wardrobe of coats, waistcoats, frock coats, dresses, dress shirts, breeches, boots, bustiers, and more – to ensure your own remain intact. We love to see familiar faces; it wouldn't do to put you off."

"Now, pick one item, and I'll choose you an outfit that suits it."
A hat!
What a dizzying cornucopia of grotesquely perfect millinery! London would weep in envy.
The Couturier summons a pair of pale children, their stained-glass eyes a palette of emerald-golds. "They'll help you with anything you need, Addressed As(SpeechInformal). No favour's too big, too terrible. I'd ask that you don't request a bladder as a hat, however. I hate training new help."

His assistants are as attentive as they are silent. Reverently, they offer possibilities in flattering headgear. Fascinators, bowlers, top hats, even veils filigreed with milky-blue seed pearls, and roses the red of a broken heart.

When you finally dismiss the children, the Couturier considers you for a long moment. He turns to a wardrobe and hands you several garments, all your size. Once you are dressed, he dismisses you, shooing you into Worlebury-juxta-Mare.

Game note: The condition of your clothes will limit your time in Worlebury.


A dress? Dress shirt? Why not both?
Awaiting your attention are armoires heaving with lace and leather, silk and cashmere; everything that'd ever elicited the envy of another.
The Couturier deploys two gangly youths, both pale with eyes like the death of the day: sunset colours to complement their uniforms. "I hope you won't mistake this for a common establishment, Addressed As(SpeechInformal). Wear anything you want. There are no rules here."

No matter what you do, it feels like the Couturier's assistants are there first, whisking your picks away to resize for your frame. They tug and tease at collars, lace up corsets with grace, adjust folds and hems so that every angle cuts like a cruel word.

When you finally dismiss the youths, the Couturier considers you for a long moment. He turns to a wardrobe and hands you several garments, all your size. Once you are dressed, he dismisses you, shooing you into Worlebury-juxta-Mare.

Game note: The condition of your clothes will limit your time in Worlebury.


A finely-tailored coat
Draped across an army of smiling porcelain mannequins is an armament of coats in every size, all sumptuously designed, all perfect. Just like you.
The Couturier calls two women from a door you hadn't realised was there. They are tall, sinewy and sepia-skinned, with the bluest eyes. "As before, as always, my assistants will do everything they can for you, Addressed As(SpeechInformal)."

The women are efficient but impersonal, their attention bereft of interest. Whenever you attempt to don something that doesn't quite fit your ensemble, they remove the offending garment and replace it with an inventory of superior options.

When you finally dismiss the women, the Couturier considers you for a long moment. He turns to a wardrobe and hands you several garments, all your size. Once you are dressed, he dismisses you, shooing you into Worlebury-juxta-Mare.

Game note: The condition of your clothes will limit your time in Worlebury.


A skirt. Or maybe kilt, or bustle, or breeches...
A glimmering sea of fabrics, tooled to fit any waistline or hips, line an enormous walk-in closet. Through the frills, you see undergarments. Oh my.
The Couturier calls two old women from a door, their stained-glass eyes nearly as pale as the nacreous filaments of their long white hair, the latter suspended in complicated spirals.

They ease you into your selections without fanfare. There's even a martial contempt, as though you're not moving halfway fast enough, gracefully enough. Despite their disdain, they are competent and civil assistants, wholly disinterested in everything from your choice in lace-up trousers to erotic underwear.

When you finally dismiss the women, the Couturier considers you for a long moment. He turns to a wardrobe and hands you several garments, all your size. Once you are dressed, he dismisses you, shooing you into Worlebury-juxta-Mare.

Game note: The condition of your clothes will limit your time in Worlebury.


Fabulous footwear
Of all the finery on display, the footwear is possibly the most avant-garde, with fashions that border on ludicrous. Exciting!
It is the Couturier who goes to his knees, latticing your foot between his long fingers. In the frame of his black-on-black eyes, your reflection is that of a stranger's, wild and otherworldly.

"A personal touch," is all he says.

