Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 177 - January 2012

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. DiscTrivia
5. Review: Old Men Of The Forest - Game
6. Hogswatch News Update from Unseen University Convivium
7. The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now First Novel Award
8. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 177 and to 2012. We hope you had a great end of year celebration and are looking forward to 2012.

This year we can expect a couple of new books from Terry. The Long Earth written with Stephen Baxter due in June and Dodger (previously Happy Families) in the Autumn.

Hopefully we will also see filming start on Good Omens, Unseen Academicals and the CSI Ankh-Morpork series.

* * * * *

Last month milad fe's letter suggested we should prettify Discworld Monthly. We received 21 messages on this and 19 of them asked us to keep the format as it is. We'd like to thank everyone that wrote to us. Looks like we will be keeping the notepad look for the time being.

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My thanks to Colin Smythe for clarifying the confusion over the Bookseller results for Snuff last month. In the article Bookseller claimed that Snuff sold 31,094 copies in the first week whereas I believe it to be around 54,000.

Colin writes: As I understand it, the sales figure they gave was the first full week - i.e. the week starting the Monday after publication date. The Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the previous week was the period which had the 54,000 odd sales, and made it the fastest selling book. One would think the first week of sales would be the first seven days of sales, but no.

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Don't forget, if you visit a play or a talk and would like to let the world know about it, please feel free to email your review to and we will consider it for publication.

Also if you have written an article that you think we might want to include in the newsletter please feel free to email me at the address below. We will of course give credit for anything we use.

Jason Anthony (Editor)
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Stone Age Man)

2. News

Terry and Rob (@terryandrob) have recently Tweeted the following on Twitter:

Happy New Year! Let's hope for a happy and healthy one and that we're all here next year looking back on a vintage 2012.

Oh, and we raised a glass to all those who made 2011 so special. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Lord Falconer QC talks ahead of his Commission reporting on our duty of care to the dying @TelePolitics -

* * * * *

Bit-Tech, who are usually more at home reviewing computer games, have reviewed Treefrog Games Ankh Morpork board game and given it a very respectable 95% and a Bit-gamer Premium Grade.

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The Express newspaper recently ran an interesting interview with Terry. The interview appears to be a few weeks old but still makes interesting reading.

* * * * *

Fancy an unofficial Hogfather inspired T-Shirt then look no further than Perdita's designs on Etsy at:

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Susan Sto Helit is one of the top ten memorable governesses in literature according to John Mullan's 10 Of The Best article written for The Guardian newspaper.

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In the Radio Times top 40 TV shows of 2011 - Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die came in at number 37. The review said:

"A fog of manufactured media outrage almost engulfed this profoundly important documentary where author Terry Pratchett asked difficult questions about the right to self-determination. The hysteria was provoked by the on-screen assisted suicide of Peter Smedley, debilitated by motor neurone disease and absolute in his conviction that he wished to die with dignity by his own hand. Choosing to Die was haunting and sad, without being ghoulish or intrusive."

* * * * *

The Discworld Calendar 2012 comes in at number 1 in the Independent's top 10 calendar list.

"If you are a fan of Terry Pratchett (and with 55 million books sold, a good few of us obviously are), you'll love this collection of paintings of his fantastical land, Discworld, by illustrator Paul Kidby."

* * * * *

Periwinkle (aka Mandy Eldred-Tyler) has written her own review of the recent Hogswatch event which was published in the Wincanton Window.

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This Is Dorset has an article about how Bernard "The Cunning Artificer" Pearson has had his shop restored to its former glory using a 1907 photograph of Watchmaker's shop W. Weare. It's nice to see that the shop has a long tradition of crafts.

* * * * *

White Glove Movies have created a video that describes the setup and rules of Discworld: Ankh Morpork. If you ignore the attempts at humour the video is quite informative.

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According to The Guardian's best seller spread sheet, Snuff was the biggest selling hardback in 2011 selling 194,034 copies at an average of 10.06GBP each grossing a total 1,952,481.42 GBP.

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Transition Vision (a Dorset Internet based television company) visited the recent Hogswatch event a made a 12 minute video record of the event. If you look carefully you might even see me (JA) in it!

