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Trouble's Tales (also known as Tanj's Tales) is a space-opera furotica series that has lasted over thirty stories, as well as inspired art and 'spinoff' stories. Kittiara is the author of the series, although she has collaborated with a co-author on a handful of the stories. The series began in 1997, and the most recent story, which the author states is the "final episode", was posted on 12 July 2005.
At the beginning of the series, the titular Trouble (whose real name is Sou An Ki) and the rest of the crew of a tramp freighter are railroaded by a corrupt government, with Trouble herself being sold to the Elysium Academy, a facility for training sex slaves. After enduring a long, sometimes erotic and sometimes harrowing ordeal, she completes the training and is sold to her new master.
- Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.
Although Trouble is technically a sex slave, her new master (who is never named and is known simply as "The Lion"), the leader of a space pirate gang, gives her a considerable amount of freedom -- enough that if she wished it, she could easily take the pirate's best ship, fly out into space, and sell everyone out to the government for a hefty reward. However, she not only does not do so, she actually falls in love with her master, and forms deep relationships with the rest of her crewmates. One of the core themes of Trouble's Tales - besides the ubiquitous kinky wanton sex and the silver-formfitting-spacesuits-and-rayguns space opera - is the development of trust among the core members of the team.
Many artists, including JonwI, Ironbadger, and Paul Pinewood, have drawn characters and scenes from the story. A few authors, including SMWolf, have written works of fan fiction using characters from Trouble's Tales.
The titles are followed by the "Stardate", which in theory is supposed to indicate when the story takes place. However, a couple of them are missing stardates, and the dates in book three apparently switch to a year/month format vs. the decimal fraction of a year used in the first two books. They should not, in any case, be treated as reliable indicators of the timespan covered during or between stories. The order shown here is believed to be the correct storyline sequence.
The stories in book one are much shorter and read like chapters or short stories. Later in books two and three the stories get much longer, many of them long enough to be novels in themselves. Some of the stories in book one were written to "fill in the gaps" after parts of book two had been written and posted.
Also known as The Academy Years, although the stardates suggest and many fans believe the time period covered is only about one year.
- In the Beginning, 2397.00
- Punishment, 2397.10
- Breaking-in, 2397.12
- Introductory Restraint, 2397.14
- Kabbazah, 2397.16
- Revenge Can Be Sweet!, 2397.20 (this was the first story written)
- Daydreams, 2397.30
- Distractions, 2397.50
- Learning Process, 2397.55
- Oh, the Horror!, 2397.60
- Piled Higher and Deeper, 2397.61
- The Road Less Traveled, 2397.62
- The Party, 2397.70
- Sahajoli, 2397.75 (this story usually appears immediately following Kabbazah)
- The Escape!, 2397.80
- Endings and Beginnings, 2397.90
Also known as The Pirate Years.
- Slave to a Pirate
- Endings and Beginnings, 2398.00 (yes, the same title as the last story from book one)
- The Start of Vengeance, 2398.05
- Trouble's Return, 2398.10 (aka Tanj's Return)
- With Jenka, 2398.20
- Cloak and Dagger
- Cloak and Dagger, 2398.30
- Strange Bedfellows, 2398.40, co-author Ann'katar
- Changes in Lattitude, Changes in Attitude, 2398.50, co-author Ann'katar
- Shared Assets, 2398.55
- Lord Xylex Revenge
- Lord Xylex Revenge, Part 1, 2398.60 (there is no "Part 2")
- Explanations, 2398.70
- Marooned, 2399.00
- The Battle That Never Was
- Part 1, 2399.31
- Part 2, 2399.32
- Part 3, 2399.33
- Part 4, 2399.34
- Turnabout, 2399.40
- The Green Eyed Monster, 2399.60
- Part 1, 2400.11
- Part 2, 2400.2
- Part 3, 2400.4
- Transitions, 2401.9
- Arrangements and Accomodations, 2402.2
- Raid on Nikkeldepain, 2402.8
- Dueling Culture, 2403.00
- Consultants, 2403.5
- Hostile Takeover, 2403.7
- It's a Trap, 2403.10
- Aspiring Author, 2404.01
- Road Trip, 2404.10
- Decision at New Tortugas
It is believed that Kittiara had planned to write a Book Four, but for personal reasons had to end the series earlier than originally planned and decided to tie up all the loose ends and finish the series in the last two stories.
In the first days of September 2000, an author known as Renee Newsom threatened to sue the author. Her claim was that Kittiara's character Trouble was a rip off of one of her own characters, a LARP character about whom she claimed to have written some stories. In an effort to avoid legal action, Kittiara changed Trouble's name to Tanj (an acronym for "There Ain't No Justice").
However, the only common ground the two charcters shared was that they were both cheetahs and were both pleasure slaves. Kittiara's character has appeared in multiple stories, with substantial character development, while Newsom's Trouble was in two brief stories and a LARP. Kittiara's Trouble is from a science-fiction world; Newsom's character is from an alternate history. Kittiara's Trouble was a poor engineer, working her way up from the bottom; Newsom's Trouble is a mage born to high society.
Legal advice given to Kittiara has indicated that she would have nothing to lose in court besides lawyer fees, which is something she can't afford. Additionally, Kittiara would have to disclose her real name, and she values her privacy a great deal. For these reasons, Kittiara still calls Trouble Tanj, but most Trouble fans still call her Trouble.
Trouble in Print
In 2005, the furry author known as EternalWanderer reformated Kittiara's Trouble's Tale works into a collected printer friendly version. The effort took a total of just over 2 years and its last segment was made available in 2007. Its prohibitive length lead the editor to turn to Lulu for production of printed copies for their own use.
However, it is not clear that Kittiara was aware of this work prior to its inception or gave her approval. When S.M. Wolf pointed out the print version, Kittiara expressed surprise and shock at its existence. She has not subsequently received royalties from the publisher as of 2008. This may make the edition "unauthorized".
Lulu has since pulled this book due to copyright infringement.
- Kittiara's Stories at the VCL
- "The Collected Tanj Stories" by Kittiara at Mia's Index of Anthro Stories