The Couturier does not permit you to rise nor does he allow you to pick your shoes. Instead, he ferries you options to sift through: high heels, sensible clogs, equestrian boots in the softest leather, open-toed slippers, sandals teased together from gold wires.

When he is finally satisfied, he considers you for a long moment. He turns to a wardrobe and hands you several garments, all your size. Once you are dressed, he dismisses you, shooing you into Worlebury-juxta-Mare.

Game note: The condition of your clothes will limit your time in Worlebury.


Back out; return to the dock
Fear somehow supplants common sense. Sure, you'll have to wait an age to get back here. But perhaps you'd do anything to escape the Couturier's carnivorous grin.

Game note: You will have to queue again, or pay your way back. There is no reward for taking this option.


Worlebury-juxta-Mare
Category Story Event
Type Story
Data ID 278593


Worlebury-juxta-Mare[edit | edit source]

"Worlebury-juxta-Mare is precisely like every other weekend destination: shabbier than advertised and bristling with ways to spend more money than intended. Worlebury Weirdness(meta)"

Interactions

Actions Requirements Effects Notes
Clamber through the gnarled door
The door slides like a thief into the periphery of your vision, too short to enter unless you crawl.
You pry the door open. Inside, is the throat of a short tunnel – connective tissue, really – leading out into a star-swallowed twilight.
Find the Race Marshal
Lord Rochester is strolling the promenade, bearing a truly terrifying amount of candyfloss. He needs to confirm you've reached Worlebury-juxta-Mare.
A grand day out
Lord Rochester roars as he sees you, dispersing puffs of candyfloss over the both of you. "Jolly good. Knew you'd make it. If you've time, I'd highly recommend a donkey ride while you're here. Nothing like it for the thighs." He sends you on your way and with a heap of candyfloss for good measure.
Meet a New Street Line Passenger in the Haunted House
Your contact said you could find one of her passengers acting as the Murderous Butler.
The Haunted House is a coarse artifice, populated by actors who you wouldn't even cast in a pantomime. The White Lady leaves floury footsteps wherever she glides. The chef offers you a set of unconvincing pies she claims were made from the previous visitors. And in the library, an old, dour man lurks with a feather duster in one hand and a cleaver in the other. You present the Murderous Butler with the New Street Line ticket. His tears, for the first time in this house, are genuine. You hurry him to your engine. The next stop for him is New Street Line: Passenger For Delivery(Port).
Write a Port Report
Those who are anybody, and those who are nobody, come here to relax. The port's comings and goings could be informative.
In the face of candyfloss, guards are let down. Presented with this much tea, defences are dropped. This should have been a good place to gather information. Unfortunately, the screams of the donkeys render eavesdropping impossible. Still, even by itself, a list of visitors is certainly worth something.
Listen to the Will Of The People
A delegation has been sent to petition you in your role as Minister.
Endless problems, few solutions
You listen with appropriate amounts of care to each person who begs a moment of your time. The majority are local issues, not worth bringing up in Parliament. Occasionally, inspiration strikes for a new law. You promise with a practiced politician's sincerity that even if there is nothing you can do, you will do it to the best of your ability. They seem mollified by that.
Rare event (10%)
Endless problems, few solutions
You listen with appropriate amounts of care to each person who begs a moment of your time. Until the egg hits you in the face. The perpetrators run off giggling. You wipe away the dripping yolk. Someone should make a law against that sort of thing.
Stand for Parliament in Worlebury-juxta-Mare
This isn't a town that stands on ceremony. They like their representatives charismatic.
Failed event

Advanced query needs investigation

Game note: A new Election will be called here after a while, if you wish to try again.

Game note: It costs 50 sovereigns to stand. It is refunded if you win.

