Stately, plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a
bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed. A yellow
dressinggown, ungirdled, was sustained gently behind him on the
mild morning air. He held the bowl aloft and intoned: -Introibo ad
altare Dei. Halted, he peered down the dark winding stairs and
called out coarsely: -Come up, Kinch Come up, you fearful jesuit
Solemnly he came forward and mounted the round gunrest. He faced
about and blessed gravely thrice the tower, the surrounding land
and the awaking mountains. Then, catching sight of Stephen Dedalus,
he bent towards him and made rapid crosses in the air, gurgling in
his throat and shaking his head. Stephen Dedalus, displeased and
sleepy, leaned his arms on the top of the staircase and looked
coldly at the shaking gurgling face that blessed him, equine in its
length, and at the light untonsured hair, grained and hued like
pale oak. Buck Mulligan peeped an instant under the mirror and then
covered the bowl smartly. -Back to barracks he said sternly. He
added in a preacher's tone: -For this, O dearly beloved, is the
genuine Christine: body and soul and blood and ouns. Slow music,
please. Shut your eyes, gents. One moment. A little trouble about
those white corpuscles. Silence, all. He peered sideways up and
gave a long slow whistle of call, then paused awhile in rapt
attention, his even white teeth glistening here and there with gold
points. Chrysostomos. Two strong shrill whistles answered through
the calm. -Thanks, old chap, he cried briskly. That will do nicely.
Switch off the current, will you? He skipped off the gunrest and
looked gravely at his watcher, gathering about his legs the loose
folds of his gown. The plump shadowed face and sullen oval jowl
recalled a prelate, patron of arts in the middle ages. A pleasant
smile broke quietly over his lips. -The mockery of it he said
gaily. Your absurd name, an ancient Greek He pointed his finger in
friendly jest and went over to the parapet, laughing to himself.
Stephen Dedalus stepped up, followed him wearily halfway and sat
down on the edge of the gunrest, watching him still as he propped
his mirror on the parapet, dipped the brush in the bowl and
lathered cheeks and neck.
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