E-Merl’s idea isn’t that far-fetched, Gravedust. It’s not like you carry around a bedpost with notches on it, but you seem really confident, self-possessed, and full of both worldly and scholarly knowledge. If you were a human and spent some time in the city, even your age wouldn’t deter a fair number of women looking for husband material from striking up a conversation.

Let’s excuse E-Merl for his occasional use of pick-up-artist terminology like “close” in the context of “close the sale.” He hasn’t learned enough to fully understand why that’s tasteless, but he clearly respects Rachel on every level, and that’s really the important thing.

As Gravedust composes a paragraph about standoffish races getting drawn into others’ conflicts whether they want to be or not, Frigg and Rachel helpfully offer him a metaphor.