My complete “The Smythe-Worthington Foundation” RPG setting is up on Patreon! (Free!)

Here ya go. Or here:

It’s pre-apocalyptic time travel RPGing at its finest, you know. Then again: how many of those kinds of campaigns are even out there, anyway?

Patreon!

The January 2023 Patreon stuff is up!

And I’m tired!

There ya go.

Patreon!

Snippet the Last, ROCCA JACK AND THE LIQUID GOLD JOB.

Need to think about the title, but it’s in the can.

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“That is reasonable, Captain Hwinda,” Miss Mehrotra allowed. “That is also why you brought the tribe of bears out, yes?”

“They’re good sorts,” Jack replied, slightly defensively. “They’ll be a lot happier up in Virginia.” Where everybody’s crazy anyway, he thought. Certainly the Virginians themselves were eager to resettle a tribe of well-behaved bears who turned human when the moon was in the sky. Not to mention turning them into mad Virginians, themselves: the last he saw of Mr. Bear, he was being bemusedly fitted for a doublet and hose.

“Yes, better there than home,” Miss Mehrotra mused. “Although a bearwere or two might liven up dull quarterly meetings — well, no matter.”

01/29/2023 Snippet, ROCCA JACK AND THE LIQUID GOLD JOB.

Hail Hydra!

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The Emancipation was exactly where Amos’s charm told him it was. Unfortunately, the charm didn’t give a damn about anything else that might be with the ship. That pretty much included things like brackish hydras. This one wasn’t big enough to curl itself around the ship, but it had given it a try.

Amos handled it well, all things considered. “Why is it doing that?” he muttered, after getting a good look through the spyglass. “It can’t eat the ship.”

“It’s a Dominion monster,” Jack replied. “The first ones were bred to drag ships down, only they’re just too stupid to be trained at all. We usually kill every single one we see, but… Cursed Jersey.”

“Cursed Jersey.” In Amos’s mouth, the name came out like a curse. Which, to be fair, was how it was sounding in Jack’s mouth, too. “We don’t have these things, up in the States.”

“Yeah, they like warmer waters. Big problem, down in the Gulf.’ Jack sighed. “We can kill it with enough volley fire, but it’ll wreck your ship first. The cargo, too.”

Book of the Week: SCARLET.

It’s funny: I would normally presume on old acquaintance and discreetly hint that Genevieve Cogman might pass along an advance review copy of her upcoming vampire alternate Scarlet Pimpernel novel Scarlet – we’re both old In Nomine hands, after all. At the same time, though, I want her new book to sell when it comes out in May, so that same past history is arguing against said presumption. I have it on pre-order, and I’ll undoubtedly order it in paperback, once I’ve read the Kindle. I’m okay with that.

01/27/2023 Snippet, ROCCA JACK AND THE LIQUID GOLD JOB.

Ambush!

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“We had run afoul of a sudden squall,” Amos went on. “The captain, God rest her soul, knew these waters well enough to navigate the channel into the Bay, but we took some damage in the dark, and lost most of the water stores. She sent me and most of the crew to the island to find a spring for refilling our barrels. If only we had just tried to reach Newport, instead! We could have stretched out the water for that long.”

“Cursed Jersey’s no place to sail with sprung barrels,” Jack told him. “I’d have looked for water, myself.”

Amos shuddered. “Well, we found some. It saved our lives, too. Just not how we reckoned it would. While we were filling from a spring on the island, those damned beasts woke up and swarmed the Emancipation! They can hop on the water, you see. Hop on the water, and jump right up the anchor chain…

“We heard the fighting as we returned. When we saw what those things were starting to do to the crew still left aboard, we rowed like the damned, but everybody was dead by the time we came alongside, including the captain.

“Then it was our turn to be savaged.”

Got some preliminary sketches back on COVENANTS, too.

I don’t want to show any of them because the artist’s still working, but I’m torn. They’re all good so far, but I can’t decide which one of two I like for the cover of COVENANTS. The best one of the four might be a little too busy for a cover, but I like it personally just a bit more than the second-best one. Fortunately, I have some time to think it over.

Moe Lane

PS: In other news, the entire house has what is thankfully not Covid, in varying degrees (I’m not even sure if I really have it, or whether I’m being psychosomatic, out of sympathy). Fortunately, cold medicine seems to be shifting it for the worst sufferers…

In the Mail: Spare Keys for Strange Doors.

Spare Keys for Strange Doors is a webcomic on indefinite hiatus; it features a British couple who do supernatural — well, it depends. Sometimes it’s pest control; sometimes it’s rescuing mythological creatures that are being pests. It’s fun and charming*, and the author got a book together, so I went and got a copy because God knows it ain’t easy out there for an independent publisher who needs to crowdfund for working capital. We’re all Bozos on this bus.

Moe Lane

*It’s got the same kind of matter-of-fact view about magic that Widdershins has, which I like. I think that’s where I heard about it first, in fact.