tml> Girls' Town

The virtual village of magical femininity

Previous Archive | The Index | Next Archive

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Quelle brunette!Chocks Away Pettes

My Dear Friends, one and all, It seems to be a jolly dreary time of year at the present mome, with many people feeling down in the old dumps. So I thought I'd introduce a bit of adventure to perk us all up a little. This is in the form of a ripping, young lady who is a relatively new discovery for me, but may be familiar to some of you.

She is Flight Officer Joan Worralson, familiarly known as "Worrals". She is one to inspire the Brunette adventuresses amongst you, and perhaps to get some Blonde hearts and eyelashes-a-fluttering!

An intrepid Brunette, Worrals first made her debut in the Girl's Own paper published on the borders of Trent and Kadoria. Instantly popular, the stories also became books, ten of which were published in Kadoria, and one in Quirinelle.

An all round good sort, Worrals earned her pilot's wings at eighteen, and in the stories  she flies Tiger Moths, Reliants, Merton Midgets and even the Ranger Sea Plane. She can parachute out of an aircraft, drive a car at speed, and also a lorry or motorbike!

Every blonde should have one! She's a strong swimmer, can shoot straight (Aristasian Brunettes don't miss, remember!) and as if all that's not enough, she's fluent in French and German.

Worrals is known for her icy cool nerve, has a deep feeling for fair play and duty, and is described as "immaculately British".

Are those Blonde sighs I hear through elektraspace?!

Well, don't get those hopes up I'm afraid Girls, as Worrals has a constant companion in former school friend and now "Section Officer" Betty Lovell, known as "Frecks". Glaringly Blonde, Frecks is described as "less stern" than Worrals, more overtly feminine, a worrier rather than a doer. She has a penchant for pictures, tennis and chocolate, which arouses Worrals' active disdain!

Although Frecks is also revealed to be afraid of the dark, she is however, always there when she is needed and proves on more than one occasion that she can fight her corner savagely when required.

Worrals and Frecks seem to take turns in getting each other out of an assortment of scrapes! Throughout the series they fly far and fast, often to dangerous places, always making it back to blighty, they prove to be a formidable team.

Up, up and away!Worrals titles include "Worrals on the warpath",  "Worrals Flies again", "Worrals in the wilds" and "Worrals goes afoot" name but a few. I have been lucky to find unexpectedly "Worrals in the wilds" in a specialist shop. The series are unfortunately not currently in print, but hurrah! can quite easily be found in all good Elektraspatial Bookshops!

  I hope Blondes and Brunettes alike enjoy this little review and recommendation, and that talk of Worrals has awoken some adventuring spirits for when the winter weather and moods have lifted!

Chocks away!

Miss B* x

Interested in America

Hello Ladies of this Gracious Empire,

My name is Laine and I live in the U.S.  I learned for the first time of Aristasia on yesterday evening, and I must say, I've could not stop thinking of this amazingly enchanting place.  My distinct pleasure in the knowledge has, however, been slightly tarnished in learning that the open school is in London.  I was wondering, however, what opportunity might be afforded to an aspirant across the Ocean?  Is it possible I could become a Friend, or must I forget this newfound dream altogether?

Thank you so much for your time.


E. Laine 

We have an on-line school group here, though it tends to be a bit quiet. You are always welcome here at Girls' Town. A lot of girls keep in touch with Aristasia from afar. We are hoping to have a much more regular discussion group at the Lipstick Theatre. May I suggest you go there and join the Femme-femme Community group. We are hoping to make a very busy international Aristasian community there soon.

The Provinces of Aristasia & Invisible Dollies


I have happened upon a printed map depicting the Provinces of Aristasia, once part of the original interactive map.  If useful to the archives, I shall be most happy to scan it and send it to you.

Also, I have found HTML of the original "Miracle of Any Century" description for Invisible Dollies!

How gleeful I was to find these in my archives of the early days of innocence, before the web became the noisy arena is is today.

Do let me know if these interest the Royal Office of Aristasia!

Princess Eryn of Itasca,

Thank you! We should be delighted to have these things — sorry for the delay in posting. The Aristasia postbox has been out of order for several days,

We are also anxious to know if anyone has a copy of the essay The Conformist Sex — an important earlier Aristasian work. We have a copy here, but two pages are missing. Has anyone the full text?

Aristasian Spirituality

Some interesting discussions have been taking place at the Aristasian Spirituality Group, so if you are interested in Aristasian spirituality and devotionalism and the ideas behind it, do take a look here.

Messages are open to the public even if you are not a group-member.


New cards for a new yearNew Elektracards

With a new year, The Lipstick Theatre is starting its new range of free Electracards to send to your friends.

Glamorous images with pithy captions that celebrate femininity, elegance and style with wit and gaiety.

The collecton has only just started, but do pop along to the Lipstick Theatre Card Shop and see the delightful things that are there already.

Happy card-hunting.

And, of course, happy new year.

The Blonde Management


Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Even Prefects’ Jokes are About School

Mary wakes up one morning and realises it is the first day of term and she is obliged to go to school. The idea fills her with such horror that she burrows down under the blankets and refuses to come out.

Her mother knocks at her door and calls, "Mary, dear, if you're not out of bed soon you'll be late!"

"I'm not going to school, Mummy! I simply CAN'T."

"Of course you can, dear. In fact, you must."

"All the children will make fun of me."

"Children can be beastly, dear, but you can't let that discourage you. Now, up you get."

"And all the mistresses hate me."

"No more of this nonsense, dear. Out of bed, please."

"And the lessons are all so BORING... I can't, can't, can't go! I

"For goodness' sake, Mary, you HAVE to go! You're the headmistress!"

Miss Drusilla

Something Beautiful from the East

Happy New Year, darlings! Now that the pink champagne has run out, who fancies starting twenty-oh-five with a little poetry? This is an old favourite of mine, written by a lady poetess in 19th century China named Wu Tsao. It hasn't a name; it's known only by the tune to which she sang it.

To the tune “Flowers Along the Path through the Field”

The lost belovedI have closed the double doors.
In what corner of the heavens is she?
A horizontal flute
Beyond the red walls
Blown as gently as the breeze
Blows the willow floss.
In the lingering glow of the sunset
The roosting crows ignore my melancholy.
Once again I languidly get out of bed.
After I have burned incense,
I loiter on the jewelled staircase.
I regret the wasted years,
Sick, afraid of the cold, afraid of the heat,
While the beautiful days went by.
Suddenly it is the Autumn Feast of the Dead.
Constantly disturbed by the changing weather,
I lose track of the flowing light
That washes us away.
Who moved the turning bridges
On my inlaid psaltery?
I realise---
Of the twenty-five strings
Twenty one are gone

Isn't that just the sweetest, saddest thing?

Anne Belleanne

Blonde penguin Joke

I say pettes, have you heard this one?

A blonde is walking along one day when she finds a penguin. The penguin attaches itself to her with cries that sound suspiciously like "mama" in penguin language.

So the blonde rushes off to a brunette friend, penguin in tow, and says. "I say, you brunettes know everything. What shall I do with this penguin?"

"Take it to the zoo," says the brunette.

So off trots Blondie, penguin in tow.

The brunette sees her trotting along the next morning, penguin still in tow.

"I say," she says, "why didn't you take that penguin to the zoo as I told you?"

"I did," said Blondie, "and she liked it so much that today I am taking her to the kinema."


Preeesent LEGS!Call to Legs

I came across these four blonde heroines of The Airborne Forces of Quirinelle having their stockings inspected by an undoubtedly horribly stern brunette officer before taking off.

If you think you see and hear the four blondes giggle at this most serious occasion, I can tell you that both your eyes and ears delude you, for our four heroines are actually engaged in producing a blonde battle cry.

But battle giggle or battle cry, does it matter?

What army would not surrender anyway at the mere sight of advancing troops such as these?


Postal Problems

The Aristasia postal system seems to have been down for a few days. If you have written to us, please re-post to miss underscore miralene at yahoo dot co dot uk. String it ogether, of course!

Amelia Bingham for Christmas

Exciting news! A new Amelia Bingham story is out in time for Christmas. It was apparently a big rush to get it up in time and out Lipstick Friends wish to apologise for the slightly rough quality.

We did notice one hiccough — but it is a splendid girl Christmas story, so pop over to The Lipstick Theatre and hear it.

Forty-Thousand and Counting

Pettes of an observant nature will have noticed that the little counter at the bottom of this page has just passed the forty-thousand mark. That is forty-thousand visitors to Aristasia Friends since the counter was started on the fourteenth of July.

Not bad going for less than half a year, what?

The Blonde Management

Fierce brunette!

Theatre News

Sword-wielding brunettes continue to make news in Aristasia!

This time the Lipstick theatre is proud to announce the most gorgeous, colourful, musical blonde-brunette drama in the history of Telluria. Well, certainly in the recent history of Telluria.

Rather than be rotters and give away the secrets of what our Theatrical Chumettes have been up to, we will send you over there to see for yourself.

Just look at the picture to your right and know that every character in the scene is a girl. Know that with one click you will be seeing more pictures even more delightful and that with another click or two you will be seeing and hearing blonde-and-brunette musical drama of a sort that will overwhelm your senses and leave you swooning with delight.

So what are you waiting for? Click already!

Or you can click on the picture if you prefer.

The Blonde Management

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Wouldn't you like this in your stocking?Travel, Chat and Dates

What ho pettes! Avendale District is rather quiet au mome as Tiggrs have gone off to Vienna. Much to the envy of certain Mushrooms — Vienna being their favourite city in all Telluria.

Ah well!

Have you tried the Lipstick Theatre posting group? You can join up from the front page of The Lipstick Theatre and unlike other posting lists you don't have to be a Yahoo member or anything. Just pop your elektrapost address into the box on the page and press submit. It couldn't be simpler. Also postings are completely anonymous, which is nice if you feel shy — and one can play as many different characters as one likes (I thought you'd like that!)

