Alligator - toothsome monster Barny rescues from demonic snare and feels he needs to care for despite everyones terrified, screamed opinion that it can fend for itself. Edgy mirthfully warns Gregor that if hes not careful the beast will open those choppers and give you more than you bargained for.
Amy Gort - Edgys on-off girlfriend who writes disastrous poetry such as I Freeze and Smash the Velvet.
And another thing - One of the Captains truncated parting shots as he leaves the room.
The Anti Room - club frequented by the gang.
The Babys Arm - a pub.
The Baffling Ocean - local term for the sea to the south of Accomplice. It is horizontal, moving in the foreground, seemingly motionless in the distance, and changes colour a bit. The citizens of Accomplice find the whole arrangement baffling. Traditional for groups to visit the shore and stand frowning, shaking their heads slowly.
Bargain Basement Henrietta [aka BB Henrietta, BB, Henry, Orgone Generator] - one of the boys, BB works in the Sorting Office and parties at Liars and the Broken Man. The only person whom Murdster, the Tower guard, treats with any respect. Amateur dramatist. She and Barny have a fling through mere proximity.
Barny Juno [aka Bubba, The Barn, Boo, June, Juniper, Barnstormer, Bangmaster, Bangme Bangme] - Barny shelters several dozen dangerous wild animals at home and these are his main preoccupation. Works part-time at the Sorting Office. A simple man, Barny becomes the inadvertent nemesis of the demonic Sweeney and blunders through hazards unaware of his peril. His best friends are Edgy, Gregor, BB Henrietta and Mr Peterson. Eats small, struggling trolls when nervous.
The Bata Motel - Edgys home, run by Morse Cloud.
Bats - inverse, quivering creatures which the Sorting Office boys keep for company.
Beltane Carom - shaman who explains the Sweeney set-up to Plantin Edge. We suspect the existence of these adjacent realms as one nostril suspects the existence of the other. Another time Gregor wnet to him for supernatural protection and Beltane instructed him to place his soul into an inconspicuous, inanimate object for safety. Gregor placed it in the hubcap of a car and spent months trying to track it down.
Biophantines - large inflatable swamp creatures which burst when approached, leaving absolutely nothing of interest.
Bland souls - Sweeney finds modern souls bland and spices them with a course of etheric marination in the creepchannel before devouring them.
The Blank Stare - Accomplice newspaper, originally titled Stare at the Obstacle.
Blood Clock - the mayors building features an ornate blood clock which on the hour propels glossy figurines into jerky battle.
Bo - cursed gentleman who turns quietly to sugar at sundown, this fella exists only in a dream which Barny has occasionally.
Boneseed - calciate spores from which ribbed, bone-like buildings are grown. Rate of disintegration varies. Bonegrown buildings include the court-house and the Anti Room.
The Bone Weary Club - club for the bone weary.
The Broken Man - another pub.
The Bulkhead - the demonic Sweeneys massive living carapace/throne.
Bullshit Borealis - atmospheric disturbance which Gregor claims to perceive around Plantins mouth area.
Cannon - a means of firing the dead into the heavens, as taught by Cannonical scripture to the Followers of the Fuse.
The Captain - white-uniformed authority figure who visits the Sorting Office every few days to check on the gang. Has no more idea of its function than they do, and shares their shapeless anxiety. Has a habit of leaving the room in the middle of his own remarks.
Caterpillar - arching, larger-than-life pet owned by the Petersons but never seen.
Cattle - hefty creatures which Gregor complains are expecting something of him when he sees them standing idle.
Chloe Low - mysterious daughter of Mr Low, lives at the Juice Museum and wanders its galleries at night. Barny is fascinated by her. Death-pale and smart. Barny gives her a gift of a gater tooth for the Juice Museum.
The Church of Automata - church which seems devoted to the building and activities of spooky mechanised dummies which grin to show each individual carved tooth just so. Alot of jerky harpsichord action in the half-light. For the sake of appearances this church maintains a feud with the Followers of the Fuse. But these ghoulish goings-on exist to distract folk away from its organisers' comfort and privilege.
