Viv Trafalgar: Welcome to the first Aether Salon of Babbage! ::clears throat:: Many ladies such as myself hold salons as a means of both education and entertainment in their community – I hope today’s speakers assist us all in both lights. This salon, as well as those that follow, are intended to please and to educate. As well, because we in Babbage are noted far and wide for our busy hands (ahem. Please put that spoon back, dear.), Our salons will feature a “craft” portion at the end. In this case, as the craft contains eight very sharp objects, we will wait to put the boxes out until the end of the discussion. In hopes that this avoids any … Incidents.
Jimmy Branagh whispers to himself “Ain’t THAT the truth.”
Almira Leopold covers her mouth so as not to be giddy..
Ceejay Writer tries to look innocent.
Sylvie Franizzi murmurs “Good thinking.”
Sylvie Franizzi eyes Bob.
Viv Trafalgar: We are very grateful to a number of individuals – Miss Ceejay Writer for her support in publicizing this event, Miss Breezy Carver for her supplies of food and drink, and Mr. Draconis Neurocam for his recent public works that make the Palisades such a lovely place to reside.
Viv Trafalgar: (also eyes Bob) We are especially grateful to today’s sponsor, Miss Canolli Capalini of Capalini Fine Furnishings, for her wonderful chairs, without which we would all be standing. Many thanks indeed go to Serafina Puchkina, my partner in the Salon endeavour. Without her, I would have taken to my medicinals long ago. To our wonderful speakers, we are so pleased and honored to have you with us. Your experience brings much import to our subject today. We do have a Speakers’ Fund – the proceeds of which will be split in full among the featured speakers at the end of the salon.
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: django gets PAID?
Viv Trafalgar: Now, as to the rules of the salon. There are several speakers today, and we ask that you hold your questions until the end. There will be plenty of time for all questions and discussion. The craft boxes will go out following the discussion. ::pats Bob on the head::
Ceejay Writer nods at Bob “He’s working for it!”
Viv Trafalgar: Please observe common rules of etiquette, as well as SL niceties – in particular turning off HUDs and scripts that could cause lag and impair others’ enjoyment of the event. Please no biting or skewering of anyone with anything other than words. Duels to be taken outside. And lastly, as Miss Puchkina introduces the speakers for our topic today – “Curses!” – please enjoy the afternoon!
Serafina Puchkina: Today’s topic is an ancient one, encompassing several cultures and time periods. A quick perusal of the aether will reveals curses from ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, and China, to name only a few. There have been professional curse makers and specific rituals to follow. Curses are serious affairs, striking fear in its victims. Today’s speakers will enlighten us with events closer to home, that of curses and mysterious events that have occurred here in Babbage. Our first speaker is Mr. Django Yifu.
Django Yifu: Evenin’ All. Well I think most of you can guess why I’m here. It’s that dratted hand business. I dunno if it counts as a curse but it weren’t good. My grandpa is an adventurer of sorts, and he was explorin the southern continents. He discovered this island with all sorts of strange beasts… One of which was as tall as a house and twice as nasty! Grandpa is a fiesty one and he was not put off by a vicious monster, and bein as how he likes to keep trophies he thought he would hunt it down so hunt it he did and kill it too…
Beq Janus: django is a gypsy name, a fear of houses is to be expected
Django Yifu: very true Miss Janus. Grandpa had a big fight with it that lasted days but in the end he stood victorious,and as a token of his love for me he decided to send me the hand. It was a nice suprise I can tell you to find it on the docks waitin for me, so I put it on display for the good people of Babbage and that was when the trouble started. Only Poopers! It seemed that about the same time some people started gettin sick
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: coincidence!
Django Yifu: there was this terrible cough goin’ round. People hackin’ up all sorts of green stuff and blood
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: coincidence i say!
Ceejay Writer mutters, ‘coincidence my … er, ankle’
Django Yifu: and the Mayor was all ” We must take matters under control,” “The Bow Street will be called,” and “The thing should be burned.” It was most upsetting.
Ceejay Writer: And smelly.
Django Yifu: I hadn’t heard from Grandpa for ages and now I was being threatened with legal action. So anyway… Bob had sold some of the meat and it was mighty tastey, specially with apple pie I seem to remember. Then another crate arrived…it was these bottles of stuff called nectar. Mighty powerful it was and me and Bob had a blindin’ couple of days drinkin that stuff
that’s to the point.
Viv Trafalgar: You were saying something about a HAND?
Django Yifu: can’t remember much of it but I do remember eatin anything i could lay me hands on.
Ceejay Writer: I remember that. Drunken urchins everywhere.
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: good liquor that
Viv Trafalgar: considers sitting on bob
Django Yifu: Anyways…the hand got burned cos the mayor said that he would put me in prison otherwise.
