"Unbelievable!" said the head pro, enraptured by the story. "I'll call Dr. Dingsby right now and see what's holding him up!" And off he went, striding after his Dudley Do-Right jaw.
In about three minutes he came back, ashen-faced. He looked like a man who had just swallowed a plateful of leeches.
Dannie played it for all it was worth.
"My god! What happened? What on earth is wrong?"
The pro swallowed hard. "I don't know how to tell you this," he said, "but Dr. Dingsby is...the doctor is...dead. I'm so, so, so sorry."
"Dead?" said Dannie.
"I'm so, so, so sorry," said the pro, holding Dannie's shoulder. "He was struck down by an eating accident yesterday afternoon."
The three held their breath for a moment and then began their own peculiar brand of wailing.
"I just can't believe our tradition is going to end this way," Dannie said. "It's so...incomplete. And Dr. Dingsby was so proud of his course. I know he wanted to show it to us."
There was silence. Dannie looked at the pro from under her furrowed brow.