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The nerds are gathering.  "I am in a town."

Bethunia is coming.  Her flanks are rippling.  Oscar sees her and the cigar drops from his mouth.

"I am Bethunia, keeper of the straight lank hair!"  She whips it around and several flies scuttle.  She rears up and blows the air out her nose.  Her nostrils flare as the result, and some snot spittle also flies.  Her eyes are red.  She is not happy.  She tries speaking in her best British accent, she asks if we have seen any monsters.  We all shake our heads no.  Her British accent is poor and makes us cringe, but we don't show it, or at least we hope we don't, lest she wile.

"I am merely looking for some monsters," she says, as calmly as she can.  "Who are attacking this village."  She flourishes her hand in what's supposed to be a sign of 'the-devil-may-care' or 'I-don't-give-a-care', but her enflamed red eyes betray more than any hand signal ever would.

"I am Bethunia," she says.  "Bethunia of Norfast, here looking for monsters."  She whips her hair around and several flies scuttle.  All of our cigars have fallen from our mouths and they have begun to alight the dry leaves upon the ground.  Soon there will be a raging inferno.

Bethunia rears up on her legs and claws at the deadly sky.  She is trying her best to appear unruffled, but it is apparent: She is deadly ruffled.

"Hello, Bethunia.  I am Professor Wordsworth.  We have seen no monsters.  We are just here smoking our cigars, and after we will continue down the trail to Plonkman's house.  Do you know him?  He has several dogs."  Professor Wordsworth had stepped forward to deliver this message, and presently he stepped back, as though a loose appendage.  He put his hands behind his back, which was a gamble: He wanted to cover his nads, as though he were in line to stop a football at a free kick.

Bethunia stood at ease, slouched a little.  Some runny ol snot ran down her nostril.  We can all assume her nostrils had lost their feeling.  She wiped at it with a sidelong motion that began at her finger and ended at the fat of her arm.  It left snot on the entire length of her arm.  She whipped her hair and several flies scuttled.  She kicked some dirt on the ground and saw the leaves there smoldering. She kicked some dirt on the leaves and extinguished the flames.

"Thank you, Bethunia.  I am Professor Winklebottom, and we have seen no monsters.  But thank you for extinguishing those flames at our feet.  I'm sure we were all worried about burning to death, ahahahah."  Professor Winklebottom chattered his teeth and tried to emit some trapped sound in his throat which might be mistaken for friendly laughter in different circumstances.  He had horse teeth, and showed mainly gums.  He screwed up his face into some imitation of a smile, which now just seemed manic and full of terror.  He stepped back.

Bethunia reared up again and sprayed us all with a snot-air mixture which came from nostrils like chasms threatening to engulf us.  A wind picked up.  Professor Windsnout stepped forward.  "Please, Bethunia, we have seen no monsters.  We would tell you if we did.  We are just going to Plonkman's house.  He has several dogs and we would like to play with them.  Please.  Calm down.  There are no monsters here."  He wrung his hands.

But his words did nothing to waylay whatever was causing Bethunia's to warm so.  She let out some kind of otherworldly screech and then said, "Hiya!"  She started galloping around us.  What was once a rather comfortable and comradely little gathering had since turned into a circle of fear. The wind picked up.  Bethunia circled us faster.  Her flanks rippling.  The wind whipped at her hair.  All the flies had left.  The trees they were blowing.  Bethunia was screeching.  And we in our circle trembled with fear.

"Professors!" cried Professor McTrinder.  "Now is the time!  Put your fingers on your circles!"  And we did as we were told.  Personally, I honestly didn't know what was going to happen.  I had never done it before.  We were all never in the same place at the same time.  I always thought what they told me was nonsense, utter nonsense.  Boy, was I wrong....

...Next thing you know, there we are, all us Professors, except now we are one, and spiky, and one foul mouth emitting foul fumes, large teeth, rough skin. We were like a freshly born child trying to use our new body.  But we managed. We picked her off the ground and ate her in no more than 8 or 9 bites.  Delicious!  Plonkman would not believe our story.

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