Also, unlike other groups, this one allows members to send pictures with their messages, so the fun is potentially unlimited!

With the New Year coming up, another subject sproings to mind. Has any one noticed that naming the years has become less horrid? In the last century, saying "nineteen-ninety-something" just sounded so full of bongo ghastliness, but since the turn of the century it doesn't seem so bad.

Perhaps it is because Johnny Bongo has this funny habit of calling the years "two-thousand-and-whatever". Curiously unnatural, like much of J.B.'s speech.. We, naturally, say "twenty-oh-whatever".

What a difference having one's own way of saying a thing makes!

Congratters to QuiQui who posted he first picture to the Lipstick Theatre posting group. It was of the adorable Diana Dors. So just to make a pair, here is Miss Dors in seasonal mood.

Princess Mushroom

Aristasian Elektracards - the first generation!ANNOUNCEMENT of the YEAR!

We are nearing the end of the year, but this is definitely the Announcement of the Year.

You will have noticed several experiments over the past few months with New Media - or Son et Lumiere as we prefer to call it — wireless programmes, animations and the like.

You will also have heard dark rumblings about The Lipstick Theatre.

Well now, we are delighted to tell you, The Lipstick Theatre is finally up and running. You will find animations, including the introductory episode of The Poppitops — the delightful two-dimensional blondes and brunettes — now in their own animated cartoon stories.

You will find the first Amelia Bingham wireless story — which you may have heard before, but there are more to come soon.

And you will find the very first Aristasian Elektra-Christmas-cards which you can send to your friends, complete with music. Only a few are there as yet, but more will be coming.

So for the Electronic Girly Theatre of the Air, hurry now to The Lipstick Theatre — And don't forget to have the sound turned on!

The Blonde Management

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

The Castle prepares for a glugging seshThe Cocktail Mistress has a Birthday!

Our very own Miss B* — well known about these parts for her Cocktail Column is celebrating her birthday.

Or rather, as is the custom in Aristasian Districts, we are all celebrating it.

Castle Mushroom is festooned for the festivver and we shall be having — can you guess? — cocktails. Cocktails and sushi: Miss B being a Kadorian cocktail-loving Japanophile.

Oh, and Kadorian music, of course.

The picture to your left was taken in the castle during preparations this afternoon.

The blue cocktail shaker is a Novarian one that flashes light as it shakes . 'Strordinary people these Novaryani!

The Tiggrs have decided to break training for the night to partake of the various remarkable cocktails in preparation — some from the Savoy Cocktail Book (seen centre-stage in the picture) and some from the inventive minds of the Avenbridge pettes.

Training? You ask. Oh, didn't we mention? The Tiggrs are planning to climb Mt. Kilimamjaro this year.

I suppose you think that was some obscure joke, but it wasn't. It is literally true. The ascent of Kilimanjaro by an Avenbridge brunette and her intrepid blonde may be one of the Madcap Schemes of the Year, but we are rather inclined to put our money upon its coming to pass. When the Tiggrs set their mind on something, it generally happens.

And now, as the party begins, we invite all of you to join us in saying "Happy birthday, Miss B*".

Les Shrooms

The Star fairyNew Things at Belladonna

Well, Miss Pippsy, I am sure you will be glad to learn that I found a few more Wonder Woman strips. I promised you I'd share them with you all if I found them, and found them I have!

Also, in honor of the season, the Llangollen Museum of Art has added a few new pictures to the Star Fairy Gallery.

And I finally, after having them almost-ready for who knows how long, snatched the time to put together two more pages about Aristasian geography. Explore the regions of Angel Island and Ladyland , complete with pictures and the original texts. I particularly recommend reading the definitive work on Ladyland, "Sultana's Dream" .

Given how much I must do these days, it will probably be a few months before I can make any new additions to Belladonna, though I have research materials for far more Aristasian geography in a towering stack on my desk. Well, when I am able to put it together, you pettes have my word that you shall have it!

Eve, br.,

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Nativity in Trent

Pettes, I am lucky to live in a lovely Trentish apartment, at least it was beautiful when it was built. Some of you may have seen the picture I posted of it a while ago.

Unfortunately it has been furnished by a Bongo landlord, and the Trentish fireplace taken out (I've seen the beautiful, original Art Neo fireplace in a neighbour's apartment, ours would probably have been the same) Boo Hoo! Beastly Bongos and their lack of any taste!

As I've mentioned before, I try to see it as it was, rather than how it is now. Although I am able to make my own room as civilised as possible, and have some lovely Art Neo objects that help.

I've been thinking about how lovely people would have made these apartments during Nativity in Trent, and have been thinking of ours as a beautiful, Aristasian home inhabited by a Trentish Blonde and Brunette. I found this picture which shows my image of it perfectly. I like to imagine myself and the girl I share with as the Trentish girls in the picture, decorating our lovely home.

I feel it is most important for all Aristasians forced to live in the Pit to always transform Bongo surroundings if not literally, at least in our imaginations. It keeps a connection to all that is Real and sound and good.

A very happy Nativity to you all my Darling friends,

May the Star Fairy smile upon all your homes!

Miss B*X   

Worth waiting for!You wait ages for a brunette and then three come along at once

Just to complete this topping triumvirate, I suddenly remembered the postcard my Sister Kity sent to me whilst on a brief visit to Arcadia.....

It was a touch dusty, but I managed to dig it out of my digs, and here she is

 An elegant Arcadienne Militaire if ever I saw one!

I say, what fun to find corking Brunettes from each Province?....

I sniff a challenge afoot! What?

Miss B*X  

Mmm... sounds like a delightful challenge to me.

The Star Fairy

All this talk about Nativity and Christmas, and the deeper significance — which is very important I know — but nothing about the Star Fairy.

The original question, if you remember, asked if we have Santa in Aristasia. “Mother Christmas” seemed a bit unlikely, and of course there couldn't be a Father.

The Star Fairy comes to our good blondes and brunettesWell, the answer to this question is that in Aristasia we have the Star fairy.

Each of the four seasons corresponds to one of the four elements. Summer is Fire, of course, and Winter is Air. The Star Fairy is the Princess of the Sylphs or air-elementals and so has an especial connexion with midwnter.

Midwinter is also the northernmost, or “highest” point of the year and so corresponds to the “roof of the world” whence we may exit through the Sun-Door at its apex.

And, since the house is a microcosm of the world, and since the hearth-fire represents the Sun in the world and the Heart in the body, it will be seen that the Star Fairy's coming down the chimney is more than just a pleasant fantasy, but has a spiritual and metaphysical significance.

So be good girls, my darlings, and the Star fairy will come to you this Nativity!

Serendra Serelique

Shaking with cold!Cocktail of the Month

My Dear Pettes, Winter draws on....."and a thermal vest too!" as my Brunette GrandMummie always says (Ahem!) — I knew my sister Eve got her high spirits from somewhere.

Sad as I am to leave my favourite season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, I welcome the bracing season of Nativity, festivity and beyond, where nothing could be jollier than Blondes and Brunettes frollicking together in the snow, or cosier than drawing your chairs close to the fire and sharing stories and toddies and stollen. Mmmm!

So here are a couple of fiitting tonics for those chill, Winter evenings:

Winter in VintesseApple Toddy

1 Teaspoonful of Powdered Sugar.
1/4 Baked Apple.
1 Glass Calvados or Applejack.

Use stem glass and fill with Boiling Water. Grate nutmeg on top.      

Baltimore Egg Nog

1 Fresh Egg
1/2 Tablespoonful Sugar.
1/4 Glass Brandy.
1/4 Glass Jamacan Rum.
1/2 Glass Madeira.
1/2 Pint Fresh Milk.

Shake well and strain into long tumbler. Grate nutmeg on top.     

So, cuddle up in front of the fire with your favourite Blonde/Brunette and My very Best Wishes for an absolutely topping festive season, Dear Pettes!

Your Faithful,

Miss B*X      

Good heavens! There are two of them! When do I get mine?

Two for the Price of One

What a curious coincidence to see this fine Brunette in a lightgame, as she is not a hundred light years away from this splendid lady, who I was going to present this picture of to a friend of mine (who has, shall we say, a penchant for uniformed maidens) this very day!

Now I feel I must share her with you all, as the likeness is somewhat uncanny, what?    In addition, I must add that there are so many pictures of lovely blondes about (thought I'm not complaining, I might add!) it is apt to keep some balance and display these splendid and gallant Brunettes to keep those Blonde hearts a fluttering!

She is a marvellous, Trentish actress named Eva Le Gallienne. Bold, Brunette. Honourable and true to her Blondes apparently.

So, to all you lonesome Blondes out there, remember, there is a Brunette for every Blonde! Your paths have only to cross, and your eyes to meet.....

Phew! I think I'll go and sit down with a Femme Fatale (the cocktail that is, more's the pity!)

Fond Regards, From,

Miss "I've been spending too much time alone lately" Beaumarsh!

Click to listen-in!A New Wireless Programme

It is rather infuriating waiting for the first episode of Daughters of the Blue Raihir — which will be the first all-Aristasian wireless story. I mean, why don't those pettes hurry up?

In the meantime, there is a proggie you may like. It is not Aristasian — in fact it is a bit ch*ppy. Well, it is in the first episode. But it is also a rather charming romantic story about a woman and a little girl, very Christmassy and very magical, set in a world where civilisation is returning after the Eclipsed Years.

If you want to give it a whirl, Click the little wireless set — and a bigger one will appear playing the proggie. If you have any problems, do let is know.

You can fence with me any time, big girl.Game for Anything

Well, girlies, it's been a long time since anyone talked about lightgames about these parts.

I am about to break the silence.

We have recently been playing a game called Soul Calibur II. It is a Japanese fantasy fighting game.

Doesn't sound interesting? Well some of the girls in the game are just too gorgeous for words.

