October 7, 2013

In Which Severin Endorses the Naroni Way

April 4, 1183

"So... obviously, this is bad timing."

Severin drummed his fingers along the side of his chair. Raia had that right--though while he supposed he knew that as first-hand as a man could, the sheer facts of life amplified that truth for women. "I doubt there's really such thing as good timing."

"I did want another one eventually, but I was hoping I could focus on the university for the first few years."

"Well, you know there's no shortage of supervision here. Falidor could bring the new one along with Rio." Hell... maybe hiring a few nannies for the university wouldn't be out of the question? Ellona and Lettie were married with children too. Morgan still had Viridis, and there was always the possibility of her marrying again, and there was the chance of Cherry starting a family as well. And if Vera was working at Xeta's school, it would be nice if Lucien could take their son until he was old enough to start his lessons... "Have you seen Arydath?"

Raia nodded. "She said it would be some time in the middle of November."

November. Well, that was the bulk of the planning phase, but at least the university wouldn't open until January. "Then you have a month and a half with the baby before the job starts, at least."

"Yes. As for what happens after, I suppose we'll worry about it later." She picked at one of her nails, her mouth twisted into a half-forced smile. "So, who all did you ask to this meeting? Just Ellona and Lorn and the baron?"

"Yes, just those three. I thought about asking the professors to pick a representative, but it might be easier just to keep it to patrons and administration."

"True. As long as it's not obviously horrible, I don't think the staff will care too much about the name."

Apart from a quick breath of an agreement, they opted to sit in silence until Ellona arrived, and Lorn shortly after her. There had been a few glances shared as Lorn walked in, his being the brother-in-law of Ellona's former lover and all, but it seemed that they'd each resolved to keep a professional civility.

And even if they hadn't, well... they probably would have stopped their bickering when the last of the attendees arrived.

"So... what's wrong with Octavius, exactly?"

"Well, he says he pulled a muscle while training, but judging by his movements and his preferred method of treatment, I suspect a sex injury." If Florian had stopped talking after 'training', Severin would have called that a satisfactory answer. "So, we're starting up a university? That shouldn't be too difficult. Probably along the lines of inventing a new religion."

"Inventing a new religion?" Ellona locked eyes with Raia across the table, getting nothing but a shrug for her troubles. "I suspect that would be quite difficult."

"You know, I thought it would be too, but now every Thursday night, sixty people gather at the sex pond to worship Falidor."

"So that's why my valet always leaves early on Thursdays." Lorn shut his eyes, a sniff escaping him. "But we're supposed to be talking about the name today, right?"

Raia nodded. "Any ideas, Lorn?"

"I don't know. After one of our dearly departed, maybe?"

"That sounds good," Florian agreed. "Say, how about the old king?"

Jaw unhinged, Raia let her eyes wander about the table. When they landed on Severin, he took to saying what they were all thinking. "No disrespect to the dead, but... naming a university after one of the stupidest men these lands have ever seen? Really?"

"That's the point." Florian shrugged. "It would be funny."

As Roderick's son-in-law, Lorn took it upon himself to shake his head. "Don't we have a national animal or something?"

Raia smirked. "Well, there's Jadin."

Severin had to chuckle--at least, until he saw Florian doing the same. "What are you laughing at? He's not your family."

"Good." The steward leaned forward and stuck out his tongue. "You're all terribly dull. I can't believe you don't want to name a university after some dumb king."

"Though to be fair, I'd rather work at King Roderick University than King Ietrin University," muttered Ellona, but not so quietly that anyone had trouble hearing.

"And I don't think anyone would want to attend King Ietrin University," Severin agreed. "What about a geographical feature? Granted, all of the points of interest in the area are a bit... unfortunately named..."

"Unfortunately?" Florian snorted. "Speak for yourself. Open Crotch Delta is my favorite delta. It's the alpha delta, if you will."

"Alpha Delta would have been a better name." Lorn sighed, gripping the edge of the table as he pulled in his chair. "Maybe we're going about this all the wrong way. What if we took suggestions from the populace, then polled them on those?"

"Polling the populace?" And of course it was Florian with the mock-gagging. "Christ, how many people will want to vote in that? I don't think I need a second hand to count them on my fingers."

"Well, even if it's only five people, at least we don't have to worry about it any longer, right?" Raia shot Lorn a smile and Ellona nodded in agreement. Florian crossed his arms and pouted, but Severin chose to ignore that. "That's the great thing about being in charge. You can pass tasks like these onto other people."

"That's right--for no reason other than sheer laziness." And maybe a complete lack of spare energy. An undertaking of this size made for stressful times, after all. "It's the Naroni way."



Van said...

Hello, five people who might want to vote! Click here!

Winter said...

When I saw the preview for this, I thought "Oh, Raia AND Severin in one post - this will be a good one!" And then you put in Florian. Sixty people at the sex pond to worship Falidor??! Oh, that was perfect. I love him so much.

Hooray for a new baby, even if it's inconveniently timed. With the way everyone breeds in Naroni, nannies could be a must-have at the university - and not just for the faculty.

King Roderick University could work as a diploma mill, maybe. Florian could run it as a side business, if cult leader doesn't pay well.

Van said...

I very nearly picked a preview with Florian in it, but I decided to let him be a surprise. :)

Oh yeah, the faculty probably won't be the only ones in need of nannies at the university (though I will admit that one of the main reasons behind giving Naroni a university was to delay students' reproduction for a few years, hence slowing the growth rate slightly). But whether at-work daycare becomes a reality or Falidor takes Rio and the new kid to Severin's with him, they'll work something out.

Heheh... I could totally see Florian running a diploma mill. I don't know how much tithe revenue the Church of Falidor accrues. ;)

Ekho said...

This post was quite entertaining, good bunch these ones ;P

Van said...

Thanks, Ekho! :)