Monday, March 30

OOC: Searching for "JeremiahThe Reanimator"

Whoever you are, Sir, please contact me at your earliest convenience. Things are going to get EXTREMELY confusing in the Steamlands if this is not resolved.

And I'd love to know how you chose your name.

The Cats Will Play, and the Play is the Thing

I am pleased to announce that beginning this Friday at 7pm (right after the Jager Poetry Slam), Kiralette Kelley will be playing a rousing selections of tunes via Kitty Radio at her Caledon cafe', Tea by the Sea. Assisting her as Host will be none other that my son, Koen. (Yes, he's still my son. We reconciled.) Come unwind from a difficult week over a fresh cup of tea. Or catnip.

In more serious news, I've been asked by the Countess to come to Belhaven in my brother's stead and manage their Roleplay. I'll have to give this some serious thought.

Friday, March 27

The Return to Fusang: Crescendo

(Continued from Hotspur O'Toole's files)

I brought for myself and Hotspur with a set of earplugs to protect us from the din of the pom-pom guns and from the Song. They were the same devices I used in Hong Kong when Fuzzball and the Cappers were trying to defeat the Deadly Ringer. I added a few more fail safe systems...we can't have another Ramsey on our hands...and I don't have a demon inside me anymore to pull me back into the fray.

The Black Ocean soldiers were fighting like automatons...lining up like musketeers and firing in unison. Failing to take basic defensive maneuvers. Not registering pain when wounded, falling only when the spine was severed or blood loss brought all life functions to a stop. Sparks were few and far between in this region. This had to be powerful magic at work.

"That's it," I thought, "keep up your soliloquy. You have no idea I speak Mandarin, do you?"

Hotspur had wanted me to use a horn to signal the troops. I had to conserve my breath...I fired a flare gun into the air instead. They charged.

I watched Hsieh Lieng from behind the artillery emplacement. As I stared at him, my eyes focused on his aura. His breastplate was obviously enchanted. The black pearl radiated with dark tendrils with each syllable he uttered. Their flag is a black pearl. Black Ocean...yes, that was their relic of power!

I tapped Hotspur on the shoulder and pointed to Lieng's gorget. "There." I whisper.

Hotspur shouts a command to his troops, and they dive for cover, holding their palms to their ears.

The air around me rippled as my words and gestures pulled at the fabric of reality itself. I took one long, deep breath, siphoning the raw magic into my lungs. I focused my ch'i from a balanced, life-sustaining aura into a ray of palpable force. My lips parted, and a screech like a bird of prey the size of a mountain ripped through the din of war.

The shock waves radiated from my starting point towards the enemy. I narrowed the cone to Hsieh Ling himself. The artifact had remarkable resistance. But its source of power was also it's Achilles' Heel.

Mr. Tesla told me once why he never allowed women wearing pearls to be present in the room when he gave a demonstration of his Oscillator. Pearls shatter.

With a plume of ebon force, the metal cracked with the rapport of a lightning bolt. The drones trembled before dropping their weapons and collapsing in shivering heaps to the ground. I ended the spell and took a ragged breath. My stomach promptly released its contents. Several times over.

Dizzier than I should have been. The wards were weakening. I was too weak to fight.

I know your bloodline, Doctor. The Dragon Who Waits drove the Demon of Blood Wings out of the Middle Kingdom long ago. I would do the world a favor by disposing of you...

Hotspur shook me out of my delirium. My ears were ringing from the enchantment. , but I read his lips...Hit Me? I pull back my shoulder and throw a weak punch. HIT ME! he yells. I cast a look to Angus behind him. He nods. I spin him around to get a wallop across the jaw.

I stand back as his skin flushes crimson and he begins to grow in size. Lycanthropy? No...berserker rage. How mighty your ancestors must have been, O'Toole. You may have Cu Chulain himself in your family tree.

Hotspur charged Lieng, who was rapidly shifting into a reptilian form. As near to death as I was, I took a step forward...

...and red clawed hands reached around me to pull me back.

"Koen! No!"

His whiskers brushed against my face as he growled in my ear.

"Even at your best wouldn't be strong enough to kill the Dragon, Doc! Vortex might, but he's fighting the Hydra! We're getting you someplace safe!"

Darkness enveloped me...

Powers far beyond the realm of mere mortal fleas!

I've finished cloning Professor H. A.'s Circus fleas. In some cases entire lifecodes could not be reconstructed, so in true Spark fashion...I improvised. The Professor will have quite an interesting show!


Oh, wait...was that Genie passing by outside? She seems to be happily blue again! The mithril bracelet must have worked after all!

