Pray silence for her Imperial Majesty. Silence, and darkness.
Call in favours at the Empress' Court
At the Court of the Traitor Empress, the great, the good, the perceptibly less good and the faintly misshapen all rub shoulders.
Exchange a considerable quantity of Connections for London Street Signs
Unlocks Connected: Society 32
'Hard times, my dear, hard times. I'm having to break up my collection. But you know, I've always liked you. Perhaps you can find a home for some of it?'
Life at the Palace is sedate, but some people enjoy more active pursuits. Joining a hunting party will also be a good way to meet influential people.
[Unlocked with Persuasive 85]
Bats? Are they sure? Apparently, they are. Apparently, the trick is to mimic their calls. It confuses them, and they can be caught in a net.
Lizards thrive around the ponds, but you'll be hunting the slightly larger ones that live in the wilder parts of the gardens…
The life of the mind
Life at the Empress' Court is not all about hedonistic pursuits. You must also see to the cultivation of the intellect.
[Unlocked with Persuasive 85]
Discuss politics at a salon
Be careful, though. You never know who might be listening.
Discuss the arts at a tea-party
Painting, literature, the dramatic arts, even poetry - these are all very suitable topics for showing off your erudition.
Discuss philosophy whilst taking the air
The ability to discuss profound and abstract concepts intelligently is highly valued at court, as it is one so many lack.
Make friends with the Empress' dog
A puppy comes rushing up as you stroll in the gardens. Adorable little thing. But he looks like the one you've been told belongs to the Empress.
[Unlocked with Persuasive 85]
Give the puppy a biscuit
How could you resist his big brown eyes? And the Empress will surely look favourably on someone who is kind to her dog.
Keep your distance
You have already got one scar from an encounter with a canine - albeit one as different as it is possible to be from this little scrap. But still. Say, 'nice doggie' and move on.
[Unlocked with marked by the Eater-of-Chains 1]
Take the dog with you
It will be pleasant to have a companion for your walk. You can throw sticks for him to fetch, and so forth.
The Corruption of Youth
The Palace enforces a sedate and stuffy atmosphere, but you have seen hints of a secret, livelier side to some of the younger visitors.
[Unlocked with Persuasive 85]
Join a picnic expedition
Some of the younger socialites are planning lunch in a remote corner of the gardens. Accompany them. Their smiles hint that lunch is not all they are planning.
The seduction of music
Under normal circumstances, music is frowned upon in the Palace. Frequently, dances and salons feature string quartets or chamber orchestras who remain silent - their sole function is decorative. But some of the younger socialites are inclined to rebel, holding recitals in far corners of the attics. You should join in.
Someone else's scandal
Unlocks: Persuasive 97
A Permanent Under-secretary has been indiscreet with a noted poet. The press already has the story.
Help the poor fellow out
His gratitude would be a worthy prize. You could attempt to sway the gentlemen of the press into leaving him alone.
Tea at Court
You cannot avoid it forever. Sooner or later, you will have to take tea with the dusty old veterans of the Court.
Unlocks: Persuasive 100
Go to afternoon tea
The tea is decent and the macaroons delicious. But can you strain anything useful from this interminable afternoon?
There are a number of romantic options available to you at court.
Carving out a reputation
The below opportunities open up a number of ways for you to build up inspiration for your latest work. These have been moved onto their own page due to the number of them.
A slow day
Unlocks: Persuasive 97
A silent, dreary day at the Court. Has even romance lost its sheen?
A polite tap on the shoulder
The Veteran Privy Counsellor would like you to come this way. He's a Duke, isn't he? You should probably pop along.
What's your next work?
The Veteran Privy Counsellor looks expectantly at you. His glass of port quivers dangerously in his hand. What's your next project?
Poetry is a mirror which makes the distorted beautiful. The Neath could benefit from your reflections. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 34 to finish your work]
Complete a novel
Not everyone has a novel in them. You do. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 34 to finish your work]
Write and stage a play
Theatre is the true art. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 24 to finish your work: this will be a little quicker.]
Write a song and have it performed
You'll have to be subtle. The Empress hates choral works, but in the far corners of the Palace much of the court appreciate a good song. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 24 to finish your work: this will be a little quicker.]
