Aftermath [7 Thory 4385]
Not the Aftermath
The reactions to me coming back Orren-bouncing from Eigrach the other day include:
Kantele: Looks quite pleased with herself.
Umbers:"Really? I thought zie was impotent or frigid or whatever you call it with a Zi Ri."
Windigar:"Oh, no. Zie didn't." (and then explained to me in some detail why it was a rather bad idea, undignified, inappropriate, and generally wrong.)
Jyondre:"That's Nupyup Pond for you." (To which several other wrongfolk nodded in assent -- there has been a distinct amount of fraternization between Eigrachters and liveried wrongfolk. One of Windigar's points is that my livery is, pretty much, a sign of begging for traff intimacies. Windigar did agree that this isn't my fault; indeed, Inconnu pretty much did it single-handedly.)
Grinwipey:"So, you went in for a morbid-and-grim, and came out with the bump lamp on your up-ramp? Tell you what, boss, some days it's just the ramparts to work for you, and other days I'd rather fesh under the coggles."
Everyone:"We do not understand the substance of Grinwipey's statement; nonetheless, we suspect we agree heartily!"
So, enough of that.
Also not the Aftermath
No carpenters and shipwrights have yet materialized to repair Strayway, and the first two polite hints about the matter haven't done anything. Perhaps the following letter will have some useful effect:
Dear lord mayor and other notables of Eigrach, greetings from the wizard Sythyry, the mighty Vaisessasilmin, and the notables of Strayway. It has not escaped our attention that three days have elapsed since the mystic sword Festina Lente was delivered to the guardsman Rehit, with greater power and subtletie than anyone in Eigrach could account for. We had agreed that the reconstruction of the skyboat would start immediately upon the delivery of the first artifact. The time has arrived. Perhaps sooner than you expected; perhaps you are not used to the techniques of Ketherian wizards. Please instruct your shipwrights to start the first aspects of the project quite soon, thereby keeping unanticipated consequences down to a minimum. -- Sythyry
Grinwipey embraced Quendry and petted his head with two tentacles in the Grand Dining Hall, as I flew in from my workshop. Quendry snuffled and wiped his nose on Grinwipey's embroidered cravat. Grinwipey didn't complain, so the situation was obviously serious.
Being the extremely concerned patron, I asked Grinwipey about it later. (Later being that afternoon, over embroidery -- or, rather, while Grinwipey was embroidering a thorn bush whose thorns were thinner than the thread he was using, I think, and I was, um, supervising. By means of threading needles and holding patterns and doing other such things which any expert member of the Couturier's Guild can do nearly as well as Grinwipey.)
Me: "Grinwipey, what happened to Quendry?"
Grinwipey:"Nothing wrong with Quendry that a little squeaky chitin-mounting 'n raspy bug love won't cure."
Me:"Um ... I hope you're being metaphorical there. Quendry's a decade or two too young for that, even if he turns out to be traff."
Grinwipey:"About as metaphorical as a box of stocks on the dock by the lock." I started to say something, so he continued, "Not that Quendry gets the quick friction himself. The woof with the choof and the bug with the shrug, that's who."
Me:"Arfaen and Mellilot? Why?"
Grinwipey:"Mellilot's got splinters in her feelers about you sending Arfaen to play Mount-the-Count."
Me:"I beg your pardon?"
Grinwipey:"I'm a simple cissy-man floating over here, Sythyry. I don't know all these fancy manners about Orren who are really Zi Ri being all over Rassimels, or Cani who are married to Herethroy only not really being sent off to rub up Orrens and the Herethroy getting all upset, or any of it. I just pet the puppy when he's sad, is all."
Me:"Wait, what? Did you say I sent Arfaen off to be intimate with Totalie?"
Grinwipey:"If think she'd've done it again this quick if you hadn't said, your tail's threaded through your ears and out your arse."
Me:"Wait, what? Again?"
Grinwipey:"I figured you liked it so much when she did it the first time that you were softening him up for your own later rocking-in-formation, poke-creation, wreck-creation, and general dee-leck-tation."
Me:"Wait, she did with him a first time? Why didn't Phaniet tell me?"
Grinwipey:"Dunno, boss. Maybe she thought you'd chack her whacker if she said anything in the dull chai about Totalie."
I shushed him up and looked at my diary. "Then we took him back to Glynubla House and Arfaen made sure he was on our side. I guess Phaniet was just being a bit nonspecific."
Grinwipey:"Y'need t'lissen t'the nice comprehensible shoggies what speak so clear like the blue-green beer and always make the great immense. We tells it like it is without bubbles or fizz!"
I stared at him for a while, as he unworriedly poked silk cloth with a bone needle, glancing at it occasionally with one eye out of his five, and producing a miniature embroidered tascernel flower with more realistic petals than a real one.
Me:"You're right, I should. So, tell me the rest of the story?"
Grinwipey:"Sure thing, boss. Mellilot weren't chirpy and keen after the first time of Arfaen and Totalie. 'Cause it weren't the first time, you see; she's got the hot spots for otts, same like you only she actually can catch 'em. Melly is sure a Melly-mel when it comes to her Arfaen. So they's had the big anger-and-spite about Inconnu, and another one about Totallie, and then another'nother about Totallie."
Me:"So ... Arfaen likes Orren and plays with them sometimes; Mellilot wants to act more married, and they're fighting about whether Arfaen can?"
Grinwipey:"That's what I said, boss, clear as the nose in the day. And then, Mellilot is all up in her brattles at you for letting, nay telling, nay enabling, nay encouraging, nay demanding, nay whoring Arfaen out to Arfie's happy little otter boy for your convenient convenientosity."
Grinwipey:"Oh, your dearie-dearie-dear! 'Not even indentured, Arfaen, and zie's sending you out to go soil yourself and a pile of quilts too!' is what Mellilot says. Got a point, too, she does, does Melly. If you sent me out for some squiggles-and-shrieks, better be a she-shoggy with the lolly-loggy. Who doesn't remind me of my former wife."
Me:"I wouldn't send you out for that -- or anyone! I didn't mean to send Arfaen for that." I looked at my diary for that day, where I was pretty sure I wasn't ordering any personal intimacies, but the way it came out, all I really got was that Este wouldn't couple with Totalie. "I can see how she might have misinterpreted it."
Grinwipey:"Boss, Arfaen's a Cani."
Grinwipey:"Boss, Cani live and die for orders. Arfaen knows what you're asking for better'n you do. If she don't want to hear 'juice that otter-boy up and give him the slide-and-hide', then she don't hear it, and if she do, she do."
Me:"Right ... so ... it's not really my fault?" (Asking moral advice from a Khtsoyis is pretty much an admission of guilt, of course.)
Grinwipey:"Your fault it is, your fault it ain't, but Mellybug is stomping mad at you. And Quendry's in tears, too, doesn't want his mommies breaking up."
The Call for Advice
I am sitting in my fireplace in a time-bubble, trying to figure out what to do about either (a) the shipwrights of Eigrach, or (b) Arfaen and Mellilot.
If Eigrach doesn't send shipwrights in the next day or so, what should I do by way of "unanticipated consequences"?
What should I do about Arfaen and Mellilot?