The Offer (TPL Story)

TPLStoryPicThis following story took place before my adventures with King Arthur at his castle. The twirly fighting stuff and getting knocked out, I suppose. Mr. Howell and I went to see Mr. Manahanny. And this is what happened.


So, this professor went with John W. Howell to see Mr.Manahanny. You know, the chap that runs Archiving News and is always trying to buy PT News.

I took John, see, ’cause he is trained on the witty and caustic comeback that might prove to be useful. Now here’s the thing: Mr. Manahanny is too arrogant for his own good and this arrogance is costing him money, so this professor decided to offer a buyout arrangement for Archiving News before it is driven out of business by the Manahanny arrogance. I thought it kind of me, see.

I called Mr. Manahanny to get an appointment but the person on the phone was hard of hearing. Dadblameit. We decided to simply drop in and put on our best imitation of gentlefolk. (Deception recommended by my cohort Mr. Howell, who is a great chap.)

Anyways and some, we went to the Manahanny building and invited ourselves to have a seat in the Manahanny office which was noticeable empty of Mr. Manahanny.

“You can’t be here,” said a person of small stature. “Mr. Manahanny does not see anyone without an appointment.”

“The exact arrogance we have noticed,” said Mr. Howell.

This made the professor glad he was along. He points things out like that, and it’s just super.

“But since we’re here,” said the professor, “please go and fetch Mr.Manahanny.”

The person scurried out of the office and I noticed Mr. Howell helping himself to a cup of coffee from Mr. Manahanny’s carafe.

“Care for a cup?” he said. The professor was glad to accept. After all, when one is offered it is polite to accept.

Mr. Manahanny came into the office and by the color of his face he was not pleased. He asked Mr. Howell to get off his chair; then he sat down with a huff.

Then he spoke up: “What are the people from PT News doing in my office?”

“Enjoying a cup of coffee,” this professor said. “In addition we have come to make you an interesting offer.”

“To leave immediately?” he said.

Mr. Howell then broke in asking if he could have more coffee. Mr. Manahanny was breathing in short gasps and appeared as if he was going to explode which would have ruined the beautiful carpet in his office. Imagine the mess, after all!

“Get out,” he screamed.

“I figured that’s what he would say,” said Mr. Howell. “Let’s take our millions and be gone.”

“Millions?” said Mr. Manahanny.

And now it was time to strike. “Yes, we have come to offer you a substantial amount for the worthless assets you call a newspaper.”

“Worthless? Where did you get that idea? Why, idiots, my paper is bigger than yours. You should know this, PVJ.”

“But you’re wrong, I fear,” I said.

Now it was time to be firm and factual, which are two diametrically opposite traits. “According to our records you are the most arrogant person on the planet. Your arrogance is costing you advertisers and we believe you only have one advertiser left. We don’t believe the Acme Tar Paving Company will be enough to save the paper.”

Mr. Manahanny slumped in his chair. It is obvious the professor was correct. “What is your offer?”

Mr. Howell stepped forward and handed Mr. Manahanny a paper on which we had inscribed the amount of our offer.

“This says one hundred dollars. You had mentioned millions.”

“A slight exaggeration. We think this amount will more than compensate you for the value of the paper.

“Get out.”

“Before we leave you should reconsider. Here is another amount.”

“This says ninety dollars.”

Mr. Howell spoke up. “I would take it before it goes any lower.”

“My paper’s…failings…” Mr. Manahanny began, “are none of your concern! I have—”

“Not much of anything,” this professor said. “Your coffee is horrible.” And I threw it on the carpet. That’s what you do when you’re cranky, see.

Mr. Howell did the same.

Written with John W. Howell


40 Responses to “The Offer (TPL Story)”

  1. 1 erinkenobi2893 October 2, 2015 at 13:10

    Oh dear! X-D He deserved it, though. If he’s only got one advertiser left, he should have been more careful.

    • 2 Professor VJ Duke October 2, 2015 at 13:40

      I know. It’s a shame. But hey, what can you do?

      • 3 erinkenobi2893 October 2, 2015 at 14:02

        Not be an idiot like him, for one. :-P

      • 4 Professor VJ Duke October 2, 2015 at 20:24

        That is definitely a good star.t

      • 5 erinkenobi2893 October 2, 2015 at 20:30

        Indeed. ^_^

  2. 6 teagan geneviene August 7, 2015 at 13:45

    What a fun Friday adventure. Too bad about the coffee…

    • 7 Professor VJ Duke August 7, 2015 at 20:39

      I know. Would you have drunk it?

  3. 8 John W. Howell August 7, 2015 at 12:54

    Reblogged this on Fiction Favorites and commented:
    Although I’m a little late in this reblog I was honored to go with Professor V J Duke of The Punchy Lands to try and hoodwink Mr. Manahanny into selling his paper. All good fun and Thank you Professor for the opportunity.

  4. 9 lifeconfusions July 31, 2015 at 17:30

    Actually I was sitting underneath that table and caught the coffee right before it could spill, It wasn’t that bad actually..I enjoyed drinking it :D
    But yeah great going there with the whole situation :D

    • 10 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:58

      *laughing lots* You mean you drank it?

      • 11 lifeconfusions August 1, 2015 at 22:12

        Of course I did ! No need for the perfectly good coffee to go to waste, I wouldn’t let that happen now would I :D :D

      • 12 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:05

        Well…and here I thought you hated coffee!

