“ There are four simple ways for the observant to tell Mr. Croup and Mr. Vandemar apart: first, Mr. Vandemar is two and a half heads taller than Mr. Croup; second, Mr. Croup has eyes of a faded china blue, while Mr. Vandemar's eyes are brown; third, while Mr. Vandemar fashioned the rings he wears on his right hand out of the skulls of four ravens, Mr. Croup has no obvious jewelery; fourth, Mr. Croup likes words, while Mr. Vandemar is always hungry. Also, they look nothing at all alike.”—
C&V: Hello, You Must Be Going
100 Themes: 1. Introduction
Breath pounding a hole in your chest, eyes whisked dry by the air whistling past and leaving no time for the tears to dampen them again, you flee down endless tunnels and up innumerable ladders, up down forward back until that point when it takes at least five seconds to realize that you are no longer moving and are, in fact, lying face down on the ground, heaving up the extreme nothing in your stomach onto the dreadfully filthy cobbles.
Finally the tears catch up to the fronts of your eyeballs. You have no idea how long the run was, but certainly it was fast and far enough that they have been left behind…
Suddenly you hear the faintest rustle; all too late you scrabble for purchase on the bile-coated stones, but by now you are being dragged off the ground, arms pinned and feet traped between two huge, dusty shoes. The scream you intend to send echoing off the corridors doesn’t.
“Where are our manners, Mister Vandemar?” An oily voice slinks out of the dark. “Allow me to apologize for startling you without a proper introduction. I am Mister Croup; the man holding you is my colleague Mister Vandemar—”
—shink, the sound of metal and a glint—
“—and this is Mister Vandemar’s knife.”