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Pink Gins & Googlies 8:1 Sydney Smash n Grab

Following the drama on the Perth stretch of the Cranford ladies old girls XI tour of the Empire and North America … ooh

As Hettie, Gwen and the delightful Contessa Lemichello (Matt’s new character) wait to withdraw money a speeding tram derails and smashes into the Australian Federal Bank.

The chaos is followed by domino masked fedora wearing hoodlums rushing in declaring a robbery. Though Hettie is stunned Gwen and the Countess waste no time in giving the bandits lip over their skullduggery.

To avail the irritated ingrates open fire, their shotguns firing boxing glove rounds at the girls. Hettie recovers her composure and shoots an assailant dead with her trusty webley.

Bedlam breaks lose the Contessa wrestles a shotgun off a bandit but demonstrates her uselessness with the weapon. Gwen helps the wounded on the tramp while Hettie manoeuvres round the tramp but his his hit by a reversing van. She bounces to cover winded.

More robbers leave the van, including a purple suites figures with green tinged hair and a pale face.

The Contessa and Gwen trie and stop them as they go for the vault – the purple man threatens the hostages with a mills bomb. Gwen fails to bat the grenade with a shotgun and Hettie fails to catch it but kicks it under rubble.

Gwen is knocked out as a biller creases her temple but the Contessa drags her to cover as the robbers clear off to a getaway car.

The Girls are thanked for their help by Detective Sergeant Robinson who reveals that the purple man ‘ the crown kookabarra of crime’ has carried out lots of strange robberies in Sydney.

Unimpressed by his bumblings the gals retire to their hotel. The next day the team captain Lady Agatha does not appear to arrange nets – lady Bouchet calls them in – Lady Agatha has been kidnapped ! All that is left is a kookabarra card with a note ‘ you mess wit me, I’ll mess you’

The Games a foot !

Unimpressed by a passive police response. The girls get investigating they wonder about the card. Concluding they aren’t playing cards but animal field guide cards – visiting a hunting shop to stock up on guns they enquire abs find out the cards were printed by Riley’s & co a printing firm that went bust.

Investigating press clippings it turns out the form went bust in 1918 after the son Marcus Riley fell into dye being horribly burnt. Furthermore both the business premises (warehouse etc) and family home burnt down this year 1928. Two bodies were found in the wreckage – the parents the son presumed to be burnt beyond recognition.

As the girls retire to the hotel from their researches they are asked to reception. It’s the Kookaburra – they have to carry out a heist for him or will get Agatha piece by piece.

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2019 holiday reading

10 days in turkey this year. Bit as much reading as last year mainly because the pool was bigger and I did more exercise.

Grendel – John Gardener

Heard about this at length. Much more literary than I imagined. The treatment of time made me think of merlin in Excalibur. The monster’s view of humans made me think of Corum in the Knight of Swords which I might have to reread. An interesting volume.

Barcelona Plates by Akexi Sayle a collection of dark to absurdist short stories. Minister of Death has a central idea I’m using for a game but plenty of brain fodder. Overall fun rather than hilarious.

Balham to Bollywood’s by Chris England now this was hilarious – a ‘tour diary’ of English actor, cricketer and chum of arthur Smith Chris England from the set of Laagan: Once upon a time in India (a Bollywood magnificent seven based around a cricket match that will have brits saying ‘ are we the baddies?’ (Yes)) Excellent fun & insight into the world of cinema.

Biggles and Co WE Johns – Biggles between the wars gets involved in air freight to foil gold heists – it’s international espionage & corporate skullduggery seem off with quick wits, instinctive thinking and fine flying. Good fun.

Peter Davison’s Book Of Monsters a strangely excellent collection of stories by likes of Dave Langford, Philip K Dick, Michael Scott Rohan etc various between various British ‘stranger things’ type stories, outer space tales and wired pieces likely a very comic story were an Alien explorer lands in 1880s Texas rather than the ice age. For what was no doubt a cheap cash in smashing fun and brimming with gameable ideas.

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Pink Gins & Googlies 7: 4 & 5 the Suborean Ashes

Following the challenge a cricket the ladies turn to training the Neds for their cricket match against the Trogodyltes under the old law.