      • 13 lifeconfusions August 4, 2015 at 19:03

        What, why,who gave you get that idea?! Hate coffee?!! Who does that?! Who?! :o

      • 14 Professor VJ Duke August 5, 2015 at 13:00

        The professor just a bit?

  5. 15 Debbie July 31, 2015 at 14:41

    Wise of you, Professor, to take John along. He’s got a level head, many witty retorts up his sleeve, and can be counted on NOT to lose his temper first!

    Mr. Manahanny should have accepted the offer — pittance though it was! — as soon as it was made. That way, he’d at least have preserved his rug. Now, not only is he losing out on saving his failing company, he’s also made you mad. Never a good thing, you know, when somebody carries around a katana!!

    • 16 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:57

      Wait…are you saying this professor loses his temper? *professor eye*

      Yes. And I’m brutal with that sword, too! I can kill a buffalo in a full run, don’t you know.

      • 17 Debbie August 2, 2015 at 18:18

        Whoops, never want to make you angry, Professor! And that *professor eye* could send me running for the hills! As for the buffalo, who’s in “full run” — you or the beastie??

      • 18 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:13

        Isn’t the professor eye scary? It could star in a movie. *practices it*

        Definitely the beastie. I only run sometimes.

  6. 19 walt walker July 31, 2015 at 14:21

    Good show! I liked all the coffee parts. Now I see why he wanted to buy your paper.

    • 20 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:54

      Yes, yes. *laughs* You would’ve thrown it on the carpet, too, you know.

      • 21 walt walker August 1, 2015 at 22:35

        Absolutely! And ground my heel in it too.

      • 22 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:05

        You’re spicier than I thought!

  7. 23 FictionFan July 31, 2015 at 13:45

    I’m glad Mr Howell is around to help out with the buyout – it’s always wise to have someone caustic along on these things! In fact, being caustic is a seriously under-rated skill in general, I feel, and one to be applauded! However… I did get somewhat over-excited at the thought of the two of you having access to millions! Imagine how much chocolate you could have bought me! What a disappointment when it turned out to be a measly $100 – though converted to Smarties that would still be a substantial pile…

    • 24 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:52

      Caustic! Good noodles, that is something you’d like, I’m thinking. Still, underrated is quite right, in this case.

      Imagine if you could buy millions worth of chocolate! I think it might smother the world. Smarties all taste the same–that’s what I have against them.

      • 25 FictionFan August 2, 2015 at 16:46

        *nods* Indeed it is! You should take Mr Howell as your role model in these matters!

        A world covered in chocolate! *trembles with excitement* Yes… but they all taste of chocolate, which has to be a good thing, don’t you know…

      • 26 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:09

        You’re right, I should. And I will. Maybe. Sometimes I forget who my role models are.

        They do? They do not! Not at all, madam!

  8. 27 PorterGirl July 31, 2015 at 13:41

    What a super chap is Mr Howell, I must say. Quite the right person to take along. If a place serves bad coffee then it is asking for it to be thrown on the floor. However, I fear Mr Manahanny may want some kind of revenge. Or at least a new carpet.

    • 28 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:51

      He’ll probably get a new carpet–but I feel like ruining that, the sudden, don’t you know. Then again, Manahanny probably will try some sort of revenge, the bugger.

      • 29 PorterGirl August 2, 2015 at 07:28

        No doubt he would – but then you can plot a revenge for his revenge and that might be quite fun.

      • 30 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:07

        Very good point. That would be lots and lots of fun. I might quite like that. My revenge would be better.

      • 31 PorterGirl August 4, 2015 at 12:14

        I have every confidence that it would, you know. I say keep the revenge game going until he surrenders with exhaustion. It’s the only way some people learn.

      • 32 Professor VJ Duke August 4, 2015 at 12:15

        Very true. But I usually don’t have revenge cause I forget. I’ll make an exception for this chap.

      • 33 PorterGirl August 4, 2015 at 12:19

        I will start keeping ‘revenge notes’ for you so you don’t forget so much, if it will help.

      • 34 Professor VJ Duke August 5, 2015 at 12:53

        Yes! That will definitely help. Revenge notes! I like the sound of it.

      • 35 PorterGirl August 5, 2015 at 13:16

        Sounds a bit musical, actually. I think A minor would be a revenge note.

      • 36 Professor VJ Duke August 6, 2015 at 20:43

        A minor! I love that. Yes, and then a Bb!

      • 37 PorterGirl August 7, 2015 at 04:11


      • 38 Professor VJ Duke August 7, 2015 at 20:36

        *laughing* Now I’m spooked.

  9. 39 L. Marie July 31, 2015 at 13:14

    Well, it’s a good thing John Howell went along for the ride! I enjoyed the witty retorts. Good on you for throwing the coffee on the carpet. Surely Manahanny has money enough to supply good coffee. I wonder if Manahanny will mend his ways and wind up pumping money into the PT News as a silent partner.

    • 40 Professor VJ Duke August 1, 2015 at 21:50

      I thought the carpet throwing thing was rather spicy myself. He deserved it, after all. Mr. Howell was excellently vicious, I must say. I should practice being so wicked.

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Depends on the day, see.

Punchy Argot:

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