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The Army & Navy Club (The A&N)

A Gentlemen's Club for Space: 1889

by John Gannon


In some circles, there are those who refer to Syrtis Major as "Little London". These people are few and far between, however, and the majority of travellers refer to it as "that damned hot place on Mars". One of the few joys about travelling is being able to find familiar circumstances at your destination, and this is no different for the bold adventurer who has come to Mars seeking fame and glory. Many of these adventurers are current or former officers of the British Army or of the Royal Navy, and these officers are always pleasantly surprised to find a bastion of calm and order located here in Syrtis Major. A true Men's Club! It is to a small house located on a quiet Martian back street in the city's European Quarter that these bold officers gather - to share a meal, a glass of sherry, and perhaps a game of cards. Here in the safety and quiet of "The Club", these stalwart representatives of Victoria's military might can relax with their peers and contemporaries, until the next crisis calls them to serve!

A&N - The Background

The Army & Navy Club, an authorized branch of the Original A&N back in London, is the "Second Home" of many serving British officers while they are on duty in Syrtis Major. The branch club was originally established in a hastily restored Martian building several years ago when a number of officers, all members in good standing of the London Chapter, successfully petitioned to have a branch of the club opened on Mars. The initial premises were regarded as "somewhat primitive" by the members, but were still gladly patronized. The A&N moved into its present structure last year when a legacy from a late member (killed by High Martians while prospecting in the Astusapes Highlands) provided sufficient funds to allow the club to purchase and furnish an establishment more appropriate to the social status of many of the members (and it had a larger bar, too!). The club is now housed in a converted two-storey house and has been supplied with as many amenities as they can afford and acquire. Laid out with waiting room, cloakroom, kitchen, bar, dining-room, main club room, and offices for the club manager, servants lounge and cloakroom, and two washroom facilities (staff and members), the club is a picture of the civilized Gentlemen's Club. Upstairs is the card room, library, billiards room, and several guest rooms for club members passing in or out of town, or who find themselves in need of a place to freshen up (or sleep it off). All rooms are decorated in a military motif, with care taken to ensure equality between army and navy. Pictures of officers, donated trophies and souvenirs, replica weapons, etc, fill the hallways and walls of the club.

The A&N Today

Membership requirements here are the exact same as back on Earth. The prospective member must be a serving officer of Her Majesty's forces, or have been honourably discharged. Native Officers and female-auxiliaries of officer-status are not eligible for membership, despite the protestations of several of each. A prospective member must be sponsored by a current member in good standing, and receive a two-thirds majority of votes from the present membership (or a quorum thereof). Annual dues are £60.00 per year, and the member is entitled to full use of the club facilities both here in Syrtis Major and on Earth in London. Of a difference from the London Club, the A&N maintains a listing of Associate members. These are officers of non-British services who are residing in Syrtis Major. Associate Members pay only £2.00 monthly dues, but are not entitled to vote or hold office in the club.

Special features of the club are "Regimental Night", "Battle Night", "Service Night" and special dinners from time to time. The club supports a local charity for disabled veterans, and also provides financial, moral, physical, political support to members in need. In addition, the club has financed a few expeditions, mostly related to military artifacts and items of historical interest that are in keeping with the theme of the club. The Club's scheduled hours are from 10:00 AM until 1:00 AM. It starts with a late breakfast and morning papers. The bar does not open until 12:00 PM (although there seem to be several "bottles" strategically hidden about the place), afternoon tea (consisting of soup, sandwiches, and assorted pastries) is served at the compromise hour of 4:00 PM which allows members to pay their respects socially at the Bradley House, then come to the A&N where they can take their tea in relaxed surroundings. Dinner is a light affair, unless it is a function, and commences at 8:00 PM. A Midnight Buffet of cold meats and assorted trays is served daily. In the case of a function, Dinner is conducted in the fashion of a military Mess Dinner (with seating based on Seniority of Branch of Service and Regiment as opposed to a member's military rank or their time in the club), and follows the traditions of cocktails, grace, The Loyal Toast, a smoke-free meal, followed by Brandy, cigars, and Port. Such functions usually begins with drinks at approximately 7:30 PM, dinner at served at 8:00 PM and the head table retires about 11:00 PM. On the night of a function, no Midnight Buffet is served.

