A Fish Dinner in Malmiston [13 Oix 4261]
Thestra stopped off on the way to get a nice freshly-grilled pink zabouf and a chocolate-and-ground-groundnut pie. It looked like an insanely large amount of food for three primes to eat, and I said as much.
Thestra:"Oh, the spotted one eats quite a bit."
Me:"Your mysterious lover has spots, then?"
Thestra:"Denaist's not so mysterious as all that, Blueshell. But he does have spots. Slippery spots."
By the way, Blueshell is me. It's the name I use at Across Saga. It's a very generic Herethroy name, and that makes sense, 'cause I usually go there as a Herethroy. It's a very strange Orren name (I was in an Orren body at the time), since, for one thing, Orren do not have shells, and for another, nothing about me was blue. I would say that I'm a very strange Orren, but I'm plain as fishwater compared to the One True Very Strange Orren.
Thestra:"Yes, some of them are slippery, like he's been oiling his fur or something. He hasn't, though. He botched a fur-grooming spell."
Me:"That's odd. Is he going to get it fixed?"
Thestra:"Sometime, when we have the money."
Thestra and her lover live in Malmiston Hall, a former home of a former magistrate of former wealth. It is now divided into seven fairly cheap apartments. I guess they're saving up for that spellbreaking.
Of course, I had forgotten to ask what species Denaist is.
That makes no sense, does it? Thestra spent most of an evening complaining to me about how Denaist was out courting some Orren girl or other and leaving her alone. When I tried to sympathize too emphatically, she got a bit offended and scolded me, saying that Denaist was much more devoted than when they had first moved in together, when he had half a dozen assorted lovers and playmates, and now he's down to just one and maybe another one or two but only when he's out of town.
In all that, Thestra was careful to use species-general pronouns, saying 'pe' ('that prime') instead of 're' ('that Rassimel') or 'oe' ('that Orren') or whatever. I was pretty sure it wouldn't be 'ce' ('that Cani') or why would I know Thestra from Across Saga at all?
Besides, pretty much every conversation in Across Saga uses 'pe' for everyone who's not there. Cursed confusing. We might almost as well not have pronouns, or all be the same species, or something.
[Translator's note: I don't generally use species-tagged pronouns -- it's unduly confusing for many English speakers, and the natural Herethroy pronoun 'he' is dead wrong 85% of the time. But that digression was incomprehensible without using species-tagged pronouns. -bb]
Fortunately, I have delivered pastries to Oorah Thrassen, to say nothing of spent quite a while as Rhedwy's labmate. I was wholly polite when Thestra opened her door and there was a slim sleek slender slinky slit-eyed Sleeth slumped in a slippery slutty sleep on the slow-slung, um, hammock.
Denaist:"You bring me fish and chocolate-and-ground-groundnut pie! You must really love me after all!"
Thestra:"We'll see about that when we see how much of it I get."
Denaist:"Who's your friend?"
Thestra:"That's Blueshell. Pe saved me a couple hundred lozens today."
Me:"Hallo, O Sleeth!"
Denaist:"Hallo, O Orren!" Which is a very odd thing to be called; it took me a moment to realize he meant me.
Denaist:"How do you save Thestra so much money?"
Me:"I warned her about a city guard raid on Across Saga."
Thestra:"So I bought zabouf and pie, and we're still a hundred ninety-odd lozens richer. And without doing a bit of work. Let's celebrate!"She clambered over the Sleeth and into the kitchen.
Denaist:"Doesn't she mean, 'We're a hundred ninety-odd lozens not-poorer'?"
Thestra:[shouting over her shoulder]"Not poorer is richer, kitty!"
Denaist looked rather put-upon, or amused. "This is why we are poorer, not richer!"
[Thanks to coppercheetah for a Katrina contribution!]