Minor setbacks
The polls are not in your favour. Your opponents appear to have the will of the people behind them. Fortunately, it is a long way from here to Parliament. You suspect that it will not be long before the winner tires of their new position and steps down.
Successful event
The election is called
At least a few of the people bother going to the polls.
Save your rabbit from the pavlova vendor
Crushed-up meringue and trails of cream ooze down its pink nose. Why is it there?
A daring escape
That is your Obviously Delicious Rabbit, all right. Sitting inside a bowl brimming with clotted cream and blueberries, a halo of meringue atop its head. Someone had clearly endeavoured to eat some of the confection, a fact that does not seem to bother the rabbit at all. You pay the vendor of the pavlova and abscond with the bowl, rabbit and all. With any luck, you won't have to repeat this peculiar rescue.

Advanced query needs investigation Advanced alteration value probably needs examination.


Locate maudlin poets for the Incognito Princess
A series of sombrely-clad people with scarves and aggressive rhyme schemes gather around a public house. This must be the meeting place of the Celestial-inspired poets the Incognito Princess wishes to see.
Leave swiftly
Cold frissons down your spine, dragging your attention southwards. Oh dear. Your clothes are in tatters.
Your beautiful garments are nothing but rags now. Well-dressed onlookers gawk and giggle, whisper and point. You look bedraggled, shabby and, worst of all, unfashionable.

Game note: You have exhausted these opportunities for now.


Gather new members for the cult
No amount of finery is enough to hide the grief weighing from their lashes. These poor souls must hear your words.
Failed event

Game note: You will only lose your Vision of the Heavens if you fail.

Oh dear. No, no. Absolutely not. The beautiful people promenading through Worlebury have no time for you. They have come to Worlebury-juxta-Mare for escape, not evangelism, and most certainly not your frothing lectures on metamorphosis in the mists. To make matters worse, it appears that some of them have alerted the Authorities about your misdemeanours. Best to go.
Successful event
A man, a woman, teenagers lanky as hounds, a couple too old for the weight of their years. They listen to the sutras and scriptures of transformation you repeat, their entire bodies poured into the act. Something in the words sings to them. And one by one, they say yes, yes, and yes again, discreet in their reverence. You give them directions to the cult's headquarters and pats on the shoulders; they receive your attention with the gratitude of children.
Gather new members for the cult
Grief weighs from their lashes. These poor souls will be persuaded, if only you can make them listen. You'll need to start with enthralling tales, then drop to the personal.
A man, a woman, teenagers lanky as hounds, a couple too old for the weight of their years. They listen to the sutras and scriptures of transformation you repeat, their entire bodies poured into the act. Something in the words sing to them. And one by one, they say yes, yes, and yes again, discreet in their reverence. You give them directions to the cult's headquarters and pats on the shoulders; they receive your attention with the gratitude of children.
Go to the office of the Bureau of Entertainments
It is perched on the lip of the boardwalk, so close to the beach that its rails almost touch the wind-blasted pebbles.

Game note: Here you will be able to betray the cult and forge a different alliance. Just entering the office is not a betrayal, however.


Slide across to the Off Season
It bleeds from your teeth, the story that grants you passage, guilt-rinded and sour.
You tell a passerby a story they'd not expected, something raw, profoundly and audaciously private. They gasp and the air jumps, irises into a door like a wicker tunnel strung with fairy lights. You dash through and the air feels membranous, stinks of burning wire. It is a wall of mucus, two-feet thick, and it cauls your eyes in oilslick rainbows.
Consider the strangeness of the Lanes
The Lanes do not appear as advertised – but of all their sins, that one is the least phantasmagoric.
Failed event

Advanced query needs investigation Advanced alteration value probably needs examination.


Game note: This enables you to investigate the weirdness of Worlebury-juxta-Mare and offers a potentially rewarding opportunity.

You see nothing amiss. At least, there is nothing immediately amiss. The Lanes are tawdry but colourful, the shops lavish with pointless baubles. It is all quite normal. Yet still, something gnaws at your brain stem like a tapeworm that'd found its way up your spine, an insistence that maybe, maybe something is very, very wrong?
Successful event
It is most likely the smiles. Maybe. Carnivore expressions, syrupy and gleaming, faultless mirrors of the Couturier's dazzling grin. Or maybe it is the second-rate souvenirs cobbled from haberdashery and children's nightmares. The arsenic aftertaste of the candyfloss, the wine-wild quality of the local perfumes. Could be anything. Could just be your insecurities, the error of your existence.