One of the peculiarities of the Club that distinguishes it from it's parent in London, involves the Loyal Toast. Traditionally, the toast is raised by the President of the Club, and consists of the phrase, "Gentlemen, The Queen" at which point all present raise their glasses, repeat the phrase and drink their salutation. However, in recognition of the presence of non-British members in the Syrtis Major Club, the Loyal Toast given on Mars consists of the Club President calling, "Gentlemen, Your Sovereign.", at which point in time, toasting members are free to name their individual ruler, be it the Queen, the Kaiser, the Tsar, or in the case of the French, the Republic, before drinking their alutation. American Officers in attendance usually respond with the words, "The President".

To carry out the various activities and services provided, the club employs a staff of 26. The staff of the club is composed of a mixture of Human and Martian servants, there being 6 cooks, 3 bartenders, 4 stewards, 6 footmen, and 5 maids. The cooks and servants are provided with appropriate uniforms in keeping with their duties. During the day (10:00 AM until 6:00 PM) the staff consists of 2 cooks, 3 maids, 1 steward, 2 footmen and a single bartender. From 6:00 PM until closing, the staff is made up of 4 cooks, 2 maids, 3 stewards, 4 footmen, and 2 bartenders. In addition to these staff members, there is also an accountant who handles all financial matters, a club manager who oversees the day to day operations of the club, and a Major Domo who is responsible for overseeing the activities of the servants. These three men are all humans and the Major Domo is a former RSM of "The Buffs".

Visitors are allowed in the club, as signed guests of the members, although they must be escorted and may only visit while their sponsor is present. Women are only allowed to attend the club for special functions and dining-in. Naturally, they must be signed in as the guest of an attending member on these occasions.

Using the A&N Club

The A&N Club is a special setting for a Space: 1889 campaign, providing those characters that qualify (Human Male Officers) a private gathering area. As written, the A&N is a useful place to make contacts with officers both of other services as well as other countries; it provides temporary lodgings, and possibly even a loan should the player in question be hard up for a few pounds. Of course, all is not brandy and cigars at the A&N, either!

It is in such a setting that Players might overhear conversations concerning the latest news from the field columns, plans for aerial campaigns against Pirates and Oenotrians, special "officer-only" hunting and exploring parties could be raised at the A&N, as well as gaining some financial backing from the club (if you can just convince the Accountant and the Committee). As for intrigues, remember the non-British Associate Members? Well, sometimes the British officers present DON'T remember them either. The well-spoken German officer who sits quietly in the Club Room, reading the Times and simply listening to the talk around him at tea time, may pick up as much important information as the active spy who risks life and limb to steal papers and learn secrets. Once again, the necessity of employing native Martian servants and domestics offers the chance for Oenotrian spies and anti-human cultists to infiltrate the club to learn vital information. How embarrassing when the leak that has endangered British convoys is traced to the A&N club, and one of the servants within.

Regardless of the manner in which it is used, the A&N is a worthy addition to the your campaign setting as both a point of intrigue and a haven for well-deserved R&R..

A&N Club Staff

Club Manager - John Strickland (Human Male) (As Required)

Once an officer is the King's Regiment (8th Foot), John Strickland left the military in '82 and came to Mars with the Colonial Service. After serving for a time as a Collector in one of the Protectorate Station Houses, Strickland left the service and took this position with the A&N as the fulltime manager of the Syrtis Major Branch. His priorities in life are the Club, the members, and Strickland - in that order. Strickland is of medium height and average weight (5'8" tall, 160 lbs) and will almost always be found wearing a Tailored Business Suit.

