A New Fiancée [8 Hivvem 4261]
Not my new fiancée, of course. Anoof-and-company's new fiancée. (Last year, I would have said Havune-and-company. I hope they figure out a family name sometime soon.)
Her name is Enziet Kansampopa Carn. This of course makes her and Havune bitter enemies, since he's from clan Halyn. Clans Carn and Halyn have been feuding four four thousand years as of tomorrow.
Of course most Carns and most Halyns don't care about the feud.
Of course any reasonable-sized Cani marriage will have a Carn and a Halyn in it. This observation is due to Iska, who notes that most Cani families have a dozen or so people, and that there are only nine clans, and that there are exogamy rules so that Cani are most closely married to Cani of different clans. So most of the time, most families will have someone from every clan.
So ... just about every grownup Carn or Halyn is married to someone from a clan they're officially feuding with, and have been since roughly forever.
Cani are all crazy. Now you know why. Well, 2/9 of why. I expect by the end of this that will be up to 3/9.
The Clans in Quelldrie House
We've only got three clans in Quelldrie House, which is a good thing since there are only six of us. These clans are:
|Clan Name||Clan Motto||Clan Membership|
|Clan Doggiboine||Semper Cani Sub Cani (trans: "We have a richer intimate life than you do.")||Anoof, Narngi|
|Clan Pornotrafficante||Quod licet Iovi non licet bovi (trans: "We're working on it!")||Dustweed, Ghirbis, and me|
|Clan Miserabobble||Nemo hic adest illius nominis (trans: "I want my security deposit back!")||Agrimony|
Naturally, Clan Pornotrafficante and Clan Miserabobble have been feuding since the first day, or, at least, since a few weeks after we moved in and Agrimony figured out that he wasn't really as liberal as he thought he was. Clan Doggiboine has mostly been staying out of the feud, though they tend to favor Clan Pornotrafficante.
Note: I just made those names up, but the social lines in the house are pretty obvious. Poor Agrimony.
In any case, Enziet was carefully introduced to Clan Pornotrafficante first. She is due to be introduced to Clan Miserabobble at such point as it is convenient, e.g., if he stumbles upon her at her ablutions in the well-room.
Yes, Enziet's relationship with Anoof and Narngi does require the occasional ablutions in the well-room. More of that later.
Anoof:"Enziet, please meet our noble and transaffectionate roommates: Sythyry, Ghirbis Vlaan, and pro-Great Baron Dustweed Grentian of Asquant."
Enziet bowed quite nicely, and said nothing.
Anoof:"Honored roommates, please meet our noble and new fiancée, Enziet Kansampopa Carn, pro-baron of Tsierny."
Us:Polite, polite, polite-polite-polite.
Enziet bowed again, and wagged her tail, and said nothing.
Narngi:"She conveys her appreciation for your polite welcome of her."
Ghirbis:[singing]"A woe, a sorrow, a deep and terrible pickle of endless doom! I weep -- I mourn -- I am glad not to endure the same fate myself -- I daresay even my closest friends wish the same fate upon me!"
The Cani all looked a bit embarrassed. Enziet produced a small wand tipped with a Cani's head, and waved it in a triple circle. From last semester's classes and a glance at the Eye: The Twenty Words, a Creoc Illusidor spell of complexity 5 that creates the sound of a phrase or two chosen by the caster, cast by a poorly-enchanted wand that really would be more useful if it had more than twelve charges a day.
Enziet's Wand:"It's a pleasure to meet you all, and I do apologize for having Narngi do most of the translation."
Me:Something diplomatic about how Ghirbis, though well-intentioned, is dreadfully rude.
Clans Pornotrafficante and Doggiboine:Enthusiastic and emphatic agreement.
Enziet speaks some Cani dialect of Sleeth Silent Language when she wants to talk without using magic. Narngi is learning it -- and was before the marriage was being discussed, I understand. Anoof is starting to learn it as well.
Me:"Has it been decided who will be the mate or husband-or-wife of whom?"
Clan Doggiboine:A third-of-an-hour discourse on the possibilities and variations that might occur based on the other people who might join the marriage.
Clan Pornotrafficante:"Alas, that Sythyry asked an innocent and socially-appropriate question!"
It's awfully hard to get much of an impression about someone who can only say twelve phrases a day. If you're not Cani, at least.
Anoof:"What do you think of her?"
Me:"I doubt my opinion will carry much weight on your engagement to her!"
Anoof:"Is it as bad as that, then?"
Me:"It's awfully hard to get much of an impression about someone who can only say twelve phrases a day. If you're not Cani, at least."
Anoof:"Well, we had exchanged a substantial correspondence by letters before we invited her for engagement-exploration."
Me:"That being the enthusiastic barking flowing forth from your room last night? Though presumably she wasn't barking."
Anoof:"Yes, that. And no, she's entirely mute."
Me:"Better than anything I've done lately, I take it! Which is not much of a challenge."
Anoof:"I'm sorry, I'm quite sorry, I'm very sorry!"
Me:"Well: your fault about Ilottat."
Anoof:"What do you think of her?"
Me:"Not very much, yet."
Anoof:"For I'm thinking of breaking off the engagement."
Me:"Already? Haven't you only been engaged since this morning or so?"
Anoof:"Better than than breaking it on the edge of the wedding day."
Me:"The yes, there! But why? You can't endure a mute spouse?"
Anoof:"Between this, that, and the other thing, she is all but unmarriable. For good reason."
Me:"This being that she is mute... what are that and the other thing?"
Anoof:"That being that she is transaffectionate. I've nothing ill to say about that for its own sake -- you know I don't, don't you? -- but it seems a problem for a cis-specific marriage."
Me:"I know you don't, and I treasure that in you, and I do, indeed, see that you might be concerned. Is that what you were testing with all that barking?"
Anoof:"More or less. It's like watching Anoof with a woman; the jiggling is present, but the joy is absent. With Anoof we've got a few options, since there are men in the marriage too, and arrangements of bodies that some might find overcomplicated do keep his interest."
Me:"The World Tree would be a far better place if I did not know even that much."
Anoof:"For which apologies. With Enziet ... we're all Cani."
Me:"Oh, ouch. Ouch for you and several ouch for her."
Anoof:"So I'd like your best traff insight on that."
Me:"My best traff insight isn't terribly good. My best traff Cani friend's insight might be better... shall I arrange a clandestine rendezvous between you and her?"
Me:"Either to make her Sleeth boyfriend jealous, or because I've been spending too much time around Ghirbis."
Anoof:"I say it's Ghirbis... I hope it's Ghirbis. Yes, I would like the rendezvous."
Me:"I'll see what I can do about it. And the other thing?"
Anoof:"Poor family. Her parents mortgaged her Tsierny, and weren't able to pay it back. Which means that, if we marry her, we'll have to pay a lot, or we'll lose the town and the baron's title."
Me:"That's a classic problem."
Anoof:"Havune's dead-set on having a baron in the family -- his parents have one. Leiska, too, in a delicate quiet way."
Me:"Havune and Enziet as husband and wife?"
Anoof:"Heavens, no. His wife should be the woman he likes best, and her husband similarly."
And we conversed for another two-thirds of an hour. Being Cani is fearsomely complicated.