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Postby mspanners » Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:49 am

The wind rushing past, the clouds, Witch's on Broom sticks and the occasionally attack by a Hawk, these are the sort of things Buggy Swires cherished as He guided the Heron over the sprawling city scope of Ankh Morpork.

Below People were going about their daily business. Bakers baked, drovers drove and thieves waited for Nightfall.

As the Heron banked right Buggy could see a coulomb of smoke rising up from the Guild of Alchemists, looks like the crazy fools had blown up the Guild House again and this time also set it on fire as well.

Below He could make out a number of Golems heading towards the smoke........... Buggy made a note on a piece of paper and wrapped it around a small Lead shot,he then directed the Heron in the direction of Pseudopolis Yard.

As He circled high above the Watch House Buggy leaned over and carefully dropped the Lead, scoring a direct hit on the Head of Sergeant Detritus.

Detritus gave Buggy a cheery wave and picked up the shot and then headed into the Watch House, note in hand.

Buggy pulled a small compass and sundial from his pocket, and carefully aligned the sundial due Hub wise.

"Just time for one more sweep of the City then home, come on old girl lets move".

Buggy spurred the Heron on, this one is called Shiftily and a regular ride for Buggy. He no longer took Wild Herons from the Ponds and Lakes outside the city, some of those Birds were rife with Fleas! No He had found a far more reliable source at the Lake Near Nap Hill.

He loved it up here, the Air was fresh and He never got trod on. He felt like a big Man, being a Gnome had it's down sides but up here He was King.

Right below them was the Lake, time to land. Spiraling down, down the ground came rushing up to meet them. Shiftily glided down next to the reed bed doing the strange looping hop that long legged Birds do when landing.

Buggy Hopped down and in payment for the ride walked over to the Lake. Shiftily followed Him and leaped on to a Tree Branch sticking out of the Lake water, eyes fixed on the lake.

Buggy pulled open the rucksack He had been carrying and pulled out the special Fish bait that only Gnomes knew how to make. With the precision of a practiced eye Buggy launched the ball of bait into the waters, within seconds the waters were a boiling troth of Fish. Shiftily made Her move, stab swallow, stab swallow stab............

"Hey careful there my girl, eat to much and you won't be able to get Airborne tomorrow!" said Buggy, grinning.

Well She had earned it Feast, and if She is a little sluggish in the morning there were other Birds willing to stand in for one of Buggy's treats.

Buggy made His way back to the Watch House and only had to lay out one cat that had tried to eat Him on route.

Custody Officer and stand in receptionist Sergeant Fred Colon was on the main desk as Buggy arrived, a sandwich in hand and a Book on the Desk in front of Him.

"Hello Buggy, good patrol was it? Can you please remember to drop the message weights into the hopper on the roof instead of Detritus next time, not that He complained but is you were to hit on of the Human or Dwarf officers you may find yourself brought up on charges. Remember what happened when you hit Nobby in the face, burst one of His boils......... and the Guild of Doctors complained that you were not a trained Doctor".

"Yes Sir, I would like to report that I noticed a Troll hanging about out side Gimlets Delicatessen, it was there for over Two Hours but left after a Dwarf came out and handed it a Battle Loaf..........." said Buggy.

Fred said "And what's strange about someone ordering a Loaf of bread from Gimlets? I think you are seeing problems where there are none. Just stick to traffic reports and so on and leave the Policing to the lads on the ground"

"You may be right Sergeant but I think it strange that a Troll would be buying a Dwarf Bread for His lunch. Unless it was one of the High Fibre ones with extra gravel in it" replied Buggy.

"Yes, but there is no law against it so there. Now Buggy before you clock off Mr. Vimes would like a word with you. He is in His office at the moment, can you pop up and see Him..."

Buggy ran over to the stairs and climber the banister riser then up the rail to the first floor. The door to Commander Vimes office was shut but this was not an obstacle as there was an old mouse hole in the plaster board wall that lead into the office. Buggy knocked on the door before entering through the hole.

