GANGREL ANTITRIBU NEWSLETTER VOLUME 8 NUMBER 10 June 2006 In this next-but-one-issue ... FICTION: The Story So Far BOOK REVIEW: The Dangerous Book for Boys, by Conn Iggulden and Hal Iggulden CARD FOCI: Monique, Muricia and Abombwe FICTION: The Story So Far It's a pleasant mid-summer evening on the South Coast of England, and the vampires are taking breakfast on the terrace. As its struggles subside, Anklebiter leans back in his chair and leafs through the paper to the Books section in search of The Listener crossword. Today is Father's day, and the theme of the puzzle reflects this in a rather pleasing and multi-layered way. "Old wotsisname would have enjoyed this. By the way, where is the old Devil?" "I dunno. Ask your father." "Um, he IS my father." "Well then, ask Winthrop." RRRRRINGGG "You rang, Sir?" "Ah yes, I was just wondering if you had any idea of the whereabouts of the previous occupant of this exceptionally comfortable chair. Bearded fella, graying, name on the tip of my tongue ... " "I believe your Lordship must be referring to the Noble Lord the Lord Legbiter, joint author, as it happens, of Sir's being." "THAT'S the chap. Well?" "He's, erm, asleep, in the cellar." "Well, go and wake him up, there's a good flunkey. Quick as you like, now!" "Yes Sir, if you're sure." Several cobwebby flights of stairs later Winthrop is investigating a series of dusty trunks, boxes and other reliquaries of old junk. And sure enough, underneath a reasonably complete run of the Boy's Own Magazine of Torturing Small Furry Animals 1879-1926, he finds a familiar-looking coffin. CREEEEAK. Inside we see Legbiter, his face dignified in repose, his hands crossed upon his breast and a beautifully-ornate stake plunged into his heart. Winthrop plucks it out. "Grmbll...goway...shleepy..." "Now, Sir, high time you were up, there's a goo-, erm, there's an obedient monster. Allow me to help you into your dressing gown." Yawning and blinking I hobble up the stairs onto the moonlit terrace, absent-mindedly clutching the stake. Anklebiter has finished the Listener Crossword* and is now practising forward defensive cricket shots. Lady Legbiter is watching him. I sidle up to her. "Hi babe - didja miss me?" She turns, and gasps. Tears flood into her eyes. "My beautiful, beautiful little stake ... I thought I'd lost you forever!" She seizes it from my hand and cradles it, sobbing in a quite unnecessarily demonstrative way, while I shamble over to the breakfast table in search of leftovers. Now read on .... *The Listener crossword is allegedly the hardest puzzle in the world, being in fact a series of code-breaking exercises rather than a crossword in the normal sense. It is published in the London Times Books Section every Saturday, as any fule no, and it generally takes me and/or Anklebiter about 4-16 hours to crack it. The answer to the June 17th Listener Crossword [the day before father's day] is ROTAS OPERA TENET AREPO SATOR It would take a VERY long time to explain why this is so, why it is relevant to Father's day, and how you are to enter the answer. If you buy the London Times for Saturday the 1st of July the compiler will explain it all, or if you can't wait that long then you can ask me by private email [Chopsalotapepl@SWIFTIANWORDMEANINGVULGARIAN.co.uk, which is also the address for other queries to the editor and/or contributions to the Newsletter. email@example.com was long ago seized by Nigerian con-people, spammers and willy-improvers]. BOOK REVIEW: The Dangerous Book for Boys, by Conn Iggulden and Hal Iggulden For real Father's day real Anklebiter got me The Dangerous Book for Boys by the above authors. This beautifully-produced and delightfully eclectic volume is a highly-amusing romp through the spiritual hinterland of British Maleness. Most importantly as far as this reviewer is concerned it is, wherever I know anything about the subject being covered, factually accurate. Not everyone on this newsgroup will share the present reviewer's politics, philosophy, gender and morals so you may not all enjoy this book quite as much as I did. But you will ALL, I feel sure, be pleased to know that it contains a short but accurate and enthusiastic essay about role-playing games. CARD FOCI: Monique, Muricia and Abombwe Quite properly, given the prominence the clan attained in Kindred Most Wanted, not much has happened in the way of new card opportunities for our guys since the last time this Newsletter appeared. Significant exception can be made, however, for Muricia [who, whilst ready, allows !Gangrel to pay a blood to turn into Ahrimanes thereby gaining a level of Spiritus], and Abombwe, a Master-discipline card which can be played on a vampire with Protean, and is a Trifle. I'm not sure that Abombwe adds THAT much to the functionality of the !Gangrel but the turbo-boosting of capacity inherent in Muricia, Abombwe and normal discipline cards is a different matter, threatening at long, long last to make Monique worth playing. You remember poor Monique, 5-cap Group 2 with ani aus for pro at inferior, always stuffing her face with vampire chocolate at parties while absolutely ALL the other vampire girls except maybe Patrizia Giovanni got off with at least ONE Methuselah. But it's that 5 capacity which has always interested me, at least slightly, because of Atonement. If one could only get Atonement onto Monique and then ratchet up her capacity quickly [ESPECIALLY if some of that ratcheting could include the Third Blocking Discipline of Spiritus] she could be the all time non-tapping-blocking Queen, able to perform a Carrie-like Rampage of Revenge on all the pretty Vampires. Oooh, the thought of it is making her rub up against my leg in a MOST urgent manner. Maybe by the time we talk again I will have, erm, gratified her needs. See you in July!