Ah—for Francis the Looner was a lifelong reminder of the inadmissible primitive in the most cultivated life, a lifelong adjuration to pity, a sign that disorder and abjection stand less than a hair’s breadth away from every human creature. A continual counsel to make the best of whatever fortune had given him.
—But surely, also, a constant pointer to humility? said the Angel.
—Very much so. And I think that although I had nothing to do with the begetting of the Looner, I made good use of him in the shaping of Francis. So the Looner did not live in vain.
—Yes, you did well there, brother. And where is the helm set for now?
—Oxford certainly won’t strengthen the Blairlogie strain, said the Angel.
—Oxford will strengthen whatever is bred in the bone. And I have already made sure that the Looner, in every aspect, is bred in the bone of Francis. Francis will need all his wits and all his pity at Oxford, said the Daimon.