* * * * *

The location and date of the North American Discworld Event 2013 have been announced as Baltimore and July 5th - 8th.

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Discworld Dates...

This section will contain events that you need to keep in your diary. Entries will remain until they go out of date. New entries will include the word [New] next to them. If this section gets too large we will start pruning entries.

* * * * *

[UK and AU, Updated] The Broken Drummers and The Drummers Downunder are groups of fans that meet up monthly in the UK and Australia.

Unless otherwise stated the Drummers meet on the first Monday of each month. In February this will be Monday 6th.

The Drummers Downunder (Perth) will be meeting from 6pm at The Vic Hotel, 226 Hay St, Subiaco, Australia. You can contact the organiser Daniel Hatton on

The Drummers Downunder (Sydney) meet at Maloneys Hotel on the corner of Pitt and Goulburn Streets (across the road from World Square), Sydney, Australia from 6.30pm. For more information contact Sue (AKA Granny Weatherwax) on

The Broken Drummers meet at The Monkey Puzzle, Paddington, London, W2 1JQ, England at 7pm.

The Drummers are always happy to welcome new visitors.

* * * * *

[UK, New] Neil Gaiman's urban fantasy "Neverwhere" will be performed at Progress Theatre in Reading, January 19th - January 28th 2012.

Neverwhere tickets are now on sale at or 0118 960 6060; full price 10 GBP and concessions 8 GBP. For further information, please visit,, or follow @RdgNeverwhere on twitter.

* * * * *

[AU] For fans in Adelaide, The City of Small Gods Terry Pratchett Fan Club meets on the last Thursday of the month from 6.30pm at the Ed Castle, 233 Currie St. Details, discussions and organisation of extra events (such as play outings) are held on our email mailing list, so please sign up at

* * * * *

[UK] Lichfield Players will be performing Lords and Ladies at the Lichfield Garrick Theatre between 1st - 4th February 2012.

* * * * *

[AU, New] Pratchett Pieces Three is three bite-sized quirky comedies adapted from Terry Pratchett short stories will be performed at Bakehouse Theatre - Main Stage, 255 Angas St, Adelaide from 22-24 Feb at 8pm

Tickets cost Fringe Benefits 15 AUD / 18AUD / 15 AUD

Bookings: | 1300 FRINGE | Fringe TIX Outlets: Rundle Mall, Gawler Place Canopy/ Adelaide Fringe Office, 105 Hindley Street/ East End, cnr. East Tce & Rundle Rd (Open from 16 February)

* * * * *

[UK] Monstrous Regiment will be performed in Cardiff from 22nd - 25th February 2012.

Performances start 7:30pm (2:30pm for the matinee on the 25th).

Tickets cost 7GBP (5GBP for concessions)

More details at:

* * * * *

[AU] The Unseen University Convivium 2012 takes place from July 6 - 8 2012.

You can find out more information and purchase tickets by - Looking on the website: - Liking to them on Facebook: - Following them on Twitter: - Sending enquiries via email to:

* * * * *

[UK] The Eighnnnnnn International Discworld Convention will take place from the 24th to 27th August 2012 at the Hilton Metropole in Birmingham.

For more information visit:

The second edition of News of the Disc can be found at:

Over 900 tickets have been purchased, so if you are still looking to go you need to get in contact with the convention very soon.

* * * * *

[DE] German Discworld Convention 2013

After successfully surviving the Assassins of Ankh-Morpork in 2011 we are taking the German Discworld Convention 2013 to their home continent Klatch! Make room in your schedule from October 3rd to 6th in 2013 for the fourth German Discworld Convention.

* * * * *

Small Ads...

Please note, DWM has no way of checking the veracity or validity of any of the items in our small ads section. As always, exercise caution when giving out your details over the Internet. We *strongly* recommend parental supervision for younger readers who
follow up any of these contacts.

* * * * *

Catherine Magalhaes writes: I'm preparing a PhD Thesis about the stage adaptations of Terry Pratchett's books I would like to know if it's possible to send a request to Terry's fans. I would like to gather as many documents (site, photos, videos) as possible about the staging of the plays If you would like to help, can you send me an email?

