"So eloquent I have seldom seen the Doctor," thought Conrector Paulmann; "really talkative, I declare!"
In one word, honored Conrector! I, Hofrat Heerbrand, do now entreat of you the hand of your most amiable Mam'sell Veronica, whom I, if you have nothing against it, purpose shortly to take home as my wife." Conrector Paulmann, full of astonishment, clapped his hands repeatedly, crying: "Ey, Ey, Ey! Herr Registr Herr Hofrat, I meant to say who would have thought it?
Veronica was cheerfulness, was grace itself; and when Paulmann left them for his study, she contrived, by all manner of rogueries and waggeries, so to uplift the student Anselmus that he at last quite forgot his bashfulness, and jigged round the room with the light-headed maiden.
"Come out, then, with this mysterious substance which you carry with, you, most valued Registrator," cried Conrector Paulmann. Then Registrator Heerbrand shoved his hand into his deep pocket, and at three journeys brought out a bottle of arrack, some citrons, and a quantity of sugar. Before half an hour had passed, a savory bowl of punch was smoking on Paulmann's table.
You will put up with a bad dinner; then Veronica will make us delightful coffee, which we shall drink with Registrator Heerbrand, for he promised to come hither." "All, best Herr Conrector!" answered the student Anselmus, "are you not aware that I must go to Archivarius Lindhorst's and copy?" "Look you, Amice!" said Conrector Paulmann, holding up his watch, which pointed to half-past twelve.
The Punch Parts. How the student Anselmus took Conrector Paulmann for a Screech-Owl, and the latter felt much hurt at it. The Ink-blot, and its Consequences. The strange and mysterious things which day by day befell the student Anselmus had entirely withdrawn him from every-day life.
My compliments to Herr Conrector Paulmann, if you see him; and come tomorrow precisely at noon. The fee for this day is lying in your right waistcoat-pocket." The student Anselmus actually found the clear speziesthaler in the pocket indicated; but he took no joy in it.
"Ey, ey, Herr Anselmus!" interrupted Conrector Paulmann, "I have always taken you for a solid young man; but to dream, to dream with your eyes wide open, and then, all at once, to start up for leaping into the water! This, begging your pardon, is what only fools or madmen could do."
Conrector Paulmann and Registrator Heerbrand raised a horse-laugh, which reverberated through the room, and, in the intervals, Veronica was moaning and whimpering, as if torn by nameless sorrow; but as to the student Anselmus, the madness of inward horror was darting through him, and unconsciously he ran out of the door, into the street. Instinctively he reached his house, his garret.
So said Conrector Paulmann, as he next morning entered his room, which still lay full of broken sherds, and in whose midst his hapless peruke, dissolved into its original elements, was floating in the punch-bowl.