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Ah.  A small PGP subset.  You hadn't mentioned this.  When you said
you weren't requiring the user to run PGP, I assumed key generation
must occur on the board.

As for your fatal flaw I hadn't spotted, I had spotted it, and the
location of the private key was the critical point.  If the key is on
the BBS, the message goes out in the clear.

Look, it boils down to this.  If the message traffic to the BBS is to
be encrypted, then the user has to generate a key on his own machine
and decrypt it on his own machine.  There's no way around that.

But the user interface problem can be solved.  Just make a bunch of
.com files which do nothing but spawn pgp by invoking the correct
arguments.  Very simple; a few lines of C is all.  Even the PGPPATH
can be set before the spawn.  It's an easy encapsulation.  It will run
a bit slower for load time, but not appreciably.  And you won't have
to recompile PGP from the distributed executables.