Rabbi Ischak ben Loria is so dreadfully serious about the number Four, by Gematria, Notariqon, Temurah, Aiq Bekar, and in every other mode of Exegesis that it is time for us to straighten our ties and try to look like a respectable novelist and his most charming reader on a sunny but not too sunny day towards the end of April. The autumn leaves were almost fallen; all nature seemed to sympathize with the great sadness of — Please do not interrupt. Lola! I am not making a fool of myself. The scene of Our Story is laid in the Southern Hemisphere. That girl has put me completely off. We will begin again; one wintry day the good folk of New Orleans were being hurled at the rate of a thousand miles an hour and more into the shadow of the planet Terra, and —
Too scientific? I think so myself; besides, the whole business bores me. And, on another count, Not the Life and Adventures of Sir Roger Bloxam should begin at the beginning. Lucky this ain’t them! A further advantage of this course is that I shall have opportunity to expose rose prose, Ambrose, in my most mystic manner. I’ll be Chrysostom of the Church of Fiction; you shall have asphodel and nectar to your chota hazri. Begin then, daughters of the sacred well that from beneath the seat of Jove doth spring; a perfect pianissimo like Ratan Devi’s is appropriate to the first part of what is not the Life and Adventures of Sir Roger Bloxam.