Cog vulture - undead mascot guarding stock in Shop of a Thousand Spiders.
The Conglomerate - committee of creatures physically joined together, whose joint intelligence and morality is less than their individual intelligence and morality.
The Courthouse - legal cases must usually wait for months while the cathedral-like court-house is grown from boneseed. The cornerstone of the tangled, vortical building is formed by a piece of thigh-bone removed from the innocent party. After the case, the building totally disintegrates again.
Crash Test Nureyev - editor at Feeble Champ Books.
Creepchannels - demonic transit system under Accomplice, made of electrocutive nerve tissue and freezing fear. At the spine-lit hub of thousands nests the devilish Sweeney and his inconvenient hordes.
The Cyril Manifesto - the Mayor invents a sinister public threat against which to campaign and thus unite the populace behind him. Knowing the Cyril threat is false, Prancer Diego enlists Barny to bring the threat into physical reality, causing the Mayor a temporary bout of concern.
Death & Destruction - law firm which acts for Gregor after he molests a statue.
Dels Fright Foundry - psychodimensional vortex from which the gruff, uncommunicative Del drags horrific, steaming artifacts which are totally useless. Barny undergoes a fraught job interview with Del when fired from the Sorting Office.
The Devils pistachios - Edgys term for Gregors eyelids.
Dietrich Hammerwire - Sweeneys number one henchman. He can freely roam the upper world performing Sweeneys evil. Approaches the Mayor and then doomed Eddie Gallo to turn them against Barny.
Dinosaurs - one of Gregors guilty passions.
Disguise - Disguise abounds in Accomplice. During the course of Only an Alligator Barny and Edgy disguise the alligator as a crocodile (by adding two false external incisors), a giant furled leaf, a sleeping tramp, the rigid wave prop behind a stage show and the devil himself. When Dietrich Hammerwire approaches Mayor Rudloe, he suggests that his demonic master should be disguised when endorsing the campaign, because if the public saw Sweeneys true form, they wouldnt be able to take the stress. In a later adventure Prancer Diego disguises himself as a giant wren and incites bloody mayhem. Gregor disguises himself as a bundle of chaff in order to be ignored.
Doctor Perfect - leatherhearted quack with the sort of face youd see high up on the side of a church. Should I be happy about your ailments, or cruel? / It amounts to the same thing. / Precisely.
The Doggone Diagram - high ticket item from Stampede Products.
Doll Engineers - priests in the Church of Automata.
Dont touch the underwear - Max Gaffers caution to strangers when they approach to shake hands.
doomed Eddie Gallo - amiable contender for Mayor in the permanent election race. Taken for a ride by one and all but always comes back amicable. Sometimes addressed as Frank Baby.
Dust monkeys - if enough dust gathers in the corner of a room, it may assume the form of a monkey and go berserk. A skirmish between these and floor lobsters is a low lifestyle marker.
Erno the Mute - timid gofer for the Mayor - not a mute, but no-one listens.
Exploring my dark side - usefully vague comeback to question What are you doing tonight?
Exterminator - early job at which Barny failed due to his belief that rather than exterminate the rats, flies and so on, he should soap and clean them.
Fang - bog man who doesnt realise he is not meant to socialise with the towns living. Barny never understands that Fang is one of the long-undead.
Feeble Champ Books - publishing house which asks Barny to write an account of his canine adventures and subsequently retitles the book - ghosted by Edgy - I am a Failure.
Feral Beryl - old woman of the woods, forced by one and all to pretend shes wise. Wishes to hell theyd leave her alone.
Flaunters - subdemons which deliberately extrude their skeletal structure into the outer air.
Floor lobsters - huge house insects which are physical manifestations of guilt. The Mayor employs someone to dispose of them daily from his office.
Flowers Joyce Belt - mysterious exhibit in the Juice Museum.
Folders/gore doors - phantom doorways superimposed over solid doorways, which fold the victim down through subspace into realm of demons.
Fossil bombs - spiral ammonites sprung with compressed resentment at their extinction.
Fury Day - traditional public holiday during which the community express themselves.
