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Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Blondes and Films

Oh you blondes are awfully silly but quite, quite sweet! I must admit I am one of the non-understanding brunettes, although I find it charming when faced with an excitable blonde I can not comprehend the excitment. I think I love films as much as the next Vintessenne, but blondes do have a certain feeling for them. My younger blonde sister, Evie, went potty over films a while ago and got into quite a bit of trouble as she and her best friend managed to get into a quite unsuitable film that was not for unaccompanied blondes. When my mother found out they and the unattentive box office girl were soundly punished.

Christabelle


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The Silver Diary - part 4

I awoke today full of excitement. A whole new world seems to have opened up before me - new creatures, new adventures, new people to meet.

After a hasty breakfast of coffee, a roll and cheese, I stepped out into the morning sunshine and headed north toward Violet City. I was told that there I should find the first Dojo in which I must challenge the trainers. Travelling north I met a girl who told me that if I met a trainer on the road and looked her in the eye, I must prepare for battle. Soon I met a young brunette and said hello to her. The most extraordinary thing happened. An exclamation mark appeared above her head - a thing I have never seen before outside Toontown, but it appears that this is the sign of a trainer about to battle.

Chikkie battles a HoothootShe brought out her creature, and I was surprised and delighted to find how well my hours of training in the long grass had already improved my creatures. Chikkie defeated the challenger with relative ease, receiving lots of experience points. I was also given some money, some of which mysteriously flew to my mother, who, as you will recall had promised to save a portion of my money. The slightly disappointed trainer and I exchanged the little gesture called a reverence - a bow of the head with palms together - and I passed on, feeling that I had really begun.

On the way to the city I passed a Dark Cave. A trainer outside it said that she would love to explore the cave if only there was a creature with the power to make it light. I certainly had no such creature, so I passed on.

I met three more trainers on the northward path. Each one popped an exclamation mark at me, and each challenger Chikkie defeated with little trouble. They were young blondes and brunettes like myself, but it seems I have a bit of a way with these creatures as Professor Oak foresaw.

Soon a rather elated blonde came to Violet City. The sign read "Violet City - city of nostalgic scents". How lovely. I went to the poke centre where a delightful red-haired blonde nurse restored my dear creatures. Then, full of confidence, I proceeded to the Dojo. As is the way of this land, people talked freely to me as I went, and my confidence soon began to wane. The Dojo, it seems was owned by Falkner, mistress of Elegant Bird Creatures and all her disciples trained creatures of the flying kind. A blonde told me rather worriedly that grass-type creatures like my Chikkie are particularly ineffective against flying creatures.

I decided to wait a while before challenging the Dojo and train up my Squirl to a higher level. She should be my champion at the Violet City Dojo. I had been warned before I began that I should have a more difficult time if I chose a Chikorita; but I love my Chikkie and do not regret my choice.

I wandered to the north of Violet City and came to Sprout Tower - the place I had been told was haunted. Nervously I entered, but was made very welcome by a girl in a kimono. This was a very peaceful and serious-seeming place, quite unlike the bright, busy city. I was told that there was once a bellsprout 100 feet high and that the tower had been built about this huge plant as its central pillar. I had seen wild bellsprouts - sweet flower like creatures. It was hard to imagine one 100 feet high.

I was told if I proceeded to the top of the tower I should receive a reward. This was easier said than done, for at each level I was challenged by a peaceful lady in a kimono who had a trained bellsprout. At times the frail-seeming wodden tower shook, but I was told the central pillar would always stand firm and preserve it. I used my Squirl to fight these creatures and each time she prevailed, gaining many experience points and much money.

At the top I met the Mistress of the Tower. She told me how I must love and care for my creatures and that if I was at one with them, I should be victorious. Then she challenged me to fight her bellsprouts. Again my Squirl was victorious, and the mistress was very pleased with me. She gave me the power called Flash which I might bestow on one of my creatures. This power was able to light dark places.

"Oh, thank you," I cried, "Now I shall be able to explore the Dark Cave."

"Not yet, young Squirrel-maiden" she replied, "for to use this power you must possess the Zephyr Badge."

"How shall I find that?" I asked.

"Only the Bird-maiden Falkner can bestow the Zephyr Badge, and that she will do only when you have successfully challenged her Dojo."

We exchanged reverence and she gave me her blessing, but I felt worried. The Dojo seemed so very daunting.

The Mistress of Sprout Tower smiled. "Take courage," she said. "Follow your destiny."

I made my way to the bottom of the tower, receiving greetings and wise advice from each of the ladies who had challenged me on the way up.

It was nearing dusk as I left the tower. I should find a small hotel for the night - or perhaps not so small, for I was feeling rather rich. Tomorrow the Dojo. I realise there had been no ghosts in Sprout Tower after all. Now, if I were to return there at night...

What a bold blonde I am becoming!

But not tonight.

