• across the chessboard
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    welcome to across the chessboard! we're an alice in wonderland based site with an original plot and slight modern dystopian twist and canon characters from alice's adventures in wonderland and through the looking glass and what alice found there, both by lewis carroll. for a longer summary, please visit our information center here. if you have any questions, feel free to give an admin a shout in the cbox (it's to your left- just click the chatter button and it should pop open). again, welcome, and we hope you join us!

    it is currently summer 2015 in london.
    it is currently summer-ish in wonderland.

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    Wonderland wasn't always this way. There was a time when it mirrored medieval England, albeit with a few magical elements: a few quirks and eccentricities that made it truly unique. While all feared the Queen's mercurial temper and the fine blade of her Guillotine, all was well, until a little girl named Alice Liddell disturbed the status quo and sparked a revolution. The kingdom began to fall into decay as the taint of the modern world invaded. History is beginning to repeat itself and no one is happy. As the Queen of Hearts tangles in a battle of wits and riddles with the Cheshire Cat, the rest are starting to wonder ... is it true that the White Rabbit is bringing humans to Wonderland when they themselves are banned from going to London?

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 Posted: Jan 1 2015, 07:03 AM
You stand with your hand on my waist line It's a scene & we're out here in plain sight I can hear them whisper as we pass by It's a bad sign bad sign Something happens when everybody finds out See the vultures circling dark clouds Love's a fragile little flame it could burn out It could burn out
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Do humans know about Wonderland?
At this time no, humans are not aware of Wonderland unless in the case of a White Rabbit kidnapping, but these must be roleplayed out. There have been no reports or known cases of humans sneaking out of Wonderland, either, so don't think you'll get away with being a snitch. In any event, the humans all seem to enjoy Wonderland too much to try and leave for some reason.

So do Wonderlanders know about London?
Yes, they do. Once upon a time, after Alice Liddell's initial visit to Wonderland, some of the creatures she met became curious about the strange land in which Alice usually lived. The Cheshire Cat, was the first to successfully cross over, with some magic and a looking glass; second, the White Rabbit, this time with magic and one of his larger rabbit holes; and many more followed in their footsteps. Her death was the tipping point, however- Wonderlanders flocked over to either pay their respects or demand to know what about this "London" had taken Alice away from them.

What happened?
Wonderland began to lose her muchness. Crossing over to London meant taking on a human form forever; after a lot of the muchness was gone, everyone woke up in human forms, most unable to summon the ability to shift back into their original forms. (Note: if your character can shapeshift, they must be powerful enough to do so and it must be mentioned in your application.) The Queen, newly coronated and fearing the death of Wonderland, sealed off all contact points with London . . . except for one.

How long ago was this?
The Queen sealed off the portals in 1995, human time. So roughly twenty years ago. For all information re. the site timeline, look here

So how are humans getting into Wonderland?
The White Rabbit has taken up kidnapping humans and dragging them down the one, small rabbit hole left open, on order of the Queen. No one really knows what the humans are for, just that a new arrival seems to make either the Queen or the Cheshire Cat very excited.

When a human arrives, a thin grey band appears on their wrist, marking them as an outsider. This will change color to red or black, depending on which set either they pick or one of the Set Queens chooses for them. This band is permanent and will not wash off; it will typically only disappear if the human becomes a Card or is chosen as a Chess Piece. (More on Cards and Chess Pieces below.)

Can I ask for my human character to be kidnapped?
This is the only place where that question isn't weird. At this time, kidnap victims will be determined by staff. Just know that any humans made are fair game and that the White Rabbit will be interacting with pretty much every human written- but again, the White Rabbit not threading with you doesn't necessarily mean anything, either.

Why London? Why not America?
Because the original Alice was born in England, and spent most of her life in Oxford. Why not Oxford, then? Because not many people outside of England will have any great knowledge in that place, and rather than have two made up places- we opted to use London. It's a well known city, and thus the perfect setting for everyone to get involved with!

Can I make the Red or White Queen?
Unfortunately not. The way we've set up ATC excludes the Red and White Monarchies and instead focuses wholly on the Queen of Hearts and her court. This is to keep things relatively simple. We do however have plenty of other canons for your taking! The Duchess has been suggested as an alternative to the White Queen, as she can be somewhat of a rival (though not in power, sadly) to the Queen of Hearts. The White Queen may have the opportunity to exist in the future . . . you'll just have to stick around to find out!

Can a Wonderlander and a human 'get together'?
Providing said Wonderlander can take a human form, yes! Think of Harry Potter where a Veela can have children with a wizard. It's more or less the same concept- the child will simply have some tell tale traits of a Wonderlander. Bonus: The human parent and half-human child will also be (seemingly) immortal by living in Wonderland! This just means children take longer to grow both in the womb and once born, so think very carefully if you want to pursue a pregnancy storyline. And, as always, storylines of that magnitude must be first cleared by an admin.

So can I make a Wonderlander who was from London and crossed over?
This depends! If it was a recent crossover, then they'd either be a Card or a Chess Piece or simply existing in Wonderland due to forced entry via the White Rabbit- it is very, very rare that any human is given Wonderlander status for nothing. The first human to cross over was Alice herself, so any Wonderlander from before that time MUST have come solely from Wonderland. If you want them or their parents to have crossed over after Alice, this must be cleared with an Admin first. Generally, we prefer you not to pursue this kind of background, though we're not about to stifle creativity, so if you have an idea, by all means, ask away!

