Anna, part 27

“How did you get here?” Dean Simon said, startled.

“Oh dear,” Bob looked equally startled. “Sorry, I must have gone to the wrong office.”

“You materialized out of thin air just now, didn’t you?”

“Did not.”

“Did so.”

“Did not.”

“Did so.”

“Did not. I walked in right through that door. You just didn’t notice.”

“That door right there?” the Dean pointed to the door in question.

“Yes, the very one.”

“That door, my friend, is locked. And here you are.”

“How do you know I’m here?”

“Well, we’re talking, aren’t we?”

You’re talking Dean Simon. I might simply be experiencing an hallucination.”

“How can you be experiencing an hallucination if you’re not even here?”

“Point well taken. Perhaps my argument was not as closely reasoned as one would like. Then again, as you say, I am not even here.”

“Oh I think you are here all right, and I think you’re a liar.”

“Dean Simon, if you are going to impugn my good character, I don’t see any reason to continue this conversation. Faculty have rights, you know.”

“Even faculty who materialize out of thin air?”

“Well, yes, I should say so!” Bob said indignantly. “Wait, that was a trick question, wasn’t it?”

“Afraid it was. Now, I think you have some explaining to do.”

“Um, would love to stay and chat Dean Simon. Really would. But it’s a very busy day and I, um, have a meeting to go to. They hate it when I’m late.” Bob looked around nervously, and without another word he vanished from the room.

“Well,” the Dean said, to nobody in particular, “This changes everything.”

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