I could show you various pictures, but I think one will make you see what we are raving about — a gorgeous white-haired brunette called Ivy who wears something akin to an Arcadian naval uniform and…

Well, don't say I didn't warn you.

Yes — she really looks as good as that on screen and in action.

A stiff brandy, barmaid, to revive those blondes.

Mitzi Marenkhe

Wintry Questions

I have been reading your bit about Nativity and winter and saw that you were inviting questions.  I am not a very religious person in the 'going to church' way.  But I was thinking that the things you write seem to come somewhere between Christianity and Hinduism.  Am I right?  Probably not but I thought I would ask.

Miss Mayhew

TrinityWintry Answers

Yes, I would say there is a good deal of truth in your suggestion.

To a certain extent there is a “parallel” between the Western conception of the Daughter and the central Christian mythos, though one should not press the analogy too far.

The idea of the Divine Child and of the Sacrificial God may be found in many other places in Telluria too.

As to Hinduism, we would say, as the Hindus do, that what is truly in question is the sanatana dharma — the eternal and changeless Truth that lies at the basis of all religion, and is preserved in Telluria in its purest Western form in what is termed Hinduism (by Western, I mean, as opposed to the Far-Eastern forms which take a rather different perspective on the same essential truth).

So yes — a good way for a Tellurian to understand the mythos of the Solar Mother and Lunar Daughter would be to say “it is something like the Christian mythos (which itself is something like various older ones), but it is not — as modern Christianity tends to be — severed from the universal metaphysical and cosmological truths that in Telluria tend to be associated with the name of Hinduism.”

I hope this makes things clearer. Please do ask further questions, Miss Mayhew — or any of the rest of you.

With love,

Sushuri Novaryana

A light in the windowNativity in Aristasia

Aristasia being a parallel world, naturally there is a parallel to Christmas. In Aristasia we call it Nativity.

Or is it the other way round?

Anyway, in many parts of Aristasia, especially in the West, we celebrate the birth of the Divine Child on the last day of the month of Astraea — which is the 25th of December.

And on the first day of Astraea, which is also the first day of Winter (the 28th of November) the period known as the Advent begins, which is the time of preparation for Nativity.

Here is a text often read during the advent:

When the first night had come upon world, the Mother of All Things stood alone once more, as She had in the beginning. 2 For a terrible abyss had opened to lie between the world and She, and Her creatures could not look upon Her brightness.

3 And She stood in contemplation upon the waters of the first darkness; like a great Dove upon the waters She brooded 4 And She became absorbed within Her and communed with Her own Self; and Her light ceased to shine forth from Her, and yet Her light grew greater. 5 And She fell to Her knees. And the surface of the waters became turbulent, and the great waves curled over Her, and their white foam could not be seen in all that darkness.

6 And when the waters became calm again, the Mother of All Things rose to Her feet. 7 For She had conceived a Daughter that was not separate from Her, but one with Her, and the child of Her Light.

In Aristasian thealogy, the Mother is Solar, and as with the Sun, “we cannot look upon Her brightness”. Manifestation , in itself implies a separateness from Dea — there must (at least in appearance) be things as well as Dea. In Aristasian thealogy, the ideas of the Creation and the Fall are one and the same thing, or at least are inseparably linked, since manifestation means the apparent existence of a world that is not-God.

Well, that is all a bit philosophical, perhaps. The simple way of understanding it is to say that we became separate from Dea and “could no longer look upon Her brightness” and so She, the Solar Mother gave birth to the Lunar Daughter who, like the moon, reflects that brightness in a gentler way that we earth-creatures can look upon.

That, very briefly, is what Nativity means.

If you would like to ask any questions, please, please do.

And in any case, happy Nativity.

Sushuri Novaryana

When Ho Ho Ho becomes Hee Hee Hee

If winter comes, can Christmas be far behind?

Well what a useful noticeboard! It even tells us when it is winter.

But what about Christmas. Is there Christmas in Aristasia?

And what about Father Christmas? Well, obviously not. Mother Christmas? That doesn't sound too good.

We don't have to do without, do we?


Now can you imagine Aristasians missing all the fun?

Perhaps somepette can explain the sitch for Angela.

Winter is Icumen In

The 28th of November is, in the Old Aristasian Calendar, the 1st of Astraea — which is also the first day of Winter.

Fur coats and muffs, darlings. Hot chestnuts and open fires (or Art-Neo heat-panels in Novaria).

Winter is officially here!

The Blonde Management

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Sally forth, Jeeves!

My dear ladies, I must say, it is dashed surprising the way one's life can be turned totally topside downside, like unto the pineapple turnover, in just under a quarter of an hour.

There I was, utterly flattened by the exertions of the previous night, rather blurred images passing before my eyes pertaining to whiskey punch, the admiring glances of a number of rather toothsome blondes, a true night of it at the Nimble Dryad with one Bingo Little, and a real corker of a hat, when the doorbell rang.

"Wrstfrgl," said I, and rolled over.

It rang out again. "No encyclopedias today, thanks," I called. "Be off with you."

Yet the finest alarm clock had nothing on the persistence of my caller. After the seventeenth refrain, I writhed out of bed and answered the door. A dark sort of respectful brunette stood on the homestead's doorstep, valise in hand.

"I was sent by the agency, madame," she said. "I was led to believe that you desired a maid."

To be absolutely truthful, what I actually desired at that moment was something more in the line of a nice peaceful rest cure, but I motioned for her to enter, and she did so with the noiselessness of a summer breeze. This in direct and flattering contrast to Miss Saunders, my previous maid, who had been rather more of herd of wildebeeste and rather less of a zephyr. The woman before me had a solemn, sympathetic manner, as if she were perfectly acquainted with the results of a long evening's revelry.

"If you will excuse me, madame," she said, and shimmered off into the kitchen.

There was the noise of kettle and cup and the next thing I knew, I was being presented with a cup of a rather rum sort of tea.

"If you would drink this, madame," she said with the air of a solicitous doctor, "I should venture to say your morning shall improve directly. The odor you detect is a Culverian herb known for certain curative properties."

Now, I don't want you to get the impression that I am the sort of brunette who is in the habit of accepting potions from strange women, so you must understand my position. After the night before which I had just experienced, I would have embraced almost any hope of improving the morning after. I reached for the teacup.

Once the first ghastly impression of having drunk hot wash water wore off, I felt the gears within my head once more groan to life.

"When can you start?" I asked, blinking.

"Immediately, madame," she said. "My name is Jeeves."

And that, as they say, was that. The life of Bea Wooster was never the same e're after.      

- From the correspondence Beatrice Wilmadeene Wooster, on the subject of first encountering her new maid.

Miss B. Wooster

Is it our fancy, or have we heard a yarn like this somewhere before?

Quiz Picture

Illness and aileries at the shroompatch, we fear. Just about every one has been down with Tellurian 'Flu (at least it is rumoured to come from Telluria). And one shroom was rushed to the hospital witha migraine so severe shje had to have injections in — well, in a place that makes sitting less than comfy.

However, all is not dreadfulness. We did manage a poppage to a local shop and were able to buy some lovely schoolgirl books from Quirinelle, one of which included the following picture puzzle. Why not try it and see if you can spot the artist's deliberate mistake:

Surely Quirinelle is too perfect for mistakes!

Well, there it is, big enough for you to study every detail. What feature of this picture is not as it should be? Look carefully.

And if you are anxious for more news I think we can supply a rather exciting tidbit. Does any one remember the Aristasian fantasy novel Strangers in Paradise? Well that was only a working title. At present the story continues to grow under the title of Daughters of the Blue Raihir.

And — this is the exciting bit — the first episode should be available as a wireless programme very soon. So get ready to listen-in to this fascinating tale of mystery and adventure in Aristasia Pura.

The Shroomeries

No you dont!


London has always been a chic location where hats might be worn with the utmost stlye and panache at almost any time of the day ...or night ...or year.  Why, then, is it proving so difficult for me to procure a few pheasant feathers for my brown felt?  It is not much to ask, surely, that a good costumiere, haberdasher or (Dea forbid) milliner might actually keep some feathers in stock, is it?  I shall have to resort to the butcher if the finer establishments continue to provide so meagre a selection of feathers.

  The thing is, gels, a brunette of hardy constitution might not mind resorting to such a course of action if desperation demands it, but one does worry so about setting unhealthy precedents.  One can hardly expect the poor butcherette to keep stocks of pink ostrich feathers for her blonde customers.  No matter how accommodating she might be, she is, when it boils down to it, a butcher, not a milliner. 

Pet shops have been suggested as a possible source of feathery finery but, as my picture indicates, even the most extremely persuasive approaches to pet shop birds seldom produce favourable reactions.

  So, ladies, can anyone help me with a few nice long pheasant plumes?  I should be awfully grateful if you could.

Miss J x

When does she start losing things?Books and Films

When shall we have our International Showing of Brekkers at Tiffies? We have the film here at the Avenbridge District Kinema, so we can roll whenever other pettes are ready.

Any pette near London is welcome to come to our showing. Just drop us a line.

Other than that we need to fix a date. When would suit you, Miss Eve?

Have been bumbling about for up-to-date books and found some gems. One is a Quirrie book full of misprints and accidental ambiguities from newspapers and things. Some of them are so funny, such as:

Why kill your wife with work? Let electricity do it.


Inventor wishing to sell her parents on reasonable terms .

I also acquired a delightful Trentish book which seems to be all about me. It is called the Girl Who Lost Things, and, among its other delights, the frontispiece is just gorgeous. I reproduce it here to prove my asertion.

As to my losing things, a brunette friend once said "If I ever lose you, I shall just follow the trail of gloves until I find you."

Lady Bracknell had little tolerance for people who lose things. She said "To lose one parent may be counted a misfortune. To lose two begins to look like carelessness."

Oh well. At least I don't try to sell them.

