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28 May 2019 @ 07:28 am
_Professor_ part 3  

Urfa strolled across it. “Is this the one you killed on Wolf World? I hadn’t quite grasped how large they were.” It took up most of the open floor space.

Rael giggled.

And bent to pick up the head (glass eyes, mouth open, teeth showing) and examined the leather surface of the underside. Inside? “Yes. See? Here’s where the punch went in . . . and then out through the spine. Only safe way to deal with something this size when it attacks. And at that it was only about ten meters away.”

Eshy stared at the holes then rocked back and looked at her. “A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not, that’s . . .”

Rael giggled and thumped the head back down. “That’s why Urfa wants me running the magic training, here.”

Not to mention bringing in some new blood to break up this petty rivalry.

A woman in her thirties bent and poked tentatively at a paw. “It’s got huge claws! The poor thing!”

A few uneasy glances at the bear. They don’t want to admit they’re impressed, but that rug’s got all those primitive instincts screaming “RUN!”

A growl from Oliver. “Where’s that door go to, and who hooked up the electricity?”

Rael followed the direction of his gaze. Another oak door behind the desk . . . she walked over, no lock . . . Oh, Xen, you didn’t! She pulled the door open. The stripped clean front hallway of her new house.

“What’s this!” Poor Eshy’s voice was getting high and he stumbled past her.

She stepped through, Oliver on her heels. “This is the old house I’m remodeling.” Crashes and thumps from the kitchen; she took a peek. “Ah. The plumbers are hard at work.”

“You . . . you . . . have a corridor from your home to your office!” Eshy was huffing faintly.

Hyperventilating or just indignant?

Rael giggled. “No. The office is the corridor. Three outlets. This one. The windows that I suspect let out on the top of the house, and, of course, that nice little storeroom you assigned to me.” She patted his shoulder and strolled back into the office.

Urfa was grinning as he joined her. “Perfect! Now once word gets around about the bear, maybe you won’t have to prove you can beat up every single Team Trainee.”

“But, Boss! I was looking forward to that!” She turned her attention to the people wandering around the room, most of them trying to not step on the bear. She raised her voice. “I suspect you all know me, so how about introducing yourselves and telling me what you teach.”

Three section heads—Ivpy “call me Professor Ivy” was History. Professor Aggy was head of Politics, and Professor Lows was Sociology.

Dr. Juok, “Joke,” glanced nervously at the rug, as if it could bite. “I lecture on magical theory.”

A nod from a young man. “Me too. Wnlw. Umm, Lenny. I’m working on my doctorate, and lecturing. We’re your subordinates.”

“Oh good. We need to talk. You two can bring me up to speed on what classes you’ll be teaching, what Professor Yppo usually taught and I’ll see how best to add my specialties.” Rael paused . . . “Do I have any other subordinates?”

Shaken heads. “The other two finished their doctorates and Exterior snatched them up.” Lenny sounded a bit wishful.

“Hmm.” Rael nodded at a new foursome looking around in horror. “Who are they?”

“Languages.” Joke sniffed. “Office thieves. That’s Head Professor Erdu on the left. The skinny guy is Professor Ymco, Modern Languages. The tubby guy is Professor Undw, Archaic—he’s a nasty sort. Professor Wnma is Mr. Average. Cross-dimensional languages.”

Lenny nodded. “Those two in back ground are junior lecturers like us. They’re so snooty I don’t even know their names.”

Professor Erdu noted them looking their way and stalked over. “This room intrudes on the Language Department’s space. Remove it.”

Rael gave him a pitying look. “I see you don’t understand anything about dimensional phenomena. I’ll have to add that to my lectures. I hadn’t realized the faculty was so out of touch with the newest information.”

Ah! Another man getting red faced. Always the sign of a good morning.

“Remove it. Immediately.”

“This dimensional bubble does not exist in the ordinary three dimensional world.” She waved at the double sliding doors. “The bubble is attached to the wall of the storeroom. That is it’s only contact with the building. It doesn’t even extend into the wall board.”

“I understand that you,” he stabbed a finger at her face, and cried out in pain as it hit her shield a few inches in front of her nose.

She shook her head slowly. “I think you need to be careful. I’m here because I’m an expert in the use of magic.”

Use!” he made it sound like an insult. Massaged the finger he’d jammed.

“Well, my PhD is in Advanced Magical Theory. I’ll have to make sure the Library has my thesis, ‘Analysis of the Comet Fall Teleportation Spell.’ Of course, what I’m best known for is Warrior level battle magic.”

“Oh? Is that why you spent two months as a statue?”

“No, that was stupid orders and personal reluctance. Xen Wolfson can’t be killed with a straight forward attack like that amazing debacle.”

Sneer. “And how would you kill him?”

“Poisoned lipstick.”

Erdu recoiled.

A deep laugh, as Xen walked past with Oliver Reed. “Evil Redhead.”

He waved at the two hanging globe lights. “The room is all DC. See this strip on the window sill? Photovoltaic. The batteries are along the wall in this bump-out, vented back through the window shield. Once we get the new roof on the house, I’ll add enough panels out there to not need to charge the batteries from the house current.

“Right now,” he reached through the window, fished around underneath, and pulled in an extension cord. “I’ll charge up the batteries every night.”

Oliver grunted, looking around. “Things like this are going to really mix up architecture. Handy though.”