STR : 5 Fisticuffs 4, Close Combat (Edged) 1
AGL : 3 Stealth 2; Marksmanship (Pistol) 2
END : 4 Wilderness Travel (Mapping) 2; Fieldcraft 1; Swimming 2
INT : 4 Observation 5
CHR : 3 Eloquence 3; Theatrics 1; Bargaining 1; Linguistics 2
(French, Parhoon)
SOC : 4 Riding (Horse) 3; Leadership 2
Motives : Proud, Responsible, Friendly
Equipment : None

Major Domo - Edwin Johnson (Human Male) (As Required)

Following the Shastapsh Campaign, Regimental Sergeant-Major Edwin Johnson of the KRRC found himself honourably discharged after 30 years of service with no prospects and no desire to retire and grow roses. While idling about the depot prior to returning to Earth, Johnson overheard two officers talking about the dreadful staff at their club and how the officers wished the club would hire someone to whip them into shape. Having spent the last 20 years doing just that, Johnson applied and was hired that day. Since then, Johnson has proven a godsend to the club, and the staff now performs to a high standard under his hawk-like eye. Mr Johnson is an impressive figure of a man, with his 180 lb weight well distributed across his 5' 11" frame. Mr Johnson somehow always appears dressed in an immaculate Butler's Uniform at all times.

STR : 4 Fisticuffs 3, Close Combat (Edged) 2
AGL : 3 Stealth 2; Marksmanship (Rifle) 4
END : 5 Wilderness Travel (Foraging) 2; Fieldcraft 4; Swimming 2
INT : 4 Observation 3
CHR : 3 Eloquence 2; Bargaining 1; Linguistics 2 (Hindu, Parhoon)
SOC : 3 Riding (Horse) 2; Leadership 1
Motives : Honest, Loyal, Aggressive
Equipment : None

Accountant - Melvin Fitzgibbons (Human Male) (Once Per Week)

Mr Fitzgibbon is an excellent accountant, and his good work has helped to keep the A&N a profitable, growing arm of the parent club. So much for his good points. Otherwise Fitzgibbons is a humbug - a shallow-eyed man who detests Mars, the Military, strong drink, physical activity, and as far as anyone can tell, life in general. Fitzgibbons is a small-framed, average looking man of about 5'6" tall, and probably weighs no more than 155 lbs. He wears a plain but well-kept business suit and invariably carries a briefcase.

STR : 2 Fisticuffs 1, Close Combat (Edged) 1
AGL : 2 Stealth 1; Marksmanship (Pistol) 1
END : 3 Wilderness Travel (Mapping) 2; Swimming 1
INT : 5 Observation 5; Science (Geology) 2
CHR : 2 Eloquence 2; Bargaining 1; Theatrics 1; Linguistics 4
(French, German, Italian,
SOC : 3 Riding (Horse) 3; Leadership 1; Medical 2
Motives : Cautious, Frugal, Arrogant
Equipment : None

The remaining staff members should be considered as Stock Green NPCs for most game purposes. Naturally, these NPCs may be changed or expanded upon as the Game Master might wish to, depending upon their intentions.

Lucy Abbot (Human Female)
Paula Duffy (Human Female)
Dermot Mccracken (Human Male)
Yoyshendra Utthaal (Canal Martian Female)
Abenya Verekshuur (Canal Martian Female)
Margaret Blake (Human Female)

Dwyer (Human Male)
Agbola Ptor (Canal Martian Male)
Alarkon Uushataamri (Canal Martian Male)

Bobby Chambers (Human Male)
David Foley (Human Male)
Meyhar Grafftaak (Canal Martian Male)
Afzal Zaleznaak (Canal Martian Male)

Neil Heath (Human Male)
Harry Willows (Human Male)
Phillip Boydell (Human Male)
D'Janth Haravekeer (Canal Martian Male)
Kuuladin Poveendran (Canal Martian Male)
Udom Sribranuun (Canal Martian Male)

Taamri Adrieshaan (Canal Martian Female)
Beverly Walcott (Human Female)
Claire Grimes (Human Female)
Vesnya Kulaanith (Canal Martian Female)
A'anda Rangarayi (Canal Martian Female)


Churchill, Winsoar & Klehr, Alan. "London's Gentlemen's Clubs". British Heritage Magazine, Volume 21, Number 3, April/May 2000. Harrisburg, PA: Primedia Publications Ltd. 2000

Farwell, Byron. Mr Kipling's Army. New York: W.W Norton & Co. 1981. ISBN 0-393-30235-0

Pool, Daniel. What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew. New York: Simon & Schuster. 1993. ISBN 0-671-79337-3

Last Updated Monday, 04-May-2009 19:53:39 EDT

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