Wednesday, March 25

Back to the lab

An esteemed associate has asked me to clone some insects. How one can be emotionally attached to creatures with such a short lifespan I'm not sure. This should be interesting.

Tuesday, March 24

Fire, Water, Anger and Pride

I returned to Mason Labs after performing errands elsewhere. These wings have made travel much easier. As I approached the portal I heard the distinctive rattle of the morgue unit on the second floor. Was it Marcus getting up again? No. Not possible. I saw to that.

It was an intruder. A Jager, armed with an axe-bladed staff. She tried to make for a break for it when I roared in anger, but I grabbed her by her epaulets. What business did she have with my brother's remains? Was she trying to steal them? Devour them? Was Herr Baron sending spies now?

My vision turned red as my eyes began to glow like embers. My wings were wreathed in flames. I told her she should have learned in Jager School that bad things happen to fools who rummage through the laboratories of Sparks. With the shred of reason I still possessed I let the blue recruit scamper back to the barracks with her tail between her legs.

Indeed, my magic was returning. Save for that short-lived fusion with the Founder as "Dr. Bloodwing" I had never felt such power! And with it the deep dark chasms of emotions that no mortal could ever fathom.

In the middle of my soliloquy I noticed my flames had been extinguished. I was standing in five feet of water. In the middle of my laboratory.

[picture to be provided]

I quickly escaped the lab before the floodwater shorted out my equipment. I thanked the stars that I had stored my brother on the second floor. I flew outside. Indeed, it was a flash flood. residents had taken to high ground or the safety of boats.

I saw a dog from the farm next door paddling helplessly as it was washed to sea by the waves. In a flash, I swooped down and scooped the animal in my arms. It licked my face as I landed on a dry outcropping of rock nearby and put her down safely.

I watched from that vantage point as the waters drained back into the bay. I felt a twinge of pride I once had in serving this town re-emerge.

Some old feelings are worth revisiting. Some most certainly are not. I must be careful. I need this strength to battle Jeremiah. But it will be a hollow victory indeed if my hubris brings about the same punishments laid upon the Founder.

Saturday, March 21

Let's Watch the Watchmen!

I admit I haven't had time to read them before, but judging from this 80's cartoon they must have been really fun to watch. I guess I'll go check out the movie!

P.S. "Give you cancer?" Must be bad sound quality.

Thursday, March 19


My thanks to Dr.Fabre for showing us this wonderful piece, the CG Society Steampunk Animation Winner!

A fantastic adaption of the Golem myth...which is central theme to many of my adventures.

Tuesday, March 17

solved by the scalpel

I honestly did not plan this. Any Spark will tell you that he is as much a thrall to twisted muse of Science inside him as are his Minions. The problem was simple. My magic was gone. The drop of demon blood in me that was my link to the energies harnessed by my family line was severed. So many options cut off from me, no longer within my comprehension.

The Spark is a relatively new family trait that emerged with the advent of Alchemy - Western civilization's arduous transition from Magic and to Science as the dominant paradigm of how reality functions. In fact, Aleister Mason was only the second recipient of the Bloodwing Curse to also possess a Spark. As the Demon learned, it made his Host more powerful, but harder to control as well.

I was missing a part of me. I had a donor on the floor in front of me who had it. I didn't even have to sacrifice a limb or an organ to get a fresh infusion of magic-infused cellular tissue.

Pain was not a factor. The Spark overrides such things. And when you have a Doll Minion who is more than willing to contribute her surgical talents...

I only needed a graft.

G-d help me. G-d watch over my brother's soul, wherever it may be. And G-d have mercy upon Jeremiah Mason, for I shall have none!

Spring cleaning

Neutralized the threat in the vault. Vault door requires replacement. Armor destroyed. Personal injuries recoverable.

The corpse was animated remotely. Cauterized wound meshed with circuitry, same as Steel units. Corpse was navigating through vibratory sensations in wings. Problem solved with axe. Explosive shells from Le MAT revolver neutralized subject.

The Vault is a total loss. I have no choice but to incinerate all contents to prevent a Pandorus outbreak.

Wait. Not all...

Monday, March 16

Meanwhile in the Lab...

Something's amiss

A movement alarm activated in my cryogenic storage vault. Chamber #78 breeched. Marcus.

Pounding from inside the vault door. Getting stronger. Starting to dent the door.

Sent Sparky out of the building. Mason Labs under lockdown. Gearing up for conflict. Will report after.

Recitation of purple prose

My thanks to Hotspur O'Toole for teaching me the ways of Audacity and hosting this on his site for me.

