The year is 1791, and there's trouble afoot ...! Not in England, where Good King George III. of the House of Hanover-Pumpernickel is apt to deal sternly with troublemakers, be they Whigs, Irish, Quakers, or just Furry, Foreigners. But it's a different kettle of fish in France, on the other side of the Channel, where the political situation has deteriorated into a public free-for-all, no hold barred! "La Revolution mange ses enfants!". Nobody is safe any more. Emigrants arrive in London in ever increasing numbers, stating that declarations of war are expected monthly from Berlin, Vienna, Madrid, Moscow, and Lisbon. They also complain that taxes are higher than ever and the cost of nearly everything has doubled. And they shake their grizzled heads (powder being very expensive nowadays) at the unheard-of idea of raising armies by conscription, the brainchild of a certain young Corsican artillery officer about to enter French politics. Nevertheless, they all agree that the great shipyards of Toulon, Brest, Cherbourg have never been more busy - beehives ain't in it, they say. France is obviously marshalling its forces. And the French Navy seems to have plans of its own ...!

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