Arrens woke early Monday morning, a horrible crick in his neck from the night before. Aely lay silently sleeping next to him, her naked silhouette casting a shadow upon the wall beside the bed from the dying embers of the fire. It was her first full day off in some time. Instead of waking her for their morning run, he pulled the covers over her carefully, dressed in his workout clothes and stepped out into the crisp Dun Morogh air.
Stretching out on the front porch of his house, he pulled his buzzbox from his bag and dialed into Professor Landris' private channel. He heard her sleepy tone as she picked up the box. "Mornin'."
"Good morning, Professor Landris. I'm sorry to trouble you at this early hour, but I was wondering if I could ask you to cover my first class today. I've some...research to conduct that might keep me away from the school. Would you be so inclined?"
"What's the topic?" she asked, her gnomish voice starting to wake. Arrens filled in the details, explaining where his lesson plans were and how advanced his students were in their studies. Finally agreeing to teach his class, Arrens started his morning run, carrying a quick pace up the road and into the dwarven capital where he ran straight into the morning throng of people eager to catch the first tram into Stormwind.
The Deeprun Tram was as punctual as ever, arriving at 5:15 in the morning and depositing its travellers off a few short minutes later. Arrens continued his run from the Dwarven District towards the canals bordering Old Town. Instead of turning right as was the norm when he spent the evenings at his home, he turned left and into the Keep where he was greeted with sleepy nods from the guards posted outside. Giving a curt nod in return, he continued into the Keep and headed straight towards the library where he saw Donyal Tovald fumbling with a ring of keys and a steaming cup of coffee.
"Good morning, Master Tovald," Arrens said breathlessly as he ran up to the librarian.
Donyal jumped spilling his coffee all over himself. "Son of a...! Light, but you nearly scared me half to death, professor! What are you doing here so early? Got some demonic problems somewhere?"
Arrens smiled softly. "My apologies, Master Tovald. No, nothing demonic about today. I'm merely here to do research and I'm afraid the school's library might not have the proper books on hand."
Donyal looked at him wearily. "Is that right? Seems to me you've got quite a collection there, professor. You're school's library is threatening to close us down with its popularity. Seems kids these days are more inclined to go studying where they can hopefully get an eyeful of some young college cutie."
"Master Tovald, I assure you. Your library has far greater resources than mine. And far greater funding. Every book in Stormwind University's library was, at one time, my own. I have donated every last one of them for the sole purpose of ensuring my students can get the best education that I can provide them. As such, your library has things I couldn't even begin to imagine."
"That so? Well then, what are ya looking for today? Maybe I can point you in the right direction."
"I'm here to do research on...erm...lockboxes," Arrens replied.
Donyal raised an eyebrow. "Lockboxes? What in the Light's name for?"
"Research, Master Tovald. Research."
Donyal unlocked the door to the library and lit the sconces lining the walls. "Suit yourself, professor. Everything you ever wanted to know about lockboxes can be found down that row," he said pointing towards the third large row of books on their right.
Arrens thanked the librarian and headed towards the shelves. Casting a glance behind him to ensure Donyal was no longer paying attention, Arrens headed towards the back row where a "Health & Fitness" sign hung. He quickly perused the books on the top shelf and began pulling several down. Sexual Revelations & You, A Tale of Two Lovers and a magazine with baudy type declaring one should "Find Her G-Spot!" were quickly stuffed under his arms as he found a well-lit table in a quiet corner of the library and began reading. Arrens opened the first book and flipped to the table of contents. As sure as day, he found the title of the second chapter: Oral Sex. Pulling a notebook and pencil out of his bag, he quickly turned to the page and began reading voraciously.
Arrens started scribbling notes, his left hand jotting things down in nearly illegible shorthand that was meant to be transcribed into something more legible later. It was an old trick he had learned in Dalaran when certain teachers had the habit of speaking too fast, thus making notetaking a difficult endeavor for the unpracticed. He licked his thumb and forefinger and turned the page. "Wait," he said aloud. He flipped back a few pages and read before flipping a few pages forward. "So you mean if I can...really?" He jotted a few more notes, his eyes as wide as saucers.
"Ya find everything alright there, professor?" Donyal asked. The librarian had snuck up behind Arrens without his noticing, so engrossed in the topic as he was.
Quickly, Arrens slammed the thick tome, his pencil snapping in half between the heavy pages. "I...erm...yes, thank you, Master Tovald. Everything seems to be in perfect order."
Donyal peered down at the now-closed book and chuckled softly. "You know, professor, that's not about lockboxes, right? Not unless you're looking for the verses to 'The Queen's Lockbox.'" Donyal laughed at his joke assuming the typically naieve professor wouldn't understand.
Arrens looked aghast at Donyal, his face paled. Donyal's eyes went wide as he burst out laughing and doubled over the back of the chair. The professor quickly stuffed his notebook in his bag and hurriedly walked out, the librarian's laughter echoing on the stony walls behind him.
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