Beq Janus: sounds like any Friday night so far, drunken urchins eating dodgy meat
Django Yifu: and then right after the hand got burned things got really bad. I woke up one night with the most terrible hunger pangs. I couldn’t find nothing to eat anywhere so I took to the streets.I searched and searched but no-one would feed me. Some even threatened me with guns. Then there’s this hazy patch where things are a bit foggy, and I wake up in the mornin’ with Captain Maelstrom stood over me. Captain Maelstrom mumbles something about creatures and fangs and stuff and he’s holdin this big gun and I’m feelin hungry still…so he takes me to the boat to get some food. The next day people are sayin that I was like…attacking people and that
Ceejay Writer: Ahem. Yes, you did. That bite HURT!
Django Yifu: And I did some biting and others got infected with whatever was wrong with me
Myrtil Igaly: sounds like rabies
Django Yifu: and then they wanted to bite and it was all a bit strange really.
Viv Trafalgar: ::hands Myrtil a cookie::
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: Wasn’t owt to do with the meat!
Myrtil Igaly takes the cookie and smiles big at Miss Trafalgar
Django Yifu: All I know was Dr Mason came up with the gun thing that Captain Maelstrom says he shot me with, and I felt better and me cough had gone and that was that… but… Since then there has been this feelin’ of something watching me! I keep hearing rumours of something searching for Grandpa and me but I think it’s just rumours
I’m sure it is…
sort of sure…
Myrtil Igaly: Weren’t you talking about a big monster stalking you? The one with the missing hand?
Django Yifu looks nervous
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: It was a load of lies! He’s sold out! Blame me for god’s sake why don’t ya!
Serafina Puchkina: Ahem! Our next speakers are Miss Janus and Miss Dagger.
Beq Janus: I should say that the hand curse of Master Yifu is but one of many that have befallen Babbage. I suspect that it is the fate of these shores as we encourage visitors from far afield and as a new state have a limited legal process to deal with quarantine
Jedburgh30 Dagger: …and limited forces to enforce it
Beq Janus: The hand curse was one that I nearly avoided altogether, I had been sequestered in my home beneath the waves for most of the time and luckily avoided both the initial cough and the spread of the disease through the inadequate efforts at incineration. It came to my attention however that despite the appalling effects visited upon the populace some were still keen to have the damned thing preserved.
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: some of us wanted it cooked, but OH NO!
Beq Janus: So I took it upon myself to take what remains I could and commit them to the deep. It was then that my own troubles with this thing began.Yes Bob, you wanted it cooked, and little did you think of those you might kill in your haste to fill your purse.
Django Yifu: in all fairness I think he gave most away free
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: no one died!
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: I did! I gave loads of folks a bit. I am generous!
Jedburgh30 Dagger: Perhaps we can discuss disease epidemiology on another date…
Beq Janus: The madness that surrounded this thing was beyond my ken. After I had buried it beneath the ocean I had thought us rid of the curse, but it was to be uncovered after just one night, and the thief, who is to this day unknown, made a failed attempt to lift the heavy casket from the ocean only to smash it into my own home risking flooding with luck it did not smash the crystal glazing.
Dreddpiratebob Streeter: And before anyone brings it up, it wasn’t me!
Beq Janus: it did however fracture the casket and a putrid green was seen to leak from it. There was talk of people having been infected by exposure to the tainted sea water and I felt guilty, without my part in this it would not have been in the sea. I collected the casket and resealing it as best I could took it far away to a deserted island and through the remains into the mouth of a volcano.
Adventure is not something one should seek I feel. It seems to find us of its own accord. Which I guess brings me to my next curse. And one which brings Jedburgh into the story. The seedier taverns of the port area, those frequented by the pirates were all talking of a treasure lost upon the seabed. Indeed many of the pirates were looking to recover the item, lured by the alleged value of this item. The tales also included details, though somewhat sketchy, of a curse associated with the treasure but of course, those of the more mercenary nature, were inclined to ignore these things.
As I stated before, adventure seems to find me, as I was wandering the seabed where I had been many a time before I encountered the corpse of a young lady. It was around this time that Miss Dagger joined me. I leant towards the corpse, that was sat, almost serenely, as if waiting for something. Its hand seemed to move out, toward me, and it “handed” me an amulet. At the time I put the movement down to the shifting of the sea. I am not one to take superstition at face value., but it became clearer later as I shall recount I stored the jewelry inside my hard suit, which is built with many iron pockets for recovering small items that I may find upon the sea bed. Miss Dagger and I returned to my Vernian home and examined the amulet.
Mindful of the alleged curse we prepared a solid casket and stowed it in it as soon as was possible. Yet even as we did it called out to us, a siren song, the likes of which I have never heard before or since. At this stage I believed in the curse, its powers over women had been alleged and then witnessed, we promptly sealed it and took it to the Bow Street Police. The full extent of the curse however was only revealed in the following days. Jedburgh and I recovered the body and arranged for an autopsy. The most terrible news was then announced. The victim, who we know as Juliana from the diaries circulated through the taverns, had bones that had been broken many times and healed, her body was also quite well preserved. Indeed she had been dead for but a few days. It seems that in taking the amulet, accepting it even. I had allowed the victim to die. I had killed her. I was in a terrible state, as you might imagine, and since then I have had the most terrible dreams. The dreams give me solace, but I know not if they are of my own making, an attempt to alleviate the guilt.
