Apr 24

Political Parties

Prior to the creation of the Assembly, political parties were more like lobby groups. The most prominent were the Realm Benefit Party, which was the political face of Human Purity, largely active in Denning; the Tried and True party, a conservative, anti-Victory party which aligned behind the son of Realmgold Glorious and agitated for a return to Glorious's ways; and the Averi Group, a pro-Victory party, smaller and quieter than the Tried and Trues but engaged in a continual propaganda war with them, largely through the newspapers.

The Realm Benefit Party was proscribed as an illegal organisation after Unification.

Once the Assembly was created, the following parties formed and fielded candidates:

- Tried and True Party, seeking a return to the policies of Glorious;
- Unification Party, a pro-Realmgolds, pro-Unification party with widespread support among the gnomes, many humans in former Koskant and some in former Denning (Bucket and Briar Heathlake join this party in Mister Bucket for Assembly);
- Gnome Party, a party of more radical gnomes wanting further self-determination, among whom Bucket's ex-crush Plait is prominent;
- Reversionist Party, a rump of those members of the RBP who managed to escape prosecution or at least conviction for treason, supplemented with some more radical Tried and Trues, arguing for a return to the pre-Unification, pre-Gnome Day status;
- Dwarven Justice Party, a (small) party campaigning for compensation for the dwarves for the "confiscation" of gnomeservice. Victory is, of course, implacably opposed to this, since it would inherently acknowledge that the dwarves had owned the gnomes' service legitimately in the first place;
- New Dwarf Party, made up of New Dwarves who, by and large, accept the changes of Gnome Day, but want to protect dwarven interests;
- Workers' Party, a Copper party interested mainly in advancing Coppers, willing to work with the Unificationists for the most part and in opposition to the Tried and Trues, but with ties to the Workers' Co-op Association and thus to organised crime;
- Equal Wealth Party, based mainly in former Denning but with support from outlying areas of former Koskant, seeks acceleration of the development of these poorer regions to come up to the same level as the Koskander heartland.

Apr 23

Workers’ Co-Op Association

A number of Workers' Co-ops exist which buy bulk items for their members, thus making them available more cheaply than normal retailers. Any profits are returned to the members periodically. They also function as insurance mutual societies, providing assistance to ill members and their families or those affected by disaster or layoffs, paying for funerals and providing benefits to the widows and orphans of members.

Because individual co-ops are often owned by people who work together, exposing them to risk if the factory goes under and everyone looks for benefits at once, they have banded together to form the Workers' Co-op Association. The Association will redistribute funds from other co-ops if one of them is stricken in such a way.

This is all wonderful, but control of the Association means control of considerable funds, and since the reign of Realmgold Glorious (who more or less drove them into the arms of the resistance to his rule) there is a persistent link to organised crime, money laundering and intimidation of inconvenient parties. The leaders of the Association tend to be large, scary men who have gained their positions through fear. Anyone found embezzling funds is, of course, kicked out and brought to the Realmgold's justice, but there have been killings to prevent this kind of revelation happening in the past and probably will be again.

Truculent Roper is, at one time, in charge, and is later succeeded by his son Rock.

The Workers' Co-op Association is also a force in the world of airhorse racing (where it sponsors the blue-and-copper team), and, as at the initiation of the Assembly, in politics.

Apr 23

Wheel

Gnome, Senior Planner at the Clever Man's Works until he replaced Gizmo as manager. In the process, he transformed the Works staff into a company which he headed.

His father was a dwarf, a fact that he kept quiet until the family was forced to reveal it. His stepfather Valve is relatively wealthy. Bucket courts his sister Braise.

Apr 23

Valve

Stepfather to Wheel and Braise, oathmate of their mother Cruet, and father of Ladle and Bolt.
An upright, conservative gnome, who believes in family, hard work, and gshnvk.
As a young man, he rescued Cruet and her children after they'd been cast out of the hold, defying (and striking) a dwarf in order to do so. Gizmo arranged new identities for them all.

Apr 23

Unification Party

A pro-Victory/Determined political party, in favour of Unification. Bucket stands as a candidate.
Colours: dark green (like Determined's coat) and white (like Victory's suit).
Careful Fuller, one of the organisers, is a smarmy little man with too much hair oil and unusually white teeth.

Apr 23

Truculent Roper

A leader of the Workers' Cooperatives. He threatens Bucket not long after his candidacy is announced, trying to pressure him not to advance gnome interests at the expense of human workers. This backfires.
Minions include Silent Rock and Talker Tree (rumbling voice, breathes heavily), two very large men. He is himself large (though not as large as them), with a paunch. Some grey at the sides of his hair, above the ears, and in his thick but neatly-shaped beard. Looks like he doesn't smile much.
Son Rock Roper.
His real name is not Truculent; it's a joke that's become general, because of his aggressiveness and bad temper.

Apr 23

Tried and True Party

The Tried and True Party are an anti-Victory group, consisting largely of Golds and wealthy Silvers who benefited from the policies and patronage of Realmgold Glorious. They oppose Victory's reforms and changes and want to return to the "good old days" of Glorious.

The leader of the Tried and Trues is Glorious's son Magnanimous, Provincegold of Gulfhead, who has never got over a) being taken to task by the younger Victory at their mutual school for bullying and b) the fact that by tradition he could not succeed his father.

Tried and Trues typically dress in the highly ornamented manner affected by Glorious, in contrast to the simpler style of Victory.

With the advent of the Assembly, the Tried and Trues transition from a pressure group of discontented magnates to a true political party, though many of their leaders, as Golds who hold demesnes, are not qualified to stand for election. They use their influence through the newspapers - the Gulfport Herald, the Dawn Declarer and the Lantern of Koskant - to drum up support, mainly among the urban Coppers and the lower end of the Silver class. They make a certain amount of common cause with the Reversionist Party, a rump of the Denninger Realm Benefit Party which wants a return to the pre-Unification, pre-Gnome Day status.

Apr 23

Singleminded Soaper

A member of the Executive Committee of the Gnome Advancement League. He's a well-off businessman (working in his hereditary trade as a soapmaker) with charitable interests, driven by his sincere Asterist faith; he's a member of a lay order.

Wears a light-brown Victory suit. Salt-and-pepper eyebrows, and a plain, honest face.

Apr 23

Salver

A prominent gnome in Gulfport, moderator of the debate between Bucket and Plait. Grey hair and beard, dark, tidy clothing; an upper servant.

Mar 02

Rosie Printer

Born Industry of Rosewall. Rosie was originally a byname, based both on her name of affiliation and also on the fact that she is unusually pale-skinned and blushes readily.

Her great-grandmother on her mother's side was the inventor of the pressure gun, and she is descended on her father's side from a localgold of Rosewall (not closely enough to count as Gold Class).

She is first seen as an investor in the airhorse. She manages some of her family's money, very competently.

Gave up her family connections and wealth and changed her name in order to oathbond with Dignified Printer.

Associated Characters

  • Mother: Admiration Merchant
  • Father: Punctual of Rosewall (called "Early" by his oathmate) - when parents are interrogating her (or, presumably, her siblings) they speak in turn as a double act
  • Siblings: Punctual, Opportunity and Constant
  • Family butler: Courageous

She is thin and awkward, with flyaway hair and large spectacles. Speaks, as do all her family, in a "high" style using a large vocabulary. Good mathematician and competent inventor (trained in engineering at the University of Illene), creator of an adding machine and a calculating machine.

Briar Heathlake and Hope at Merrybourne helped her with a makeover, after which she gave up wearing the fashionable but unflattering clothes her mother bought for her in favour of outfits created by Mistress Pintuck.