Fusehead - slang for a Velocity Gospel fanatic or Cannonite.
Gas radio - natural radio extruded from demon-blown amber - transmits metallic whistling from the upper pain spectrum.
Gettysburg - a rogue demon, decamped from Sweeney and living in the Accomplice observatory.
G.I. Bill - local thug.
Mr Gibbon - authority figure to whom the Captain claims he answers.
Gills - all children have gills.
Gimble - one of the disguises the gang consider for the alligator, but nobody really knows what a gimble is.
Glass harpies - transparent winged dragons able to blend with the terrain.
Golden Sid - timorous young man who comes to take care of Barnys menagerie twice a week, but does nothing but scream and hide on top of the furniture.
Graveyard watch - timepiece denoting loyalty to Church of Automata.
Gregor [aka Round One, the Bulb, Furry Gregor, Furry Tyrannosaur, Hey Puff-head, Dont Touch Me, Potato, Spuddy, Pig Servant, Hey You] - Best friend of Barny and Edgy. Rants impotently against the fates, fails, and so on. Works and lives at the Sorting Office, nesting in a sub-basement. Displays sexual attraction to socially awkward objects/animals/concepts. Fears he will never amount to anything and that people will only remember him for the time he kicked a snail through a store window.
Gubba Men - inert figures which remain utterly immobile until victims of crime go to them for help - the Gubbas then hold the victim in place with an iron grip. Doctor Perfect experiments on Gubba Men and finds they have no internal structure atall.
Mr Gully Low - amiable curator of the Juice Museum.
Help - Barnys spooky dog.
Helterpolitik - the system of politics in Accomplice and the real world, composed of nanosecond memory, hypocrisy too extreme to process and pretended surprise at the consequences.
Hen hydrants - emergency street hose for dispersing evil birds. Penalty for improper use.
EH Hunt - seafaring lard-arse who drags a heavy, locked sea chest wherever he goes - whats inside is a mystery.
I am a Failure - Feeble Champ Books final decision for title of Edgys dog book. To publicise the work he creates a float for the Plunder Parade in which he is caged with twenty increasingly furious hounds.
Ill have the roast beef platter. - the only thing Dumbar ever says.
The Juice Museum - a repository of ignored stories, rejected wisdom and forgotten capers, each connected to a strange object. Run by Mr Low and his daughter Chloe. Barny is fascinated by the place and by Chloe.
Karloff Velocet - proprietor and ringmaster of the Circus of the Heart's Shell.
Kelmans Deadly Sombrero - exhibit in the Juice Museum. Hazardous titanium headgear worn by Jack Kelman, a stoker long deceased.
Kenny Reactor - menial worker in hydroponic gillball farm. Experiments with his own hybrid plants. Shelters escaped Maquette doll.
Kung Fu Snorter - runs Snorters cafe.
Learn from the giraffe - Barnys advice to Gregor regarding neck motion, when Gregor complains he cant accurately fake falling asleep to avoid responding in court.
Levity Closet - high ticket item from Stampede Products.
The lion (Mister Braintree) - Barnys second most frightening animal. Gregor cries in its presence, especially when asked to 'rest on its head'. .
Magenta Blaze [aka The Screech, Red Alert, Deathbabe] - Barnys over-lively girlfriend and the worst for him. Barny says she makes him feel like a bomb disposal expert.
Maquette - mechanical doll which develops consciousness and escapes from the Church of Automata, scaring the bejesus out of everyone.
Max Gaffer - legal/campaign adviser to the Mayor.
Mayor Rudloe - Rotund, corrupt politician involved in perpetual election race. Is regularly embroiled in the feud between Sweeney and the gang. In his darker moments, considers himself a sad one for being mayor of a place where ants go to die.
The measure - that which Edgy claims he has of the world.
Microlady - hand-sized woman who sleeps in a hammock made from a leaf, sings haunting songs, and bites holes in peoples cheeks. She is a rare overlevy survivor, over-drained of blood.
Mike Abblatia - too-easygoing mechanic at Spaceys Gas Station.