The Mushroom Princess

Looking? Who's looking?New Pages at Belladonna

The Iron Maiden and the Blonde Bombshell's saga can now be read in its entirety — so far — at Belladonna. Please stop by and see all the nifty additional pictures that have been added!

For younger audiences, there is also a darling traditional fairy tale, The Frog Princess.

Oh, and I think that an International Showing of "Breakfast at Tiffany's" would be an excellent idea. Do you know, I have been hearing about that film all of my life and have never seen it. This weekend, however, I went to a Magic Cinema matinee of "Some Like It Hot", starring sigh Marilyn Monroe. She is just so... so! One of the brunette characters puts it very well: "It's like Jell-O on springs!" The plot is silly, of course; it is about a couple of rough-brunette musicians who are trying to hide, so they don blonde wigs and join an all-blondes band called Sweet Sue's Society Syncopaters. As if a pair of brunettes could fool anyone into believing they were blondes for more than a few minutes!

Oh, it's true that in some parts of Eastrenne Arcadia, blondes are not permitted on the stage and blonde roles are played by brunettes wearing yellow wigs, but those brunettes spend years in training to create the illusion of blondeness. And as a pette who has seen such performances, I can tell you that while they are quite impressive, they are never quite convincing. Blondes and brunettes are simply too different!

Eve, br.,

Grimmish Reality — or Magistra puellam vulnerat

Grimmish reality returns to the younger inhabbers of the Embassy with Miss Wardelle's firm declaration that This Period of Laxity is At An End.

This is the sort of behaviour up with which I will not put

Now, I have to admit that while some of us have got back to our studies after the summer hols, some of us haven't. And I have to admit that a few riskay rhymes have somehow managed to get themselves told. And I have to admit that a habit of nipping to the kinema without asking permish has sprung up, which is strictly against reggers if you want to be really technical about it.

So one spent yesterday evening trying to get up to scratch with one's Latin ready for the fresh new week. Because one really did seem to have forgotten a good deal of it over the hols. One was also punished rather severely for a number of offences — being given the choice of being punished individually for each over the next week or getting it all over in one go. The latter seemed the wiser, if not the most immediately comfortable choice. Bulk discount, don't you know.

The curious thing is, one feels rather calmer and fresher after it all. Now, if only one could remember which bit declines and which bit conjugates…


Click here to listen-in!A New Wireless Programme

The mid-21st-century detective, Miss Mimsy Crystal, stars in a new wireless programme - The Adventure of the Man Who Died Twice. Please click the wireless set to receive your own wireless and hear the broadcast (if you have a popup blocker, you may need to turn it off to get your wireless set).

Not quite aristasian, but we think you may enjoy it!

Also, for those interested in the beauties (and current horrors) of the English language, may we recommend Is English Changing? by Miss caroline Scott-Robinson at the Harmony Point Penthouse Library.

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

A Final word from the Iron Maiden

You know, that silly blonde Countess really isn't such a bad sort.

Not that I'm going to let her know that I think so. And don't you tell her I said so, either!

Major Klara Hannah von dem Eberbach

The Bijoux

Thank you for the drink, barpette. But… can you drown a brunette in this?

That's better. I do think that the Major calls for a major beverage.

She actually tried to apprehend me! No respecter of persons, the Iron Maiden. But I have no intention of entering Punitive Servitude just because I am a devotee of Beauty.

So I ran out the door before she had any idea I intended to. Really, did she think I would just stand there and let her drag me to the District Governess? Well, I expect that's what she would have done. Not me, though. I ran, and when I heard her footsteps running after me I sped up.

But I knew that I couldn't outrun her for long, her being a brunette, and such a very brunettish brunette at that. So I decided to hide in a place where I doubted she would follow. Yes, I ducked into a nightclub! Lean close and I'll whisper its name: The Bijoux. I had never been there before, and I certainly don't want anypette to know I was there even this once.

Oh, I knew the club's reputation, but I didn't take it seriously. One always hears how scandalous things are only to discover that they are merely very slightly daring, and only shocking to the most straightlaced sorts – sorts like the ferocious green-eyed Major who was still hot on my heels. Not that I was wearing heels when I had known I might have to run, but you see what I mean. Still, given the Bijoux's reputation, I was certain she would rather walk over hot coals than follow me inside. 

So I ducked inside, and hurried through the anteroom, pushed aside the red velvet curtain and entered the club proper, where the floor show was.

I see you want to hear what the floor show was like. Well, my dear, let me assure you that you do not want to hear about it. I could not possibly speak of anything so… so… oh! I thought I was sophisticated and even decadent – why, I buy Brunette magazine! – but I had no idea! No idea at all what the lower orders get up to when they are unsupervised.

And it isn't as if I'm prudish about the human form. Many of the most beautiful paintings and statues depict the form of Maid in its unadorned beauty, as innocent as Adama and Eve. But this was… I can't even put it into words. Too awful.

I was so shocked, so horrified, that all I could do was stare, as if I were frozen on the spot. And then suddenly, the Major was beside me. She glanced at the stage and quickly looked away, her face red, and took me by the elbow. Before I knew where I was, I wasn't there anymore. She had steered me back outside and was offering me smelling salts.

“Good heavens,” I whispered.

“Very few blondes are able tolerate a sight like that,” she said, and do you know, she actually sounded concerned. I would have thought she would be bawling me out for having gone in, but instead she was looking after me as solicitously as any  courtier. “Nor should they be. Certainly it's too much for an ingenuous blonde like you.”

“I thought you considered me a floozy,” I murmured. My knees were still wobbling, and I had to lean heavily on her arm. But that was no problem, because the Major really is wonderfully strong. Thank goodness she came along and got me out of there. Otherwise I would probably have fainted, and then who knows what sort of scandal may have resulted.

She said, “Not like the poor benighted pettes in that club. And most of the denizens of the Pit would think that show was tame stuff.”

I could scarcely believe my ears. “Tame! What could be worse than that? How could anypette degrade herself more ?”

She answered, “I am certainly not going to tell you.”

I shuddered. Then I asked her, “Have you actually seen things worse than that?”

She nodded, and she looked very grim. “My Lady, you cannot even begin to imagine the depravity of the Pit.”

 Suddenly I understood. “That's why you're such a prig! Because you've seen such horrid things!” I said. Then I was afraid she would be offended that I had called her a prig, but she didn't see it as an insult; she only nodded her agreement. “How can you endure going there?” I asked. I could not imagine even walking into the Bijoux ever again, let alone someplace worse. She must be so brave!

“It is my duty,” she replied.

I looked at her, and that was when I knew.

I said, very softly, “Thank you for coming after me, Major.”

She gave me a startled glance, and we just looked into each other's eyes for a long time.

Is it indelicate to kiss and tell? Well, she didn't kiss me, so I guess I can tell. No, she didn't kiss me.

Not yet.

But it is my principle to always get what I want, and to possess all beautiful things!

Doria Red, Countess of Glorian

With envy, no doubt!The Pink Sunrise and the Dresden Green

Tell me, does a blonde who brazenly sends brunettes flowers, in clear reversal of the Golden Order, expect not to be seen as a terribly fast blonde?

Not that it matters. I suppose that to a vixen such as the Countess, dozens of roses are a perfectly proper way to thank someone for doing their duty, which should need or expect no thanks. By her lights, she was likely simply doing the courteous thing. I suppose I can't complain about that. I have plenty of other things to complain about.

Of course I was lying in wait for her that night in the jewelry shop, with two of my subordinates, Miss A— and Miss B—, with Miss Z— ready in the car outside. I had no doubt that oversized pink diamond would be irresistible to someone like the Countess. And so we waited.

And waited.

I was finally beginning to wonder if she wasn't planning her heist for another night when Miss Z— came in the back way, much excited. "Major!" she said. "I just heard it on the radio! The Countess has tricked us!"

"What do you mean?" I demanded.

"The Dresden Green Diamond of Saxony has just disappeared from the Victoria& Alberta!"


In a flash I saw what she had done. She has been talking all over town about how beautiful the Pink Sunrise is, so that I would be watching for her to try to "borrow" it. With my attention diverted elsewhere, she was able to abscond with the Dresden Green with no trouble! How diabolically clever she is!

"Quick!" I ordered my subordinates. "If we get to the Victoria & Alberta quickly enough, we might pick up her trail! The District Governess will never listen to me unless we catch her red-handed!"

My subordinates were scrambling into the car, Miss Z— quickly revving the engine, when another thought suddenly occurred to me. I stopped still.

"Major?" Miss A— spoke up. I made my decision in an instant. "You three, go ahead to the Victoria & Alberta and do your best to find any trace of the thief. I have something else I must do."

They obediently sped off like the well-trained subordinates they are. They should be, I trained them. I, meanwhile, went back inside and stood hidden in the shadows, my eye on the display case that held the Pink Sunrise.

I was not disappointed. A few minutes later, a form clad in disgracefully tight black crept stealthily into the store. She went straight to the Pink Sunrise and regarded it reverently before prying its case open.

I waited until her black-gloved hands were almost touching the diamond before I called out, "Halt!"

She jumped and looked up. It was, of course, the Countess, and she was very surprised to see me.

"Major! What are you­" She stopped.

"I suppose you thought I would be engaged at the Victoria & Alberta just now."

She looked as impressed as she was irked. "You figured out my plot! You're quite a brunette, Major."

"Crime does not pay, Lady Glorian. Hand over the Dresden Green."

She pouted, but took it out of her pocket — it was carefully swathed in black velvet - and instead of simply handing it to me, pinned it onto my uniform. "Emeralds look very nice on a brunette. It's just the color of your eyes, Major," she said, fluttering her lashes.

I took it off and stuffed it into my pocket quickly. "Quit talking nonsense, Lady Glorian, and come with me. It's Punitive Service for you this time."

She tilted her head coyly. "Oh, I don't think so. You'll have to catch me first!"

And with that, the shameless wench ran outside. I gave chase, of course, and then..

