"I should point out, Campbeltown, may I call you Camp?" and he grinned, "Cam or Cammy will do, Ma'am," so Cristo continued, "well Cammy—I'm sorry but when I said 'I should point out Campbeltown,' it sounded as if I were a signpost or a tour guide on a ferry—the fact is, we're a very academic family, full of Double Firsts, Emeritus Professors, if you'll forgive the hyponym, apart from May—who buried herself in General Practice and is the only one with a practical turn of mind—and able to construe, conflate or conjugate almost anything but quite incapable of giving simple answers to simple questions and, I would suggest, 'what the fuck's going on?' is about as simple and direct as anyone in your situation should want answered, and I think I would suggest, although Maude may have a different interpretation, that the most hopeful answer might be that with any luck at all, Sir Parlane MacFarlane and his Merrie Men, might have met their Waterloo, by jumping into an alternative Universe, which you were all very lucky to manage to jump back out of, what do you think May?" and she sat back, cradling her whisky-tumbler in both hands and gazing over the rim at Cammy, while May set her own drink on the table and reached out for the young man's hand: "for once, dear boy, I sincerely hope that Cristo is right, because the alternative is quite unthinkable," and the silence was broken only by a cheery voice from the garden, as the kitchen door opened and Maude, supported by Daphne and Dudd, tottered in, beamed at the upturned faces and said: "well, Dr Bellwether says 'am no deid yet!' an ah've decided tae accept that diagnosis, so, May, ah've a notion fer the fifty-year-auld, iffen youse anes huvnae swallied the lot while me an Oyzell wis riskin Life and Limb," and as she sat down in the old oak chair at the head of the table, May reached into a high cupboard and brought out two special bottles, saying: "let's finish these anes, they've been here ower lang and likely weel past their sell-by date, like us!"