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Ventin Tollerspoon was fortunate in that he held an adequately remunerated position as a clerk in one of the minor counting houses of the city. The hours were not onerous, but he was held responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the work of those clerks under him. Thus he would check for errors before their work was allowed out of the clerks’ inner sanctum.
Almost by definition, this meant that he started his work after they did and finished after they did. So in consultation with his employers, it was agreed he would take an early lunch at home, which meant the he would arrive at work just as the other clerks were heading out for their repast. In their absence he would start immediately checking their figures, starting with the least reliable. He would work methodically through the afternoon, finally leaving the office perhaps an hour after his juniors.
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