3. Readers' Letters

If you have any letters or comments, please email them to

We assume any correspondence is eligible for use in the newsletter unless otherwise stated, including the sender's email address. We may also edit your letters while eating left over turkey.

It is vitally important that you don't pass off other people's work as your own. If you use information from other resources please let us know so we can give proper credit.

* * * * *

* From: "FP Anduin"

Having read Snuff a couple of times I was in the mood to find out more about poo - and a Danish paper provided me with the latest: as it happens, Denmark has a world famous scientist of poo - Dr. Eske Willerslev. He is a professor of evolution and DNA - and poo - and has written extensively on the 'method of poo', which tells how you can reconstruct whole eco systems of the past by checking out bits of DNA from whatever poos in the woods, bears included. (and people). His research proved that humans came out of Africa, that the Aboriginals left Africa some 62-75.000 years ago, and that people arrived in the Americas earlier than was previously acknowledged. Sometimes he gets the heat from the cold - also proving that the Greenland ice has fluctuated quite a lot during the past 10.000 years but remains much more stable at the core than some people think even at temperatures 5 C above present level. Which apparently wasn't welcome news. I should think young Sam has quite a future ahead of him.

* * * * *

* From: "Wilf Stepto"

I brought The Last Continent & Thief of Time recently, and before that I bought Lords and Ladies & Feet of Clay, and Snuff before that, now I own all of the Discworld Novels (but not the graphic novel), but it still feels pretty cool having them all. Now I can read them all without having to borrow any from the school library. So Awesome! Now all I need to do is wait until the next one!

* * * * *

* From: "Lionel Goodwin"

I am sure you did not intend to belittle The Wee Free Men, you wouldn't dare. They feature at no. 7 in Conn Iggulden's top ten list of Tiny making Sir Terry's score three out of ten.

JA replies: My apologies for missing the Wee Free Men. They must have been hiding at the time!

* * * * *

* From: "Urban-Pixie"

Inf your review of Hogswatch 2011, you forgot to mention Secret Hogfather and so many people love to take part each year, not to mention DEATH and his lovely little helpers, Periwinkle, Jax and Hannah! Also Heather does such a good job of organising it, both the online one for those who don't attend and the actual one at the event so it would be nice if you could thank her on our behalf .

Can I put an ad in the next one for Jacq with her wonderful F-space jewellery inspired by the Discworld but of course not allowed to use names - she has a facebook shop at this link and I am sure your readers would love to visit. Jacq's dad had Alzheimers so she clearly understands what it is like to live with it.

Special message on this page to Hogswatch people and Discworld fandom to direct them to the DW inspired jewellery!

JA replies: Sorry to not mention the Secret Hogfather but I wasn't at the Bear at the time so missed it. Can't write about what I wasn't there to see!

* * * * *

* From: "N Frazier"

With reference to Whowray's letter last month - too bad John Thaw is not available to play Vimes - anyone else had this thought??

* * * * *

* From: "Sue Diggines"

My husband has quite a collection of TP stuff, books, some first editions, maps, pictures, a Paul Kidby pencil sketch of Librarian and Clarecraft figurines. We have now split and I have his permission to sell all this to raise funds. Can you advise the best place to sell/auction this collection please, Any ideas? I don't have a clue to prices etc.

* * * * *

* From: Gary O'Connor

Once again Terry Pratchett foretells the future! With his tree climbing octopus in Nation he's still a little bit in advance of this Round World but when the Scientific American has this [video of an octopus walking across land - Ed] as one of its items:

at the

he is getting very close indeed to bettering 'Old Moors Almanac' in soothsaying, so don't walk too close to palm trees if you are ever on Moss Beach CA.!

* * * * *

* From: "Duncan Gordon"

I am very proud to live in the shadow of Pendle Hill.

It's all getting exciting as the 400 year anniversary of the Witch Trials is soon.

And then this happens . . .

