Mirrored from Sythyry.
In traff cafés far and wide, it is whispered — under the influence of brandy, of euphoriac smoke, and of the kisses of our true and improper loves — that Lord Caring University, in Barency, has a Department of Transaffectionate Studies. And this is not simple some idle and foolish rumor. I have, in fact, corresponded with one Professor Sir Doctor the Honorable Mump, who styles himself “Sir Norning Goddibert Professor of the Study of the Transaffectionate”. (Who was this Sir Norning Goddibert, you may ask? I may ask, too, when I get a chance!) We bickered bitterly about the definition of transaffection in a series of three letters.
Not long ago, I wrote to him conceding that he was right, and mentioned that I was going to be somewhat in the area at some point.
We are now camped up nicely in the skyport of Barency, awaiting a somewhat belated tax official before we can go into the city. Professor Sir Doctor the Honorable Mump has just appeared — he is a tall and very grizzled Rassimel gentleman, dressed entirely from head to toe in impeccably-tailored light-blue checked garments, and all of his buttons were identical ivory images of St. Nollimar, whose philosophies concern Behaving In Accordance with Societal Norms. He also bears a pair of blue ceramic cameos of a pair of Rassimel faces, with ‘Elemyne my Beloved Wife’ and ‘Tummita my Beloved Wife’ on them, one on each breast. It seems that Mump is quite concerned that nobody think that he is transaffectionate, despite the topic of his academic studies. He is having a detailed discussion with Este about inlaying shells into wooden boxes. If I am not mistaken, he is flirting a touch, but Este is having none of it.
Ah, there’s the tax collector now.