The Moral Fibre - length of muscle stretched between two pegs, kept under guard in the Tower of Nowt. Rumoured to degrade and require regular replacement - some claim that the original was replaced long ago with an artificial replica. It is twanged on the hour.
My Dog Friends - book which Feeble Champ Books commission from Barny, and which Edgy volunteers to ghost for him.
My Dog Hell - revised title considered by Feeble Champ Books.
Murdster - gruff resident of the Tower of Nowt. Guards (and some would say maintains) the Moral Fibre. Treats visitors to poison and a slack stare.
Noam B Turbot - speech writer who resorts to raiding the Juice Museum.
Nothing - that at which Gregor claims he will stop to make his mark on society.
Parents - these are mainly banished to the Swamp of Eternal Enmity/Degradation, where they proceed on automatic. Pa Juno, a committed angler, complains of the lack of a worthy opponent and offers a cynical antidote to Mr Petersons constructive advice.
The Petersons - married couple to whom Barny goes for homely advice. Mr Peterson advises Barny to settle down with a nice girl and extols the joys of married life. Yet Mrs Peterson is seen to be growing backbones and similar organic horrors in the yard.
Plantin Edge [aka Edgy, The Edge, E-Plan, Palatino, Hey Thats Not a Toy] - lanky and sincere, loyal to his friends, Edgy is a man of misdirected action. Scorns religion but says he sees flying creditors in a moving flame. Has his own wild code and always a scheme for his betterment in life. Works at the Sorting Office, lives in the Bata Motel by pretending to be a ghost, goes out with Amy Gort.
The Plunder Parade - yearly parade in honour of mythical thief Zeuxis Dyabell, who stole everything in the universe and, when hunted down by the mob and told to empty his pockets, turfed out every object imaginable. This creation myth is celebrated with floats bearing whatever objects the celebrants choose.
Powderhouse - shout-filled, sleepless temple of Fuseheads.
Powdermouth - titanic metal image of cannon-mouthed godhead maintained in Powderhouse.
Prancer Diego - trickster who disconcerts one and all.
Puffwell traaasers - strange, laminated dungarees which infect the wearer with a false cockney accent.
Quandia Lucent - master chef/owner of the Ultimatum Restaurant.
Rakeman - nine-foot-tall Sweeney minion which enters the upper realm through mirrors if they are laid flat on the floor.
Ready to listen - the attitude Barny claims he has in regard to his animals perhaps speaking.
Rooster - annoyingly zany Jimmy Durante type who thinks hes funny. Relentlessly oblivious to the communitys boiling hatred.
The Ruby Aspict - giant revolving jewel in which Sweeney views the upper world.
Sags Dumbar - medium-sized man who only ever says Ill have the roast beef platter, irrespective of the situation. His head once gave birth to a bug and now seems to be a mere transparent bag filled with water.
The Sarge - bloodheaded, pointblank shouter at the weary Brigade.
Scapular - the Scapular system of magic is used by Beltane Carom; meaning 'of the shoulderblades'.
Scardummy Garden [aka Scar Garden, Dummy Precinct] - part of what the Mayor in this case wrongly calls the statue problem in Accomplice - along with the Gubba Men and the artifacts drawn from Dels Fright Foundry. The Scar Garden is a precinct of statues resembling each person in the town. Citizens maintain their own statues for fear of falling ill or meeting misfortune. Barny never bothers with his, Edgy buys his a donkey jacket and a bobble hat and refers to it as Chalky, and in DUMMYLAND Gregor finds his own statue disturbingly attractive.
Shop of a Thousand Spiders - sells betsy lamps, puffwell traaasers, Spitain boxes, gas radios, carnival skins and other weirdware. Turmoiling wormhole entrance in rear of shop. The proprietor is Ursula, a rigid goat.
Sidebar Billy over there - Mayor Rudloes nickname for Max Gaffer.
Skeleton Coast - boundary to west of Accomplice, a tangle of wild-grown boneseed structure a mile high.
Skittermite - a Sweeney minion resembling a pale pterodactyl made of elbows.
Skybikes - terrifying aerial apparitions, stained glass penny farthings driven silently in circles in the night sky.
Smackerbats - see Bats.
