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Maps and Chipper – The great(ish) Escape, Part 7



The Sea lapped gently against the walls of the Harbour. A small fishing boat approached, the man at the wheel smiling from ear to ear. The little motor propelled the boat ever closer to the entrance of the harbour.

Maps and Chipper were busily haggling over the price of petrol with a local farmer, the major sticking point being the transportation of the fuel to the field in which the aeroplane sat.

“Two and Six!”, demanded the Farmer.

“Is that with a lift to the filed?”, questioned a tiring Maps.

“No, that’ll be another sixpence per mile”.

“Its damned Extortion, doesn’t he know that there is a war on?”, Chipper asked Maps in a resigned tone.

“Will you take the word of a Military Officer and wait for Her Majesties’ Government to pay you?”, asked Maps, more in hope than expectation.

“Government!”, Laughed the Farmer.

Chipper looked at Charles, Charles looked at Chipper. Maps, Chipper and Charles dug deep into their pockets and removed every penny they had between them. The total amounted to about three-quarters of the aeroplane’s needs, with the transportation. Without the transportation, the aeroplane would be full.

Charles agreed the price of the three-quarter full aeroplane, and the four of them loaded the fuel onto the horse-drawn carriage. Charles winked at Maps and Chipper and took the Farmer in to a barn to exchange the payment. When the two were out of sight, Maps and Chipper filled the remaining containers and loaded them as well. Charles soon returned and leapt onto the carriage. The horse made a noise that resembled a giggle as the carriage with its fuel moved off toward the field.

Bardufloss entered the Harbour certain that salvation was close at hand. He was puzzled to see his companion Arnold standing on the dockside.

“How on earth did he get across the Channel so quickly?”, Bardufloss thought.

Victoria and her Uncle were relieved when Bardufloss wandered in their direction and released the ropes that bound them to the mast. Standing up and stretching themselves felt like manner from heaven to them both.

Suddenly it occurred to Bardufloss that he was actually the wrong side of the Channel! The Boats all had English registrations and the people shouting at him were English. Bardufloss panicked. He had released his captives in friendly territory. He panic became abject terror as Victoria’s uncle approached him.

Bardufloss had little time to react as he was lifted bodily from the deck and thrown into the Harbour. The splash was tremendous as he hit the water, Bardufloss’s mouth and nose filled with the salty water, his clothes became heavy and he struggled to remain afloat, he eventually stopped struggling and managed to swim the short distance to the harbour wall.

Victorias’ Uncle berthed the boat at the quaiside with his usual skill, throwing a rope to a kindly gentleman on the shore, he felt happy that all had turned out just fine.

Sadly for Victoria’s Uncle the kindly gentleman was Arnold, who had offered a hand which when it was accepted turned viciously into a push. A tremendous splash signalled the entry of Victoria’s uncle into the Harbour. His nose and mouth filled with the salty water, his clothes became heavy and his ability to swim impaired.

Victoria’s uncle had just made the harbour wall when he turned to see a dripping Bardufloss jump back into the boat, which set sail immediately for the open sea. Victoria simply sat next to the mast and accepted her fate. Arnold took the wheel, and a dazed Bardufloss went below to find a dry place.

Charles supervised the refuelling process. Maps and Chipper hauled the fuel to and from the carriage. The fuel was emptied into the high fuel tank, and then, when at the point of exhaustion, the refuelling was complete, Charles ordered the aeroplane into the air.

“Contact!”, screamed Charles as the swung the propeller with all of his might. Fortunately the engine took at the first attempt. Chipper advanced the throttle, swung the aeroplane into wind and took off.



The BEST holidays

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