Lindie


Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Modern Millie

Dear Lindie,

Oh I can utterly understand your feelings! Quite often when watching a film I am sent into near hysterics, not all films of course,
usually it is the more silly films, especially musicals. Musicals often make me feel like dancing and singing and laughing and just give me a very warm feeling. I thought it was only I who became all silly over films!

Perhaps we should go to the pictures together and then we can indulge in our silliness. Whenever I watch films with brunettes they find it quite funny that I get this way and just don't understand. sigh But if I found one that did- why I'd be hers forever!

With many swoons,

Nicola


Utterly, utterly overwhelmed

Millie and Miss Dorothy Charleston in the lift of their hotelOh, my darlings, I am utterly, utterly overwhelmed. I have been watching a film called Thoroughly Modern Millie, and it has stirred me to my most inward places. I feel elated and tearful, happy and sad all at once. Do you ever feel like that? Blondes, I mean, I can't imagine brunettes ever do, though if any do I should adore to meet one.

I mean, it isn't as if it is a serious film, or one with deep emotions. It is really quite a silly film. But it is so alive and stylish and charming, so very Vintesse in such a very Infra way (Vintesse and Infra are a bit related , I've heard), oh and Mary Tyler Moore is so divinely blonde and Julie Andrews so amusingly trying to be brunette, and the Dreadful Eastern Villains, and the way the Alleluia Chorus is mingled with Baby Face, and the Sweet Mystery of Life duet that plays as the melting blonde finds her brunette, and that counterchanged black and white art-neo dress, and the innocence and the joie de vivre.My rather down-to-earth brunette guardian just looks at me over her spectacles and thinks "blondes", and cannot understand why I need her to cuddle me and want to cry.

So I popped into the Bar to ask if any of you can. Can you? Oh, can you?

Lindie


 

Aristasian Poems

Miss Mayhew asks if there are other Aristasian poetesses. I do not consider myself a poetess, but I have written a few verses which seemed to me too personal to publish. However, since Miss Mayhew has shared with us such tenderly personal things, and since we are among such dear friends, I shall offer a little poem of my own. I still blush to present such things and hope I shall be forgiven for concealing myself behind a nom de plume.

To Her Mistress upon her Homecoming

Oh, Mistress, my Mistress, I give you my greeting
To welcome you home from those far-distant shores.
It seems long I have waited and yearned for this meeting,
To kneel and to offer you things that are yours.

My heart that I give you was long in your keeping,
My hands are in chains whether steel or unseen
My love that has brought me both laughter and weeping
Has been yours for a year - perhaps always has been.

What can I give that is not yours already?
For I am a slave-girl belonging to you.
Only a heart that is loving and steady,
Only a love that will always be new.

For that which is yours is still mine to make brighter,
The world that is ours to make new every day,
The darkness we both feel to make ever lighter,
New vistas to open each step of our way.

Envoi
Love is the collar that marks me a chattel
And honour the foot-ring that fettereth me;
Kindly fate is the chain and the lock and the shackle
And kinder the fate that I never go free.

"Cordelia"


Thank you so much

Thank you so much, Miss Mayhew for sharing your beautiful poems and your delicate thoughts. How sad that such a sweet soul should suffer loneliness. I wish I were there to comfort you.

Annalinde


Japonisme, continued

Gentle ladies -

I am touched by the compliments I have received on my poetry.  If I might be so bold, I would like to post some more tanka. These poems were also written to Cassandra more than ten years ago. It occurs to me that much of the poetry I have shared is melancholy; perhaps I can work on something more cheerful. Pettes, does anyone know if there are any other Aristasian poets present? If so, have any been published by a Real publishing house, so that I might buy their work? Or are there any other poems by Aristasian ladies floating around in Elektraspace?

A word about the symbolism of flowers. In the fourth poem, I have mixed metaphors shamelessly. The plum blossom in ancient Nippon stood for romantic love, the cherry blossom for youth and life. Pansies are not Asian. In the West, they stand for thoughts (a pun on "pensees"). Cassandra lived (and lives still) in Telluria, and at the time of our friendship, so did I.

My first and greatest love...I think I will always have a melting place in my heart reserved for her.

I am sorry. I am in a rather sad and lonely mood tonight. I swore to never marry until my aunt no longer needed me to care for her - her health is not good, as some of you probably know. I must keep my vow, and sometimes, remembering my youth, remembering how I almost married several times and did not (or, later, could not) - the loneliness is terrible. On the other hand, I am grateful to have family.

This blonde needs some comfort. I am so glad to be in the company of friends; I am so glad that you are here. I cannot even fathom how a Tellurian maid would face such melancholy. The atomization, the aloneness - it's too much for me to even try to understand. How terrible it must be.


Autumn now is here;
the leaves fall to frosted ground
and no lovers play
within the cherry orchard.
The time for blossoms is past.

II.

Behind the rice paper screen
two kimonos fall.
Furtive the whispers,
but how delicate the hands
of my lady when we tryst!

III.

I once loved a butterfly.
She flitted about
my garden, touching
the flowers with her beauty.
She has flown to other flowers.

IV.

The cherry blossom
is admired, as is the plum.
Many flowers are
delighting to a gardener.
Why not then the pansy?

V.

I remember you,
love, the long springtime we shared,
the gazing fondness,
but also the bitter nights.
I shall let the seasons turn.


Cordially,

Miss Victoria Mayhew


Blondes, Brunettes and Cakes

The picture of Theda Bara is certainly a little frightening. I was going to be bold and ask if we might have one or two pictures of our charming brunettes on our walls, so I am glad that someone else has managed to pin one up as I am lacking in good pictures to send!

My role model is more Doris Day or Ginger Rogers. I confess to having a Quirrie-esque love of the home and kitchen. My dear friends managed to find a wonderful Trentish housewife's guidebook in a Tullerian shop the other day- for only 5 shillings! It is packed full of wonderful recipes for more cakes than a girl could possibly eat in a life time as well as handy household hints. They said I may borrow it whenever I like and I was thrilled!

And please, I must congratulate the management in making this Cocktail bar so very popular and successful.

With much love,

Nicola

Thank you so much - we love it when you love us! But possibly you underestimate the cake-eating capacity of some of us!


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A Thought for Today

Today, as you know, is the first day of Western Summer Time. Guess what? In the Silver game I must go to my mother and tell her it is now "daylight saving time" and she will adjust the game's clock for me. Isn't that clever and delightful?

Impressedly,

Lindie


The Adventure Diaries

Although I am not familiar with this Novarian adventure game, I am enjoying the diary entries very much. Thank you for sharing.

Cordially,

Miss Victoria Mayhew


The Silver Diary - Part 3

When I finally arrived at the laboratory, everything was in a state of confusion. I met the Professor's assistant at the door - a well-groomed blonde who told me that a creature had been stolen from the lab. She was very distressed because she had heard that when creatures belong to evil people they may become evil.

The Professor herself was talking to a constabel, and I heard them saying that the stolen creature was a Cyndaquil, and that the thief had been spotted running away - a brunette with long red hair. Surely this must have been the nasty girl who challenged me on the way here. I was a bit nervous of interrupting but shyly I told them what had happened.

I gave them a better description than they already had of the girl. The constabel, a tall brunette who looked just dreamy in her uniform thanked me and said I was a very sensible blonde. Oh! I nearly fainted - but I tried to look sensible instead.

When the police left, I showed the Professor the strange egg the Old Woman had given me. The Professor's eyes lit up behind her spectacles. "This could be a Pokemon egg," she said. "If it is, this is a most important discovery."

She was also impressed that Professor Elm had given me a Pokedex. "She must have seen something in you," she said. "Perhaps you will become a great trainer. Blondes can do very well, because they are so sympathetic to their creatures." She gave me six pokeballs so that I could catch creatures of my own and told me that if I really wanted to become a trainer I should have to challenge trainers in the dojos in different towns.

It seemed frightening but exciting. And now at last I had pokeballs so I could collect some more creatures.

I went to see my mother before setting off on my adventures again. She was excited too and wondered how she could help me. She suggested that she could save my money for me. This seemed a good idea as I am very prone to spend it all at once.

A "page" from the PokedexAfter taking tea with Mummie I set off again, this time determined to catch some wild creatures. In the long grass on the way to Cherrygrove City I caught a wild Sentret - with Chikkie's help, of course. When I first saw them I thought they were flying squirrels, but in fact they stand on their long tails so they can see far, and warn their friends when there is danger. I adore my little Sentret, and called her Squirl.

We proceeded to Cherrygrove city where, over coffee, I consulted my new Pokedex. Sure enough data for both Chikorita and Sentret had appeared. The descriptions were very sweet - and informative too. We blondes are most interested in informativeness as well as sweetness, you know - especially sensible blondes such as I am.

Most of the rest of the day, I trained my two Pokemon by fighting wild creatures. These fights are not in the least violent and seem to amuse both tame and wild creatures greatly. I suppose it is instinctive, for it is by fighting that their levels increase and they become stronger. At certain levels they even learn new moves, which make them more effective still. Late in the day I caught a wild Pidgey. These are small, gentle birds that fight by flapping their wings to create wind or stir up dust.

Then I returned to Cherrygrove City and found a charming little hotel for the night. Over a light dinner I met a very cheerful blonde who told me that if I went much further north I should encounter trainers who would challenge me. Remembering my encounter with the red-haired brunette I felt unhappy, but the blonde assured me that these challenges are very good-natured and part of the tradition here. Besides if one wins one is given money, which will help me continue my journey - and trainer battles increase one's creatures' levels much more swiftly than fighting wild creatures. I was also told of a strange place called Sprout Tower, which was said to be haunted.

That night my dreams were filled with darling creatures, trainers and the Mysterious Tower.

Lindie


Delightful girls, delightful drinks, delightful conversation

Scotch Mist

Interesting that our blonde management should liken this occasionally-evanescent town to the Scottish town of Brigadoon. At least this one up more often that it is doon.

Lorna

>tee-hee<


Oh! What a shiver-making brunette!Theda Bara and others

Since for now I reside in Vintesse, I can indeed assure you that Miss Clara Bow is the "It Girl." I'm not quite sure what "It" - refers to, though; allure? glamour? sultry looks? charisma? She certainly has these in abundance, although for true allure, I think a Kadorian brunette named Hedy Lamarr possesses even more. Miss Lamarr actually was born in Trent and she starred in her first few films there, but she seems to have moved around almost as much as I have. She's also done some films in Quirinelle. She's even an inventrix, as well as an actress, and some of her work made its way to Novaria. My goodness.

One of my favourite film actresses in Vintesse is a brunette named Theda Bara. She is a little frightening - not unlike my aunt, really, and come to think of it, Aunt Juliana does confess to having had a severe crush on her when she was young, and having hero-worshipped her, almost as a role model. Here is a picture of her. It's a little on the risque side, and it's rather frightening to look at with the skeleton and all - I can't watch all by by myself, I need to have a brunette holding me tightly and reassuringly - but it's the best picture I have. And oh, she does have soulful eyes, does she not?

My own role model when I was growing up was actually Miss Ingrid Bergman. Far less frightening. On the other hand, I longed to be swept off my feet by Miss Katherine Hepburn, or - yes - Miss Sarah Bernhardt. What blonde would not?

Miss Victoria Mayhew


Screeeeeeem!

I am so sorry your postings are sometimes being delayed. Last night it took four hours to post them and sometimes we have to abandon a session altogether. I am also sorry if pages are sometimes loading slowly. It is all part of the same problem. Cheap servers I fear - but it is all we can afford au mome.

Since writing the above I realise that this morning the whole site has disappeared again and I can post nothing until it is back up - which may not be before I have to leave. Can any one help us?

Sorry,

The Blonde Management

P.S. - the site did not return before I left - sigh - please bear with any slowness, and if ever you find the Town vanished like Brigadoon, do return - it should come back again!


How Wonderful

Dearest Pettes,

My name is Johannah and I am so glad to see the return of the Aphrodite Cocktail Lounge on this site.  I wasn't aware of the Lounge during it's original incarnation, but I read all of the archives on the Belladonna site after it ended.  I wished so much that I could contribute and get to know the girls in the Lounge.  After reading all the posts so many time I felt as though I knew everypette and that they were all my friends.  It made me sad to remember that the conversations had all ended years before I found them. 

I am very grateful to the management for bringing the Lounge back and doing ll the hard work that it takes to maintain it so that we can all enjoy it. 

Thanks again.

Gratefully Yours,

Johannah

blonde

Thank you too! It is delightful to know that our efforts are appreciated.


Our very own magazine - buy it from the Clubhouse

The Very Thing Itself!First Issue

The Novarian Game Friends Club now has its own occasional magazine - the Game Friends Courier. Welcome to our first issue.

The most important news of the month, the year and possibly the century is that the Gamebaby advance now exists! It was launched in Nihon on the 21st of March - so some one else obviously thinks the Spring Equinox is important! Our purse-portable friend has jumped from eight to thirty-two bits, with a 50% larger screen, thousands more colours, higher resolution, brighter, crisper display and much more sophisticated games, all with only a tiny increase in size and no increase in battery consumption. It is due here in June.

The fairest brunette so far!Lady Sia

There are lots of Advance games you may have heard of, but here is one you may not have. It is called Lady Sia and is about a shape-shifting maiden who must rescue her realm from the Forces of Darkness. For those of you who like a girl rather Gulp! Rather large villains for our small heroinebrunetter than Alice, Lady Sia may be ideal - for though her hair is golden she really cannot be a blonde - can she?

Lady Sia wields swords and other weapons and can also take on the forms of animals. The picture on the left is an actual screen-shot, which gives you some idea of the graphic quality of the new machine. If Alice pushes the Gamebaby Colour to its limits, Lady Sia initiates a new generation.


 

"Shall I not seek Avala?"

Miss Trent's contention that Aristasia Pura is not a temporal paradise is confirmed by the fact that it has its own legends of such a paradise. It is called Avala and exists out on the Western Sea, "Yond of the seagulls' cry" - to quote an Aristasian song I learned some time back, but I regret cannot fully remember now.

It is said that if one sails Westward, then just as in the East, there will come a point when Western technical things will cease to work, and if one could go far enough one would reach Avala, the land where the twelve golden apples of the sun grow on a great tree, tended by golden maidens.

Whether this is true or not - and, since Aristasia is a far less prosaic world than ours, it may well be - an earthly paradise would hardly have legends of finding an earthly paradise, now would it?

Ellhedrine


Our First Archive!

My Dears and Darlings,

A Momentous Occasion is upon us. We have achieved our First Archive. The old Cocktail Bar eventually ran to countless thousands of archives - well, about eighty, actually, which is the length in text of several substantial novels. This Town has been so busy in the first week-and-a-bit of its existence that it is now so full that the first days have already been consigned to an Archive. This, I am told by the veteranettes is Not Bad Going.

So champagne on the house - straight for the brunettes, pèche royale for the blondes.

For reasons of Immemorial Tradition and technical bodgery the current Girls' Town will always be filed as girlstown1.html while successive archives will be named girlstown2, 3, 4 etc.html - if you see what I mean.

There. You didn't want to know that last bit, did you? But why shouldn't you share our troubles occasionally?

With love

The Blonde Management


Behind the Scenes

Oh Nicola, thank you so much for your kind words about my diary. I was so hoping girls would enjoy it. We must meet again soon, and I can lend you a copy of Pokemon Blue for your Gamebaby.

Before continuing my Silver Diary, I just wanted to make a few behind-the-scenes notes. Pokemon Silver is a delightful game. I hope I have managed to convey a whiff of its charm. Some of the events - the taking of coffee etc. (I am an aficionado of the traditional European coffee-house) are mine. I have Aristasianised the story, of course, and I hope my doing so will help to transform it for Aristasians who play it after me. But most of the charm is found in the game itself.

Pokemon world at nightThe main character is a bee-oh-why (oh why? indeed). But too indistinct for it to matter much, and you can give her your own name and she will be referred to as such throughout the game. Would that I had waited for Pokemon Crystal where there is a real option for a female protagonist. Waited for Pokemon Crystal indeed! - It will be ages before it is translated, and I could not even wait for Silver to come to this country but ended up getting an imported one!

The graphics are very similar to the earlier games (which has advantages) but it is a glorious thing to see the Pokemon World in full colour. And the change from day to night in real time is positively wonderful the first time you see it. Everything is night-blue and the houses have their lights on and the hoothoots come out. Also the battle sequences are much improved. Graphically they were the weakest part of the earlier games. Now the creatures look just as they should.

Gameplay is similar, but with many, many improvements from the real time clock to the improved equipment - telephone, working wireless sets and lots more (I believe) to come. One finds well-thought-out touches everywhere with the usual Nintendo thoroughness. Everything conspires to make the Best Adventure Ever (with apologies to Zelda fans) better still.

I shall continue my adventures and tell you all about them very soon!

With blonde love

Lindie Miralene


Far Away and Magical Indeed!

Oh, Annalinde, would that I were that lucky violet-haired princess...

Cordially,

Miss Victoria Mayhew


Calendars and Angels

As so often, our dear Miss Mayhew raises some important and thought-provoking points.

I should preface my remarks by saying that in Aristasia religion is a matter of personal conscience and many varieties of belief are found, especially in Aristasia-in-Telluria. Beyond that the subject is so vast that it is hard to know where to begin.

Let me begin with your example. When your friend spoke of Lent - if she was speaking in any way of Aristasian forms of religion - and if she was at the Embassy I am sure she was, it is probable that she actually meant was Moura. Aristasians in Telluria will sometimes simply say Lent to avoid long explanations. Lent is not an Aristasian term, though it is not, in origin a Christian term either - it is the Old English (and pre-Christian) word for spring, though it gained a special significance in the Christian Church.

The equivalent to this in Aristasia is Moura, which is the thirteenth month of the year and the fifth season as well as a period of self-sacrifice in preparation for Easter and the old calendar's New Year. Easter, incidentally is not a Christian term in origin even in Telluria - Eostre is the name of the Teutonic goddess of spring and dawn, equivalent to the Greek Eos.

Which brings us on to calendars. While in everyday Western usage the Aristasian calendar is the same as the Tellurian, the Old Calendar - which is used in much of the East and in the West for religious purposes - is very different. It has thirteen months, each of twenty-eight days. The four seasons have three months each and correspond to the four elements: fire, water, earth and air; and the thirteenth month, Moura, is considered a season on its own, corresponding to the fifth element (quintessence) of ether. Mathematicians will realise that this leaves one day unaccounted for. This day is called the Hiatus and falls between the end of Moura and the beginning of the new year. On leap years the Hiatus is two days. Very strict Aristasians will do virtually nothing on the Hiatus.

The year begins on the 21st of March, which in the Old Calendar is the first of Columbina (or in Old Aristasian Culverine), the first day of the year, and also Aristasian Easter.

I have deliberately not entered into theology at this point. How far Aristasians-in-Telluria can or should adopt the religion(s) of Aristasia Pura is a matter for each individual. Many of us have a broadly Deistic faith based on a Feminine concept of the Divine. God is called in Aristasia Dea (Old Aristasian Dia). It is from this "minimalist" position that I speak in The Feminine Universe - though of course it is not incumbent upon an Aristasian to have any religious position at all.

How far any given patriarchal religion can be reconciled with being an Aristasian is entirely a matter for the individual to decide.

Of other Aristasian religious ideas and practices adopted in Aristasia-in-Telluria, probably the commonest are the keeping of Moura with some small personal sacrifice, as a mark of respect and a belief in and understanding of the seven great (or planetary) Geniae (Old Aristasian Janyati), sometimes referred to in Telluria as Angels (which is probably more accurate than goddesses, at least for people of Western Tellurian provenance). These Genia or Angels, as you probably already know are also the tutelary spirits of the seven Provinces of Aristasia as well as of the seven days of the week.

As to the need for redemption in Aristasia - you raise a very profound theological question. Aristasian philosophy holds that all manifestation as such is ipso facto a separation from Deity, and clearly if there is any need for discipline - not to mention any evils whatever, such as suffering, disease, old age or death, then we are not inhabiting a Perfect world and reunion with Dea is therefore desirable and ultimately necessary.

It has been suggested that Pure Aristasians are what the Greeks would have termed titans (or what the Buddhists call the long-lived gods) i.e. creatures living in a world of relative perfection - a kind of temporal heaven such as the Isles of the Blest. Such creatures do not require religion since they can neither sink below nor rise above their present state so long as that lasts.

However, since there is religion in Aristasia Pura, this would appear not to be the case. I do not state this view with complete certainty.

I am aware that I have skated rather fitfully over an immense subject, but I hope I have managed to shed a little light in doing so.

Respectfully,

Miss Alice Trent


Religion in Aristasia

Dear friends,

 I am no expert on matters Aristasian, although I am Aristasian to the very  marrow of my bones. A long while ago, I made a journey to the Aristasian  embassy in Tellurian London. A lady there had given up sweets for Lent.  This made me wonder about religion in general. I am sure Aristasia Pura is  not Christian - Jesus was a man, and at any rate, while I am sure there is  sin in Aristasia as elsewhere (surely there must be, or there would be no need for Imperial Discipline) Aristasia, as a fundamentally sound and pure realm would not need a saviour of any sort. Am I correct?

 But what of Telluria, and Aristasians in Telluria? Lent is a Christian  creation, as are Christmas and Easter and Advent, which I believe are also  celebrated. What is the meaning of this?

 Also, a friend of mine who I shall call Polly is a classic Type One in her temperament, and I believe she might find Aristasia interesting. She  happens to be Jewish. How would her religion and background be viewed?

 My blonde mother always told me that religion, like politics, is a potentially explosive issue and ought to be handled diplomatically if it is  brought up at all, unless one is engaging in a conversation with people who are all of like minds. I hope I have not been indelicate.

 Cordially,

 Miss Victoria Mayhew


Apologies and Grumps

Dear Pettes,

I am so sorry the Town vanished for part of last night. At least - unlike Brigadoon - it is here most of the time and only gone sometimes.

I also apologise for slowness in posting letters. I cannot claim to be the most efficient blonde barmaid on the face of the Empire, and I am not always with my ordinator in any case. But at the moment sometimes, even when the town is standing bright in the sunshine and plain to view, it cannot be reached by the back door wherein come the pictures and words and things. And sometimes even when it does work it works only very slowly after millions of tries. Well, lots.

But don't worry. We keep going. But sometimes we make little squeaky blonde growls. Don't worry about them - like squeaky doors you can always oil them - preferably with a cocktail rather than a spanking.

The Blonde Management


Poems from Miss Mayhew 

The discussion of Novarian games and Japanese culture reminded me that I had written some Japanese-styled poems to a brunette, long ago; Cassandra was her name. Alas, we were not meant to be! She married another. However, while we were in each other's company, we wrote each other many poems.
 
I tried my hand at writing both tanka and haiku. Tanka is actually a much older style than haiku. Haiku is from the age of the samurai; tanka comes from the heyday of Heian-kyo, a time when the romantic love of women was exalted.
 
I hesitate to share these - I have longed to share my literary efforts here for some time. I am afraid that my work might be somewhat too "riskay" - it is no more explicit than the poetry of Sappho, but as I am sure I have mentioned before, I was raised in a very modest household. (Arcadia is in some ways more modest than Quirinelle!) Part of what made beauty and romantic love so beautiful and romantic, in my family, was the way they were whispered in a trembling voice rather than cried out to the heavens; some things were quite private, and that was that.
 
These poems were the fruit of my desperate longing. Cassandra is in my past now; she is happy with her wife, and she has published some of the poems that she wrote me, so perhaps it is safe for me to show some of the poems that I wrote her. Again, I hope they are not too flagrant.
 
I tried to be true to the spirit of Heian culture first, and only secondarily to the strict syllable counts that true Japanese poetry demands. It was a difficult decision, but real tanka and haiku are meant to be spoken, and they sound best to the ear if they are spoken in Japanese. Trying to convey the proper mood in written English is difficult enough. So often when one tries to force English to bend to Japanese rhythms, the result is stilted and artificial and most un-Real.
 
About the second to last haiku. I don't think Nippon ever had any kestrels, but the kestrel was a bird that Cassandra identified with, so I allowed myself a conceit.

 


 


Linked Tanka

 
I.
 
Swift the dawn rises
stretching her arms to the sky
smiling at a dream;
but soon the day is obscured
by the clouds of your absence.
 
II.
 
Behind rice paper
we whisper our love, breathing
soft sighs; our deep looks
are hidden behind spread fans.
Ah! Can we not see open air?
 
III.
 
The plum blossoms weep,
without you to behold them;
in the lonely night,
the moon cries without comfort.
Alone, I too am weeping.
 
IV.
 
Your hands are white, and
soft as silk against my breasts;
white as lightning in night.
Soft the thunder as it breaks,
sweeter than sake the rain!
 
 

 

Haiku (mostly unlinked)

 
I.
 
 From the first thunder of spring
bloom roses:
the night petals of longing
 
II.
 
A cat cries in want
of a lover; would that I felt
the sweet stroke of your hand!
 
III.
 
I tilt my head back
to slake my thirst with warm rain -
I am lightning-soft.
 
IV.
 
This storm will not bate,
it seems; I am blown away
in wind and thunder.
 
V.
 
The roses burn, a
flaming sacrifice to
the goddess of my want.
 
VI.
 
The rains have gone, and
you with them: memory lies
on the roses - dew.
 
VII.
 
Your honour lies in my hands,
where you have placed it.
Why is it so sharp?
 
VIII.
 
We met in battle;
what folly, to engage in war
without armour!
 
IX.
 
Beyond the cherry blossoms,
a stable tree's trunk:
ah! mad, fleeting spring!
 
X.
 
The cup brims over;
the sweet wine of love's promise -
my parched throat cries thirst!
 
XI.
 
The veil is lifted.
Now truly I see the face
of living beauty!
 
XII.
 
A kestrel flew away -
why can I not spread my wings
and follow the wind?
 
XIII.
 
Cold and desolate
blows the wind from my city
to your far abode.
   
 

 

Here is some of my more conventional rhymed poetry. I feel a little more confident sharing these fruits of my labours.

 


Sorrow, My Heart (A Triolet Redouble)

 
Sorrow, my heart,
For summer has flown.
True loves must part.
Sorrow, my heart;
The lilacs they wither
and true love must part -
It is all gone.
 
Sorrow, my heart,
For summer has flown.
True loves will part;
sorrow, my heart.
Cold breathes the wind.
What now is my own?
For the wind is unkind.
 
Sorrow, my heart,
For summer has flown.
True love must part,
and sorrow's my heart -
Now learns my art
To chase leaves that have blown.
 
Sorrow, my heart.
Summer has flown.
 
 
 


It Was Dark In The Night

 
It was dark in the night
when Fate took my hand;
The shutters protested
As a wind swept the land.
 
We skimmed out the door,
Two leaves on the gust;
Blown on by Force,
Abandoned to Trust
 
Fate asked me then
If I longed to be free -
I stared through the wind -
As she stared through me -
 
Giving no answer
But blinded by night,
I gave up my wings
To our circling flight;
 
Gave up my wings
my trembling wrists -
My neat fingers clenched
In trembling fists -
 
Husks of frail leaves
on the cold autumn breath
Go spinning alone
Against the white rose of Death
 
But such warmth in the chill!
and so sweet to be blown!
In the palm of a Goddess
I spin not alone -
 
 
 
 
 This last one is quite bitter, written after the end of a very brief and ill-advised whirlwind romance. I think the reason blondes are meant to be with brunettes is that when blondes are with blondes, the sisterhood and resulting rivalry ends up overpowering the romantic love. Or such has been my experience. I suppose I really should have known better, but the golden arrow strikes where it will. For a date, for flirting and teasing, I can bat my eyes at another blonde any day; but for a good solid marriage, solid as an oak, give me a brunette! I am blonde; I was never meant to settle down with another blonde.
 
 
 

All I Can Commit to Paper Is Your Hair

 

All I can commit to paper is your hair,
the sweetness of your flesh and blood;
I would rather capture inner beauty, not stare
at the physical shadow of where you stood.
Yet I am helpless. I only obsess
on your perfect bosom, your catlike moves,
the shadowy form that I long to caress,
but surely your soul is what my soul loved?
Our conversation was delightful, our love as well
and if this fragility of feeling disproved
its reality, nevertheless, it was in love that I fell.
Your absence is something of which I'm all too aware -
yet all I can commit to paper is your hair.



Boop-boop-a-doop!Short Skirts and Boop-boop-a-doop Girls

I am glad to see the picture of Miss Brooks on our walls this evening, she is a wonderful actress- but of course I would have to express a preference for Miss Clara Bow, she is a sweetie isn't she?Yes, Miss Lindie, we Vintessennes do know a thing or two about short skirts! As a brunette I wouldn't wear anything higher than my knee but some blondes do look very charming in a shorter skirt than that! Mind you even I am shocked at some of the fashions the girls in InfraQuirrie wear! I once travelled to that part with a darling blonde who loved it so much that she stayed, I believe she even married an Infra girl. Well must dash- I have a flying lesson to go to! My Aunt just purchased a biplane and I can't wait to start zooming through the air- ripping!

Christabelle

I have popped in a picture of Miss Bow, who I think is known in Vintesse as "The It Girl" - can any vintessiennes confirm this? I saw her in a film called, I think The Long Party. It was one of her few talking films. Usually I believe, she prefers the more traditional Vintesse silent film. I must admit that I think silent films sometimes have a sort of primordial atmosphere that words somehow make more ordinary and trivial. As if the silent actresses were Universal Archetypes or something, not just people who talk in a particular way, just like us. Do you know what I mean? Or am I just being silly?


A Wonderful Diary

Oh Miss Miralene your diary is wonderful! I have managed to borrow a Gamebaby and at the moment only have the little game where you build blocks- the name escapes me- is it Tetris? But your diary made me want to explore the curious land you describe and the little Chikkie is absolutely darling. I can quite understand why you would pick her over more powerful creatures. Please keep up with your diary, it is just like a novel or a wireless serialisation.

With love,

Nicola


Ckikkie - of course!The Silver Diary - pt 2

We found a charming little café in Cherrygrove City and sat taking or coffee. As we had entered the town we saw a sign saying "Cherrygrove: City of Cute, fragrant Flowers" - and so it is. The early spring air is so warn here, and heavy with the scent of blossom that summer seems come untimely to this town.

People greet one in the streets here. A gentle blonde who passed me said "When you are with pokemon, going anywhere is fun." She was right. I held my little Chikkie closer. She had a sweet Clefairy and some other creatures hidden safely in their pokeballs. How I wished I had caught that wild Sentret on the journey hither, but alas I had no pokeball.

As I sipped my coffee and Chikkie her milk, I examined my equipment and saw that I had a little wireless telephone. So I rang my mother. She was happy to hear from me and reminded me I was on an important mission for the Professor. She told me to be good.

Oh dear. I must stop idling about beautiful Cherrygrove City and look for the Old Woman. But first I went to the pokemart to equip myself and especially to buy pokeballs. I bought some potions to heal Chikkie on her travels, but alas there were no pokeballs. On the way out of the shop a brunette lamented that pokeballs seemed impossible to get. I could not help her of course. Another told me her creatures had been poisoned on the road North, so I went back and bought an antidote just in case.

Then I set out to look for the Old Woman's house. It seemed nowhere in the small city, but a friendly brunette directed me Northwards. So we took the road again, encountering somke wild weedles and kakuna. They were not very formidable, but fighting them increased Chikkie's level some more.

We then came to a tree where we found a berry. These are good for Chikkie. She can carry them herself and will use them to replenish herself in battle. So I gave it to her. We continued north and finally found the Old Woman's house.

What a strange Old Woman she was - very excitable, laughing and chuckling. She had a friend, Professor Oak there who gave me a Pokedex - that is a sort of magical encyclopaedia that records the creatures I have seen and tells me all about the ones I own - or at present the one I own. How very kind.

The Old Woman gave me a curious egg. She told me to take this back to Professor Elm straight away. She rested and replenished my Chikkie, then sent me on my way.

As I left the house, my phone rang. It was Professor Elm. She seemed agitated in the extreme. She said only "A great disaster - come quickly." and then hung up as if she had no more time to lose.

I began to run back south into Cherrygrove City and then East toward Bark Town, when I was stopped by a rough brunette with long rough hair. She was the roughest brunette I have ever seen.

"So you were given a pokemon by the lab - you weed - what a waste." No one has ever spoken to me like that. Not ever. I wished there was a good brunette to stand up for me.

There was none, but there was little Chikkie. She looked angry, and her little leaf began to spin on her head as if she were about to attack.

The rough brunette laughed nastily. "So your creature thinks it can fight mine, does it?" she sneered - and unleashed a Cyndaquil - the very fire-porcupine I might have chosen at the lab but didn't. I was terrified, because every one knows that grass-type creatures are more vulnerable to fire than to anything else.

Chikkie was so brave. She was not afraid at all. Luckily, all or travels and encounters had by now raised her to level nine, while the Cyndaquil, fresh from Bark Town, was still only level five. Chikkie thought of nothing but protecting me, and fought so fiercely that the Cyndaquil soon fainted. She span her leaf in triumph as it daring the brunette to insult me again.

The brunette ran away, swearing I should see her again. I do hope not.

One good thing was that this challenge gained Chikkie a whole 69 experience points. She will soon reach level ten.

But we had lost precious time. We must hurry to the lab to see what disaster had occurred.


A Redhead Temperament

The portrait you post is that of Miss Louise Brooks. I've always believed her to be a blonde, despite her dark hair colour, but she is one of those ambiguously adventurous blondes, isn't she? I'm sure she has a redhead temperament. That would explain it.

Cordially,

Miss Victoria Mayhew

Miss Brooks - Oh silly me - I saw her in Diary of a Lost Girl (was that the title?) when she was sent to that terribly strict reform-school, place.


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