Writing 2014-06-26

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Cragclaw narrows his eyes at Larrikan and says, “I find it hard to believe old Djarlee has stooped low enough to hire a dog. What are you really doing here?”

Larrikan winces, but does not reply to the jibe. He does not even flick his ears back or swish his tail. He gets the flash of irritation under control and says, “I am exactly as I said. If there is nothing you need from me, I am going to finish my work.” He turns and does so, opening the book back up and figuring out where he stopped.

The look of distrust has faded to one of annoyance, then surprise. Few people ignore Raven Cragclaw! Much less dismiss him out of hand.

While Raven tries to figure out how to reply to this polite dismissal, Larrikan says to him, without looking up from his work, “If you like, I can recommend a good inn.” He pauses, then adds, “Or a good bathhouse.”

This shocks Cragclaw, who snarls, “Are you suggesting I need a bath, you filthy mongrel? Are you saying that I stink?”

Larrikan glances up at him, and mentions, “Every human has a strong scent to me.” He looks back at his book, and replies, “And no, I wasn’t suggesting that. I just thought you might enjoy those things after your journey.”

Raven has to admit the fox’s observations are true. He settles down a little, and says, “Yeah, that would be true, wouldn’t it?”

Larrikan ignores the rhetorical question.

Raven asks, “Can you tell me of a martial arts school or dojo nearby?”

This question stops Larrikan cold. He is surprised to realize he doesn’t know. He finally recalls, and tells Raven to see the City Guard, and tells Raven where they meet and practice. He adds, “If that isn’t the right spot, they will probably have a better idea where to go.”

“Good idea,” replies Raven, and takes himself out.

Larrikan wonders what is so special about the man, then gets back to work. He finishes before Professor Djarlee returns, which surprises him. Having no other work for the Professor, he goes to the Library for a while to look some things up for a project of his own.

The next morning, Larrikan returns to Professor Djarlee’s office. Raven is there, sitting at Djarlee’s desk, angrily facing away from Professor Ktharr. He greets them both.

Professor Ktharr replies normally – the troll seems to get along with everyone – but Raven just grunts and turns away. After staring at the corner for a moment, he grumbles, “How does Djarlee put up with working in this zoo!” and goes out, slamming the door behind him.

As soon as the door slams, Ktharr comments, “Jerk.” Larrikan is startled by this from the usually even tempered troll.

Voices outside make clear that Professor Djarlee has arrived. The Professor is too low to hear, but Raven’s strong voice carries through the door. The conversation starts out unremarkable but soon turns a little sour, “You want me to teach your dog tricks?” is the first sign anything is amiss. Djarlee must have replied, but quietly. “Do you realize that fleabag had the gall to send me to the bathhouse?”

“The door opens, and Djarlee enters, saying, “You probably needed it. I notice you listened. Come in and talk; I’m not going to argue out here.”

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