rix_scaedu (rix_scaedu) wrote,

Alchemy 101 - Opening Remarks

I wrote this to lilfluff's fourth prompt.

The lecturer looked at the room of students over his glasses, adjusted his long black robe and began, “Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the first class of this subject.  If you look to either side of you, you will note that you are a mixture of first year students and more experienced scholars who have been caught up in the administration’s decision to require all graduates to have undertaken a mandatory number of units in what one of my social sciences colleagues has termed the ‘liberal arts.’  You can tell that he has never been in one of my classes.”

He paused as if waiting for a laugh that didn’t come and went on, “This is a practical alchemy class and we will be spending over half our time in the laboratory.  If you wish to study Hermetical theory or philosophy, this is not the class that will do that.  If you only wish to study spiritual theory and philosophy, it is not too late to transfer - please see me after this class and I will give you a note of introduction to the relevant professors.”

He cleared his throat and looked around.  A number of students shifted uncomfortably in their seats.  “Having said that, I believe those of you who have previously or are currently studying chemistry and/or physics will find yourselves at an advantage when it comes to conducting laboratory work and understanding some of the concepts we will cover concerning matter and energy.  Be clear in your minds however,” his voice rose, gaining the attention of several people up the back who looked as if they were there because they had to be, “this is not physics or chemistry - act as if it is and you will fail the course.”

He looked around the room again then picked up a stapled together set of papers.  “You should all have picked up a course outline as you entered the room.  If you did not, please do so on your way out.  We will begin the year with laboratory technique, transmutation precursors and catalysts and finish the semester with the cheapest of the metallic transmutations as the Dean would like us to stay in budget.  In second semester we will address organic alchemy including fermentation, distillation and basic medicinal remedies.”

One of the older students near the back of the room sat bolt up right and put up his hand.  “Yes?  Stand, tell me your name and then ask your question.”

The tousled haired young man stood.  “Cartwright.  Sir, are you going to be teaching us how to make booze?”

“Mr Cartwright,” the lecturer gave the student a look over his glasses, “we will be brewing and fermenting for medicinal purposes.  I expect it will be rather better than the rotgut normally referred to as ‘booze.’  Now sit down.”

Tags: alchemy 101, prompt request 120324
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