Well, I think we can rest easy that she won't steal anything for a while now. The Pink Sunrise is safe, and the Dresden Green is back in its place.

Major Klara von dem Eberbach

A Bluestocking in No-Pette’s Land

Do you recall what I was telling you the last time I was here? My sweetheart, that darling little blonde Gabrielle Cesare, had wandered off and was nowhere to be found. Somepette caught a glimpse of her perilously close to the Iron Curtain! In desperation, I appealed to the District Governess for aid, and she assigned no one less than the Iron Maiden herself, Major Klara von dem Eberbach, to fetch her. And to take me along.

The moment the Major fetched me, it was obvious she wasn't happy about having me along. She's made no secret of her disdain for frivolities like pretty clothes and art and flirting and dancing, so she certainly couldn't think much of me. But I was too worried over Gabrielle to mind what she said to me - and what she said to me, pettes, was plenty.

She griped all the way to the Waste between Kadoria and the Iron Curtain, but when we got there she quieted down. Not that I blamed her; it was awful. Just barren ground, rocks and stagnant water as far as the eye could see. It was horribly depressing, but she assured me that the Pit itself makes the Waste look downright habitable. She seemed serious, but surely she must be exaggerating, mustn't she?

In any case, we drove through it in the Major's Jeep for hours, and they must have been the longest hours of my life. To think of my poor little Gabrielle stranded in this desolate place! It doesn't bear thinking of. But after the longest time, there she was, crouching next to one of those smelly pools. I jumped out and ran to her, and she looked up as if she weren't even slightly surprised to see me there, and said, "Look at the algae on the surface here, Lady Glorian. I do believe it's an unknown species!"


I hustled her into the Jeep and we lost no time in returning to civilization, the Major telling us off all the way. She might as well have saved her breath; I was too busy fussing over poor Gabrielle, whose clothes had gotten all dirty, to pay her any mind, and Gabrielle was too distracted marvelling over the lichen and algae samples she had gathered to hear a word either of us said. Really, sometimes bluestockings drive me quite mad.

Perhaps it's time I considered finding a sweetheart who can manage things, instead of wandering off and getting into trouble. One who's capable and can take charge. You know. A brunette.

The Major deposited us both at Castle Glorian and waited impatiently while I turned Gabrielle over to my keveline, Miss Bonham, with orders to see that Gabrielle was promptly immersed in a bubblebath and given fresh clothes, and her present ones burned. Gabrielle became quite beside herself until we assured her that her samples of fungus or whatever those things are would be preserved for her.

Hmmm. I should introduce Gabrielle to that frightfully rich Volovonte pette who chased me so ardently a few years ago. They both love art, and Miss Volovolonte has demonstrated that she has a taste for tall, long-haired, exceedingly pretty blondes such as myself and Gabrielle....

Then Miss Jane appeared and insisted that Gabrielle's clothes were perfectly good and we shouldn't burn them but should save them and use them. You have to understand that Miss Jane has a somewhat skewed perspective when it comes to economy. However dilapidated anything is, she wishes to jury-rig it together and continue using it. I thought we would all lose our heads when she learned about a custom of Arcadian Culveria called "toots". Puritan houseblondes there guard against wasting the dregs of anything - the little bit of flour left in the bag after you've used it all up, the scrapings of the bottoms of the butter churns - by sweeping it onto a little paper square and then twisting the paper up like, well, like a Tootsie Roll, to hold it till it can be used. Indeed, in a large establishment such as mine, we might save as much as fifty cents a month by such measures. But Miss Jane gives us no peace unless we use them. Culverians! They must all be quite mad to think of such a thing.

After several minutes of this, the Major lost patience and bellowed, "IDIOTS!"

That brunette has a set of lungs on her! We all jumped at this frightfully rude outburst and then got quiet. We were all curious to see what this rampant brunette would do next.

She glared at us all as if we had done something, and then snapped at me and Gabrielle, "You two silly blondes get yourselves wives to keep an eye on you. I can't keep hauling the two of you out of trouble!"

With that she got back into her Jeep, slammed the door and sped away.

We all just stared after her for a few minutes, and then we started giggling our heads off. The thought of how disgusted the Major would have looked had she still been there only made us laugh harder.

When I caught my breath, I had to admit, however, that she was wonderfully brave to venture into that desolate waste after Gabrielle. I should never have been able to endure looking through it by myself. And what with one thing and another, I hadn't had a chance to thank her!

So I had Miss Bonham send four dozen red roses to the Major's office with a nice note, and then I retired to my own chambers to prepare for this evening. Tonight, you see, I am going to go and, er, see that magnificent diamond, the Pink Sunrise!

Doria Red, Countess of Glorian

Pure,gorgeous, unadulterated chic.

Cigarettes and Breakfast

But Miss Eve — what a beyond-gorgeous cigarette holder. Three guesses what is on my Christmas list.

Actually I often go for weeks without smoking. I really cannot be bothered to smoke without a decent audience. However, when I do smoke, I sometimes smoke three or four in an evening. Well, I shouldn't like any one to think me a non-smoker!

And the Cat Girl a reformed super-criminal. How fascinating...

How interesting that you should mention Breakfast at Tiffany's. That very film is coming to our District Cinema soon. I have never seen it. In fact I have never seen Audrey Hepburn moving or heard her voice, though I have seen and swooned over countless pictures.

What say we have an International Showing, the way we once did with the Blonde Film. If we all try to get copies and see the film about the same time, then we can discuss it here at Girls' Town. What do pettes think?

The Mushroom Princess

Duty Calls

I cannot believe this.

Pardon me, Fraulein, but would you be so good as to light my cigarette? I am so agitated I can't seem to manage it myself. I realize that it's proper for a brunette to light a blonde's cigarette and not the other way around, but then, you are the barmaid..

Ah. Thank you. What would we do without cigarettes? Lovely inventions.

Forgive me, I can't help but be perturbed. The District Governess has just given me the most appalling assignment imaginable.

Oh, it isn't the assignment itself. Some silly blonde named Gabrielle Cesare has gone missing, and it is feared she wandered into the No-Pette's-Land separating Kadoria from the Pit. My assignment is to find her and bring her home before she stumbles through the Iron Curtain.

The quandary is the person who reported the silly pette missing. It's her sweetheart, none other than that - that floozy, Lady Glorian! And as the Countess is the last pette to have seen Fraulein Cesare, I am expected to take her with me as I search for the lost blonde. I don't know how I'll endure it, being around a shameless baggage like the Countess for who knows how long.

But it is my duty as an officer of Her Majesty's Army. And I must not delay, lest Fraulein Cesare fall into the horror of the Pit. Do excuse me.

Major Klara Hannah von dem Eberbach
Her Majesty's Army
Germania, Altalia, Kadoria

Turning smoke into goldBeauty in the lie of the C- Holder

Of course one uses a cigarette holder. Here is one of mine, which I found at a fleem. I also have a plain black bakelite one like Miss Audrey Hepburn is holding in the Breakfast at Tiffany's poster. And my preferred brand comes in a box very similar to yours! I of course have been stalking the Elektra-fleems for a pretty cigarette case for some time, but every time I find one, some unscrupulous cad with more filthy lucre than I snatches it out from beneath my very nose. But I shall persevere.

Miss Pippsy, if I am able to lay hands on anymore Kadorian Wonder Woman strips, have no fear that I shall lose any time in putting them up at Belladonna. Don't tell anyone you heard it from me, after those various dire threats, but I have heard that the Cat Girl is a former bongo villainess who was reformed by the Amazing Amazon. She has reformed ever so many misguided maids, who then joined her in the fight against the Pit!

On another subject, last night I came across a delightful quotation from Miss Edith Wharton which perfectly summarizes something about Aristasia that I have been trying to explain for years:

"The artistic integrity of the French led them to feel from the beginning that there is no difference in kind between the curve of a woman's hat-brim and the curve of a Rodin sculpture."

Eve, br

Artist's smock?Zoë Mozert’s Gloves

While studying the wonderful archives of Girls Town I stumbled upon a note by Petrouchka concerning the whiteness of white gloves and mentioning the delicious Zoë Mozert, who "always wore white gloves when she painted her delightfully erotic girl-pictures". Although I do not doubt that Zoë Mozert wore gloves most of the time when she painted, she did, however, not do it on this particular occasion - and in a way I am glad she didn't, because that gives us an occasion to enjoy this nice picture, doesn't it? Is it true, by the way, that she modeled almost all of her pictures herself?


The Case of the Missing Blonde

Barpette! You do remember me, don't you? Thank Dea! Listen, have you seen my sweetheart Gabrielle in here? Wait, here, I know I have a picture of her someplace… let's see… oh, let me just empty my handbag here on the bar… here it is. This is her. My sweetheart. Please, have you seen her? Has anypette here?

I've asked everywhere! At the museum and the library she frequents and everywhere else I thought she might have gone. She's terribly scatterbrained; she's going to turn into an absent-minded professor, I just know it. It would be just like her to wander off and get utterly lost or something. And she's such a very * blonde* blonde, she can't look after herself at all. Oh, I'm so terribly worried! What can I do?

I've looked for her simply everywhere! There is now only one possible recourse: I must appeal to the District Governess for help! Barpette, call a cab for me!

Gloria Red, Countess of Dorian
England, Altalia, Kadoria

Artists' materialsA Performance, not an Indulgence

Dear Miss Eve — it sounds like time to change most of your acquaintance for a more up-to-date model!

One absolutely agrees about anti-smokism (like all the other anti ***-isms) as a morality-substitute. Amusingly, all over the Enemy Union manufacturers are compelled to put large nagging-boxes on their cigarette packets. This would seem to confirm that so-called governments are composed of directionless twerps as lost and hopeless as their apparent subjects in their desperate adhesion to pseudo-moral comfort-blankets as they flounder in a world void of all real values.