Compose a symphony and have it performed
The Empress hates noise, but sometimes makes an exception for a good symphony. Apparently the Consort likes them. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 24 to finish your work]
Ballet hasn't been popular for decades. Still, the Veteran Privy Counsellor is thought to have a soft spot for it. [Raise your Inspired… quality to 24 to finish your work: this will be a little quicker.]
Your poem is complete!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 1, Inspired… 34
The ink of the last line dries. You set down your pen at last. It is done. A poem for the ages. A poem to assure you immortality. But what manner of work is it?
An Epic Cycle
Nobody writes huge, sprawling heroic epics any more. Nobody but you, anyway. Twelve thousand stanzas of heroism, tragedy and myth.
A Tragedy of Romance
A timeless love. The cruel blade of fate. Death by water. A great many tears. The height of poetic fashion.
An Allegorical Satire
If one enjoys breathing, one does not write extended satires concerning the Empress, nor especially her Consort. However, the rest of those windbags in the Court are fair game.
Your novel is complete!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 2, Inspired… 34
Your work is complete! A masterful novel, plucked from the blue skies of inspiration and pinned to your desk with a quill. Surely this manuscript will set the literary world afire. But what exactly have you written?
A Gothic Romance
Desperate lovers. Ruined castles. A noble family's secret shame. All spiced up with a few flashes of nightgown and perhaps a monster.
A Tale of the Future!
A bold vision of life in the next century! A world of gleaming brass and sparking globes. A tale of London's triumphant return to the surface!
A Patriotic Adventure!
A rip-roaring tale of Empire, hardship, determination and giving those foreigners a damn sound thrashing! Thrills and danger in the Elder Country! The search for the Mountain of Youth!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 3, Inspired… 24
Everything is prepared. The performers assure you that they have memorised their lines. The curtain goes up in five minutes. But what manner of theatrical delight have you produced?
A Slapstick Farce
A tonic for the Empress's woes. It is long past time that the Court enjoyed the humour of the common man. And surely anyone, no matter how exalted, can enjoy the spectacle of two urchins pelting a Bishop with crumpets?
A Wry Satirical Comedy
Where the weighty is trivial and the insincere mouth earnest words about the fancies and nonsensitudes of life. A pithy epigram for every occasion.
A Heart-Wrenching Tragedy
Passions that destroy all before them. Innocence savaged by uncaring destiny. A story fit for the Neath.
Publish your song!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 4, Inspired… 24
The Shuttered Palace is not a welcoming venue for songs. If you publish your work all across London, you might yet hear it in the far corners of the Court. But what have you written?
A Rousing Hymn
Something to get the blood of decent folk pumping. A rousing call to action, and some old-fashioned righteousness.
A Newly Arranged Folk Song
A new version of an old song. A good one. One of those tunes about bedding those you shouldn't, robbing folks and spraying blood up the walls.
A Patriotic Anthem
A flag-waving riot of music, with a chorus everyone can sing. Something to bring tears to the eyes of the most zealous partisans.
Your symphony is complete!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 5, Inspired… 24
Music is usually banned from the Shuttered Palace. However, the Consort is old-fashioned and likes the occasional symphony, so the Empress is prepared to make an exception. But what manner of music will there be?
Somewhat challenging music
Unlocks: a Scholar of the Correspondence 1
The Correspondence is not meant for human voices. Neither is it meant for musical instruments, but that's not going to stop you.
An exuberant cannonade
A full orchestra. No, two full orchestras! A regiment of drummers! A platoon of riflemen! A cannon!
A choral requiem
Melancholy and stately and beautiful. Music is so rare at the Palace that it is one's duty to produce something both exceptional and fitting.
Stage your ballet!
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 1, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 6, Inspired… 24
The ballet has not enjoyed the favour of the Court since before the Fall. Such disdain will make your victory all the sweeter. The performance will have to be silent, of course. But what sort of ballet will you stage?
A light work based around a Neathy folk tale
An old-fashioned sort of ballet. The Veteran Privy Counsellor gets very excited about this sort of thing.
A work of romance and automata
A tale of love in the deep places, drawing on your own experience. Clay dancers! Social commentary! This will make them sit up and watch. And possibly run away.
A work of barely-clad decadence
Dull, is it? Old-fashioned? Hah! You're going to give them a night to remember. Presumably you've booked passage to the tomb-colonies in advance.
