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A Few Brief Letters

The following letters were dictated to ART Hoo during the course of this week:

Monday, January 2nd

Dear Miss Ginsburg,

I am writing to you with great excitement and a bit of trepidation over the concerns that I may be about to overstep my bounds with regards to social decorum. However, tossing aside any concerns regarding etiquette, I was wondering if you might be interested in joining me in a tropical cruise around the islands of the southern ocean?

In all fairness however I should mention that it is possible there might be a small chance of some potential points of alarm during some parts or even all parts of our mission… I mean cruise. So you might have to sign a waiver… not for me of course but for the captain of the ship I have chartered. It’s some sort of legal thing. I have already signed it.

Earnestly awaiting your response,
E. Lighthouse

PS: As we will be crossing a lot of international borders you may want to pack a hand gun, that is, if you decide to come. EL.

PPS: We leave on Sunday,that is, if you should decide to come. EL

PPPS: I know where to get more pickled air kraken tentacle tips. EL

Tuesday, January 3rd

Dear Brother Riddler,

I am writing to thank you for your hospitality last Friday. Please accept this apple spice pie as a token of my appreciation.

With gratitude,
Emerson Lighthouse

PS: I hear rumors of a condolence card or something of that nature is in order for Malus’s mother. Please have an urchin run it by the clock, I wish to sign it. EL

Wednesday January 4th

Dear Scottie and Sky,

I am writing you this little note to inform you that once more I am heading off on a mission of immense peril and great personal sacrifice. I will be leaving town this weekend for about a month and a half. In my absence I was wondering if you might do me a small favour. There is this little spider monkey I’ve taken pity on as the cold weather has descended upon New Babbage. I keep him in the clock where it is nice and warm. Would you mind feeding him for me? I’d ask Arnold, but I think the monkey is scared of the cat. Also, while he is quite good with the chamber pot he does tend to poop in the corners. There is a little bucket and spade by the door to take care of that.

Thanks in advance,


PS: Perhaps we can settle up my outstanding bar tab at Cuffs when I get back. EL

Wednesday, January 4th

Jonathan Spires

I’m on my way out of town again. I’ve left a little package for you under the garbage can beside my back door. Enjoy.

Wednesday, January 4th

Brother Dominic Lapis,

I just wanted to send a quick note to let you know I intend to steam out on Sunday January 8 on our mission to bring Malus home.

I trust that will be enough time to put your local affairs in order. My hope is that we will successfully return by the end of February.

Just one more thing before I close; I am assuming you have a pretty secure line on that sugar you like to sweeten your evenings with (although you’d probably prefer the word ‘sharpen’). Just in case that little sugar bowl of yours supplies an insatiable sweet tooth, make sure you bring enough with you to last the trip. We will be spending a lot of time on a steam ship and I don’t want you running out and getting all nauseous over everyone.

Signed Sincerely,
Emerson Lighthouse

Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Mr. Mornington

I am about to leave town again but before I do I wanted to let you know that I am in possession of a piece of artwork that I think will be of great interest to you. I will endeavor to get it to you as soon as I return.

Emerson Lighthouse

PS: Since I will be out of town for a month and a half do you think I might get an extension on that deal we have going for Chivas? EL.

Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Ceejay,



Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Mr. Tenk,

I hope you found the envelope stuffed with money I left addressed to you on the steps of City Hall this morning. It is my tier for the next month and a half. Please don’t mind that the ink appears to have run a bit… I think the bills got wet.

Emerson Lighthouse

Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Leia Berithos

I’m sorry I have missed all my French lessons for the passed two months. And now I am off on another journey and wont be back until the end of February. Hopefully I will be able to catch up.

Emerson Lighthouse

PS: I tried on my blue vest the other night and it just doesn’t seem to fit right anymore.

Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Jed and Kimika,

I want to thank you both for taking a look at my bird the other day. I think it is functioning just fine now. I’ve been recording messages all morning.


Emerson Lighthouse

Wednesday, January 4th

Dear Mr. Arnold,

By the time you get this I may very well be on the high seas on a mission of great import. I know we have the little issue of contracts and other unpleasantries of a legal nature hanging over our heads. Things were so busy in the week leading up to our departure I had no time to sign anything.

It is just as well for apparently, or so I have been told, there is some question at the moment as to whether I have a sufficient degree of liquidity to accommodate your desire for some degree of remuneration. As a result the banks and other forms of legal extortion have declared me a high risk. Without contesting what it is they say, it fell upon me to find a guarantor for the costs of your services.

