Timeline

Reader's Letter:
My Night With Saccadius

 
 

Dearest Sasha,

You will never guess who I met last night in town? Saccadius Cartwright, the government scientist who presented the first clock parts back some ten years ago, at the Department for the Advancement of Science's exposition Tomorrow's World Today.

Saccadius Cartwright
Saccadius Cartwright
Photo by Oliver Facey

I'm afraid Canada has not been kind to him. He seemed to be drinking heavily and was ranting and raving to anyone who would listen about this and that. He seemed most upset about how things are turning out with the clocks, the Clockwork Watch and all that.

He also warned me away from a fellow scientist, a sinister man. I have seen him around before. He wanders the docks looking for ladies of negotiable affection as far as I can tell. The queer thing is that I have seen him go away with several such ladies but I can't think that I have seen them since.

I think Mr Cartwright was quite right to warn me away from him. Poor man, I wish I had been able to think of something to do for him. He seemed full of melancholy, I don't think he regrets helping bring clockwork automata to the world but I think his sorrow is tied up with it.

Seeing him had me thinking back to the Tomorrow's World Today exposition. Did I ever tell you that I was there when a chracter known as the alchemist was arrested? Dragged away by plain clothes police officers he was, to chants of "long live the alchemist" from the crowd.

To this day I know not either what he was arrested for nor why the crowd supported him and I have not heard his name since. I wonder whatever became of him? Perhaps he was packed of to Canada also and was not lucky enough to be allowed to return like Mr Cartwright.

Another Rumour doing the rounds, and you will think this either quite scandalous or quite ludicrous, is that Her Majesty, our beloved and esteemed Queen Victoria, is no longer on the throne. That she has been replaced by an automata in her likelness. Can you imagine such a thing?

I could not at first countenance it, but on consideration it is true that Her Majesty must be quite a prodigous age. The question is how would one exchange the queen for an automaton and leave the country none the wiser? Moreover what would be the benefit of doing such a thing? I rather think that the presence of clocks in our midst has made us paranoid.

I hope this letter reaches you well.

Give my love to father.

Elizabeth

 

Jailbroken Clockworks Drown Man

By Staff Reporter

 
 

Life in the East End's "Clockwork Underworld" took a deadly turn over the weekend, when two jailbroken Clockwork Servants jumped into the River Thames and dragged a man to his death.

The man simply known as Zach, was a 22 year old employee at The Den, the notorious establishment owned by Christopher Hargreaves and Ella Mayhem. Several eye witnesses claim to have tried to prevent the incident, but were overpowered by the Clocks.

The culprits, Mei Mei, and Ming Cho (picture), who were Clockwork Servants at the venue, and had been inspected and certified as "safe" by officers from Clockwork Watch.

One eye witness claims that a group calling themselves 'scientists' attempted a procedure several times, and were eventually successful in jailbreaking the devices.

The person went on to say that both claimed they had not been treated well by Zach, and were intent on revenge. They became agitated when Zach revealed that both are locked up in crates when not in use.

Zach was then dragged, kicking and screaming, to his death. His body has still not been recovered.

A spokesperson for the Department for the Advancement of Sciences, said this highlights the dangers of tampering with Clockwork programming, and that Mei Mei and Ming Cho, had must have been reprogrammed poorly. "Each probably retained an element of awareness, but with limited functionality, and Zach's treatment probably did not help matters".

Records show that Mei Mei and Ming Cho, had been employed as personal protectors to a rich family, and were trained in deadly combat techniques. No one could tell us if they were still functional or if jumping into the river would eventually kill them.

With so many jailbroken Clocks on the streets, it was only a matter of time till an incident like this happened. 

Clockwork Watch are warning the public not to apprehend or approach Mei Mei or Ming Cho, and to contact them through the electronic telegram. They are said to be extremely dangerous and in a confused state.

 

Life in The Den: Business as Usual?

By Ella Mayhem

 
 

While on most given days I would be as inclined to trust that spiv, Hargreaves about as far as I could throw him; it does appear he has a rather apt imagination well suited to the world of hospitality and entertainment.

The Den has proved to be a hit, not only with the lowly ‘Forgotten’ of our Sanctuary of Whitechapel, but also several of my former esteemed colleagues on the Clean Air Committee, Fairfax in particular. Takings were so high on our first evening of business that my senior Mayhems and I have already had to take steps to rinse every ha’penny that has crossed our palms since.