For your enjoyment I've read two pages from what may be the worst romantic fantasy literature ever published, Silk and Steel by Ron Miller. As a professional editor, it reads to me like some like someone forgot to turn off Track Changes and merged every draft that should have been crumpled up, tossed in the wastebasket, then finished off with a lit stick of dynamite in said wastebacket.

This crime against literature was highlighted on livejournal, and its infamy has spread rapidly.

It took me two takes and turning the microphone off between paragraphs to get the laughter out of my system. So without further ado...

Friday, March 13

Report on the Belhaven Attack

Submitted by the Doll Sparky Gloom, refurbished by myself and sent to Belhaven:

I went to Belhaven to help with the injured and dying, as Father had told
me to. When I got there, I was treating the humans, many of them bloody,
sometimes with bits not quite attatched. It looked almost like some of my
attatchments, actually. Mr. Marcus though, he didn't think I should
be helping like that, and since my orders were to go assist Mr. Marcus, I had to
follow what he wanted. Which is how I ended up standing beside him holding
a tray of fruit and cookies. And not even good cookies. Blegh. Not a
single crispy one in the bunch. But while I was wondering how nursing had
somehow mutated into being a glorified fruit salad, and if I should go back
home, something wierd happened.

Ok, well more than wierd. Mr. Marcus gasped, and I looked over at him with a small frown. He had turned a ghostly pale, he looked more like me than any of the humans around us, and he let out a strangled yell as two horns somehow broke through the skin at his temples and two great red wings grew from his back. I was starting to get a little worried.. "Do you require assistance, Mr. Marcus?"

He ignored me and pushed passed me to run up the stairs of the lighthouse
and onto the balcony. I was afraid of what he might do to himself
with the new imbalance on his head, and he was yelling things into the great
open air that didn't make much sense. Something about his destiny, and
fulfillment and things like that. I went to the door leading to the
balcony and watched curiously. I'd never seen anything like this, with the
exception of my Creator's behavior just before blew himself up in working on me,
and you, Father, when [REDACTED].

And it's a good thing I stayed back there. This woman... well.. I think it was a woman... this dark figure that looked like a woman suddenly appeared in this ball of light right behind him. She was like a black shadow, with glowing blue lines.
"Um.. Mr. Marcus?" He didn't hear me, I guess, he'd been pushed too far in his own mind to notice me. The figure seemed to look over its shoulder at me, and then back to him. The glowing blue lights formed some sort of blade looking thing and she raised it above him. Mr. Marcus was filled with his own madness, and begain to scream, " BLOODWING IS DEAD! ALL HAIL...." There was a sort of meaty sound, as the light blade cut through him, and he fell.

As his head started tumbling, the dark shadow lady easily caught it, and I heard it/her say, "Steel Unit Prime to Regent. Subject Terminated. Returning with..." before she disappeared in another ball of light. I looked down from the balcony at the body with a frown. I'd dealt with patients missing limbs before, but really, a head is something that's really very needed.

I sighed and climbed all the way down the stairs and wrapped his neck in some bandages I had left in my apron, and sent messages to Father asking him how to repair a headless patient. I was fairly sure he wouldn't be happy with this.

Thursday, March 12

The Crime Scene

I landed my airship on one of the burnt-out fields of Belhaven. Professor Bade waited from the safety of a tree that mysteriously glistened from an icy coat, even in the warmth of Spring. Although I barely know him, he gave me a sturdy handshake. I could tell that while he had a normally cool demeanor, he was struggling with the concern and sympathy visible in his eyes.

"I contacted you as soon as he was discovered, Doctor. I've kept the peasants away from the lighthouse."

I looked towards the edge of the island where the stone tower lay perched upon a hill, brown earth still bare from fresh construction. Belfire's red wings were visible as she perched on the balcony above. A dark figure peered down next to her. The red ears identified him as my son Koen. As we passed the field of hops, a ball of lighting erupted before us on the gravel path. The sparks subsided to reveal Gematria's shining form. Without a word she followed us as we passed.

At the entrance to the lighthouse three more constructs were recording the scene. Ash stood up from where the pale body on the ground...including broken crimson wings...was outlined in chalk. Small wooden cones were scattered about the ground, marking every stray drop of blood. I heard clicks and whirrs of his optic scanner recording every detail of the grisly scene.

I heard voices from inside the entrance. It sounded like Nova, but then I saw the intricate brass tubes and gears of an arm unit. It was Qli-2. She was taking inventory of the equipment in the lighthouse.

Commander Mason stood to attention as I approached.

"Dr. Mason...Father...this will be difficult to explain..."

