A Jack Vance Grivoiserie

(En Français ici)

In Cugel Saga the episode on « La Galante » ends with a scene where Vance, with his diverting and flowery language, mocks the « sexual capacities » of Cugel, which is rare enough to be quoted.

When Cugel flees by stealing « La Galante », he takes Mrs. Soldinck and her three daughters hostage, proclaims himself Captain, relegates the mother to the wheelhouse and distributes the housework to the three daughters plus the equivocal title of « night-steward » which they will have to perform in turn (in his bed), which they do without reluctance; in reality while the girls « distract » Cugel, Mrs. Soldinck runs the ship in circles. In the end the girls call out to him:

Meadhre interjected a comment. « I, Tabazinth, Salasser — we spat in every dish. Mama sometimes stepped into the galley. I do not know what she did. »
With an effort Cugel retained his aplomb. « At night I was entertained by games and antics, and here at least I have no complaint. »
Salasser said: « The reverse is not true. Your fumbling and groping with cold hands has bored us all. »
Tabazinth said, « I am not naturally unkind but the truth must be told. Your natural characteristics are really inadequate and, also, your habit of whistling between your teeth should be corrected. »
Meadhre began to giggle. « Cugel is innocently proud of his innovations, but I have heard small children exchanging theories of more compelling interest. »
(The Skybreak Spatterlight: FromShanglestone to Saskervoy / The Ocean of Sighs)

Disgusted and ashamed Cugel jumps overboard and runs away, forgetting his purse full of gold!

Stephen Fabian (for the 17 virgins)
Li-An 2012

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