* * * * *

* From: "Randolph Lee"

Lots of wonderful almost forgotten old computer games have found a new home at low prices on Apple's App store for the iPhone and iPad. They have been resurrected from the dusty back room disk drives of their creators or of those who have obtained the rights of them via merger and takeover. The availability of tools to aid in the translation of the original format of these products has meant the costs of doing the work and submitting the same to Apple for listing on the App store are quite low and the rewards can be quite high (just ask the folks who created Lazy Birds) from the Wiki see these listed Computer games

So I guess the first task would be to find out who now owns Psygnosis and who now owns GSP Games; and do the rights remain with them and if not who now has them or have said rights reverted to Sir Terry?

I honestly feel that not only is there good money to be made here but that the entertainment value of these games deserves to be available in the present day and if they do well on the iOS App Market (I am sure the first 2 would - I never got to see Discworld Noir) then they could also go out as Android Apps or even as web based games. This might be a nice project for a university computer science team with profits going to one of Sir Terry's charities if the rights to the games have reverted to him.

DWM replies: You can already play Discworld 1 and 2 on the iPhone if you are willing to jailbreak your device and install ScummVM.

* * * * *

* From: "Nicole McCurry"

This might be kind of a long and rambling letter, as I'm not sure what I want to say.

I just know it needs to be said.

I was not raised on books. I am ashamed of this, even though it's not really my fault. Late in life, sometime in high school, I got put into an English class that emphasized reading and writing comprehension. All we did everyday is write about whatever we wanted, read about whatever we wanted, and then discuss it. It was then that I developed a passion for reading and writing. I tried to do it in my spare time, but every time I was caught writing or drawing my father would throw it away and yell at me for an hour. I got away with reading by saying "it's for school". But it wasn't until college that I discovered fantasy.

In college my boyfriend (now my husband) made me read LOTR and The Hobbit. I was hooked. Then five years ago we set off across the US with no money, no home, and a bun in the oven. We stayed with some of my husband's family for a while, and I discovered Terry Pratchett. I started with Wyrd Sisters. Right away, I knew I had found something that would take up the rest of my life. It was Granny Weatherwax that metaphorically kicked me in teeth and made me stand up to the frightened, judgemental girl inside me and start doing something with my life. I started writing, and I haven't stopped. Recently I started drawing, and found something I can be just as passionate about.

Whenever I start to despair, when I start to feel I'm not good enough or strong enough, I think "Would Granny Weatherwax act like this?! No, she bloody well wouldn't!" I get a burst of inspiration and start writing script or drawing panels for my webcomic. And I have never regretted a moment of it.

So although I'm sure he'll never know, Sir Terry Pratchett, you made this possible. It may not be a brilliant, world changing masterpiece, but I may not even be here today if it wasn't for you and Granny telling me to keep going, and keep doing what I love to do. So thank you both, from the bottom of my heart.

* * * * *

* From: Joe Kitchen

Stan Flatters asked last month:

"I had a job to put 'Snuff' down, as you would expect it's pretty damn good! But no capital letters; is this the first Discworld novel without Death?"

I believe that (if true: I haven't got hold of a copy of Snuff yet!) this would actually be the second book not to feature Death at all. Wee Free Men was until now the only Discworld book in which Death doesn't get any lines.

* * * * *

* From: "Sian Brackenridge"

Just HAD to send the link to this - it's a short news story about the Royal Mail and the addresses people write and the mystery of how on earth the letters will get delivered! Couldn't help but think of Going Postal and the dead letters, so I thought you might be interested if you haven't seen it already.

Sian Brackenridge, Glasgow

p.s. It's my birthday today and now I think I definitely have to watch Going Postal!

DWM replies: Happy Birthday

4. DiscTrivia

This month I've taken three random quotes from the Discworld series and ask you to name which book they came from.

"Never say die, master. That's our motto, eh?" said Albert. I CAN'T SAY IT'S EVER REALLY BEEN MINE.
Magrat normally wore a simple dress with not much underneath it except Magrat.
Down these mean streets a man must walk, he thought. And along some of them he will break into a run.

The answers as usual can be found at the end of this issue.

5. Review: Old Men Of The Forest - Game

Reviewed by Jason Anthony

Old Men of the Forest is a card game designed by Martin Wallace of Treefrog Games for three or four players about saving orangutans from deforestation in Borneo. All profits from the sales of the game will be donated to the Orangutan Foundation UK.