Cue … TRAINING MONTAGE !

Fielding Practice

Edith, as a fielder, helps teach the townspeople train in the art of fielding & running out the batsmen.

Sadly, the training is slightly hindered by Hettie rolling a natural 1 for her batting, resulting in the practice balls soaring higher over the boundaries – and the balls going into the nest of a giant spider – resulting in 2 of the Neds being paralyzed by its poisonous bite and then encased in silk cocoons!

After a short interlude, (where a rescue party is formed, the spider bludgeoned into retreat by Hettie and the 2 fielders rescued), training resumes – though the Cranfield Ladies College cannot shake the firmly held belief among the locals that the game actually *involves* killing a spider.

Despite this minor setback, the Neds appear to be naturally adept in the art of fielding. Mags, after some close observation, puts this down to the fact that they have learned to prey on edible flying beetles – similar in shape to giant ladybugs & not dissimilar in size to cricketballs.

Of course, as their instinct is to immediately eat the bugs, this results in some of the Neds trying to stuff the cricket balls directly into their mouths. Edith tries – and fails (rolls an 18) – to convince them that this is not how you play the game, but Mags develops a solution.Using her science skill, she finds the berries of a local bush that causes a painful chilli-like burning sensation, the juice of which she uses to coats the balls.

One experience is enough to put paid to the problem, and soon saliva-coated cricket balls are a thing of the past!

Lastly, running batsmen out is… a challenge. Edith manages to convince them what they have to do (rolls a 6), but initial attempts at training fail in that they cannot stop the Neds from simply running & dragging the batsmen to the ground via rugby tackles etc.

It is only when Hettie demonstrates a) what an umpire is, b) what a foul is & c) what happens to people who don’t listen to Hettie when she is being the umpire when they are committing a foul – that they get the idea that it is a bad idea.

Overall training for fielding (on a D20) 9

Hettie is also teaching fielding, the art of the run-out, and possibly finding a spare bowler…

Hettie sets up a line of wickets improvised from bamboo and creepers.

Line of tribespeople fling balls wildly and inaccurately.

Camera pans back to wickets, all undisturbed. Hettie is not amused.

Catching practice. Series of close-ups of tribespeople being hit with balls. Culminates in one being bopped clean on the head. Hettie looks disapproving.

More shots of wild throws and Hettie peppering stray tribespeople with balls.

Again, no wickets are down. Hettie has a “light bulb” moment of inspiration. You see her doing something to the wickets. Camera pans back to reveal they now all have coconuts or gourds on top, painted to crudely represent the features of troglodyte warriors. Hettie makes speech, points to the trog/wicket targets.

Barrage of balls. Several hit the target, the others are thereabouts.

Hettie nods to herself. Flings a ball. Hits same tribesperson.

Interlude. Hettie notices PC Ned fooling around, doing sleight-of-hand rogueish tricks with a ball. Thinks. Tells him: “you should bowl spin…”

Back to practice. Starting to come together. Hettie flings ball unexpectedly at same tribesperson, who dodges it and grins cheekily. Hettie looks annoyed, but can’t help but be amused.

Interlude. Hettie explaining how to catch ball, sees tribespeople paying no attention, gets annoyed. They are distracted by something, pointing over Hettie’s shoulder. Is a velociraptor creeping up on her. She turns, casually shoots it dead, returns to teaching. Now has their attention.

Music gets more positive and triumphant as they get better. Finally, all the tribespeople strike down their wickets wirth precise running throws. Hettie nods, flings ball suddenly at that tribesperson – who catches it perfectly! Hettie nods in approval.

Batting

Gwen was impressed by the force with which the Kellys could hit the ball unfortunately they hadn’t mastered any more aspects of batting than that. When the girls were freeing the Kellys from the spider Gwen noticed a palm tree with huge mat like leaves so having Hettie on hand in case of the return of the spider Gwen got the Kellys to cut some of the leaves which she placed between Point and Mid Off and Short Leg and Mid On. Bowling slow full tosses she indicated that instead of smacking the ball as hard as possible the Kellys should try and hit the palm leaf mats. Once they had begun to master this technique Gwen placed a fielder behind the mats and taught the batsmen to run between the wickets while the fielder tried to throw down the stumps. They seemed to get the hang of it eventually.

