The Coldfall Sanction
Professor Klaus Johann Vordenburg
A philosopher and a metaphysician
Professor Klaus Vordenburg, arising early, can be found sitting at his accustomed table in Casa Capșa’s elegant restaurant and confectioner, rather than in the Coffee House, which he finds adverse to meditative thought, what with its uncovered wooden tables and it’s artist clientele. He enjoys the solitude of his table. Segregated in a niche, by a tall window, sipping coffee beneath his cloud of cigarette smoke, he studies the early editions of Universul, Adevărul , and România Liberă whenever it is available.
Klaus Johann Vordenburg, MD, D.Ph, D.Litt, etc, etc, is currently professor of philosophy at the University of Bucharest. He was a close acquaintance of Arminius Vámbéry, as well as a regular correspondent among the group of learned men Vámbéry communicated with in Amsterdam and Berlin.
Born in Gratz, Professor Vordenburg, is a descendant of a once wealthy and influential Styrian family of the Hapsburg Aristocracy. Owing to a series of mysterious misadventures and tragic reversals of fortune by previous bearers of the families’ entitlement, the once princely estates, in Upper Styria, have long since dwindled into a mere pittance compared to its former grandeur. Although still heir to the title of Baron, Professor Vordneburg has officially refused to recognize his Ritter, except on occasions when it has become politically expedient among his various travels to Greece, Egypt, Russia, Turkey, and Persia.
What he does lay claim to is the vast Vordenburg library handed down from his grandfather, whom he never knew, other than the cryptic rumors implicating him with occult fascinations and alchemical, rather than scientific, experimentation. Thus the professor’s home is full to overflowing with all manner of ancient books, tracts, voluminous digests of judicial cases, a rove of obscure manuscripts, pamphlets, as well as a collection of rare journals purchased from antiquarians from all across Central Asia. Some at the university find it slightly more than consequential that he took residence at Mantuleasa Street, number 33, a home considered to be haunted by a 19th century prostitute.
A philosopher and a metaphysician, Dr. Klaus Johann Vordenbuurg has completed studies at Karl-Franzens-Universität, the Sorbonne, the Municipal University of Amsterdam, the University of Berlin, as well as Triposes in law, history, and theology at Cambridge. With the advent of hostilities between the Central Powers and the Entente, he relinquish his position at the University of Gratz in order to take up a position at the University of Bucharest, owing to Romanian Neutrality.