“Here you are!”
Maybe I’d plopped my notebook down a little too cocksurely, but I was feeling pretty confident. Hell, I’d been sweating over this essay for two whole nights, rummaging through the dullest monographs and sneezing up billows of agelong library dust.
The professor picked up my notebook with two fingers, kind of like it was a filthy toad. Well… actually, I consider toads pretty cool. Take, for example, Hypnotoad or Kermit. Or, even, Jin Chan. I remember, once…
His harsh voice made me jump. Damn! It looked like I’d lost the plot again. I needed to concentrate. What the hell was he saying? Yes, toads were ‘The Second Plague’, but had I said something about toads out loud?
I raised my eyes and stole a look at his reflection in the dim windowpane. Then our eyes met. For a fleeting second it seemed as though his glance was flaring a bright orange, but when he turned to me, his eyes were yellow as always. This angry look was a storm warning.
“Too vague! Up in the air! It’s a mere dalliance with the topic, not an exploration!”
Why was he always on my case? But there was no sense in arguing… at least not now. This morning, I’d heard how Uranus had said something about the Moon being in Aries and that one should avoid open conflicts. (If someone had said to me some months ago that I would make decisions with an eye to this cosmographic crap, I’d have given them a ‘Screw Loose’ sign. But this University can make anyone superstitious like the last pea goose in existence.)
I took my unfortunate essay and went to the door. I had almost stepped into the corridor when his acrid voice struck my ears.
“And don’t forget that using translations in research is ‘mauvais ton’. If you want to get a decent result, you must work with authentic texts only!”
Huh? Ball and Tzara? In the original? I fucking like it!
by TETIANA ALEKSINA
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