Stephen laughed and Moynihan, pleased with the result, murmured again:
----We'll have five bob each way on John Anthony Collins.
----I am waiting for your answer, said MacCann briefly.
----The affair doesn't interest me in the least, said Stephen wearily. You know that well. Why do you make a scene about it?
----Good! said MacCann, smacking his lips. You are a reactionary, then?
----Do you think you impress me, Stephen asked, when you flourish your wooden sword?
----Metaphors! said MacCann bluntly. Come to facts. Stephen blushed and turned aside. MacCann stood his ground and said with hostile humour:
----Minor poets, I suppose, are above such trivial questions as the question of universal peace.
Cranly raised his head and held the handball between the two students by way of a peaceoffering, saying:
----Pax super totum sanguinarium globum.
Stephen, moving away the bystanders, jerked his shoulder angrily in the direction of the Tsar's image, saying:
----Keep your icon. If we must have a Jesus let us have a legitimate Jesus.
----By hell, that's a good one! said the gipsy student to those about him, that's a fine expression. I like that expression immensely.
He gulped down the spittle in his throat as if he were gulping down the phrase and, fumbling at the peak of his tweed cap, turned to Stephen, saying:
----Excuse me, sir, what do you mean by that expression you uttered just now?
Feeling himself jostled by the students near him, he said to them: