I spoke to Missus Mayfair Mister, a
professional monster hunter who is out
collecting specimens for her travelling
exhibition, "Missus Mayfair Mister's
Marvelous Monsters." She is licensed to hunt
the undead in America, even!
The head guide and captain on our tour is
Sir Hammerhorn. He is always accompanied
by an automaton, his first mate, who pilots the
ship while he leads the hunt. He is certainly
very respectable, and has a handsome
mustache! He knows Missus Mister from
previous hunts. With him and Missus Mister
aboard, perhaps this Tour will prove, after all,
a real adventure!
It is a delight to be waited on by automatons!
The ship is positively swarming with them.
Their mechanical human forms are devoid of
any features, yet they have the most ingenious
system of conveying emotions. Each serving
automaton carries around a rectangular mask,
like a masquerade mask or opera glasses,
made of various pages. Each page has a
different expression on it, and the staff flips
through the faces to find the correct emotion
to address the guests! Happy, sad, lonely, all of
the emotions a robot could express!
There is a dissatisfied woman named
Mrs. Vandenklamp who has complained
non-stop about the robot service since we
boarded, and though you'd hardly notice it,
she is accompanied by her poor hen-pecked
I was introduced to the youngest and
handsomest of men, The Mayor. Already
holding the position of Mayor of Venice, he is
the youngest to ever hold the title. This trip is
a work-vacation he is taking to learn how to
better prepare the city for monster attacks. He
speaks in an Italian accent, and try as I might,
I find the Italian accent to be the silliest of all
accents. He would be much more attractive
with a handsome English accent, with perhaps
a tinge of the highlands. Perhaps it could be
worse. Heaven forbid he have a Welsh accent.
A robust woman named Brunhilde
Bamfield also travels, and it seems I have
found someone of a like mind to befriend.
Best of all, she is properly English.
But would you know it? That ridiculous
boy from the other night who handled me so
roughly during the incident with poor Miss
Benedicta Basilio is on this tour, too! I hardly
like to be introduced to people in such an
informal setting, but I suppose it must do. His
name is Percy Longville, and he says he is going
on this tour to study monsters. Study them! Of
all the ridiculous things. I do suppose this is
his best chance to view the famous monster
hunter Lu Yan's collection when we arrive
in China. I do hope he doesn't become
too familiar. I was hoping for adventure,
but now I'm starting to regret this lovely
berth, for instead of adventure, I have
been placed in a portable palace packed
to the pinnacle with pillows… and