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 The only thing that noticed their absence was the morning paper a couple of days later. A small square on the bottom of page 17 simply announced, “Missing: Dangerous Fugitives.”

File:TV Tropes 4743.jpg

A steampunk romance-adventure novel by E.A. Hedgecock.

The story begins with the revelation that in this world, and the country of Erivale, creativity in all its forms has been banished (following the Joyce riots of 1943, 1946, and 1951). A group of six artists have been living under the radar for years, posing as ordinary people until one of them, Thomas the Painter, has his shopping list intercepted by the police and is arrested and framed for the murder of a soldier's wife. Two are arrested then, one is killed, and the remaining three vanish without a trace.

At least, until a couple of years pass and they're picked up, one of them near-death, by the pirate airship the HMAS Verne.

A rollicking good adventure story with tearjerking romances, a monarchy with secrets of their own, and one of the darkest and most detestable villains in literature today.

Can be purchased here.

Tropes include:

 Nicola: (while punching Alexander) "Never! Ever! Do! That! Again!"

 Bernard: Why wouldn’t you marry someone who loves you?

 Felix: I’ll bet you five vales that they tell each other the truth by Christmas.

 Princeton: People seem to forget how fiercely protective Bernard can be, because he’s so nice.

 Bernard: While Dad taught you medicine, Mom gave me books. Dante, Twain, Fitzgerald, Shakespeare, I read ‘em all.

  • Break the Cutie: Alexander, surprisingly. Born the unwanted son of the king to a mother who went progressively crazy and eventually died, with a dead wife who was killed by the government (and he can't prove it).
    • Annie, too. She's impregnated by an abusive man who only made her fall in love with him to get nearer to her brothers, and then he abuses her, goes nuts, and eventually dies.
  • Character Alignment: Lewis is lawful evil. He slips to chaotic evil by the climax.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Felix's pocket watch.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Wilson. Full tilt.
  • The Chessmaster: Lewis
  • Children Are Innocent: Artie and Bast
  • Cool Uncle: Artie and Bast have three!
  • Crush Blush: Victoria and Princeton for their respective crushes (somewhat justified because they're redheads).
  • Cry Into Chest: Non-romantic, between Felix and Victoria.
  • The Cynic: Alexander
  • Dance of Romance: Lampshaded by Felix.

 Felix: Victoria’s teaching Bernard how to dance. It’s a classic way of getting someone to fall in love with you. I’ve used it myself before.

 Bernard: What happened to her parents? Are Princeton and I the only people on this ship with living parents?

 Felix: What 'cha drinking?

Bernard: My feelings.

 Nicola: I never got to say thank you.

Alexander: For what?

Nicola: You know for what.

 Victoria: Well, I don’t particularly want to punch you. I…would like to be held. That would make me feel better. Being held by someone I care about.

 Alexander: I, um, I care deeply about you.

 Artie: What happens when we don’t remember Mama anymore?

Bast: I dunno. Does she go away?

 Lewis: Wilson. Good shot.

 Lewis: Make your choice, Bernard Frierson! Your brothers or your sister!

 Alexander: Me and Nicola? Are you crazy? Me and Nicola.

 Artie: Remember? I’m smart and you’re dumb and I’m weak and you’re strong.

 Bernard: You’re not used to this, are you?

Nicola: No. Felix is the one who comforts us, normally. I’ll have him give you a hug later. He’s a great hugger.

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