Can I make an Original Wonderlander?
Yes you may! Our only stipulation is that you have at least one established character and you follow all the rules on activity and creating your next character. They can be anything you can dream up — from mome raths to jaguars to carnivorous yellow jackets to hedgehogs and anything in between. Just remember that they now have a human form and probably can't summon enough magic to shift back and forth between forms. And please, no doubles or twins of any existing Wonderlanders (available canons included) unless otherwise specifically mentioned or requested in a wanted ad- ie, there is only one Cheshire Cat, one White Rabbit, one Jabberwocky, etc. (Note: They may not have any established important or familial relationships with existing Wonderlanders unless cleared with an admin and all players involved, and they are not allowed to be integral to Wonderland society. These things take time to build through RP.)

What about magic in Wonderland?
It all really depends on the individual. The most magical creature is said to be the Cheshire Cat, who can make the seemingly impossible happen; though it is yet to be known if he truly wields magical powers beyond his evaporating skills. Other creatures of Wonderland may hold some form of magic but other than the landscape, rules and creatures being bizarre in comparison to London- there isn't all that much magic there. Or at least, there isn't any more.

How do the Cards work?
There are four suits of Cards and they all serve the King. The four suits are arranged in a hierarchical order. The order goes, from bottom to top; Clubs, Spades, Diamonds, Hearts. As you can imagine- the Hearts are the elite, the ones that attend the King directly. Everyone starts off as a Club, ranging from Two up to Ten, with the Ace being the top ranking Card in each Suit. There are ten people in each Suit, and eventually- if you prove yourself enough- you'll be upgraded from a Card to a Wonderlander.

Your suit color has nothing to do with which side your character is on- ie, they can be a spade but still be aligned with the Queen or they can be a diamond and be aligned with the Cheshire Cat. This is because the Card Deck was in place long before the Queen and Cat's drama began and the Cards answer to the King, who does not lead a Chess Set.

How do you become a Card?
To become a Card in the King's service you either get an audience with the King through one of the established Cards or any other Wonderlander with connections. These are the only two ways. Neither route is easy or advisable, but if you're dedicated enough, it should be easy as pie. Of course, getting a letter of recommendation from another Card (the higher the suit the better) is definitely recommended. The White Rabbit has nothing to do with this. (Note: You may apply with a character already established as a Card, just make sure to add in how they got there in the application.)

How do the Chess Pieces work?
Chess Pieces work similar to Cards, though they're must less conspicuous. (They're almost like spies, gathering intel and whatever else their boss asks of them.) Currently, the Queen and the Cheshire Cat each have their own Set of Pieces- two Rooks, a King, two Bishops, two Knights, and eight Pawns, ranging from most powerful to least respectively. (Note: the King of Hearts automatically takes the King Piece under the Queen. The pre-existing canon Knights hold their own role outside of this and have no part in the Chess Pieces.) These positions are stationary and you can only be promoted if someone in a higher rank dies and/or disappears. All positions and promotions are hand-picked by the Queen of each set and are primarily composed of humans, though some Wonderlanders do hold lower-ranking positions. The Set colors are red (the Queen) and black (the Cheshire Cat).

If you have Cards and you're using the Queen of Hearts, then why mix in Chess Pieces, too? Won't that just get confusing?
On the contrary, since very few people, if any beyond your set, will know that you're a Chess Piece, you'll be perceived to most as a regular Wonderlander or human. So why are we doing this? To keep you guessing, of course. No, but seriously, there's a very good, plot-driven reason, and you'll find out in due time. Patience, my fellow grasshopper.

How do you get into Wonderland?
By getting kidnapped! It's not a pleasant experience and I've heard many people upend their lunch upon landing in Wonderland (that rabbit hole is a narrow, harrowing thing). This isn't something to celebrate, contrary to the exclamation mark two sentences ago, and it'll be something of a culture shock. You shouldn't want to be kidnapped, but if it does happen, I doubt you, the writer, will be complaining much. [Note: Being kidnapped by the White Rabbit is the ONLY way for humans to get into Wonderland at this time.]

My character has an illness; will Wonderland cure it?
No. Wonderland has no magical ability to heal the sick and wounded. You can contract a disease or physical disability there just as easily as you would in the human world. Wonderland time moves extremely slow in comparison to London, thus its inhabitants seem immortal, and are, really. If a human with a time-centric disease were to live in Wonderland, the effects of said disease would slow down considerably, buying them (a lot) more time to live. But no, it will not heal, and if you were to hypothetically go back to London, the illness would move on typical London-time once more. (Note: Giving your character cancer or any other disease with a deadline-to-death will not put them in favor of being picked by the White Rabbit to go to Wonderland.)

What's this nonsense about carrier pigeons? I thought this was a modern dystopia?
You ever try to establish a Wi-Fi connection on Mars? No? Same idea applies- Wonderland exists in something of a parallel dimension to the human world (it's all a bunch of physics and maths that the White Rabbit will explain to you if he's drunk enough, but really, do you want to know much more than this?) and there was too much interference through the rabbit hole to set anything up. Sending letters by carrier pigeon is one of the few ways Wonderland has held on to her old habits. Time moves so slowly in Wonderland anyway that nobody seems to be bothered by this much.

I just saw a woman in a corset walk down the street with a guy in Burberry. What's up with that?
The modern human world DID take over for a little while, and it's evident in many of the newer buildings and customs, including clothes. Some Wonderlanders have embraced this while others have rejected modern clothing and stuck with the medieval look. Most humans typically hold on to the style of clothing they're used to, though some have embraced traditional Wonderland fashion. For more information on Wonderland culture, please click on over here.
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