in the Shadow of Greatness


October 23, 2003

IMC :: the Red Lantern of which all others...

You know that Amber has to have a commerce in sex—-if only to make the Chaosians crazy.

In Grand Affair, the center of the 'red lantern' universe is the Red Mill. Ladies and men of high caliber and eager disposition are recruited from shadow and the Golden Circle.

In my campaign, this would be Madame Masque's. A house that originally had its customers wear domino or similar face cover in order to enter and be entertained. This last several centuries ago. The practice is revived to good fun during the Harvest Festival where even the constables will be invited inside to receive a blessing for the season.

Madame Masque's is a series of houses, connected together on the inside, in a well-heeled neighborhood of the middle class. There are actually five houses altogether. One each facing streets of a block, with a joint sevice alley between their backs. There is a second story bridge that has been added to connect these two that is several rooms wide.

Usually, men enter M. Masque's from one street exclusively, women enter on the alternate block. There are separate salons for both sides and effective circulation that allows neither gender to see the other while visiting. In cases where that isn't to the customer's liking (and M knows that the person is responsible) meetings of customers can be arranged within the parlors of M. Masque's.

Some 'famous assignations' have been carried out this way. It is said that Prince Caine met the woman that gave him a son here.

Employees of the establishment enter through the block's alley into a third house. Many of the female employees live in the fourth house, where M has her offices and yet another working kitchen. The fifth house is entirely larger rooms for events of some size.

There are no rooms for let. It is not a club with membership. And the owner is simply called 'M' within its walls.

Among those in the know, Madame Masque's is considered superior to the Golden Palace, or the Mystery Theater for both its simple elegance and ironclad discretion.

It is rumored on the Golden Circle that a popular 'associate' from one the top three houses in Amber can earn a salary about five times the norm for guild masters in that same city. There are many of shadow who travel to Amber to see if they can become so popular.

Filed under : Amber, IMC at 23.10.2003