Called to the office
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 4
The Veteran Privy Counsellor summons you to his offices.
Off to the office
Go and share a little port with the old fellow, and see what he has to say.
A weighty decision
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 5
The Veteran Privy Counsellor wants you to compose an opera so audacious that it will get you banished from the Empress' Court.
Whatever your reasons, you will write his opera for him. [In a moment, you may indicate your reasons.]
What? No! You have work to do! Your ascent to immortality will not be derailed by intrigue! [Continue at the Shuttered Palace for now.]
A stroke of good fortune
Unlocks: 8 Fate
The Counsellor is a veteran of intrigue… but it so happens your Palace contacts are perfectly placed to uncover valuable information. [Fate will give you a clue to his intentions.]
Try to discover his reasons
Previous Unlocks: Sudden Insight x 3, Cryptic Clue x 300
New Unlocks(January 2012) 3 x Sudden Insight, 2 x An Identity Uncovered!
Watchful challenge, straightforward at 135
This man is a veteran of sixty years of palace intrigue. Are you sure you want to risk prying into his business?
Why are you doing this?
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 6
The Veteran Privy Counsellor wants you to create something unique: a incendiary bomb of an opera which will shatter your glittering reputation into a million pieces. And you've agreed!
For the art
No censors. No limits.
For Empress and Country?
The Veteran Privy Counsellor was too artful to say. But perhaps they need you to be exiled for a reason.
For the Revolution
Unlocks: Connected: Revolutionaries 10
An opportunity to thumb your nose at the whole Court, live on stage? Wait until they hear of this in the Flit.
Because you've done the Court.
Look at these people. They're wraiths. Leeches. Why did you ever care about their good opinion?
Because I hate the Empress
Down with the Traitor Empress!
For the freedom of expression
This is one performance that the Ministry of Public Decency won't interfere with.
To make you famous
Whatever happens, this is going to be talked about for years.
The Grand Finale
Unlocks: carving out a Reputation at Court 6, creating a masterpiece for the Empress 7, Inspired 24
Your opera for the Empress is complete! Once the curtain comes down, you'll very likely be banished from Court altogether. Let's make this one count.
A heavyweight epic mocking the Empress
An overwrought monstrosity in the style established by 'Odin's Horse'. A big, serious opera where the Queen of Valkyries is a lame, lumbering, blood-drinking monster.
A sentimental love story
A story where the young princess will do anything to rescue her diseased lover. Who unexpectedly gets chopped up by pirates.
A light comedy about the lives of the saints
An amusing hagiographical romp through history. Remember to invite the bishops. Enough to get you solidly exiled, but nothing that will offend the Empress personally.
Tristram Bagley's unfinished masterpiece
Staging the impossible thing is only marginally easier than smuggling the Topsy King into the Palace.
Unlocked with: Ambition: Heart's Desire - the Topsy King 22, **a Scholar of the Correspondence 1**
After doing this you are immediately taken to the next story option. You cannot choose to do something else.
On the way to the docks
As you walk briskly to exile, the Veteran Privy Counsellor appears and falls into step with you.
Before you go
Have a little chat with the man who orchestrated your downfall.
The Duchess's Banquet
The Duchess is holding a banquet of some kind at the Palace in honour of the Feast of the Exceptional Rose…The more Admired have been invited. That's you, of course.
unlocked with Admired 3
Catch the attention of the Duchess
The Duchess has many things in common with her feline companions. They say that if you approach her with perfect stealth, she will tell you a secret.
unlocked with Admired 5
Shadowy challenge, straightforward < 77
Share a little honey with the Captivating Princess
The Captivating Princess was born in the year of the Fall. She wears scandal like a Parisian gown, and is rumoured to have a taste for honey.
A matter of luck: it could go either way.
unlocked with Admired 7
Joke with His Amused Lordship
His Amused Lordship is an occasional visitor to the palace. He is known to appreciate humour bordering on the bawdy. He is suspected of frequenting lower class establishments of entertainment in disguise.
unlocked with Admired 9
What's going on in the wine cellars?
Sounds emerge from below. Is that music? Is something going on in the wine cellars? Perhaps you could slip away and find out. Don't get caught.
(A matter of luck: it could go either way.)
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