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Welcome, Ottoline, and thank you for joining us today!

 

 

 

Why did you call me that?

 

 

 

Why did I call you... what?

 

 

 

“Ottoline”.  We’re not friends and you’re not my father.  Why would you use my given name?

 

 

 

Oh.  That’s... not okay?

 

 

 

If it were, would I have said anything?

 

 

 

Okay.  Um, how about Miss Appletree?

 

 

 

Better.

 

 

 

Welcome, Miss Appletree, and thank you for joining us today!

 

 

 

You already said that.

 

 

 

Right.  Of course I did.  Moving along, then, as I’m sure you’re very busy.

 

 

 

You can’t imagine how busy I am.

 

 

 

Several scenes from your life are being featured in the exciting fantasy-adventure saga, A Season of Clocks.  How does that make you feel?

 

 

 

“Exciting fantasy-adventure saga”? That’s laying it a little thick, don’t you think?

 

 

 

But, surely, that’s what one would call this series of books, no?

 

 

 

I just call it life, guy.  Speaking of which, I’ve got one I’d like to return to, so, you know, hurry up.

 

 

 

Right right, of course.  So let me just make sure I’ve got this straight: even though you’re part of an exciting fantasy-adventure saga, you don’t find so to be extraordinary at all?

 

 

 

That’s not what I said at all.  Of course it’s extraordinary.  I just don’t see why you insist on making such a fuss about it.

 

 

 

Because it’s what the people want to read!

 

 

 

Oh, is it? Well, I suppose you can keep telling yourself that, if you like.  But you know what they say about self-delusion.

 

 

 

I don’t know, actually.

 

 

 

Something both discouraging and eye-opening, I should imagine.  I can’t be expected to remember every bit of old woman wisdom I come across.  My head is much too busy being filled with the types of useful things that will lead to a high-powered career and a retirement chalet in Switzerland.

 

 

 

Then why did you even bring up that stuff about self-delusion?

 

 

 

To confuse you.  It’s a tactic I often employ: leave non-essential conversationalists wallowing in confusion while I resume thinking about important things.

 

 

I see.  But, you know, we are in the middle of an interview—one you agreed to.

 

 

 

Oh, please.  As if I had a choice.  Refusal would have meant being written out of existence.

 

 

 

What! I would never do something so callous!

 

 

 

So you say.

 

 

 

So I know.

 

 

 

Regardless, one should never underestimate the darker elements of human nature.  Especially if said elements remain neglected and unexamined.

 

 

 

Whomever said my darker elements are neglected and unexamined?

 

 

 

If you actually drew from your darker elements, you would have written from some great work of soul-shattering philosophical depth.  You definitely wouldn’t have squandered your ability on fantasy-adventure pap.  Definitely no moronic fight scenes.  And no trying to be clever with weird dialogue.

 

 

 

But I was trying to chronicle your life!

 

 

 

The silly parts of it, clearly.

 

 

 

I can’t believe you of all people are saying these things.

 

 

 

You know me better than anyone, no? What did you expect?

 

 

 

I guess that’s a good point.  Um.  I think we’re losing focus.

 

 

 

We are.  Thanks to me.

 

 

 

Of course.  Ahem.

 

 

 

Why do you keep saying that?

 

 

 

Keep saying... what?

 

 

 

“Ahem”.  If you’re going to clear your throat, clear your throat.  Don’t say “ahem”.  It’s unnecessarily theatrical and wholly absurd.

 

 

 

I think we should try to keep your focus on you, Miss Appletree.

 

 

 

Must we really? You’re clearly in dire need of some invaluable social etiquette pointers.

 

 

 

Be that as it may, this is still your interview.

 

 

 

If it truly is mine, then I can use it in whatever way I please, no?

 

 

 

“Use”? The only way this interview is intended to be used is as enticement for the exciting fantasy-adventure saga A Season of Clocks.

 

 

 

Right.  Whatever.  Or I could use it as a tool for remedying hopeless sad sacks such as yourself.  Now what were we saying about invaluable social etiquette pointers?

 

 

 

First of all, I hardly think I qualify as a “sad sack”.

 

 

 

I disagree.  Respectfully.

 

 

 

Second, we really ought to maintain focus on you.

 

 

 

If you say so.  I wouldn’t dream of disobeying a direct command.  The last thing I would want, after all, would be to get written out of existence.

 

 

 

I’m choosing to ignore that.  Now.  Why do you think people should invest their time and money into the Seasons of Clocks saga?

 

 

 

Because it beats watching a bear wrestle a moose.

 

 

 

I’m not sure I follow.

 

 

 

I have no faith that “people” spend their free time doing anything constructive.  None at all.  A bear-moose wrestling match would probably be considered high drama by most.

 

 

 

But ultimately a waste of time?

 

 

 

Most definitely a waste of time.

 

 

 

So, if we were to continue with that line of thinking, those poor, misguided potential readers would be much better off spending their time....

 

 

 

Eating lettuce.  One can never underestimate the benefits of riboflavin.

 

 

 

I see.  One can’t argue with that, I suppose.

 

 

 

No, one can’t.

 

 

 

I’m almost afraid to ask, but do you have any final words for our dear readers?

 

 

 

I thought I just said them.

 

 

 

Thank you for your time, Miss Appletree.  I wish you the best of luck in your future adventures and endeavors.

 

 

 

Well, you know what they say about luck.

 

 

 

I actually don’t.  What do they say?

 

 

 

I haven’t the slightest.  I just wanted the last word.

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