I purchased a copy of this game at the recent Hogswatch event because it looked fun and was only 10 GBP. If you purchase from the Treefrog Games website it costs 10 GBP + 2GBP P&P.

The game consists of 16 Orangutan cards and 50 player cards. Each player card has a number in the top left ranging from 1 - 10 and there are five suits.

The game takes place over 10 rounds and then the players total up all their victory points, the winner is the player with the most points. The idea is to collect the correct coloured cards to rescue the orangutans but without spending too many cards to do it.

We found the game takes around 10-15 minutes to play with four players and while the game is simple in its rules (they take less than one side of A4 paper including illustrations) there is a certain amount of strategy in the game. If for example you have deforestation cards (which you don't want) you need to see if you can not only get rid of them from your hand but also force the other players to add them to their hands.

You can found out more about the game at and at only 10 GBP they make a great little time waster and help fund the Orangutan Foundation UK.

6. Hogswatch News Update from Unseen University Convivium

Happy Hogswatch to one and all! Exciting things are afoot at Unseen University in preparation for the Convivium next July in Adelaide, South Australia, Roundworld.


We are pleased to announce the Guests of Honour for the Convivium are the following visiting lecturers:

- Daniel Knight, Emeritus Professor of Silicate Biology and Condensed Metaphysics (Untied Alchemists), of Snowgum Films.

- Pamela Munt, Superbus Professor of Vindictive Astronomy and Thespian Studies (Thespia), of Unseen Theatre Company.


- Martin Pearson, Lecturer in Applied Zoology and Fretwork Teacher (Lancre), of... well, anywhere you hear folk music.

You can find out more information about our guests at


There are many lectures and other activities to keep you busy during the Convivium. They include the Entrance Examination, Commencement, Gaudy Night[1], the Maskerade, the Wizard's Excuse Me, Try Wizarding, the Winery and Gourmet Tours[2], and many many more. Our visiting lecturers shall also be contributing to the programme with a presentation by Snowgum Films, and performances by Martin Pearson and Unseen Theatre Company.

You can see a full list of confirmed and potential activities at

However, many activities will require volunteers to run them - so if you have an idea of your own, or would like to just take one from our suggested list, please do so!

MERCHANDISING AND SURVEY Those of you using social media may have seen a sneak peek at some special Convivium merchandise when we passed 100 Facebook and 50 Twitter disciples. This merchandise will be available for online sale to anyone early in 2012[3].

However, we are also planning to offer Convivium Attendees Only exclusive merchandise that will only be available to attendees. In order to get an idea of what sort of merchandise to offer, we would like you to complete a short survey for us available at

DISCUSSIONS Just a gentle reminder that if you have any questions about the Convivium, or would like to chat to other fans, we have forums at which need love and attention!

Of course, we are also on Facebook at and Twitter at

INFORMATION AND TICKETS For further information on Unseen University Convivium 2012, and to purchase tickets, please visit and browse through our website at

Yours academically,

Chair of Indefinite Studies (Programme and Activities) Unseen University 2012 University of Adelaide, 6-8 July 2012

[1] Gaudy Night is a gala dinner held on Saturday 7th July. There is an additional cost for this activity.

[2] The Winery and Gourmet Tours are held on Monday, 9th July. There is an additional cost for these activities.

[3] We wish to make sure the merchandise is of good quality before we sell it to you, so we have to wait until our own order arrives!

7. The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now First Novel Award

Sir Terry Pratchett had this to say:

Anywhere but here, anywhen but now. Which means we are after stories set on Earth, although it may be an Earth that might have been, or might yet be, one that has gone down a different leg of the famous trousers of time (see the illustration in almost every book about quantum theory). We will be looking for books set at any time, perhaps today, perhaps in the Rome of today but in a world where 2000 years ago the crowd shouted for Jesus Christ to be spared, or where in 1962, John F Kennedy's game of chicken with the Russians went horribly wrong. It might be one day in the life of an ordinary person. It could be a love story, an old story, a war story, a story set in a world where Leonardo da Vinci turned out to be a lot better at Aeronautics. But it won't be a story about being in an alternate Earth because the people in an alternate Earth don't know that they are; after all, you don't. But this might just be the start. The wonderful Peter Dickinson once wrote a book that could convince you that flying dragons might have existed on Earth. Perhaps in the seething mass of alternate worlds humanity didn't survive, or never evolved - but other things did, and they would have seen the world in a different way. The possibilities are literally endless, but remember, it's all on Earth. Maybe the continents will be different and the climate unfamiliar, but the physics will be the same as ours. What goes up must come down, ants are ant-sized because if they were any bigger their legs wouldn't carry them. In short, the story must be theoretically possible on some version of the past, present or future of a planet Earth.


1. By entering this competition, you agree to accept and be bound by these terms and conditions. All entry instructions form part of the terms and conditions of this competition.

2. This competition is open to anyone aged 18 or over who is a resident of the UK, other countries of the British Commonwealth, and the Republic of Ireland, except for employees (and their families) of Transworld Publishers, a division of The Random House Group Limited (Publisher) and any other company connected with the competition.

3. The closing date for the competition is 31st December 2012 (Closing Date).

4. Each entrant must submit the following in order to enter the competition: (a) a complete and previously unpublished work of fiction of not less than 80,000 words and not more than 150,000 words aimed at adult readers and written in the English language (Novel); and (b) a synopsis of the Novel in the English language of no more than 600 words, (together, entry).

5. Each Entry must: (a) be emailed to the Publisher at; (b) include the entrant's full name and contact details (including a home address and a telephone number); and (c) be submitted as a Word document with double spacing in font size 12 point 'Times New Roman'.

6. Each entrant warrants to the Publisher that: (a) they have not previously had a full length novel written or co authored by them (under any name) published under a valid ISBN; and (b) their Novel is original to them, does not infringe copyright or any other intellectual property right and does not defame or invade the privacy rights of any third party, or infringe any other legal rights, regulations or laws.

7. Each entrant can submit one Entry only, and may not re-submit work that was entered for the Terry Pratchett First Novel Award in 2010.

8. The winning entrant will be offered an advance payment against royalties of 20,000 GBP on entering into a publishing contract with the Publisher (Prize) and will be required to agree to license exclusive world publishing rights in all print, electronic, audio and any other media formats in the Novel to the Publisher on acceptance of the Prize. At the Publisher's discretion, shortlisted entrants may also be offered publishing deals with the Publisher. Subject to any such contractual agreement, entrants will retain their legal rights to their Entries.

9. Entries that do not comply with these terms and conditions (by example Entries received after the Closing Date) will not be accepted by the Publisher. The Publisher is not responsible for delayed or lost Entries. Entrants are advised to retain a copy of their Entries.

10. A shortlist of six entrants will be contacted by the Publisher by 31st March 2013. The publisher will select the winner from the shortlisted entrants and the winner will be announced by 31st May 2013.

11. Events may occur that render the awarding of the Prize impossible due to reasons beyond the control of the Publisher and the Publisher may, at its absolute discretion, vary, amend, suspend or withdraw the Prize with or without notice.

12. Winning and shortlisted entrants agree to the Publisher's use and publication of their name, country of residence and photograph in relation to the Publisher's publicity activities.

13. The Publisher will use the personal details of entrants only for the purpose of this competition. Personal details will not be kept on file by the Publisher and will not be passed on to any third parties.

14. The shortlisted entrants and winner's names will be available on from 31st March 2013 and 31st May 2013 (as applicable).

15. The Publisher's decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into in relation to this competition. No cash alternative will be offered.

16. These terms and conditions are subject to English law and the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.

17. The contact details of the promoter of this competition are: Transworld Publishers, 61-3 Uxbridge Road, London W5 5SA,

8. The End

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* DiscTrivia Results *

"Never say die, master. That's our motto, eh?" said Albert. I CAN'T SAY IT'S EVER REALLY BEEN MINE.
Magrat normally wore a simple dress with not much underneath it except Magrat.
Lords and Ladies
Down these mean streets a man must walk, he thought. And along some of them he will break into a run.

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