Whatever the case, the Lanes continue their watch.

Politely, of course.

Explore a tiny lane bedecked with shops
A babble of shops and stalls sears the gaze with bold, mismatched colours.
Rare event (undefined%)
Ponder that strange, unearthly taste
A residue persists from that last cup of tea: a flavour like roasted chestnuts and the colour blue, like absinthe brewed in the belly of a star.
Failed event

Advanced query needs investigation

Game note: This enables you to investigate the weirdness of Worlebury-juxta-Mare and offers a potentially rewarding opportunity.

The sour tang of that last sip resides in your palate, in the oily coating on your tongue. It is like, but entirely dissimilar to, the more familiar teas of London. Earl Grey, then?
Successful event
The sour tang of that last sip resides in your palate, in the oily coating on your tongue. It is like, but entirely dissimilar to, the more familiar teas of London. It would go magnificently with a fresh scone, some aunt-manufactured jam. But the aroma is fundamentally incorrect. The citrus notes mingle with the nostalgia for a time that's never been. The warm spices heighten the anxiety that bubbles with every sip.

This tea remembers how it will be come to made. It is a struggle to ignore the details.

Stop at a charming tea room
Tea is always a good idea. In a universe of horrors, tea is never wrong.
Airs of Tea(Tea)

It appears traditional for patrons here to abscond with a piece of crockery: a mug, a delicate teacup, a saucer. Whatever best reminds them of the tea room. As such, you do the same.

No reason to be impolite.
Ruminate on the nature of donkeys
They are very earthy animals. But where has their ordure gone? The extraneous entrails they've shed, the vomit. None of it is ever anywhere to be found.
Failed event

Advanced query needs investigation

Game note: This enables you to investigate the weirdness of Worlebury-juxta-Mare and offers a potentially rewarding opportunity.

For all of the sounds that the donkeys make, for all the viscera they disgorge, all the creatures they disembowel, they seem to be remarkably sanitary creatures. No trace of their refuse is to be seen anywhere. The beach remains spotless. Hm. The workers must be terribly efficient.
Successful event
For all of the sounds that the donkeys make, for all the viscera they disgorge, all the creatures they disembowel, they seem to be remarkably sanitary creatures. No trace of their refuse is to be seen anywhere. The beach remains spotless.

But there, look: a donkey is vomiting ropes of grey intestine onto the sands. Surely now bile and blood will reveal themselves? Except they don't. The air flickers and once again, everything is completely hygienic.

Take a donkey ride
"No trip to Worlebury's complete without a donkey ride!" a man in a candy-striped suit bellows, while his donkey drools a string of iridescent tumours. How can you resist?
Airs of Donkey(Donkey) You stumble from your donkey, weak at the knees, its voice still razoring against the inside of your skull.
Rare event (80%)
Airs of Donkey(Donkey) You are returned to the paddock of nervous customers intact and only moderately traumatised.
Succumb to the wiles of a Rubbery Lumps seller
A wax-paper cone brimming with Rubbery Lumps sounds just about perfect.
It tastes precisely as advertised: hot, rubbery, faintly sweet, with a dashing of mirin and brown sugar, and an aftertaste reminiscent of roasted berries, like a memory of better days. You graze on a palmful of lumps before you put the rest away.
Here is a path to the beach
No trip to Worlebury is complete without a jaunt along the beach. You should stroll down to the shore, where the mists wait in glittering coils.
Here is a path to the beach
No trip to Worlebury is complete without a jaunt along the beach. You should stroll down to the shore, where the mists wait in glittering coils.
Here is a path to the beach
No trip to Worlebury is complete without a jaunt along the beach. You should stroll down to the shore, where the mists wait in glittering coils.
Investigate the clocks
Attend an exclusive exhibition of portraits
A Popular Portraitist is displaying his latest works. Your connections among the Bohemian set has secured you a ticket.


