Me:"Dustweed? Do you have a moment or two?"
Dustweed had just made zirself a bowl of a very insipid plue for breakfast, and was glowering at a small pot of kathia, as if zie thought it might insult zir. "I suppose I might, at that, Sythyry. Something new with Strenata?"
Me:"Nothing new about Strenata but her name. She's still ... much less forthcoming than your own transaffectionate girlfriend."
Dustweed winced a bit. "I rather wish you'd be a bit less smirky about that topic."
Me:"I rather wish I'd be a bit more successful in love, or at least in bed. It's envy that makes me smirk so, nothing else. Besides, you two kept me out 'til midnight nearly last night. Our treaty allows me three minor teases or one major one."
Dustweed:"It could be that... and I'll count this one as a minor tease, I suppose."
Me:"Generous of you, for I would say I was smirking from muzzle to tailtip." I actually wasn't, but if zie was going to be kind, I might as well be too. "But ... Do you have a plan for a place to live next year?"
Dustweed:"Well, a plan, to be sure, though rather an indistinct one at the moment. I will stay here. I think I can extort some more money from my parents to afford a single room, which will save me three minor teases or one major one almost every day. I know Dubaille will take half the other one. I am sure we can find some unsuspecting and easily confused foreigner at the start of the term to take the other half of his room." Zie shrugged, which is a tricky and elaborate gesture for a Herethroy, and communicates a great deal, but only to other Herethroy or people who have studied Herethroy village manners, which I probably should have a little but have not done.
Me:"You'd stay with Dubaille?"
Dustweed:"I do not like him greatly, but Dubaille would stay with me. Perhaps he has little enough choice, but that is not a thing I can count on from many people at all."
Which stung rather a lot, mainly for being true. "Well, might you consider instead coming to live in Quendry House?"
Dustweed half-spread zir antennae, slightly askew. I don't know what that means exactly. "Well, consideration may come slowly." Which stung a bit too. "How much will it cost? Who else will live there? How do they feel about me?"
"Only a bit more than here. Ghirbis Vlaan, Anoof and Narngi, Agrimony, and me. The Cani will share a room of course."
Dustweed:"I don't know Agrimony particularly, and Herethroy are the ones I expect the most woe from."
I spent some short while explaining to zir that Agrimony would be no trouble at all.
Then, of course, Dustweed had a few more questions, of furniture and rental arrangements and other such things. Naturally Havune and Dubaille chose that moment to stride or slink (respectively) out of their bedroom. Naturally, Dubaille was generally oblivious to the conversation. Naturally Havune was not oblivious.
Havune:"So, are you moving to Quendry House, Dustweed?"
Dustweed:"I think I will."
Naturally Dubaille's oblivion was shattered. "But ... what about our agreement, Dustweed? You promised me!"
Dustweed:"Well, not exactly... I just said I was planning on staying here."
I cannot remember the ensuing argument in any great detail. Dubaille quickly out-shouted Dustweed, so that zie could barely say a word without Dubaille yelling it out of the air. Then Havune and I defended Dustweed ... honestly, only Havune was at all effective, with his growling at Dubaille and showing his teeth. Havune dislikes Dubaille more than the rest of us. Of course no great resolution of the matter was possible. Dubaille and Dustweed entirely disagree on the nature of their erstwhile agreement; nothing further can be discovered on the matter without forensic sorcery or some such.
One must be a particularly poor and desparate sort of person to argue so vehemently about living with a both-female.
There must be some sense in which the previous sentence does not apply equally to me.