Not That Kind [19 Hispis 4385]
Dear Sythyry: Not that kind of assassin. A character assassin. This is a very serious situation for us. We do not appreciate ridicule. I daresay that you have never particularly feared character assassins. As you are well-known to be transaffectionate, foreign, and monster-friendly, there is hardly much more than can be said. In the case of my daughter, all threats remain possible! I demand your immediate assistance and cooperation in this! My daughter must return home to me, her tail tucked in shame between her legs! Fortunately the actual shameful stories and bitter innuendo shall remain on Srineia, and nobody of importance shall ever hear of it! Your assistance in this matter is crucial! You must supply money and necessities to Far-Eyes! But in restricted quantities! She is forbidden to enjoy Srineia! But she must be provided with the fare for return passage to Oorah Thrassen! Alone! -- Nangbang.
I haven't been so thoroughly insulted by someone who needs my help in at least a week and a half. Unless I'm forgetting something.
Me:"What, precisely, did you tell your parents when you left?"
Lost-Eyes:"I don't remember exactly."
Lost-Eyes:"Something to the effect that I'd married an elderly Orren knight-adventurer from Aradrueia and gone to live there. I could't quite bring myself to mention Dorze."
Jyondre:"But they knew about Dorze. They were scandalized, you said."
Lost-Eyes:[Looking a bit evasive.]"For a while."
We applied a variety of interrogation techniques. The unfeigned admiration of Lithia did the trick.
Lost-Eyes:"I distracted them with other scandals. I gave cley to one of the sorcerers at the temple, for one, and hinted that I was going to do it professionally. I told them I was going trying to move to a riverbum village in Mrasteia. That sort of thing."
Kantele:"Not bad strategy, that. There aren't all that many things worse in the eyes of society than being traff..." Lost-Eyes looked a bit shocked at the word. " ... than being transaffectionate, if you prefer. Cley-selling will do it, though."
Lithia:"You're so clever. I wish I could be like you." She petted Lost-Eyes's tail. Lost-Eyes did not seem much put out by this.
Me:"Your parents want you to return to Oorah Thrassen, in shame."
Lithia:"Feathermom! You wouldn't make her, would you?"
Me:"Lost-Eyes and her parents are less important to me than my crew and my vacation." Everyone else looked a bit uncertain what I meant. This is entirely appropriate. I didn't know what I meant either, or what I wanted to do with the stowaways. Fortunately, being cryptic is one of my supreme species abilities, and nobody asked me to explain.
Lost-Eyes:"I'm not going to go anywhere without Dorze."
Lithia:"You're not going anywhere!"
Kantele:"Except Srineia, for starters."
Me:"What we do from there depends on how you behave, I suppose."
Everyone else looked confused at that. But I knew exactly what I meant. If Lithia's love is requited, I'm not going to toss her sweetie off the ship or send her back to Ketheria. Lithia's time is so short, and the general distaste for her species so great, I cannot really deny her what little joy she manages to scrape together. If not, I don't much feel responsible for the stowaways, except to treat them decently and/or in accordance with law and custom.
I am avoiding the decision. I am glad to have a convenient way to avoid the decision.