Premium Story: A Dream of a Thousand Tails

You dream that a story lives in your walls. It has got its teeth into your pantry. It tells itself in little leavings by the skirting board. You hear it when you’re in bed, in the dark, scampering towards an ending.

The story has whiskers, and it goes like this: ‘There is a king little bigger than a finger, who sits in a garden beyond the edge of telling. The king ties itself in knots, and feasts upon stories like a rat upon cheese…’

A Dream of a Thousand Tails is our yearly premium story for 2023. Delve into the mysteries of ratty dreaming to tell the ancient myths of ratkind. Aid the Piebald Dreamer in her quest to preserve an ancestral history. Walk the hidden places where the Rattus faber dream.

A Dream of a Thousand Tails is available now! The story requires ownership of a Parabolan Base-Camp. Playing the story unlocks a new persistent activity set in a small new area within Parabola.

Like past premium stories (The Poisoner’s Library and Mushroom’s Dream), it costs 25 Fate. Begin it from ‘Explore the Festive Season’, or from within your Parabolan Base-Camp.

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For quite nearly a decade, players of Fallen London have been searching for answers to one of the deepest mysteries of the Neath: just how did foxes lose dominion to the rats? Now, at last, we begin to approach the answer. The answer might even have truth inside of it!

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I like all the saint options one can find if you have a reliquary. So far I have a bandit, a thief, a cyborg, a priest, a candle and a saint who knew how to keep their mouth shut.

I’m assuming these are varying on an airs quality, but if anyone’s found one I missed let me know.

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This was a truly wonderful story. The fairy tale quality of the story was incredible. I hope we get more stories like this one.

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Would those of you who have played already say this one is 100% worth it? I want to get it but am on the fence between this and getting the spider lady as a lab assistant when my next paycheck comes in. (Split my fate purchases for the festival in 2 haha!)

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A truncated Hagiogratphy of Rat Saints one might hear of (doesn’t spoil anything in the story, and intentionally leaves out many delicious details for each entry):

  1. Anatoly the Gold, who built a body out of ratwork, and who lived on, ticking, for long after his funeral.
  2. Sylvia Stumptail, a Bandit-Chief of the Prickfinger Wastes.
  3. A monk known as the Penitent, who took a vow of silence and offered blessings beneath the great beast of St Fiacre’s.
  4. Gerelt the Wick, who drowned in wax and lit the way for her litter to run to safety.
  5. Pious Henry, who, by all accounts, wasn’t very interesting at all.
  6. Spot the Unmaker, a piebald beast born on the Salt Lions.
  7. Midnight Delger, who empited a Khan’s vaults without ever been seen.
  8. Jemmy of the Diamond Eye, maker of the most beautiful ratwork ever to grace the Carnelian Coast.
  9. Blake Brass-Horn, […] (they say) treated with Goat-Demons and learned the secret printing and metalworking techniques of Hell.
  10. One who is not a saint with a name.
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Neat. I’m missing 6 and 8 now. I am really enjoying these rat saints.

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I think I’m stuck in the story.

I am at Dreaming of a Thousand Tails 64, and nothing I do in the Whisker-Ways has an effect. Did I do something wrong?

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Who are all the parabolain powers you can ask for information? I’ve only found the Viscountess so far.

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I haven’t found any so far, and want to do so before advancing the story further. Here are the ideas I have for contacting Powers of Parabola:

  • [Dome of Scales: speak with Union of Lions when cats are dominant? I currently have the Red-Handed Queen dominant and don’t see an option to speak with her about rat dreams] - no option for either
  • [Speak with the Queen of Arbor, when visiting Arbor from the opportunity card in London?] - didn’t see anything.
  • At the conclusion of the Appalling Socialite storyline, you meet both the Red-Handed Queen and the Beleagured King. Maybe you can ask them?
  • In the Viric Jungle: speak with the Ophidian Gentleman, when the Fingerkings are dominant? - confirmed
  • The Hintershroom (at Mangrove College) is dreaming, and might know something.

EDIT: In the Viric Jungle, you can speak to both the Viscountess and the Ophidian Gentelman about rat dreams, depending on whether cats or snakes are currently dominant.

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What are mechanical rewards?

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You receive:

  • a +1 Mithridacy/+1 Glasswork companion (there are flavour variants, but same stats)
  • access to a permanent carousel in Parabola where you can make Rat Tails Tales which automatically cash out into a varied collection of items based upon what kind of story you tell. It has lots of fun text, and makes about 5 Echoes / act (maybe more with Rat Market shenanigans, maybe less if you can’t pass the skill checks (13 in Advanced Stats will get you 100%, so it’s doable but definitely requires some gear)). Some payout items include Antique Mysteries, Bejewelled Lenses, Blackmail Material, Storm Threnodies, but always mixed in with some 2.50 and 0.50 and 0.02 Echo items so it’s difficult to say it’s a great grind for specifically anything. But sometimes getting “a bit of everything” feels better, honestly: something to use, and something to refresh your stocks.
  • Also a few repeatable actions with flavour text (like the aforementioned Saints) that pay out fairly poor, but are fun to read.
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Any intel on this story’s author? Or should it be considered a Failbetter staff team effort? :smiley:

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I just finished this story. It is among the very best Premium stories I’ve played. I cried! both happy and sad. The main character is delightful, the carousel through which you run three variations never seems grindy, and the ending I read was so wonderful!! This is also the first time I’ve seen a Fingerking do something genuinely good, at least it seemed genuine. I do love rats, but even if you account for that bias this is a really well-put-together little adventure. We all love story creation, so the carousel is fun. It was really satisfying to play and I felt my PC had agency. Getting the main NPC as a companion at the end was a super-sweet cherry on top. Go FBG! :heart::heart::heart:

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I have just finished the story, and I must say its one of my favorite even despite my (biased) love for these adorable cutties. I proceed in a very determined way that questions everything, especially fingerkings. But I do want to know other possibility of stories if you free the fingerking, and the dreamer becomes a chronicler or a mythographer. I would be very appreciated if anyone can share the echoes with me!