Everyone else in the room was gawping at Xen.

Damn that man! Instantly recognizable, and then the tight t-shirt showing off muscles, and leaking enough glow to both intimidate and attract.

“Yes, handy. But I think the main reason we charge so much for gates and corridors is to slow down implementation enough for people to have time to consider the potential for disasters.”

He nodded toward Erdu. “Where the room is while it’s in the bubble doesn’t matter. But what if the bubble popped? Where’s the room going to land, eh? I was careful in the way I placed and stretched these attachments. If the bubble pops, it’s going to crash down on Rael’s front yard, damaging nothing but some landscaping.”

A growl from Eshy, this time. “We need to understand these . . . things.

Xen grinned at Rael. “Any time you need a guest lecturer . . .”

“We don’t generally invite in uneducated barbarians.” Erdu glared.

Xen snickered. “I’ve a BS in Biology and a Master’s in Genetics from King’s University. Then a PhD in Genetic Engineering from the University of Ash.”

Eshy walked over to stand with Erdu. “King’s we’ve heard of. What is the University of Ash?”

“A very small university specializing in magical applications in all fields.” He tossed Eshy a friendly smile. “If you’ll excuse me, I need to keep an eye on the plumbers.”

They all watched him leave. Then Eshy looked back a Rael. “Is he going to . . . be around?”

“Frequently. He can’t actually live here, with a job on Embassy. And then there’s oh, resident alien permits or some such?” She shrugged. “At least for now, he’ll just visit frequently.”

Very frequently. One might almost mistake him for a . . . husband? Oh dear One!




 
 
 
(Anonymous) on May 28th, 2019 10:09 pm (UTC)
More!
Lovin' it. Gimme more! This one flies.
(Anonymous) on May 29th, 2019 04:27 am (UTC)
It's probably not where you're going, but it occurs to me that Xen might have a new archetype to fit into in The Empire of the One, that of "Endi Dewulfe" (though since that might be a tad less adversarial for Xen & Rael I imagine it won't gain enough traction until Rael's been kidnapped & Xen turns up just in time to clean up after she saves herself)... :P
(Anonymous) on May 29th, 2019 04:47 am (UTC)
"he reached through the window, fished around underneath, and pulled in an extension cord. "
I thought that you could not stop in a corridor and certainly not when going through the interface to the normal world. How can an extension cord be run from outside the corridor to inside? Also, passing in a corridor is supposed to be "interesting". How does that apply to a room that is a corridor?
matapampamuphoff on May 29th, 2019 12:14 pm (UTC)
Gates are all or nothing. Bubbles are very different in their tendency to pull things through, otherwise you couldn't reach into one and pull things out.

Corridors, properly, have no "inside" and those are nasty to pass in. While this room has openings far enough apart to seem like a corridor--to get you from one place to another--the room inside eliminates the "passing through each other" effect.
(Anonymous) on May 29th, 2019 12:45 pm (UTC)
Corridors
Thanks for the explanation. Maybe you could add that to the story, as other readers might ask the same question.
Michawl DolbearMichawl Dolbear on May 29th, 2019 10:54 pm (UTC)
Re: Corridors
Here's the explanation from Children of a Foreign God

“Excellent. Now, take this and stick it all the way in.” He handed Arno a short wide plank, with a couple of triangular braces on the ends. “Sideways, with one of the braces up against the edge, so it can’t be shoved out, and it stays flat, like the floor of a room.”
All the kids crowded up to look it over.
“Now it’s like a dimensional room—real skinny, because the wall’s thin. Hop in, and open a hole on the other side.”
=
“Congratulations. You have made a corridor.”

Arno was grinning like a loon. “I didn’t know you could stop in the middle of a corridor!”
“Only if you build it with an ‘inside.’ Get out and remove the board, and the inside will disappear.”
=

Plus the Bank Vault scene
(Anonymous) on May 30th, 2019 04:15 am (UTC)
A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not ...
I just love how arrogant the Oners are, dismissing even their own legendary stories of a Warrior's "hundred meter death punch". According to Nil, Rustle can kill from a quarter mile away (loc 1625, Young Warriors): that's a four hundred meter death punch.

-TomR
matapampamuphoff on May 30th, 2019 12:30 pm (UTC)
Re: A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not ...
I suspect that Rael's fight with the Helios in Auckland raised a few eyebrows . . . and anything that went public, most people figured was vastly exaggerated.

"Right, from thirty meters away she sliced through a concrete planter, two meters of dirt and rock, through the far side of the planter, and killed the Helaos on the far side. Yeah, Like I believe that!"

I think I need a few scenes where Rael, having given birth, surprises herself with what she can do.
(Anonymous) on May 30th, 2019 07:00 pm (UTC)
Re: A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not ...
... can't wait to read it.

-TomR
(Anonymous) on May 30th, 2019 07:50 pm (UTC)
Re: A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not ...
I seem to recall that in "Meet the Family" the kingdom had videos from public sources of that fight.
matapampamuphoff on May 30th, 2019 08:33 pm (UTC)
Re: A punch? From ­ten meters away! That’s not ...
The Kingdom also has a number of spies all over the Empire. I really ought to write a story . . .
Michawl DolbearMichawl Dolbear on May 30th, 2019 09:19 pm (UTC)
Not your average bear so need a permit to import an extinct species?