Meg’s invents a bowling machine from a water wheel and dinosaur claws and the Need batsmen get practice at progressively faster deliveries.

TROG training

All this is inter-cut with Molemen scientists subjecting The trog team to the ludvico technique watching film of cricket matches, being injected with steroids and working out on robotic machines.

THE MATCH

It was a 20 over match on a pitch prepared by ankylosaurs trampling over the ground. The Neds-Ladies team won the toss and decided to bat first.

Gwen and Hettie build a resolute opening partnership into the 11th over when Hettie is bowled for 43. Edith comes to the crease abs adds 24. Gwen is spent by the 13th over for 67 runs & Megs adds 17. They finish with extras 153 for 2

The Troglodyte team comes to the field confident. Og is caught by the third over to Hettie’s bowling and Ug is bowled two overs later. Edith bowls Uz but a lengthy duel develops between Hettie and Ag but the Ned bowlers manage to skittle the trogs around him for 128 all out.

The Neds & Gals have won! However the ladies notice an oncoming stampeding herd of brontosauruses – the Molemen have not stuck to the ‘ old law.’

Scrambling to the shelter of the foothills they escape the trampling. Ag leads the Trog team too – disgusted his masters have betrayed the old law. Megs ‘electric death’ Hebblethwaite zaps a molemen gyrocopter ready to attack the refugees.

STORM THE CASTLE

The team assemble their alliance of Neds and Trogs and repairing the crashed gryocopter into a form of drone shepherd the brontosauruses.

Just in time as they are attacked by a moleman on submarine legs but they charge it with their dinosaurs and having taken some hits scavenge it’s weaponry. Now with their dinosaur herd fitted with electric canon they ride them at the assembled trog army and moleman aircover.

As the old girl cricketers of a Cheshire ladies college crouch on their charging dinosaurs electric cannons firing a mighty battle is joined. Fortunately taking out cannons, and aircover and oratory or Captain Ag leads to a trog mutiny.

The assembled forces rush the capital against the molemen rearguard. they manage to rescue some children before incorporated in submarines. Edith racing in stoping the castle door being locked. Storming up the castle they find locked doors and try and shoot through the doors but find them metal.

Ensuring the Neds and rescued children are already shooting to the surface via the pods.

They back track and enter the interior mezzanine level seeing the rocket engines – the molemen have retreated to a rocket pod. The gals shoot up the engines – Megs electric pistol on the fritz throwing it in just as the engines fire to cause an explosion leading the rocket splatting into a mountain.

Regretfully it was also the perfect time for Megs to be burnt to a cinder by the engine. Her team mates gather her ashes in a small urn and leave them with Ag with the promise to play an annual match in Megs memory.

Leaving Ag reading ‘God and the State’ by Mikhail Bakunin and a 1897 copy of Wisden for clues how to establish a new order they travel to the surface.

The Perth police are gathering up wandering Neds and eventually ‘top men’ from Canberra come promising to take care of it all.

next on the tour Sydney ….

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Pink Gins & Googlies 7: 3 Liberty for Suborea !

Need Kelley takes the girls to his tribe – past their numerous defensive traps to their hidden caves. There they are taken to the Jolly Old Swagman leader of the tribe who wears captured molemen re-breathers abs other kit as jewellery.

Need explains the ladies of the Cranford Ladies College old girls touring XI have come to supply the tribe with wives. Not fancying matrimony to a bunch of hollow earth barbarians the girls propose another plan with their boom-sticks and leadership they’ll lead the tribe in storming the molemen’s castle – then lead the tribe to ‘the topside’ where they can find all the wives they want.

Their counter proposal is accepted. With Mags and Edith putting together some grenades from local gourds and Hettie and Gwen following Need they lead the tribe on a sally through underground tunnels to a sally port of the molemen castle.

Which is guarded by 3 troglodytes – two with ray guns and one with a short glaive. Hettie attacks with a blowpipe and the leads them on a chase so Need can backstab with Hettie, Gwen and other tribes peoples help dispatch the two with ray guns.