It s also a rather good thing, as it is causing the sales of cigarette-cases to soar and helping to end the decidedly vulgar habit of using cigarettes directly from commercial "packets".

Half the pleasure of smoking derives from the use of charming cigarette cases, holders and lighters. I enclose a picture of a few of ours. the box marked "Gold" actually is a commercial package from Bruxelles. I think it can count as amost civilised: however it s a sturdy case in some form of gutta-percha material. The blank portion housed the compulsory nag-label, but the manufacturer sensibly arranged that this should be easily removed.

Much nicer, however are the Art-Neo sunburst case depicted here and the leatherette blonde case housing the Princess's Black Devils. You will aso see a trentish resin cigarette-holder and some rather charming cigarette-lighters.

The Princess herself smokes but rarely — perhaps three to five in a week, and only socially. Smoking is a performance, not an indulgence as the great Miss Snow wrote.

I wish I had her masterpiece The Feminine Régime to hand. As it is, I can only quote from memory and rather loosely. Lavinia has suggested to Lady C that smoking is bad for her.

LADY C: I have always believed that tobacco was simply stuffed with health-giving properties.
LAVINIA: Oh, no, my lady. Haven't you seen the warnings on the packets?
LADY C: What packets?
LAVINIA: The ones the cigarettes come from.
LADY C: I had no idea that cigarettes came in packets. They are always put into my case by my maid. Are they interesting, these packets?
LAVINIA: No, My lady.
LADY C: Then why trouble me with these tales of commercial and governmental low-life?

I apologise to Miss Snow, who undoubtedly put it much better. Has anyone access to the original dialogue?

Miss Angelica
Occasional lady-in-waiting to the Princess

Thank you for the strip-show

Miss Eve — I have been hugely enjoying the Adventures of Wonder Woman. Thank ou so much for popping them up. It feels like having real Aristasian comics delivered to one's electronic glass door!

Any more would be ginormously appreciated.

One can greatly sympathise with Miss Etta Candy, but she also provides a terrible warning, doesn't she?

Lots of love,

Miss Pippsy (bl)

All this and rope-tricks tooMore Kadorian Wonder Woman at Belladonna!

Did you pettes know that in Kadoria, Wonder Woman has not only a monthly comic book — copies and reprints of which are fairly easy to come by, albeit expensively, in the Pit — but also a far more elusive daily newspaper strip?

Now, after much effort and expense on my part, I am able to share them with you pettes.

Really, she comes from a beautiful island bereft of Strange Creatures and preaches all sorts of feminine values and spankings not infrequently occur in her stories.

What superheroine better embodies the spirit of Aristasia?

Eve, br.

A real newspaper strip in Elektra — how exciting. We must pop over right away!

I wonder if The Morning Letter could be persuaded to run the strip .

Or perhaps one about the adventures of the Cat Girl!

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Cat Girl Mystery—a Reprimand

The evidence for the Mushroom Princess being the Cat Girl is extremely slight.

Another equally well-supported (or ill-supported) theory is that the Cat Girl is none other than Cadoggers.

However may I respectfully remind readers that the revelation of the Cat Girl's secret identity would destroy her effectiveness as a crime-fighter. Lana Lang was once soundly and deservedly spanked for a similarly irresponsible speculation in relation to another super heroine.

Surely our gentle readers do not wish to play into the hands of gang bosses, super-criminals, educational theorists and people who wear track-suit bottoms and plimsoles or drink beer out of bottles.

It is the Cat Girl's sworn duty to fight these devils and pawns, and to protect us from them.

It is our duty to protect her Secret Identity.

Let us remember that

A Concerned Subject

Miaowshroom Princess?

Cat Girl Mystery

The mysterious Cat Girl has been spotted again.

This time at the Great Eastern Hotel on the occasion of the Modern Times halloween Party, an event known also have been attended by the so-called Mushroom Princess and a small party of Aristasians.

Perspicacious observers will notice that the beaded Vintesse frock worn by the Cat Girl bears a close resemblance to the one the Royal Mushroom has been blondely cooing over all this week.

Could it be that the Cat Girl and the Mushroom Princess are one and the Same?

We submit a photograph taken at the Great Eastern Hotel yesterday.

What do you think, dear reader?

Anonymous Correspondent



How lovely that you pettes found worthy tobacco in the realm of the sprouts! I immediately scoured Elektra-space looking for that kind, but to no avail. Good cigarettes have become horrendously hard to find in the Pit, since not smoking has replaced any kind of code of morality -- and having no other morality, of course the poor benighted bongos must cling to the closest thing they have. Indeed, I have had to keep my own tobacco use secret from most of my acquaintance in order to avoid hearing them rant and rave about it. So why do I do it? Well, there's an Arcadian poem that sums it up which I shall add below.

Eve, br.

A Novice
by Dollie Radford   

It also comes in useful for spearing type-3sWHAT is it, in these latter days,
Transfigures my domestic ways,
And round me, as a halo, plays?
                My cigarette.

For me so daintily prepared,
No modern skill, or perfume, spared,
What would have happened had I dared
                To pass it yet?

What else could lighten times of woe,
When some one says "I told you so,"
When all the servants, in a row,
                Give notices?

When the great family affairs
Demand the most gigantic cares,
And one is very ill upstairs,
                With poultices?

What else could ease my aching head,
When, though I long to be in bed,
I settle steadily instead
                To my "accounts?"

And while the house is slumbering,
Go over them like anything,
And find them ever varying,
                In their amounts!

Ah yes, the cook may spoil the broth,
The cream of life resolve to froth,
I cannot now, though very wroth,
                Distracted be;

For as the smoke curls blue and thin
From my own lips, I first begin
To bathe my tired spirit in

And sweetest healing on her pours,
Once more into the world she soars,
And sees it full of open doors,
                And helping hands.

In spite of those who, knocking, stay
At sullen portals day by day,
And weary at the long delay
                To their demands.

The promised epoch, like a star,
Shines very bright and very far,
But nothing shall its lustre mar,
                Though distant yet.

If I, in vain, must sit and wait,
To realize our future state,
I shall not be disconsolate,
                My cigarette!

Home again, Home again

Here are the Shroomies back again! And what a lovely time we had in Parts Foreign. I must confess that Northern Europe has not hitherto held many charms for me — Vienna, Monte Carlo, Baden Baden and even S. Tropez: these were our stamping grounds (or rather stiletto-clicking grounds) of old.

"Isn't S. Tropez full of ghastly bongo 'celebrities'?" someone asked me. Well, I suppose it probably is, but since one has never seen their ghastly films, or whatever it is they make

{ Aside to Brunette Friend: "Do they still make films in the Pit?
Brunette Friend: "Of a sort." }

and does not read dreadful bongo magazines one really cannot tell them from any other tourist oiks, whom, of course, they resemble in all respects. The only people that stand out from the crowd in S. Tropez are us.

Blonde-pleasing toiletteBut I digress. We did not go to S. Tropez the day before yesterday, but we did go to a really deliciously extravagant hotel in Bruxelles. I just love deliciously extravagant hotels. I believe there are some people who don't like them. But then I suppose there are some people who like hanging by their toes from the ceiling or even watching bongo television or wearing pit-pyjamas (in all cases they are bats). There is no accounting for taste, especially when it is bad taste. However, I am prepared to bet large sums that very few of the people who do not like deliciously extravagant hotels are blonde.

I just love everything about such hotels. Like the handbasin in our room, which was 'normously wide and had all sorts of lovely little things like wrapped circular soaps and bath gel and shampoo all with the hotel's coat of arms printed on them. And the glasses had little hats on — also bearing the hotel's coat of arms. I hope you can see them in the photo as they are too sweet for words.

The lounge is gorgeous, and employs a servant to do nothing but plump the cushions. How wonderful. It saddens one to think that bongo schoolteachers are paid good money to brainwash children when they could be doing something truly useful with their lives like plumping cushions for their betters.

And there is an ordinator there for one to use. Those of you who belong to the Aristasia Circle will have received the Mushroom Princess's letter written from this ordinator. As you can see, there is no unsightly monitor on the desk. Rather a portion of the desktop is a glass panel showing the screen beneath the surface while the keyboard is on a little retractable shelf. Who says technics cannot be civilised?

A real desktop ordinatorAnyway, here is the said Royal Mushroom Typist in her Human Form, wearing the green Jacqueline Vert suit that turned heads throughout the city.

We saw many wondrous things including a chocolate fountain — yes, truly: a fountain that perpetually flows and bubbles with rich molten chocolate.

We also went to the opera to see Aida. It was sung in Italian, which hardly matters, since I can never understand the words sung in operas when even when they are sung in English. Fortunately the words were also projected above the proscenium in French and Dutch. Well, I can't claim to know a lot of Dutch, but it was easy enough to follow the plot in French.

Though the main reason for going to the opera as far as the Royal Mushroom was concerned was to wear her blue and black shot silk Chinese birthday dress again, this time with full-length opera gloves and her mink stole.

Oh, and we found some gorgeous cigarettes called Black Devils — all black with a gold band at the point where the filter joins the cigarette, slightly scented with Vanilla and truly the first cigarettes I have enjoyed since the Enemy Union banned Sullivans' Orientals.

I am sure you will not wish to know about mundane things like raspberry beer, crèmes brulées, chocolate mousse and, of course, Belgian waffles.

So I shall end here, remaining always, your own true,

Princess Mushroom

Blonde reading?

More from the Blonde Locker Room

I shall never see blondes the same way again. Really, I thought we brunettes were the only ones who liked to see
pictures of the opposite sex in garments that didn't cover all they might. The thought of blonde eyes roving over
these pages, devouring the sight of these raven-haired sirens!

I wonder if this magazine needs any new models?

Eve, br.

Pinker still and pinker

Shroomery peoples are zooming about in preparation for their exciting trip — though being somewhat delayed by bouts of Maria vs Donkey Kong — a birthday game and by the solemn though severe duty of finishing the party sushi and doing full justice to the remains of a giant creamy Schwarzwälder.