Publicity conscious as ever, we’ve chosen to focus on local real estate and businesses; thus laundering our guineas and appearing to regenerate the East End.

While it is always nice to be popular, I have had to resort to wearing a veil whenever operating under the mantle of Mayhem. I do so partially because I simply cannot afford to be recognised by my father’s colleagues and peers but mostly because I have obviously been spending too much time in the Fog Research Laboratory and as a

result, vapours from Mr Hardie’s damned chemical concoctions have turned my hair a garish hue of blue! I had best get a suitable wig before Lady Dawson’s next mind numbing social affair...

I have always been used to lurking in the shadows for profit but the implementation of the veil seems to have added an essence of mystery and theatre.

When veiled, Hargreaves insists on following what little he has gleaned of Division M protocol and has every bar wench, card sharp and punter refer to me as ‘The Mistress’. When he’s feeling particularly grand he greets me as “Mistress of the Forgotten” loudly and boldly across the already over-subscribed Absinthe atomisers. I feel I am being made a spectacle of in my own blessed bordello.

What is that weasel up to?

Ella Mayhem
The Den, Clockwork Underworld

 

Readers Letters: A Letter To Christopher Hargreaves

 
 

Master Hargreaves,

Much as I have enjoyed our little bouts in the Fog veiled streets of the Borough, I feel it is about time we stopped dancing around each other and behaved. For one, there are only too many windows one can replace before losing patience. Secondly, events in the Commons have accelerated the return of the Clockwork Project and brought the state of our relationship to a head; I fear I may have to forego the gavottes, the moonlight and roses and make fast with my proposals, so to speak.

Having placed me under scrutiny, and I know you have, you will have learned that I have the resources and the influence to have had you shut down by now and are no doubt questioning my intentions. I wish to make it perfectly clear that I harbour no desire to eradicate nor subjugate you at all. You are an interesting man, Mr Hargreaves with far more potential than your current operation truly allows you; therefore, I would like to offer you an opportunity. Think of it as a merger of sorts or at least, a partnership of convenience.

Very soon this country will go to war with itself; it will pitch rich against poor, clock against man, masters against servants and republicans against The Crown. In such chaos, as I’m sure you are aware, conditions are ripe for profit but they are also ripe for so much more. In these troubling times why victimize the forgotten of Whitechapel at all when more promising and lucrative marks lie in Westminster or the Fairfax Industrial Estates? In these troubling times it would be churlish not come to some arrangement.

It is my intention that we declare the East End a mutual protectorate and in exchange my senior Mayhems will guide you to newer and larger avenues of profit. You would also have limited access to The Network and be assisted with the political means to expand your operation further afield, out-with Sanctuary boundaries, of course. This is not an offer I make lightly; however it has become apparent that our respective areas of expertise compliment each other well and I hope that you might wish to participate in Mayhem projects in the future.

It is my pleasure to invite you to take tea with me at the site of our last confrontation. I thought you may appreciate the poetry of forging a treaty on a former battleground. While this is a peaceful business meeting, I would not dream of insisting that all sidearms be left behind: I never leave home without a concealed blade or pistol and would consider it foolish of you not to follow suit.

Should you or your party have any special dietary requirements I would advise you to let Mrs O’Neill at the Red Lion know as soon as possible, she does so hate learning such things at the last minute.

Wednesday afternoon, 4 o’clock for half past. I look forward to meeting you at last.

Mistress E Mayhem

 

Illegality Thrives In Clockwork Underworld

 
 

Illegality thrives in what has been named the "Clockwork Underworld" - one of the No-Go zones in London's East End, according to a special investigation by the London Gazette.

In one area, an unlicensed establishment called The Den dedicates itself to providing services deemed  'alternative and different'. The venue, owned by a known local criminal - Christopher Hargreaves, and one Ella Mayhem, serves up illicit cocktails with Absinthe, while people are entertained by bands and burlesque performers.

Some establishments are known to  provide Clockwork-Only services to automata freed from its basic programming. The First Oasis, set up by a group called the Machine Liberation Front  wants an end to what it calls "Clockwork slavery". Posters claiming that "Clocks Are People" and "Salvation Is Coming" hang on the walls, as a reminder that conflic may not be far away.

While not much is known about the number of Clockworks now operating in the country, the fact that many are "jailbroken" - free from all restrictions, will come as a rallying call to those asking for a public inquiry into Clockwork ownership.

This latest revelation is a result of the dusk till dawn curfew imposed by the government, and the inability of the police to enforce law and order.