ben vandgrift · on living the dream

clockwork god - ep summary

for any interested parties. some of these eps span multiple sessions.

setting: spring, 1873. babbage's successful work on the analytical engine has the Empire at the dawn of a steam-driven information age. but stranger things lurk in the streets of london.

ep1: "haystack". wherein our heroes are summoned to the Central Statistics Bureau at the request ot Det. John Hyde (184) to investigate the sudden and unlikely disappearance of a member of the CSB. therein they meet James Cornell, the Tibbetts brothers, a charming young Mod # 1016, and get a glimpse of the massive Engines and strange culture that drives the Empire's economy.

ep2: "scope". wherein our heroes follow the trail of 1134 to a pub across the river. he is in possession of an Engine program capable of disabling a class 16 analytical engine—the product of one Fritz Stadt, a German research transfer. after some internal audit, the CSB declares that 1134 removed some of the tape record before he went, including the record of the usa's payment to the bank of england to end their six month default.

ep3: "shutdown". wherein our heroes present their findings on the CSB case to detective Hyde, who takes the matter upstairs. Sam encounters Falstaff, a man of some power, a confrontation which leaves Sam wounded and confused. Lady Emma and company are approached by the special branch to investigate an explosion in a machinist's shop where they discover a strange artifact of red metal, but find few answers.

ep4: "seeder". wherein our heroes dig for answers regarding the scene at Robeson and Maddox' Machinists. a horror beyond description is unleashed on the city of london. a physician, Dr. Thackery, joins our heroes at the request of Lord Blackmond. the resilience of the red metal is tested and confirmed. more death and an odd excavation at the site of the explosion. Maddox is discovered dead and mutilated in his library, a victim of the creature which Blackmond called a 'seeder'.

ep5: "upstairs, downstairs". wherein our heroes discover that the red metal crescent is, in greek, Orikalkos, the subject of Lord Mallory's life pursuit, and the language written upon it is Demotic. a broken statue is recovered from the wreckage of Robeson and Maddox's, which causes strange effects in the Durbin house hold until it is destroyed. a few questions answered, many more raised.

ep6: "forbidding". wherein Sam develops the photos taken of Dr. Mallory and the orichalcum. our heroes return to the Maddox terrace where a cleanup has occurred, but one forbidding door, marked with occult sigils, remains. a letter is drafted to the special branch, and a long conversation is had with the Lord Blackmond concerning the bigger picture.

ep7: "seas of fate". wherein our heroes accept an invitation by Robert "the Bruce" McCullough to southend by the sea for a short voyage on the black swan. a CSB auditor referred to as 'Wilkins' is murdered by a strangely augmented assailant. Miss Sutherland receives a communique concerning a CSB red listing. Miss Durbin introduces herself to one Mr. Moreaux. Mr. Morrison discovers that the town of penzance has become corrupt, and endures a long train ride back to london with Falstaff one breath away.

ep8: "anticipated departure". wherein our heroes take the advice of lord blackmond and prepare to leave town, on the business of one mrs. hallerand, in search of her missing cousin. sam morrison displays troubling photographs, and miss olivia sutherland discovers her touch can be a troubling thing.

ep9: "ragman". wherein our heroes travel to sutton to look after mrs. hallerand's missing cousin. with a devastating plague upon scarsey, Miss Olivia and Dr. Thackery investigate the sickness with Dr. Joseph Lydecker. meanwhile Miss Emma and Sam check in on the cousin, Mrs. Jayne Moss, to discover her infected with an illness of her own. Miss Emma tracks an artifact of power to help in Mrs. Moss' final rest as the death toll mounts in scarsy.

ep10: "recovery" wherein our heroes receive a request to finish what they started from Dr. Heath, a respected savant and technologist. they find themselves once again in the company of the assassin responsible for the murder of wilkins, one Arturo. in exchange for their aid in the recovery of certain cards within Stadt's program, Dr. Heath promises to solve their continuing problems with the CSB.

ep11: "playing with fire" wherein our heroes discover the power of dreams, and are asked to aid in the disposal of one of the escaped Seeders. they meet Mandrake, a child-sorcerer and on loan from the enigmatic Tyler to assist in the operation. our heroes find themselves underground in a part of london recently ravaged by fire, confronting Kerrick, a peer of Falstaff and another enemy who seems to know more about Sam than he does.

ep12: "wars of myth" wherein our hero Sam recollects his first introduction to Lord Blackmond, then Lord Bannaug's service, the loss of his father and his home, and his first encounter with a Nightmare.

interlude: "emaliel" wherein our heroes spend some time with Emaliel, the Dowager Lady Blackmond, Katherine Durbin, Lady Emma's mother and True Guard of Nuria, who advises them on the oft-best way to deal with Nightmares.

ep13: "i feel fine" wherein our heroes join Arturo in returning to london at the urgent request of the eminent Dr. Heath. having retrieved the shard containing Heath's personality and witnessed the nightmare bridge from Nuria, they return to the Blackmond Estate, where Rand, now LoreKeeper of Victoriana, awaits to take them before the nanosym tank containing the shattered Lord Blackmond.

tonight's episode: "dalliances".

written: Aug 18 2005