Snail, Sarge - a cadet tries repeatedly to explain a simple meal to the Sarge.
Snorters - cafe frequented by the gang - run by Kung Fu Snorter, a shrieking, sudden man.
Snot grill - Mr Petersons term for the human nostril system.
Socket truss - push-up support for the eyes, creating a look of striking distress or necrosis. Gregor demonstrates the eye-socket door-to-door, giving everyone the heeby-jeebies.
The Sorting Office - its employees have no idea what they are supposed to do with the bundles and sheets of paper which keep arriving in this basement chamber. The objects all have names and addresses written on them. The gang devise a number of means of disposal - a furnace, a bottomless pit known as the Drop, while Edgy uses them to bake a kind of papier-mache poultice for his arse. But throughout they suspect theres something more specific and important they should be doing with it all, and sometimes, in private, they cry with the build-up of sheer, unspoken stress.
Spitain Box - cursed object used to trap and freeze apparitions. Edgy uses one as a doorstop and laughs the big laugh.
Spooky Staring Boy - rudimentary child who serves silently at the Shop of a Thousand Spiders and creeps everyone out.
Statucide - the murder of a citizen through the destruction of the victims statue. The murderers statue also self-destructs, killing the murderer, but some still consider the procedure convenient.
The Stress Well - which Gregor complains is like having a river under the sea.
Sue Egypt - fortune teller in Karloffs Circus.
Swamp of Eternal Enmity/Degradation - marshy bog to the east of Accomplice, housing all manner of grotesques. People have to go in occasionally because Accomplice's only barber shop is there.
Sweeney - White insectile demon - some would say the demon - living at the hub of intersecting creepchannels under Accomplice. A real one-in-a-million, he feeds on the souls of organic beings but needs to garnish them a bit first. Finds himself constantly thwarted by a group of useless morons (Barny, Edgy, Gregor). Commands demonic minions and henchmen. Can venture above when disengaged from organic throne - the rest of the time works through Dietrich Hammerwire, Rakeman and other hordes. Collects faces. Is a thing most fully itself in the darkness or the light?
Tangent - yellow, time-wasting fruit.
Tea genie - hallucinated spirit glimpsed by Mr Gully Low from too much tea-drinking.
Theyll drag me open. - Gregors belief regarding Barnys animals.
The tiger factor - Stress is caused by the fight or flight response which in primitive times was meant to save cavemen from the tigers, but today has no use or outlet, causing ill-health. Edgy admires Barny for re-introducing the tiger factor.
The Torturers - Sweeneys torturers, who inappropriately brighten up the place with flowers. Their names are Billy Ocean Torturer and Shalamar Torturer
The Tower of Nowt - lighthouse-like armoured tower at the top of which the Moral Fibre is housed.
Traffic lights - the few traffic lights in Accomplice change with the seasons, beginning green in summer, then through yellow to a lovely russet red in the autumn when, like fallen leaves, they are disregarded.
Train - a ghost train made of solid stone goes through town every night - Barny doesnt realise its meant to be scary and clings to the roof when going to visit his mother. The only other train to use this track (in the other direction) is Karloff Velocet's scarship.
The Velocity Gospel - book of the Cannonites, listing escape velocities of various body weights and the glory of the blur.
Violaine - Bingo Violaine is the philosopher everyone quotes from as a 'brainsaver' - a system which kicks in when there has been no brain activity for a set number of minutes. The quotes under the chapter headings are also from Violaine.
Wesley Kern (Winfrey Kern) - quiet loner who, in Accomplices recent history, broke into the Tower of Nowt and denounced the Moral Fibre as a fraud, firing upon the authorities with Accomplices first and only gun.
The Wesley Kern Gun - Kerns gun, now resident in the Juice Museum, where only Mr Low, Chloe Low and Barny know the full story behind it.
You disappoint me Barny. - Mr Petersons stated opinion re Barny during Barnys visits for advice.
Youll beg for my return. - everyones favourite parting shot.
Zeuxis Dyabell - mythical master thief whose story spawned the Plunder Parade.
Copyright Steve Aylett