Wander onwards
Nothing here catches your eye.

Game note: This will reduce your Attired for Worlebury-juxta-Mare, but may open up new opportunities.


Leave for the dock
You've run out of diversions. It's time to go back to your locomotive.
You retrace your steps to the entrance of the port, poorer than when you arrived and irrevocably different.

Game note: You will have to trade, pay or queue to reenter the port.


Help the Incautious Driver hunt for the Verdant Fragment
Their connection to its progenitor should assist.
Failed event

Special is calculated as follows: 70 * 1.67


Game note: The more places you search, the easier your search will get. Failing here will not harm your quest.

A failed attempt
The Incautious Driver spends hours sniffing at the air in search of familiar spores, but to no avail. "We should try somewhere else," they reluctantly decide, shuffling with uncharacteristic glumness back towards the train.
Successful event
A taste on the wind
The Driver sniffs at the air for any hint of loose Verdant spores dragged in by passing travellers. "I can taste something. A fear. Not death, but the loss of something important. The Fragment doesn't want to return. It doesn't want to give up what it's become."

They close their eyes, focusing. "I can can taste its design, as well. Its... host knew of a place called Hostrop Deep: a desolate corner of the sky. It meant to hide there. The Deep will be hard to find. When we're close, we'll need to use our scout."

The Deep .


The Off Season
Category Story Event
Type Story
Data ID 287716

The Off Season[edit | edit source]

Worlebury-juxta-Mare has become a corpse. The run-down bones of its forgotten attractions swarm with bedraggled men and women, all armed with cleaning equipment. This is where the workers of Worlebury live and labour to create the gaudy frontage seen by tourists. The beach is now a decaying mess – visited only by the cultists who attend the chapel there. To linger here, you'll need to work. But labour is poorly paid – take other workers' jobs too often, and they'll firmly encourage you to depart.


Interactions

Actions Requirements Effects Notes
You are forced to leave
The locals have had enough of you scavenging for their scraps.
It is easier to leave the Off Season than it is to enter. You are led to impressive cathedral doors, ornate slabs of polished wood that are twice as tall as a normal man. They appear to be adhering to nothing at all.

The locals scowl at you, arms crossed, a horseshoe of shabbily-dressed bodies preventing escape. "Don't take our damn jobs. There's not enough to go around." Their single-minded labour is not out of pride for the pristine side of Worlebury, but out of desperate necessity.

Game note: You have exhausted these opportunities for now.


Go for a walk along the beach
You can scarcely see the beach in the Off Season, so dense are the mists. Beneath your feet, something crunches and cracks.
    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

Incite dissent and dissatisfaction
The Bureau asked you to stamp down on the cult. If you interfered with recruitment, it would set the cult back.
Failed event

Game note: You can fulfil the Bureau's request here, or on the Off Season's beach. You will only lose your Savage Secret if you fail.

Something in your bearing upsets the workers. They shy from you. No one says outright that they don't trust you, don't have any plans to follow your lead, but they make their decision clear.
Successful event
Angry workers seek change; but not the kind the Cult offers. A rioting proletariat will dismiss the cult with scorn. You tell the workers the truth: they deserve more than they've gotten. At first, they're suspicious, but your glibness tightens like a noose and soon, they're swinging to your tune.

The riot is tepid but serviceable, a half-hearted gang of malcontents campaigning for longer lunch breaks. You've done what the Bureau wanted; you'll have to return to their headquarters for a reward.

Incite dissent and dissatisfaction
The Bureau asked you to stamp down on the cult. If you interfered with recruitment, it would set the cult back.
Angry workers seek change; but not the kind the Cult offers. A rioting proletariat will dismiss the cult with scorn.

You tell the workers the truth: they deserve more than they've gotten. You tell them stories that guide them to realisation: the bleakness of their lives. You show them the prizes given at the Lanes, the trivialities their bone-wearying work enables. At first, they're suspicious, but your glibness tightens like a noose and soon, they're swinging to your tune.

