Challenge #01290-C195: Early Confusion

"There's a ladybug in my room!"

"Did you really call me at 3AM to tell me that?"

"I'm about two seconds away from burning this place down!" -- OohLookShiny

It took Cal a minute to recalculate what the hell Ch'v'th was talking about. " No. Absolutely not. No. Don't."

"But the ancient rhyme of your people..."

"...does not tell you to set your house on fire. You tell the ladybug that her house is on fire."

There was a slight pause and the sound of a Chitanian climbing down from a light fixture. Unlike most of his people, Ambassador Ch'v'th had spent time working on his vowels. "How does one know if it is female?"

"Ladybugs are female until proven otherwise," Cal mumbled. It was a supreme effort for her to not add, She will tell you if he's a he. Because that sort of bullshit might make her kids giggle, but alien ambassadors tended to take things literally.

"And the rhyme exists because it works? It banishes the dangerous creature?"

Ooooohhh boy... Cal rubbed her face and checked the actual time. 2:57AM. Shit like this should not happen at 2:57AM. "Ambassador Ch'v'th... you have been health checked and cleared for non-livesuit encounters with all but a select list of Terran creatures. Ladybugs are harmless to you." And this was not the time to go into a lecture about the overall Deathworld rating of Earth and certain parts of it that increased the average - like Australia.

"Then why the banishment spell?"

Cal yawned her way around, "Because we like ladybugs and they're useful and we teach that thing to kids so they don't automatically squash them, okay?"

"I am not under attack?"

"You are not under attack. Open a window, find a way to get it outside without damaging any property. Then close the window so she doesn't fly back inside. You'll be fine. Promise. C'n I go back t' sleep now?"

"My apologies, Assistant Cal. Resume your recuperation cycle."

Cal hung up and slumped back into her pillows. Tomorrow, she was going to find the Upper Echelon who sold this to her as a cushy job... and bite them.

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