1. Claude and Eustace have been sent down from Oxford but refuse to leave your flat until they have made their professional debut on the West End, an aim to which your aunt strenuously objects. What do you feed the Empress?
If you feed the Empress acorns, select A. If you feed the Empress mash with a nip of bourbon, select B.
2. You accidentally steal the umbrella of a social superior. Do you start a chicken farm or marry Muriel?
If you start a chicken farm, select A. If you marry Muriel, select B.
3. Your Uncle Fred is masquerading as a beloved Russian novelist in a dining car containing half of the most important members of your gentleman’s club as well as your publisher, who currently has on his person a compromising letter that could end your literary career. What tie will you wear?
If you will wear the striped tie, select A. If you will wear the quiet grey, select B.
4. The girl you love is engaged to the local squire. How many kippers would you like with your breakfast?
If you will have four kippers, select A. If you ask for kidneys, select B.
5. A small dog belonging to your second-least favorite aunt has stolen a constable’s helmet. Where will you hide?
If you will hide on Swan Island, select A. If you will hide in Roberta Wickham’s room, select B.
1A. You feed the Empress acorns. This fails to revive her, and Laura Pyke, the food crank, is called in for consultation. You are moved out of the Green Room — which has the nicest view in the whole house — to make room for her. The week-end has been ruined. 1B. You feed the Empress mash with a bit of bourbon. Although the Empress responds promisingly, while you are distracted by her, Roderick Spode takes the opportunity to ransack your room and plant the stolen cow-creamer under your bed. Gwladys refuses to believe that you are not a kleptomaniac and breaks off your engagement.
2A. Muriel objects to your starting a chicken farm, as she has always planned for you a career in Law, and brings breach-of-promise actions against you. 2B. Muriel has been secretly engaged to Tuppy Glossop for three years. He threatens to horsewhip you on the steps of your Club after learning of your attachment; you sail to America and spend six months in New York City trying to forget her. You forget her so successfully that when you meet her again — this time with dyed red hair as a gold-digging chorus girl — it takes you weeks to remember who she is. By this time she has married your wealthy uncle, giving him a son almost nine months to the date after their wedding, disinheriting you.
3A. You wear the striped tie. By curious coincidence, you bear a remarkable resemblance to the Canadian poet Rockmeteller Todd, who is also in the dining car, wearing a striped tie. You are invited to speak at a local primary school on the meaning of your best-known work, “Across the Pale Parabola of Joy.” Rockmeteller confesses to you in the drawing-room car that he has no intention of keeping that appointment and begs for you to go in his stead. All of the little girls have braids down their backs and goggle at you. Your Uncle Fred, meanwhile, slips off at the next stop and is arrested in London for nude bathing in the fountains at Trafalgar Square. 3B. You wear the quiet grey tie. Somehow, you find its subtle colors morally strengthening and finally draw enough courage to propose to Isobel Allsop, whom you have loved since she was so high. She accepts.
4A. You take four kippers. The kippers leave you full until lunch. It was just the right amount of kippers to have; what a flair you have in these matters. 4B. You ask for kidneys, inadvertently offending the sensitive French cook Anatole, who gives notice immediately. Your Aunt Dahlia disinvites you from her around-the-world yacht trip. The week-end has been ruined.
5A. You hide on Swan Island. It is filled with swans. The boat is gone, and you have no umbrella with which to defend yourself. It will take weeks for them to find your body. 5B. You hide in Roberta Wickham’s room. It is filled with swans. As they descend upon you, hissing curiously like the death-rattle of a soda-water syphon, you have only enough time to avoid Roberta’s Pomeranian, which begins snapping at your heels.