Ah, but life can be demanding!

The Tiggrs revealed their spectacular present — a visit by the Two Households to the one theatrical performance in London that has remained firmly in Quirinelle: The Mousetrap, now in its fifty-second year and apparently perfectly traditional. We shall see if it has managed the near-impossible ansd managed to present girls under fifty who speak the Queen's English. If there are any outside Aristasia they should be here — at least in their stage personae.

But all this is for next month. For now we are off, off and away to sunny Sproutland; Trentish opulence, opera and — well, chocolate.

Keep in touch though the Aristasia Circle.

But before I go, you must look at my lovely birthday telephone. It is in a rather splendid colour, don' you think. Two-tone pink and ivory. No two-tone ringers, though. A proper bell, I am glad to say. You may remember Miss B showing her black brunette tellie at the Cocktail Bar. Well, it was none other than she who gave me this one for my birthday. The girl is a telephonic genius, no less.

Off to the Tiggrage now as first jumping-off point to Parts Foreign.

Lots of love from,

Princess Mushroom

Archived at last!

Finally we have archived this 'nornmous page and cut it down to some sort of sensible size. The new archive is Archive 17 and it is an absolute monster. At least this page should load a teensy bit quicklier now.

The Blonde Management

Various forms of pink toast

Birthday Toast

Tremendous excitement at the Shroomeries as the Mushroom Princess celebrates her birthday! What an exciting day it is. Darling Anne said it was a national holiday.

The Shroom has already had lots of presents, including a gorgeous Quirrie-style toaster in the best colour imaginable (pink, of course!) And speaking of pink toasts, a supply of pink champagne has been laid in for the occasion.

You may see both things here laid out in readiness in the Royal Kitchens of Castle Mushroom.

There are so many other excitingnesses to tell, but we are all rushing about. We are having a further-Estrenne party with sushi made in the Royal Kitchens (Princess Mushroom has been fanning rice to make it shiny (she is assured that this is perfectly traditional and not a jolly jape at her blonde expense).

But what a chance to wear my blue-and-black Chinese-style shot-silk birthday dress!

Where the shrooms goI should love to tell you about all my wonderful presents — and I haven't even opened them all yet and the Castle Guests may even bring a few more to the party if I am a very lucky mushroom. But I simply have to tell you about the best present of all — a trip to a glorious, glamorous Trentish five-star hotel across the water in the home of Heraclea Poirot and Tinne-Tinne. Yes, you know where I mean: the place where the sprouts come from.

The sprouts may not be of huge interest to us decadent, unhealthy fun-loving types, but what is interesting is that this place is also the chocolate capital of the world. Not only shall we be visiting a chocolate museum where samples are provided, but our hotel is renowned for serving the best hot chocolate in the country — which is to say, in the world.

We shall also be attending the opera (I mention this lest any one should suggest that walking, talking mushrooms are mere tummy-stuffing Philistines.

Nonetheless, the city does vie with Paris as the gourmet capital of Europa.

A detail, perhaps, but an important one.

More birthday news if I get a chance amid all the festive excitement!

Princess Mushroom

Trentish lounge

Nights on the Town

The latest issue of The Morning Letter has a fascinating photo-article on recent Aristasian visits to some surprisingly interesting venues in Pit-london read about our nights on the town and see the pictures now!

Avendale School in Elektraspace has started to gather momentum with a number of new postings. If you were thinking of joining, now may be a good tiime to start. Or if you just want to catch up on the latest Aristasian school adventures, pop along to Avendale School.

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Pink temptationThe Iron maiden

That brazen hussy! This is her most outrageous stunt yet! I was all set to search her castle if need be, to go to any lengths to get that painting back and return it to its rightful owners, and then she has the effrontery to return it on her own! What gall!

Clearly I must put that vixen in her place once and for all. And I know just how to do it. This morning's paper had something I know that minx will find irresistible. You may have read about it: that jewelry store is going to display an impressive gem, a very large pink diamond. It is a famous stone called the "Pink Sunrise". Just the sort of flashy thing a flighty blonde like her would like.

I have no doubt she'll try to "borrow" and Anonymously Return the Pink Sunrise. And when she does, I shall be waiting for her!

Major Klara von dem Eberbach
Her Majesty's Royal Army
Germania, Altalia, Kadoria

A Glimpse of Stocking

I have been wanting to add a page like this to Belladonna for years, but I didn't have the technics for it.

Now, however, I have.

So here it is, pettes: a page about stockings. Though only grownup pettes should visit it; it's a wee bit riskay!

Eve, br.

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversationShaking like an autumn leaf

Cocktail of the Week

My Glorious, Autumnal Pettes,

The leaves are starting to don their wardrobe of autumnal hues (a good job all leaves aren't blonde, or by the time they'd decided what to wear it'd be winter!) the nights are drawing in, and the air is becoming crisp.

So, my Dears, it is time for something fortifying from this Brunette's bevy of bevvies! (Ahem)

I should also add that as I don't seem to be living up to the title of my slot, I should perhaps, change it to "Cocktail of the Month!" Although, I must say, just one cocktail a month seems frightfully restrained, for even the most prudent of pettes, no, perhaps I should just persevere, and post as often as I jolly well can.

So here is one cold and one hot offering to try, as Blondes and Brunettes curl up in front of the fire and watch the leaves fluttering outside, and certain excitable Blondes start to count the weeks until Christmas!

Port Flip

1 egg,

1/2 oz. castor sugar,

1 wineglassful of port,


Beat the egg thoroughly, add some ice and the port. Pour several times from one glass to another before serving.

Ginger Ale Cup

1/2 lb. loaf sugar,

1 quart of boiling water,

Fresh mint,

1/2 teacupful of lime juice,

1 bottle of ginger ale.

Dissolve the sugar in the boiling water, add some sprays of mint and when cool stand on ice. When required to be served, strain it, add the lime juice and ginger ale and some chopped ice.

They are both something a little different to try of a blustery autumn day/evening. Courtesy of the Vintesse Publication: "Foulsham's Cocktails, ices-sundaes jellies and American drinks How to make them" From the Foulsham's Home Library Series.

Until next time, wrap up warm, and watch out you Blondes, don't let the wind catch your skirts!

From Your Own, and Faithful, Brunette BarPette,

Miss B* X

Jelly—not only to be taken with ice-cream

Miss F, you poor, poor darling! How utterly dreadful to have to share a bathroom. I do hope this does not restrict the amount of time you have for primping and preening over the handbasin.

As for the shoe sitch, have you thought of something like these? Terribly Quirrie, unbelievably (and quite incidentally) practical but, above all, gorgeously NOT what the bongos will be wearing this season, I suspect.

They are available here:

I warn you now that the shop is a little passé in certain respects, but there seem to be some delightful possibilities in the Jelly range.

"Wear Jellies and set your brunettes' knees a-wobbling!" I wonder whether that could become a catch-phrase at the new Lipstick Theatre? - Perhaps not!

Happy bathing,

Marilyn xXx

Doves from the Pigeons

I need to wear a mask to admit in this company that I have a little stockpile of A—— cards in my stationery drawer, largely purchased at a small High Street bookshop before the brand's regrettable "Bad Girl" theme became quite so prominent (or at least, before I knew about it). While the Lipstick Theatre is of course correct in decrying the majority of the cards for the chaff they are, I have winnowed out the occasional grain of wheat, as one must do in the Pit where amusing things are so hard to find.

Like other intelligent girls forced to live in the Pit, I have selective vision: I see the cards that amuse me, and the vile ones disappear into the waste paper basket without further thought. They are not so much as pebbles disrupting the serene surface of my mind, if you follow.

Whereas I defy any girl present (speshly poor Miss F) to remain stony and disapproving when confronted by a picture of a young Quirrie couple breaking a wishbone, beneath the caption: "She ALWAYS wished for shoes!"

Yours etc.,

Miss X

A Shoe, a shoe, my kingdom for a shoe!

My dear ladies,

I find myself a brunette in a pickle! Or, to be more precise, not so much a pickle as the most horrible foot coverings. I have come to you for advice, for if anywhere there is a pette who can solve my problem, most assuredly she will be here.

I am a brunette currently in the final year of her studies at a college in, it is true, the Pit. This is an unfortunate but necessary part of my Grand Master Plan, so it cannot be helped. However, I absolutely refuse to allow this to infect my wardrobe with bongo monstrosities, and here it is that I have my difficulty. This year, my housing accomodations require me to use bathing facilities used by twenty other pettes instead of two, and I have been instructed to wear something on my feet in the shower, for reasons of hygiene.

I am all in favor of hygiene, but for the life of me, I cannot find any sort of racinated shoes or sandals suitable for wearing into a shower!

Is there any wise soul who can assist me?

Miss F

So who ARE its naughty readerettes?Those Pinups!

Miss Eve has shown us the cover of that magazine for blondes.

So we thought we might show you.

What about the inside? We hear you ask. Well, Miss Eve has not shown us any of that, as she says it is too riskay for Girls' Town.

The imagination boggles.

The Blonde Management

Another Hypothesis

All this talk about certain magazines that are said to be passed around by certain blondes makes one wonder.

One does not wish to sound prejudiced, but most blondes — oneself included — are the epitome of purity and would not be likely to look at — you know — naughty publications.

On the other hand, in places like Ladyton, known for its "cosmopolitan" tendencies, I have heard that there are certain brunettes who have curious —

Oh well, you know what I mean. And if you don't perhaps I'd better not explain.

But I should just like to suggest that it is quite possible that Blondes Are Innocent.

As usual.

Miss QuiQui

Reversing the Polarity

You have probably noticed the way the Pit uses images of Real Girls. As Miss B. said to me this weekend "One sees some lovely looking up-to-date cards on a shop display, rushes over, only to find they are debased by coarse jokes and cheap innuendos".

