Curiously enough, this very image is the frontpiece to the latest edition of the Whipsnade-Ramen Correspondence: Volume XXI, the War Years. Lovingly edited by a gang of Vargr POWs, this volume once again delivers fascinating insights into the fames duo's inner workings. Who, for example, cannot hear the pathos involved in this dispatch?:
Most honored chum,
Can you PLEASE replace the liquor dispenser in Emil the Valet Bot? Everything he mixes these days tastes like a Zhodane Sunrise.
I remain, yr. hmbl. svt,
Faced with the hard task of distracting a war-torn sector, Larsen displays a touching willingness to bury himself in the minutiae of ordinary life, the better to help him prepare for the carnage of the Rhylanor front:
My most excellent and esteemed sir:
As you no doubt know by now, "The Kid," star right fielder of the Mora Blue-Bellies, hit his 600th home run last night, a new Spinward Marches record. Kudos to the Mighty Splinter!
More to the point, his homer, a game-winner in the ninth, propelled your favorites, the Cosmopolitans, into a last-place hole that it is now mathematically impossible for them to escape from. As per our agreement, the Sum of Cr 5000, ten boxes of Aramis cigars, and a case of Zilan wine are now payable to me on demand, which you may consider this note to be.
I remain, etc.,
Larsen E. Whipsnade
PS Do not substitute Garda-Villisian tobacco for the cigars as I am no fool.
However, the larger events of history are not neglected, as seen in this dispatch from the flagship of Norris' Secret Expedition, where Mr. Ramen was serving as a Scout Auxilliary:
The strangest thing just happened. After spending several days on
the surface of --------, which we have been orbiting for a week now,
Duke Norris returned to the flagship and burst onto the bridge,
clutching a piece of paper. Squealing in that high-pitched voice we both
know so well, he exclaimed: "Branj! I've got it! the Imperial Warrant!"
He then started to caper about the bridge, loudly exclaiming his plans for using the Warrant: "I'm going to redecorate Glisten System--pink and taupe, what a hoot! Oh, and orchestra seats at La Scala Nova on Mora! And--And--I'm going shoe shopping!"
Rapidly assessing the situation, I immediately offered to carry out these orders and any others that might need a little "doing," if he would just "lend" me the warrant. I was getting close to an agreement (the Warrant for my complete two decades Holocrystal collection of "Sex in the Subsector" and a pair of Manolo Blahniks I acquired on Mora) when Branj burst in with a platoon of Imperial Marines and sent me back to my window washing station on deck ZZ double Alpha. Some days you just can't win...
In all, Volume XXI of the Whipsnade-Ramen papers is another solid contribution to the history of the Fifth Frontier Wars and belongs on the bookshelf of anyone with about a cubic meter of space to spare.
Fred "That's pretty much what the real thing looks like" Ramen