The riot is tepid but serviceable, a half-hearted gang of malcontents campaigning for longer lunch breaks. You've done what the Bureau wanted; you'll have to return to their headquarters for a reward.

Game note: Return to the Bureau of Entertainments in Worlebury-juxta-Mare to report to the Toymaker.

Game note: You can fulfil the Bureau's request here, or on the Off Season's beach.


Cry havoc and let loose; join the Bureau in a raid
So long as they know that it is the cult's presence that brings this violence upon them, the workers will drive the cult away themselves.
    • Iron icon.png Readying a Raid ≥ 1 [Assist the Bureau of Entertainments with subduing the remains of the Cult. You will need to go to the Off Season]

    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

    • Iron icon.png Iron challenge (84 for 100%)

Failed event

Game note: Return to the Bureau of Entertainments in fifteen days to participate in another raid on the Off Season.

Look at all that churlish lassitude from the working class. This will not stand. Hell is not other people. It is the grotesquerie of those who'd presume to rise up, speak out against their betters.

Alas, the workers are prepared. They have aligned themselves with the cultists, and strike back. You infiltrate ramshackle tea houses full of ragged revolutionaries – they pounce on the Bureau workers from doorway ambushes. You move to break up protests and alleyway sermons – they bottleneck you, and fling ordure. They force the Bureau officials to retreat, to reconvene and come back another day.

Successful event
Look at all that churlish lassitude from the working class. This will not stand. Hell is not other people. It is the grotesquerie of those who'd presume to rise up, speak out against their betters.

You show them their error.

You run down ramshackle tea houses full of ragged revolutionaries, break up protests and alleyway sermons. At some point in the chaos, one of the senior officers of the Bureau of Entertainments, smiling, passes you an envelope reeking of frangipani.

Sabotage the workers while the Bureau carries out a raid
If the workers know that the cult's presence brings this upon them, they will strive to drive it away.
    • Iron icon.png Readying a Raid ≥ 1 [Assist the Bureau of Entertainments with subduing the remains of the Cult. You will need to go to the Off Season]

    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

    • Veils icon.png Veils challenge (84 for 100%)

Failed event

Game note: Return to the Bureau of Entertainments in fifteen days to participate in another raid on the Off Season.

Look at all that churlish lassitude from the working class. This will not stand. Hell is not other people. It is the grotesquerie of those who'd presume to rise up, speak out against their betters.

Alas, the workers are prepared. They have aligned themselves with the cultists, and strike back. You infiltrate ramshackle tea houses full of ragged revolutionaries – they pounce on the Bureau workers from doorway ambushes. You move to break up protests and alleyway sermons – they bottleneck you, and fling ordure. They force the Bureau officials to retreat, to reconvene and come back another day.

Successful event
Look at all that churlish lassitude from the working class. This will not stand. You show them their error.

You discover the ramshackle tea houses where the ragged revolutionaries stay, and betray them to the Bureau officials. You lead the officials to protests and alleyway sermons, where they set to work crushing spirits with boots and sticks. At some point in the chaos, one of the senior officers of the Bureau of Entertainments, smiling, passes you an envelope reeking of frangipani.

Assist with the shovelling
You'd always understood that donkey excrement has to go somewhere. Apparently, that place is here.
    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

    • Iron icon.png Iron challenge (84 for 100%)

Failed event Advanced alteration value probably needs examination.


The truculent-looking woman comes over again. Without preamble, she explains that you're to harvest organs of serviceable quality and put them aside for the cleaning crew. "Worth its weight in gold," she growls, as you unspool coils of intestine from a knee-high pile of excrement. Once satisfied with your performance, she abandons you again.
Successful event
A grumpy woman wastes little time on exposition. She passes you a shovel, a few words of advice, and jabs a gloved finger at a seething mound beside you. "Try not to breathe deeply."

