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Below the cut you'll find some notes on the world that this particular version of Victor comes from.

General Setting
• General setting is that of a steampunk Victorian England
• Mad scientists exist, and are responsible for most of the scientific advancement of the period
• Most machines are steam- and/or clockwork-powered, but alternative energy sources are regularly explored
• Big difference – difference and analytical engines exist! Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace managed to get the first one built and programmed – their families and estates are quite rich now from the patent
• Magic does not exist – everything in this world has some sort of “scientific” explanation, even if it looks magical (think Arthur C. Clarke’s famous axiom)
• Mad scientists often feared and reviled (not without reason) – smaller towns sometimes kill or exile suspected Touched, while larger communities tend to shun them
• Very few towns actively embrace Touched – the most well-known is Secundus

• Founded in 1799 by Touched social scientist and mechanist Dr. Walter Zemeckis
• Copy of London created via a duplication ray
• Originally known as “London Secundus” – its original purpose was to confuse the citizens of the city and eventually lead to widespread chaos, allowing Dr. Zemeckis to take over
• Original experiment a failure; i.e., absolutely no one was fooled by the copy
• Dr. Zemeckis decided instead to use the city as a social experiment to see how Touched might function when living and working in close quarters – he consequently opened the city up to all mad scientists
• Touched immediately flocked there – the city is now known as the Mad Science Capital of the World, with the largest population of Touched in all of England
• The “London” part of the name has long since been dropped, though the city still bears a vague resemblance to London itself
• Often considered the “go-to” place by recently Creative Touched
• Zemeckis’s experiment has proved that Touched can coexist with each other, and are even capable of collaboration
• Fights still occur between Touched – the entire city is insured against damages caused by Creativity, and there’s a booming construction business
• No one is allowed to try and take over the city, however – by popular vote, Secundus is official neutral ground in regards to major fights
Current Mayor: William Zemeckis, Slightly Touched descendant of Walter
Local Newspaper: The Secundus Gears & Grind

Important Places
E. L. Brown’s 24-Hour Scientific Services: 1640 Riverside Drive, a repair shop/spare parts shop. Proprietor: Dr. Emmett Brown. He and his assistants Marty and Victor live in a small flat above the shop itself
Mad Hatter Haberdashery: 1006 McGee Street, a hat shop with a private tea parlor below. Proprietor: Mr. Richard Dodgson. Employs Alice Liddell; the March Hare provides tea below
Lewis Carroll’s Botanical and Biological Wonderland (Wonderland Park): Thackery Street, a park featuring a number of Fabricated plants and animals. Proprietor: Mr. Lewis Carroll. The Cheshire Cat, the White Rabbit, and the March Hare (when he’s not at Mad Hatter Haberdashery) live here
The Roofless: a restaurant where the food is served via a machine in the sky (hence, no roof). Proprietors: Flint Lockwood and Sam Sparks. Employs Sam’s assistant and chaperone Manny
Narbonic Laboratories: a partially-underground lab. Proprietor: Mistress Helen Narbon. Employs Dave Davenport and Mell Kelly, all of whom live in a house above the lab
Castle Finklestein: a castle on the edge of town, known as the most common source of Reanimated. Proprietor: Dr. Finklestein. Emily (the Corpse Bride), Sally, Jack, and Bonejangles live here
The Baudelaire Orphanage for Unfortunate Children: an orphanage specially catering to those children who have had extreme bad luck in their lives. Proprietors: Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire. Their pet Incredibly Deadly Viper Ink also lives here
Rincewind’s Travel: a travel agency. Proprietor: Rincewind Pratchett. Employs Twoflower and the Luggage
The First Church of Steam: a church that especially caters to Touched, Fabricated, Reanimated, and Automatons. Proprietor: Pastor (or Father) Gale
62 West Wallaby Street: the home of Wallace Park and Gromit. Home to their various small businesses (e.g., the window-washing service, the pest-control service, the bakery)
Yurt Heterodyne: the summer home of Lady Agatha Heterodyne. Contains a small copy of the brain of Kestle Heterodyne
Castle Wulfenbach: The airship city owned by Baron Klaus Wulfenbach
Big Ben the Second: a copy of Big Ben that some Touched long ago turned into a cuckoo clock; often called "Cuckoo Ben"
The Ball & Socket Pub: A bar owned for and specially catering to Reanimated. The Reanimated Rights League sometimes holds meetings there.
Cogwheel Hotel: The fanciest hotel in the city; where the elder Van Dorts and the Everglots are staying in-story.
Tropes Theater: Local theater, used for plays and concerts
St. Vidicon Hospital: The local hospital, named for the saint in charge of difference and analytical engines
Equestria Labs: A combination farm and science center on the opposite edge of town from Dr. Finklestein's, home to a village of Fabricated ponies (both normal, pegasi, and unicorns)
Aperture Science Innovators: A large complex underneath Secundus, accessible only by a couple of little sheds above ground. They deal largely with portal technology, AIs and mobility gels