In America it does not seem quite so bad. The level of coarseness is a little lower, but the ideology of sneering at the real world is perhaps even more explicit. One person who specialises in such images (actually a group of dreadfully-dressed Pit-females, on the evidence of a photograph they ill-advisedly released) who shall go nameless describes her (their) product thus:

Do you feel a sin coming on? Do you want to look cheap? Do you ignore your mother's well-meant advice? A—— is speaking your language. This first-ever collection of her wildly popular artwork celebrates the pleasures of being bad in a good girl's world ... includes nearly 100 images of nice ladies saying exactly what they mean — and it isn't pretty. We never said it would be pretty.

The extraordinary thing is that they all think they are saying something new and clever! There hasn't been a "good girl's world" for three decades or more, so they have to dig one up to be rude about! Their fundamental premiss, upon seeing pictures of real people, is that, because they — the bongos — have so much coarser minds, so much scruffier clothes and so much commoner speech than the people represented in the pictures, they are able to look down on them from a position of lofty and sneering superiority.

Wit from a wiser worldAny one from any world that was not turned upside-down could look at the pictures of real people and then the pictures of bongos and know precisely and instantly who must be superior to whom.

The results of this supercilious bongo sneering, they proudly tell us, are not pretty. Are we supposed to be surprised? Is anything in the Pit pretty? Of course the pictures themselves are pretty, because they were made in a sane world. But it goes without saying that the Pit must find ways to uglify them. If — just once; just for an astonishing change — they produced something genuinely pretty and innocent, now that would be truly surprising. Not to say, truly shocking to the bongo mind. But the bongo mind must never be shocked. It has spent its entire life wrapped in cotton wool. Dirty cotton wool.

But suppose one reversed the polarity. Suppose one produced real images with witty comments; but witty comments wherein the butt was not the "oppressive" Real World that has been dead for decades, but the Real Oppressor who is very much alive and invading all our minds, telling us how to dress, speak and think.

These would be images that are pretty — pretty, witty and wise. And, for the first time in three dreary decades, liberating.

That is one of the premisses of Lipstick Theatre.

We present a small example for your delectation.

Forward the Revolution!

Pinups for blondes

In the Aphrodite Cocktail Bar, a blonde told us what sort of brunette pinups blondes like: "We blondes like our brunettes strong, clear-eyed, competent and smartly dressed. Brunettes with a mission, brunettes a girl can count on."

And I believed it. It's only we beastly brunettes whose animal instincts are invoked by plunging necklines, scanty dresses, smoldering half-lidded eyes, or pouting lips.

I say I did believe it. Until recently, while shopping on an Elektra-fleem, I discovered what sort of publication really is passed around in blonde locker rooms!

Blondies, your secret is out!

Eve, br.

Hmm — well don't we get a picture from this publication that blondes are alleged to like? Purely for academic purposes, of course.

The Diffies of Life

What can one say? I have been meaning to tell you al sorts of things, but life can be so dfficult. You must hear about our trip to Modern Times and all about our plans for Lipstick Theatre and everything else, but I have been utterly incapacitated by the most dreadful thing in the world.

What, you ask, is the most dreadful thing in the world? Perhaps you think I am referring to something arcane and mystical. Not at all. I am referring to the most dreadful thing in the world. The thing every one knows to be the most dreadful thing in the world.

I am fererring, of course to, maths homework. Tons of it, which I have been putting off all Summer and daren't put off any longer now the leaves are turning to gold and all that sort of rot.

So there we are. Still, I shall show you a very silly and silent film whch is the first ever sketch toward Lipstick Theatre. Don't get excited. It is really a little trying-our-hands-at-very-elementary-animation piece. And it stars, of course, a mushroom.

Just like your very own,

Pincess Mushroom

Lipstick Theatre!

Sorry things have been a little quiet of late, but lots has been popping behind the jolly old scenes. Why we have even had the Village Carpentress knock us up a new Notice Board, which is just as well, as we are anticipating some Important Notices.

Do the names Blonde Bombshell Creations and Lipstick Theatre mean anything to you? They shouldn't, as they have never been used before, but they are the names of some exciting developments coming down the Old Aristasia Road in the very near fuchsia.

How about Femmeworld? Those of you who have been about for a while will remember that (and those of you who haven't but who have dug about the archives a bit). Well, there may be a new Femmeworld a-coming, along with those other interesting names. Aristasia-in-Telluria just loves to replay its own history in a new key!

For the Duchess

Sorry to use girls' Town for a personal message, but:

Dearest Duchess — I tried to post to you from both accounts before I left but both letters g'bdoinged. Where should I get in touch with you?

The Shroom

Personal messages are all right when necessary — this is a Village Noticeboard among other things! But if it is more than an inch long please make it sparkling and amusing, not only because it is for public consumption but also because it is for private consumption. Indeed, if you could even consider writing more than an inch of text to any one without being sparkling and amusing, you should write out 50 times: "I must make an Art of my life."

Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Thought for the Day

"I have been rich and I have been poor. I have been with love and I have been without it. The one thing I can say with absolute certainty is that it is better to be poor with love than rich without it."

Miss Regina Snow

An Experiment

Some of the shroomies are venturing into a dining and dancing club in the Pit. It is called Modern Times and its stock-in-trade appears to be up-to-date decadence; a theme not uncomon, we hear, down t'Pit.

So will the predominant mood be up-to-dateness with a certain uncertainty about how to manage it wthout being decadent? Or will it be decadence that realises that you can't be decadent without something to decay and, since Pit-culture rotted away years ago, one needs to turn back to the Real World if one wants something that can decay as opposed to desert-dry bones whereof the flesh /had finished decaying before some of us were born?

Our experiment at Goodwood was interesting. Here goes another one. Wish us luck!

Les Shrooms

Innocence and dignity combinedShe’ll be wearing Pit pyjamas . . .

I was most interested to hear our shy blonde define Pit-pyjamas (a general term for "casual" Pit fashions) as:

Sloppy, formless, soft-edged nursery-wear for adults who have never been innocent children and will never grow up.

This raises some rather interesting questions about the whole childhood/adulthood question which were also raised by the recent piece The Influx of Infantilisation written, I think, by a non-Aristasian, but provoked by an Aristasian piece and with an extensive Aristasian commentary.

The thrust of both comments is that the Pit juvenilises or infantilises people, which certainly seems true; and yet at the same time Aristasians tend more definitely than bongos to cultivate child-personae and to value innocence. Indeed, it goes further than that. In The District Governess we read:

Aristasians do not regard themselves as ‘adult’ in quite the way that you do. The Queen or Empress and her servants, down to the District Governess, are always accepted as being somewhat in loco parentis. The difference between wickedness and naughtiness is that wickedness implies a complete severance between oneself and the norms of goodness — a fixed and final enmity between the wicked and the victim, whereas naughtiness is a temporary rift between oneself and an order of goodness which one never ceases to accept. A good spanking will set all to rights and put one back into grace again. For children everywhere, the cycle of naughtiness, punishment and forgiveness is a part of the fundamental security of life, an assurance that one is never finally severed from the love and protection of mother and family. For the Aristasian, the concept of what you call ‘society’ — a thing with which the individual is often, and in the post-Eclipse rightly, at odds — scarcely exists. There is only the Familia, extended into wider and wider circles — the Queen, and above her the Empress, and beyond the Empress, God Herself — being the ultimate loving mothers, who may chastise, but only from kindness, and only to reunite us with their love.

I recall Miss Alice Trent being confronted with the old Pit saw that "childhood was an invention of the Victorian era". Miss Trent responded by pointing out that many things that were once common to all people — "fairy tales", games that have since been relegated to the playground (and are now probably forgotten even there) and many other things, including a sense of wonder and innocence — have become the exclusive province of childhood.

"What is a recent invention," said Miss Trent, "is not 'childhood' but the cult of adult-ism."

So how do we reconcile these views? Does the Pit infantilise? Or does it "adultise".

The answer is obvious. It does both: and it does both in a corrupt way. It inculcates the worst aspects of childhood with the worst aspects of adult-ism, creating a creature that lacks the positive qualities of either but combines the negative qualities of both. A creature that has neither the innocence of a child nor the dignity of an adult.

Conversely, the real person, whether Aristasian or from the Tellurian world, combines both sets of positive qualities.

In the Victorian era, certain positive aspects of innocence and simplicity were rejected (that is, relegated to the nursery) in favour of a very strong cult of bourgeois dignity and seriousness. This was by way of compensation for the rapid erosion of the metaphysical bases of society as outlined in The Feminine Universe. Like many rajasic "adjustments" this "cult of adult-ism" served its purpose usefully until the time of the Eclipse.

After that — as in many other areas — we have an inversion, in which the negative elements of both sides of the question come to the fore at the expense of the positive elements of either (we see exactly the same process, for example, in relation to "bohemianism" and "conventionalism" c.f.True and False Bohemians).

To take a very simple example — one which takes us, I fear, out of the realm of Aristasia, but is nonetheless very useful for our present purpose — let us take a group of young male singers in Trent and just after the Eclipse — say 1968, or any time thereafter.

Assuming the two groups are the same age, which one looks older? The question is impossible to answer, because it depends from what perspective one is looking. The Trentish group looks much younger in one way. They are much more fresh-faced and innocent. They are not at all jaded and world-weary like the post-Eclipse group. They are smiling, not scowling. They are full of youth and hope and freshness. They are much younger.

But look at it another way, and they are much older. They are dressed in evening dress. They look more like their fathers.They are upright and dignified. Compared to them the post-Eclipse group look like sullen brats, always on the verge of some tantrum, either whining and complaining like a bored child on a car journey (but trying to infuse their bad mood with Apocalyptic significance) or else indulging in the lowest and most obvious passions. The pre-eclipse group is much older.

Once one sees the point it is almost too obvious to mention. Infantilisation and Adulteration are not opposites. They are the two essential aspects of the same corruption of the human spirit.<