Over the course of the next few hours, you discover two things. The first is that donkey faeces, once it starts burning, smells curiously like tea. The second is that it occasionally fruits malformed viscera, an occasional eyeball or six. The work is nightmarish, but you survive to the end of your shift.

You'll never smell the same again.
Feed the Lanes
Feed the kitchens of the Lanes. How else do you expect them to satisfy customers?
    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

    • Veils icon.png Veils challenge (84 for 100%)

Failed event
In one end, out the other. For a few hours, you shovel muck into blindly groping ducts. One eats part of your sleeve before you can beat it away with a ladle.
Successful event
Transform filth to fine dining
The act of feeding the Lanes is actually quite menial. Once you become accustomed to the mucus-slick ducts, the way they tendril across your hands in pursuit of victuals, it really becomes quite boring. In one end, out presumably the other.
Deliver the Sequencer's care package
There are parts of Worlebury-juxta-Mare unfit for a postcard, crumbling and bleak and not at all charming. The locals eye you with unmasked hostility.
Your delivery of food and medicine is greeted with reluctant grunts of approval. Hard-eyed mothers appear, towing thin children, and pick out what they need. All of them thank you, some even curtsy, and one brings you a tin mug of hot, bitter tea.
Deliver the Sequencer's care package
There are parts of Worlebury-juxta-Mare unfit for a postcard, crumbling and bleak and not at all charming. The locals eye you with unmasked hostility.
When they discover your 'charity' consists of cravats and hymnbooks, a mob of locals chase you hurling invective and, more importantly, stones.
Follow a Popular Portraitist of your association
Wait, that's him – the artist behind the Portraits of a Devil! When you tried to follow him before, he must have slipped into the Off Season. Perhaps this is where he's been keeping his muse.
To muse no more
The Portraitist enters a dismal tenement. Following him, you listen at its many doors until you hear his voice. It is raised in passionate argument. The other party responds in calm, frank tones.

Suddenly, the door is flung open and your Portraitist stumbles out. "She is done with me," he croaks. "I offered her everything. I am emptied." He pushes past you. Beyond, the room is lit by a candle. You can see the shape of a woman, slender and gowned, at a dressing-table. She is coaxing something wispy and phosphorescent into a glass bottle.

"Hello," she says. "You are a captain, aren't you? Please, come in."
Visit the Patchwork Devil
You recall the way to her garret.
Go back to the tourist part of Worlebury
You must exchange your Ministry permit for one stamped with the Toymaker's mark, and sumptuous but mismatched attire.
The permit is oxblood wax and gold leaf, vellum as sleek as the cheek of a newborn babe. And the clothes that you're given are beautiful but nothing like the Couturier had offered, a madness of cuts and fashions.

You are sent off through the gate and this way around, it feels like salt on your skin, like sandpaper paring you to bone, like desert air, like first heartbreaks, last goodbye.

You emerge on the other side, smelling faintly of cigarettes and steak pie.
Leave the Off Season for the dock
You have run out of things to do. Best to leave before you cause any aggravations.
    • Worlebury icon.png Working in the Off Season ≥ 1 [Your immediate employer seems content enough with your work. The labourer you replaced, less so.]

The doors are gorgeous, baroque perversions set with gold-leaf, and they stand untethered to anything but the constellation-gnawed sky. You step through the doors and back into the clamour of the port.

Game note: You will have to queue, trade, or pay to reenter the Off Season or Worlebury-juxta-Mare.


Shops[edit | edit source]

Juxta-Mare Market

This collection of eclectic stalls is patrolled by sharp-eyed surveyors — each bearing a burning-book badge on their lapel.

Item Buy Sell
Fuel square icon.png Fuel Sovereigns icon.png 20 Sovereigns Sovereigns icon.png 10 Sovereigns
Supplies square icon.png Supplies Sovereigns icon.png 40 Sovereigns Sovereigns icon.png 20 Sovereigns
Ministryliterature square icon.png Ministry-Approved Literature Sovereigns icon.png 100 Sovereigns