I cannot go into detail. Suffice to say that in my dreams, I live the life and death of Juliana.
Beq Janus: her torment as the amulet that seeks to preserve the life of the one who wears it, condemns her to a hellish existence of repeated drownings. My arrival, the acceptance of the amulet, was her final release. Juliana now rest in the church, she is soon to be buried.
Serafina Puchkina: Our next speaker is Miss Dagger.
Jedburgh30 Dagger: For my part in this matter, I arrived in town after the Hand incidents had ended. I have however maintained a sense of vigilance should the former owner decide to make an appearance.
Canolli Capalini mutters “never happen.”
Jedburgh30 Dagger: For my part in Miss Janus’ tale, I, too, found the rumors of an undersea treasure very intriguing, plus the thought of a treasure falling into the hands of someone with less than noble intents disturbing. So I began my own series of dives to locate the wreckage. On what became the last one, I found Miss Janus and the body. After we talked on the surface, we found we were of a similar mind on the matter, and we moved to her residence to examine the amulet. I would like to amplify what was said earlier…that the young lady sat in a trancelike pose on the bottom, not at all what I would have expected from a drowned person
Canolli Capalini coughs and mutters.. “Water currents put objects and drowned people in strange positions often.”
Jedburgh30 Dagger: Once the amulet was removed from Miss Janus suit, I, too, noticed a strange feeling.: Thankfully for me, her suit is metallic. I do not want to think what exposure to the amulet for an extended period of time would do in the suit I use… Apparently, I was less affected at that time, and between the two of us we kept our heads and encased the amulet in a box for transport to Bow Street. We decided that it was best stored by the authorities until the legal status of the item could be decided. We then decided to recover the body… I was most intrigued by the change in the body, to one of repose… Without relating the grim details of the autopsy, it was as she said…the body was recently deceased, even though there were indications of a greater age.
At the time, my experiences personally were not as extreme as Miss Janus, but I have had…what I would call a lingering aftereffect. A feeling of anxiety, and I find myself drawn to the station to look at the amulet. I have no desire to possess it, but still and yet…there is a call, somewhere in the back of my mind. I can only say that I was lucky to have a comrade in this affair, and only hope that I have been able to offer some degree of assistance to Miss Janus
Beq Janus: I could not have managed without you
Jedburgh30 Dagger: As she said, sometimes things come to us….
Beq Janus: I can recount the legend if Miss Dagger is finished. The legend states that the amulet was created as a gift. It does indeed preserve the beauty and youth of the wearer, though it seems only females, as our experience seems to confirm. The downside is that all those loved by the one who owns the jewel seem to suffer. Perhaps not even those beloved, as the loss of the ship may show.
Ceejay Writer: Are Beq and Jed doomed to a life alone?
Beq Janus smiles at Ceejay. MY life’s love is already spent I am afraid. The legend recalls a chieftan who stole the amulet for his wife and then all around her died in a fearful blaze.
Django Yifu: Miss Janus and Miss Dagger I am impressed by your spirit. Is the amulet still in the station? And is it still just under glass?
Beq Janus: Yes, it is.
Dreddpiratebob Streeter shouts “swot!”
Beq Janus: IT is to remain there until the court hearing
Sanus Kanarik: Django, I will eat you if you touch it.
Django Yifu: So what’s to stop some “pirate” from going and getting it?
Beq Janus: However, the justice is out of town at the moment.
Django Yifu: wink wink
Jedburgh30 Dagger: It was specially purchased by the mayor. I assume it is not normal glass
Viv Trafalgar: Have we determined that the amulet is not the … ruby?
Beq Janus: I think the same glass was used to prevent the loss of the device that brought Mr Moriarty to us.
Jedburgh30 Dagger: The amulet has a ruby, but not THE ruby.
Sanus Kanarik: What type of jewel is it?
Beq Janus: That is unclear to me. I am no expert in gems.
Jedburgh30 Dagger: The amulet is a ruby, held by two golden snakes.
Viv Trafalgar: with that in mind, we have so much to thank Django for – and Beq and Jed. The craft is in the boxes I will set out – We have created a kit for voodoo makings. It is a rough doll
and pins. I do hope you all will be careful of the pins. It is our way of saying thank you for coming today !
Sylvie Franizzi is VERY glad the boys aren’t around for this!
Viv Trafalgar: Please join the group – and let us know ideas for future salons as this is our first, I think it was fabulous much because of the speakers!
Serafina Puchkina: For safety’s sake put the doll on the ground before inserting the pin
Viv Trafalgar: Thank you so much for your support of the Aether Salon!