"Tell me. And tell me quickly. I have patients waiting."

Monday, March 9

The Babbage Anti-Magic Attack

I was summoned to Babbage after being told there were prisoners that the populace wanted to "hand over" to me.

Let me reiterate that I am not a torturer, nor am I a vivisectionist. I am a doctor. I will never perform an unnecessary procedure on a living being. The only caveat is that we Reanimators have our own methods of resolving internal disputes.

I did however examine Mr. Tenk, and determined that he had the faculties to refuse treatment. For anyone of Fae or Spirit origin suffering from advanced cold-iron poisoning, I recommend wearing a bracelet forged of mithril to relieve the symptoms. This metal has an affinity to members of such species and is known to promote health.

My constructs Gematria and Ash were both built using a combination of magic and technology. For their own safety I have ordered them to not to enter Babbage until this is resolved. I myself felt slightly ill after being exposed to the weapon (perhaps from the drop of demon blood left in my ancestry) and found myself unable to harness energies through force of will as of this writing (the radiation has temporarily dampened my mystic skills).

Qlippothic-2 does not utilize magic, she may be of service if she can be found. (Her Mythos artifact uses neither Magic nor Science, but methods that should not be discussed among mortals.) Koen may also be of use, since he is no longer innately magical. He has also expressed an eagerness to hunt the dinosaur reported to be on the prowl in New Babbage since he has experience with this sort of predator. (My remaining Doll, Sparky, has been sent on a disaster relief mission to Belhaven as gesture of goodwill to my brother.)

I did examine the unexploded ordnance, then fell back to a safe distance. Whoever built these devices has taken secrets held by Inquisitors and Hunters for centuries and taken them to the fringe of modern technology. Ironically, I can conceive of a reactionary in Babbage designing such a device. Were it detonated in Caledon or Steelhead, or heaven forbid a realm of High Magic, the results would be disastrous.

While the Consulate did take a decisive role in the emergency last night, I have serious concerns about the lack of crowd control around the bomb. I'm even more dismayed that the Pirate Commodore was allowed to retrieve the weapon and leave custody with his shipmates. But then again, perhaps the Clockwinder knows more about the credibility of the pirate's threats of reprisal.

Thursday, March 5

The problem with dictatorships

In authoritarian regimes, the truth is often written in sand and not stone. Count Diablo has reappeared, insisted the he was never dead and thus never reanimated either.

I am certain at least that Marcus had a plan to automate the bloodwyne fermentation process, which was thwarted by Koen.

Who is telling the truth? Perhaps Marcus is succumbing to the family madness faster than I expected.

In light of the newest family troubles, we may be even more vulnerable.

A new Nuiscance and an old Evil

A catgirl waring goggles and a tool belt brought my missing doll Sasha to my door, in extreme disrepair. Tells me she was attacked by Luddite mice. Luddite mice? Mimmoths weren't bad enough? I ask the young lady what she'll accept as reward, all she asks for is lunch. Luckily I've started a small aquarium from my new fishing hobby.

She told me her name is Aviva. I ask her where the Luddite mice came from. They first appeared in Russia after a particularly violent spat of industrial unrest. Industry builds a better mousetrap, the mice unionize. Unlike mimmoths that destroy devices as a fight-or-flight response, Luddite mice are more sophisticated. They use pieces of machinery they've stolen as tools. They coordinate their sabotage and even subvert machines to their own ends, especially when food production is involved.

During the Steelhead meeting I felt a chill down my spine. Frau Lowey and I both sensed that Jeremiah had returned to Earth. I had an emergency meeting in Belhaven with Marcus that very night.

Koen had already been to Belhaven, and destroyed Marcus's hidden bloodfruit tree. He couldn't deny it. Bloodwing's vine cellar was pungent from it. I could smell it from halfway across the island. The thought of him using modern fermentation equipment in the 9 Muses Brewery to mass-produce bloodwyne...or worse, a tainted version of their standard ale, was highly disturbing to say the least. I wasn't even going to ask how he retrieved it Aleister's destroyed lair!

The curious thing is the day after Koen's sabotage, someone arrived in Belhaven and tried to reanimate Count Diablo to exact a favor from him. The figure identified himself as Jeremiah. The reanimation process failed, however. Diablo was back in the spirit world within a matter of hours. Chemical analysis of remains revealed the reanimation serum used was not potent enough. It was too old, diluted, or an insufficient amount.

Koen must have known Jeremiah was coming and destroyed Marcus's raw materials for the serum beforehand. Had our Father succeeded, certain enchantments over Belhaven would have broken. That is all I can divulge at this time.