Yes, you there, boy! You look a canny lad, with brawn to match! What say you join me on the adventure of your lifetime?
Who am I? Why, my identity is of no import. I am, shall we say, an renegade technologist with unorthodox views that have made him a pariah to his fellow men of reason. But as I said, this is of no consequence. Come now, What say you climb aboard my Doom Zeppelin?
Aah, She is a fine vehicle, is she not? But O, she is so much more than a mere dirigible! She represents the ultimate zenith of this Scientific Epoch's destructive technology! I am sure you will not be surprised to know that her construction cost me the whole of FIFTY English pounds! But the Doom Zeppelin shall soon pay for herself! How? Why, it's quite simple, my boy. We shall hold the world to ransom! The great men of old Europe shall quake in their beds at the thought of my mighty vessel heaving out from between the clouds, hanging tumescent above their cities, ready to spurt fiery pandemonium upon their heads if they do not accede to our demands! Be they Englishmen, French or Prussian, whether they bow to the Kaiser or the Tzar, they shall not be safe from our crusade of plunder and debauch, for the Doom Zeppelin flies no flag but my own! Their crude and outmoded empires shall crumble before my blunt implement of science and reason!
Come, I shall give you the grand tour of your new home...
THE ENGINE ROOM
Here, boy! Ear mufflers! They will stave off deafness from the thunder-roar of the Doom Zeppelin's mighty, opium-powered engine! Thanks to this sixty-ton symphony of pistons and flywheels propelling us through the heavens at nothing less than eight miles per hour, we shall be soaring gracefully over the city of Paris in a matter of mere weeks, and striking fear into the hearts of its greasy inhabitants! But ah, these mighty throbbing organs could not function were it not for my hearty crew! Let us proceed to their dwellings, that you might meet your shipmates.
Whist, hearty crewmen! This is your new comrade! And these, boy, are the most disreputable and scurrilous coterie of vagabonds, vandals, Visigoths, the most putrescent poltroons, pirates and pederasts you'll ever see assembled! I have hand-picked these men from the most ill-regarded backwater ports of a hundred different nations, as you can see! Levantines and Algerines rub shoulders, Moors mix with Boers, sullen Norwegians, swarthy Quadroons, Laskars, and all the finest scum of the world, all united by the common love of good, hard booty! These are my lads, and I love them just as a man of the cloth loves his altar boys. And all of them, in their turn, shall love you! Now, onwards and upwards...
THE WEAPONS DECK
Here is the most fearsome array of weaponry man has ever seen! Rack upon rack of machine-pistols, bomb bays swollen with ton upon ton of high explosive, enough to sink a dreadnaught ten times over! Here you see why Kings and Emperors will BEG to empty their pockets at the sight of my mighty arsenal! And so too will they empty their very bowels, when they lay eyes upon its centrepiece - the Pyroclastic Vengeance Cannon! Using Science, I reverse-engineered this implement of destruction from an ancient Chinese siege weapon which so utterly vanquished an entire civilisation that it is now only known by the half-remembered name of... Atlantis!
It was bequeathed to me by an aged alchemist named W'un Tun Pu, who with his dying breath begged me to destroy it! This, my boy, is the revolver pointed at the trembling head of Civilisation! And your supple, youthful fingers can alight upon the trigger which discharges its hot volcanic load!
THE TESLA TOWER
Oh, that? No, it doesn't really do anything. It looks good though, doesn't it? All electrical.
THE READING ROOM
Ah yes, we may soar above the crumbling cities of Man, but I do not think myself to be above a little light reading! Or should I say, lighter-than-air reading! Ahaha! Ha!
Ahem, yes. Here on these shelves, you will find all the great literary works of mankind. Mmm? Yes, they are all written by myself, of course. I do not hold with the classical tradition, it is an offshoot of the decaying, played-out "society" whose earthly bonds I am so glad to have slipped.
No indeed, here I have assembled something rather better - in these pages you will find the most scintillatingly lurid sexual passages ever committed to paper! Every carnal act imaginible, no matter how foul, physically impossible, or punishable by death, is here! How do I know? Why, I write from nothing but my own experience, and it is extensive indeed! And soon, boy, we shall add great volumes to this grand work, you and I!
I... why do you stare at me like that, lad? Say, where are you going?
Wait, NO, NOT THAT DOOR!
THE BONDAGE CHAMBER
Ah... well obviously, this is my... private exercise room! Yes, that rack there is for, um, toning the muscles of chest and abdomen. Yes, it takes stamina to empty the world's treasuries! And that crewman is tied up for insubordination, and that's just... a special rubber anti-lightning suit?
Wait, come back! Don't be so close-minded! Put down that parachute! Shut that window...