• Mad scientists suffer from a disease in this world that leads to them becoming – well, mad scientists
• Medically: Atypical Scientific Neural Disorder, with cases ranging from mild to moderate to severe
• Common Parlance: Touched, either Slightly, Somewhat, or Severely
• ASND appears to be a genetic disorder of some kind – it is inheritable from one’s parents
• ASND causes slight brain growth and makes neurons link faster while disrupting brain chemistry – basically, it increases one’s ability to learn, but also drives one crazy
• The genes that carry ASND lie dormant in most people: 60% with the disorder never show signs or symptoms
• ASND only visible in a fraction of the population, as 50% of those who do manifest the disease end up killing themselves when it first goes active; the majority of the ones who make it are mild to moderate cases
• Signs of possible ASND:
---Extremely vivid dreams
---Lucid dreaming
---Strong inclination toward some form of scientific study, despite possible conflicting personality traits
---Tendency to fidget while at rest
---Prone to laughing in inappropriate situations
---General awkwardness socially
• Not all affected show all (or any) signs, and not all signs are sure indicators that someone is affected
• Most affected manifest the disease during the teenage years, the most common age range being from fifteen to seventeen
• Manifesting as a child or adult isn’t unheard of, but the chances are greatly decreased; before age six or after age thirty-five, they’re pretty much non-existent
• Manifestation is typically triggered by great stress in the afflicted’s life (e.g., being laughed at one too many times by supposed inferiors)
• Signs of initial ASND manifestation:
---wild, maniacal laughter
---extremely fast speech
---excess energy
---desperate need to build, to create
---tendency for ideas to be written on any available surface
---laws of physics, biology, etc. COMPLETELY IGNORED
---possible violent tendencies toward self, others
---severity determined by level of disorder: a mild case will have an easier manifestation that may last only a couple of hours, while a severe case will have a difficult manifestation that may last a few days (exceptions exist)
• Most sufferers of ASND are most creative during this initial breakthrough; many are unable and/or unwilling to recreate or even explain machines/creatures/etc. created in this time period
• After initial manifestation, stability more or less returns, but there is always something different about the new Touched

• Touched – a sufferer of Atypical Scientific Neural Disorder, usually preceded by Slightly, Somewhat, or Severely to show degree
• Creativity – what a Touched has, the energy that drives them to break the laws of nature
• Inventions – what a Touched produces
• Going a bit Creative – a Touched making one of his Inventions, generally used to signal a breakthrough
• Igor – slang for the assistant of a Touched
• Playing Igor – assisting a Touched
• Reanimated – a person resurrected from the dead
• Fabricated – a person/creature put together with biological parts
• Automaton – a person/creature put together with mechanical parts

If you're wondering how Victor had such a normal life in his last post, Burtonsville is one of those towns that will not stand for Touched living there. Any and all Touched are exiled. The town is also so oppressively boring and small that not many Touched want to bother with it anyway.

November 2012

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