Edith and Mags grab ray guns. The Trog armed with a glaive staggers injuries through a keypad door that Edith jams open with a rock – and Hettie jams a second open with corpse of a fleeing guard shooting a blow dart down his ear into his brain.

Entering a upward curbing corridor they explore – finding a central column where submarines are being constructed with a central hub and wiring. Jumping on to the sub – Edith determines the hub is in fact a child brain and these are the submarines exported to the likes or Von Vulcan and Shun Wu on the surface

Gwen rushes down to try and find the rest of the children – listening at the door, she falls through into nine trogs having a shower. They pursue after her running into a fusillade of the tribes, girls and Megs widely firing her ray gun into the ceiling.

Klaxons sound and an army of Trigs come at them heavily armed – confronted and outnumbered the Jolly Swagman challenges the leader of the molemen to a challenge his champions agains theirs in a battle of skill and wits under the old law.

But what is the battle to be – the girls have the answer of course A GAME OF CRICKET !

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Lunchtime lairs Marvel FASERIP: Legion of Liverpool Legends 6# Day at the Museum

Boreas and Danger Dan responding to the Williamson phone here of a panic at the World museum Liverpool. While Dan glides BoreS speeds on a Triad-bike (trike) to the scene where Merseyside’s finest are surrounding the building they’ve evacuated. Speaking to museum goers they report scary figures with electric eyes. The police ok the legends checking out the site.

Entering the ground floor they are attacked by the small dinosaur model in the main hall – Boreas fires ice balls causing it to slip and Dan wrestles it they then grab a tray of chicken from the nearby cafe and lure it into the peak locks – capturing it.

They get a lift up to the Egyptian floor when the electric eyes where seen. Sneaking in with Dan using his light manipulation to hide them they see the large statues of sekumet animated on patrol with sparks erupting from their eyes .

Sneaking past them they found a strange man in tweed stealing various artefacts and putting them in automated tray following him about. Dan attacks and the man pulls dust from his pocket and animates a load of shabati (miniature servants) who lay into Dan.

Boreas failing to raise any dogs to his side runs past the lioness goddesses into the world cultures exhibit gets a sword and is smashed and knocked out. Dan falling under Shabati attack uses his time power to snap back when they first saw the man.

They pickpocket his top pocket of magic dust and sprinkle it on his suit. Boreas through sheer will animates the suit and takes it off the villain ‘professor tweed’ reconfiguring it at a tweed leotard for Danger Dan.

Handing Professor Tweed who was stealing to order to the authorities they return to Triad by riding the animated Superlambananna. Dan takes a complaint from pension Fred over how the Legends only deal with city centre crime which as the conversation evolves results in Dan getting a pensioner side kick – Fearsome Fred !

Tweed Leotard

A Faerie piece of costume which generates an endless supply of magic dust which will animate models or statutes which will operate at the command of the wearer. They will have appropriate skills at remarkable ie Beatle statues music, earl of beaconsfield oratory , liverbirds flight & claws, superlambanana running etc

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Pink Gins & Googlies 7: 1 & 2 Perth to Suborea express

The adventurous ladies of the Crawford Old Girls touring XI determine to investigate the Perth Ship yard Alpaca Lords which seems to supply submarines to super villains.

They carry out several investigations find out it has no employees as such but recruits one scholarship boy through an open completion from local schools.

They interview parents and find the boys write but never return. The parents get pills ‘to help’ and money from their boys.

The interview a bitter boy who failed the completion age is in skid row and another whom it was the making of him and became a surgeon. They get little insight into the completion though the boys are accompanied by invigilators are ‘ little bald men’ and ‘cold fish.’ They boys are accompanied by chaperones – teachers from their school.

They speak to the head of one school and follow a chaperone Mr Perkins bit he phones his masters at the shipyard warning them of their investigations.

The ladies discuss matters in their room and find themselves listened to my a curious scaled monkey. When they capture it and cut of its stubby tail they find it contains a radio antenna the beast is not surgically altered but grown with electrical components.

Gwendolyn turns on the charm and schmoozes a spin with a local pilot – finding no railhead or supply road into the yard. Also flirting with a city clerk she finds no sewer supplies to the centre.