Fortunately I have met one individual willing to vouch as guarantor. All we require in return is that you provide her with the odd favour from time to time over the period during which I will be abroad.

Please find your contract notarized and signed on my behalf by one Abigail Sharp held in the barrister’s office of Octavius Palmer.

Cordially, your boss,
Sir Sir Emerson Lighthouse, NBE, OSL, MD, PHD, Ψ


“All right ART Hoo, I think they are ready for delivery. Make sure you note the dates, timing is everything.”

Emerson glanced out his front window in time to see an urchin pass by.

“Look, there goes that Gadget kid again. I wish I could remember his last name…. just when I think I have it, it seems to change. Is that a small bear I see following him? What’s Gadget doing with that bear?

“I wonder what else he is up to? I’ve noticed him spending a lot of time in Wheatstone this past week. He must have something planned here.

“I’ll tell you something ART Hoo, you have to watch that one. He stole one of my cigarettes right out of my pocket a few weeks back at the Coca Java Cafe…. and I would have shared it too if he’d only have asked. It was a sad sight Art Hoo to see that kid barfing in the snow.

“I hear he’s bright but a bit hyperactive. Look at him bounce. Can you imagine being stuck on a small steam ship with that urchin for a month and a half!”

Spread the love


  1. Mr. Arnold Mr. Arnold January 4, 2012

    Arnold, in the near(ish) future, reads his letter and stops and blinks….a lot… “Abigail who?”

    Arnold reads his letter again, “What?  I don’t…what?!”

  2. Junie Ginsburg Junie Ginsburg January 4, 2012

    With scarlet cheeks and a goofy grin, Junie placed Emerson’s letter carefully on her desk.  She knew about his mission to rescue Brother Malus, and was intrigued by his pretense of going on a cruise.

    Dipping her pen into the inkpot, she set about composing a response to send back the same day.

    Monday, January 2

    Dear Mr. Lighthouse:

    I am in receipt of your thoughtful invitation to accompany you on a tropical cruise. The fact of the matter is that for all the fun I’ve been having recently in New Babbage, what with go-deviling on the ice, launching cows at the Brunel and vandalizing admiring snowmen, a change of pace (and temperature) would be pleasant.  I am therefore  delighted to answer your invitation in the affirmative.

    There is, however, the small matter of my aunt, whom you’ve not yet had the pleasure of meeting.  Although her solicitor, Mr. Octavius Palmer, sees to her day-to-day affairs, I am bound by duty to my family for her care.  She is quite dependent on the assistance of others, you see, and although Mr. Palmer is capable, I hesitate to entrust her guardianship to him in toto.

    Because of this, I will need to make suitable arrangements with someone for whom I have trust and respect to represent me in my absence where my aunt is concerned.  Please believe I will endeavor to do so by Sunday, but there remains an outside chance that it won’t be possible.

    Assuming this can be arranged, I look forward to learning when someone can come and fetch my trunks.

    Most sincerely,
    Ms. Juniper Ginsburg

    P.S.  My travel accoutrements typically include a firearm, among other useful items. Since you have mentioned pickled air kraken tentacle tips I shall pack my chopsticks as well.

    P.P.S. Perhaps you’d like to stop by sometime this week to discuss details?


    • Emerson Lighthouse Emerson Lighthouse January 4, 2012

      Monday, January 2nd

      Dear Ms. Ginsburg,

      What wonderful news greeted me from the page of your letter. Not to worry about your lovely aunt I believe I have the perfect solution that will leave us both smiling. I have recently re-hired Mr. Arnold as my Major-domo. As I am having trouble acquiring a loan to pay some sort of salary that he thinks he is entitled to perhaps your aunt and I might enter into a deal whereby we take turns with him.

      Mr. Arnold may not have a great bed-side manner, but I’ll bet he could shave down Mumsy’s corns all the while making sure she is well fed and in good health. It’s such a perfect plan, and will keep both Mumsy and Mr. Arnold occupied.

      Let me just add, Ms. Ginsburg, I would be most happy to stop by at your earliest convenience to grab your trunks and smooth over any details you might still be concerned with.”

      Your most dutiful,

      Emerson Lighthouse

  3. Brother Lapis Brother Lapis January 4, 2012

    Dear Mr. Lighthouse,

    You may be assured that I will meet you at the dock on Sunday. It is my preference to travel in civilian attire, and as such, I trust you will not bring attention to my association with the Church during our journey.

