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the response

September 21, 2004

My Dear Ms. DX,

I had undertaken the study of semaphore as a mode of alternative
communication with you, which I now see will be wholly unnecessary.

I have at my disposal the materials required for our correspondence to
continue in the manner you desire. All of my letters are composed at a
desk of mahogany which has been in the family since the early 17th century –
not a great deal of time as lineage is concerned, I know, but I do have a
certain fondness for it. My writing area is lit with two tallow
candles set in brass holders; for personal missives, I use a cobalt blue ink ground for me personally by an apothecary in Venice, and I prefer pheasant quills to the more ostentatious ostrich. From my time in the Orient, I have
become quite adept at the art of origami, and the letters to you will be
folded so as to ensure their security, and sealed with the mark of the
L_______’s – it’s a bit ornate (A ferret standing upon an antelope while conducting a symphony orchestra), but should serve the purpose you require.

These letters will be delivered by my valet, Tristan. He will knock twice,
then once, then thrice, and then leave the letter upon your doorstep. I
have instructed him to locate your domicile through his own artifice, rather
than to reduce you to the coarse and unladylike behavior of giving out your
personal address to a man who, though certainly a gentleman, is also
very nearly a stranger.

As you can see, in all matters I am as compliant and genial as one
could hope; however, on one account, I cannot compromise – I will not
knuckle under to the archaic grammar and deluded spelling of our former
monarchs. Much blood and valor was expended to free us from the yoke of the
superfluous “e”s and emasculating “u”s of the British tyrants, and I
will not dishonor the memory of my forefathers with those bastard
linguistics.

My first letter should arrive shortly.

I remain…

Respectfully yours,
L________, esq.

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