Edith looks at the harbour record and finds no Maritime supplies to the yard – how does it build ships ?

The ladies eventually hire a yacht and stake out the shed. There seems to be no security other than security lights and only movement is once a week and man in heavy coat and hat empties the post box.

They resolve on burglary for answers. Using a possum to test the fence and finding it isn’t electrified they proceed to cut the wire. Gwen picking the lock the slide the doors but one scrapes making a noise and despite noise is bad on closing. A light goes on in the mezzanine level of the yard dominated by a huge conveyor belt feeding from the depths of the earth.

Two muscular stooped figure speaking a guttural language Edith thinks might be ancient hyperborean. They search and one stays while one runs to the office

Gwen chases after one – the one staying spots Edith and grabs her – Hettie starts to fight her with her sledge hammer. Mags runs to a control panel and starts experimenting.

Gwen finds the ‘troglodyte’ daring a tank with a mole man in – a locker opens in with a glass barrel ray gun.

Gwen shots the ray gun producing a explosion. Mags puts on thr lights stunning the trog. The cat out of the bag Hettie pulls a revolver and finishes him.

Mags finds a vacuum tube and personal transport tubes alongside the conveyor belt – rather than face the wrath of the mole men the gals jump into the canisters and using the auto loader shoot into the bowels of the earth. Hurtling at these speeds rattles Gwen who of all the girls understands how quick it is

They erupt into dull red light into a strange dull world dominated by red ferns & a strange castle.

Calculating they are at the earths core they flee mole men gyrocopters from the castle into the jungle. There they find themselves followed by a human ‘need Kelley’ who is intrigued by a Sheila’s and belongs to a tribes of escaped human slaves – the scholarship boys brains being used in molemen machines !

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Lunchtime lairs Marvel FASERIP: Legion of Liverpool Legends 4# Kraken Kerfuffle

The Legion’s downtime was interrupted by a small tsunami that washed over the Mersey, bringing with it a large mass that made its way up the river. The Legion watched the carnage from the Triad as the river washed away cars and spun a container ship crashing in to a large crane. The crane buckled. Atop it, a protester dressed as Batman clings on for dear life.

Our heroes spring in to action – Danger Dan leaps from the window and glides towards the crane whilst Boss Banana and Boreas jump in a helicopter. They fly to the crane and can see dock workers struggling underwater. Danger Dan brings ‘Batman’ in to the helicopter and Boreas jumps with an inflatable dingy towards the water. He belly flops the dingy, taking a bit of damage. Boss Banana leaps to the base of the crane to tip it towards the water but lands badly.

Suddenly, a large tentacle springs from the wave and swipes at the helicopter – just clipping it.

Boss Banana tries to swing the collapsing crane towards the water and succeeds. But the Kraken darts away, making a break towards the Pier Head. The Legion regroups aboard the helicopter and pursues.

Danger Dan’s hologram of a Ms. Kraken only enrages the lonely monster.

Boss Banana and Boreas jump out at Brunswick Dock, using a light hologram of the helicopter (courtesy of Danger Dan) to hide their approach. Boreas summons a pack of dogs to bark at the Kraken and Boss Banana tips some turbines in to the river, reversing the electrical current from the national grid to try and electrocute the Kraken – with moderate success.

Danger Dan glides out of the helicopter, leaving it to crash in to the Kraken’s eye – but forgetting that the ‘Batman’ protestor was still inside! The helicopter explodes against the Kraken, drawing blood and killing Kamikaze Batman.

A tentacle attack takes a chunk out of Boss Banana and Boreas. Meanwhile, Danger Dan glides in to the Kraken’s eye, punching it and holding on as it sprays ink in defence. Boss Banana is hit with some electrical feedback, frying some circuits after the Kraken throws a spare wind turbine at him. A curled tentacle slams Boreas, but he uses the opening to command his pack of dogs to run up the tentacle and bite in to the Kraken’s face.

One last fist from Boss Banana and the Kraken falls limp and lifeless. As the survivors of the attack swim to shore, Boreas gathers his pack and they fashion a dog sled to ride back to Bootle in style.

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