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From: raster@highfiber.com (Charles Dye)
Subject: (urth) Water Thieves
Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 21:07:16 

Quoth Mantis:

>You remembered two of the water clock passages I'd forgotten--the one
>I'm vaguely thinking of is the one used to explain how the master of
>the house's clock manages to stop "precisely" at the moment that the
>master dies . . . mainly that with all the deathbed activity, none of
>the slaves fills the water pan for the clock, then when the doctor
>wants to jot down the time of death he looks at the clock, which
>stopped at some arbitrary time, and the doctor uses that time as
>being as good as any, and everybody else goes "whoo" (and the master's
>dog begins to howl since they've forgotten to feed him as well as
>water the clock <g>).

A bit of spooky magic explained in flat commonsense terms.

>Can't remember where this one comes from.

Spoken by Thecla.  Which makes the magician conducting Severian's
anacrisis say "whoo" as Sev's in solitary and Thecla's dead.  There's
a simple explanation, of course.  (And Severian continues to come up
with simple explanations for the jungle magicks until it's almost too


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