    As for the “sharpener” you mistakenly substituted for sugar in our salon, it is a commonly used as a study aid among the clergy, but it comes dearly. I will bring as much as is required for my own personal use.

    Let Logic lead you,

    Br. Lapis 

  4. Gadget Starsider Gadget Starsider January 5, 2012

    Gadget heard the curious whirring and flapping of the mechanical owl before he noticed it swooping low past them.

    “Cor! Look at that!” he said pointing and reaching for his slingshot, but the Owl was too fast and disappeared along the canal before he could load.

    “Bugger Teddy! I would love to get my ‘ands on that!”

    “Swearing is naughty master Gadget”, the clockwork Teddy Bear replied.

    • Avariel Falcon Avariel Falcon January 5, 2012

      *prods Gadget with her horn*

      Being naughty today?

      *giggles and continues chasing after the clockwork owl*

  5. Scottie Melnik Scottie Melnik January 5, 2012

    Mr. Lighthouse

    Good luck on your journey. May the wind at your back never be your own. And do not give a second thought to your bar tab. The interest is running on what you owe and it will still be here, bigger and better than ever when you return. And if you do not, I’m sure your majordomo will be good for it.

    Scottie Melnik

    P.S. Sky will be glad to take care of your monkey.

    • Sky Melnik Sky Melnik January 5, 2012

      P.S. Sky Scottie will be glad to take care of your monkey.

      • Scottie Melnik Scottie Melnik January 5, 2012

        P.S. Sky Scottie will be glad to take care of your monkey. We’ll get someone to take care of your monkey. And we promise not to sell your monkey to a scientist. Provided you’re back by the end of February.

        • Sky Melnik Sky Melnik January 5, 2012

          P.P.S. Then it’s fair game. Just kidding! (Maybe…)

          • Emerson Lighthouse Emerson Lighthouse January 5, 2012

            I am so relieved. Just one other thing you should be aware of. He likes to ball-up his blankets and use them as projectiles. Not to worry, they are very plush and don’t hurt. Once he gets comfortable with you he will be much less inclined to fling his fleeces.

    • Jedburgh30 Dagger Jedburgh30 Dagger January 5, 2012

      *sends Scottie a copy of the recipe for Macaque du Bourguignon*

      • Cadmus Lupindo Cadmus Lupindo January 5, 2012

        *Smacks his lips.
        “Mmmm…Macaque du Bourguignon”

        • Junie Ginsburg Junie Ginsburg January 5, 2012

          *stares with wide eyes*


          Are you sure we can’t bring the monkey with us?

      • Petharic Petharic January 6, 2012

        I believe I know a nice red to go along with that.

  6. Ceejay Writer Ceejay Writer January 5, 2012

    Ceejay reads her letter and smiles at her friends nice manners.  She then proceeds to spend a half hour gazing out the window, lost in thought.  

    “Thanks for what, I wonder?”

  7. Mr. Arnold Mr. Arnold January 9, 2012

    Dear Junie Ginsburg,

    It is Saturday now, a day before you depart and in all that time my efforts to figure out who an Abigail Sharp is finally led me to discover that it was your aunt who resides with you, and I wouldn’t have even known that much if I hadn’t asked Cyan.

    As there would be no point discussing this with Emerson, I want to talk with you instead, if for no other reason than to discover what in perdition is going on.



    • Junie Ginsburg Junie Ginsburg January 9, 2012

      Dear Mr. Arnold:

      Fortunately your letter found me before we leave port.

      Please contact the office of Mr. Octavius Palmer, my aunt’s solicitor, to arrange for a meeting.  He will make the proper introductions and convey Mumsy Abigail’s requirements for your service per the contract she signed on Mr. Lighthouse’s behalf.

      Fare thee well!

      — Miss Ginsburg

      P.S. – Don’t let my aunt convince you that she’s allergic to cats.  I think she’s been bluffing all these years.

      • Mr. Arnold Mr. Arnold January 9, 2012

        Arnold read the last line several times…if there had been any doubt that this wasn’t going to be as bad as he thought it would be…that hope had evaporated now.  A woman had conciously chosen, while maintaining that she hated cats apparently, to borrow/hire/share/whatever his services while performing them for Emerson…yes…this was going to be a lovely way to spend two months!  At least he was positive that she didn’t have any hold on him…except possibly legally…he’d have to see what Emerson had done first to know that much.

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