"it's me Commanded, down here" shouted Buggy as Vimes stared at the un opening Door.

Vimes leaned over the desk and looked down at Buggy "Ah,Buggy sorry did not see you come in through the Mouse hole. Good work out there today, but please try to use the hopper and not Detritus head next time"

"Yes Commander" Buggy replied.

"I believe that you are enjoying the sky patrol buggy...... but do you find it a challenge? Would you be interested in doing a more hands on job in the force?" Vimes asked Buggy.

"What have you got in mind Sir"

"Your size and weight work in your favour in the Sky patrol, but it has other advantages to. What I have in mind is a little bit Dangerous, some under cover work. I will only ask you to volunteer,what I want to do is to bug a certain person and think you are the Man, sorry Gnome for the job"

"Dangerous Sir! Please explain..........." said buggy.

"I want you to secrete you self about the person of Chrysoprase, I have been lead to believe that He and the Breccia have infiltrated our Organisation and I want to know who is involved. We would have used a Disorganiser but they have a habit of going Blinkity Blinkity Bleep at inconvenient moments"

"I am no stranger to Danger Sir, after living in a Mushroom in the old Forest and dodging Elves, Owls and stoats life in the City is easy. I have never looked back since moving here after my encounter with Rincewind"

"Good, now here is what we are going to do......................." said Vimes.

The next day Buggy was waiting on the top of the reception desk as Commander Vimes arrived at the Watch House, Vimes asked Fred to bring up Sidney Pickins the apprentice Thieve.

"Sidney, the famous pick pocket has agreed to place you on the person of Chrysoprase and in return we have agreed to drop charges of going equipped to steal without Guild Documentation on Him. Luck for us that Chrysoprase is in the habit of wearing a Suit or this operation would not be possible. Sidney will drop you into one of Chrysoprase pockets and we want you to listen out during His meeting, is that all clear.. good. Good luck Gentleman............"

And now I am in the pocket of Chrysoprase, Sidney followed Him through the City and took advantage during a distraction caused by a Cart accident to get past Chrysoprase's body guards and drop Me in the pocket.

"Did Gimlet pay His In-Sure-Ants this Month?" Chrysoprase asked one of His Trolls.

"Ya but He made Me wait over an Hour at da shop, said He had to bake a fresh roll to put the dosh in" the Troll replied.

"Dat is Dangerous, da watch may have noticed you hanging about the shop,I think we need to explain to Gimlet that keepin us waiting may be bad for his elf.......... send a couple of Dwarves around to explain to Him. Nothin to heavy though, just break a finger or two" replied Chrysoprase.

Buggy could hear the scrape of large doors being pushed back and felt the chill of icy air. The Pork Futures Warehouse, it had to be. This was the place that was believed to be used by the Breccia for meetings.

"Good to see you are here, I like punctuality" said Chrysoprase.

"Did I have a choice?" replied the voice of Angua.

Angua......... here............ Angua was Chrysoprase's mole.

"We need the patrol details and roster for the Watch for the next Week, by tomorrow Miss." said Chrysoprase.

"I will have to copy it out, this will take time but I should be able to get them, just keep your end of the agreement" She responded.

"Captain Ironfoundersson is still free and in good health, I know how much you cherish this. So keep up your end of the arrangement and we will keep up ours........" said Chrysoprase.

Angua sniffed the Air and looked at Chrysoprase in a strange way.......... "Have you been eating anything......... organic?"

"No meat gives me terrible indigestion...... I stick to Granites and other types of non sedimentary Rocks"

"Then I should check you pockets, I can smell a Gnome on you" She replied.

A Green rocky hand reached into the pocket and plucked the struggling Buggy out.........

"What we got ere then? A spy or a miniature thieve?" said Chrysoprase.

"I recognise Him, He is Buggy Swires and He is a Watch man......... Gnome" responded Angua.

"Well little one what shall I do with you, can't have Mr. Vimes poking His nose about in my part of the city........" said Chrysoprase.

"He could ave an accident, it is easy to get trapped in here and die of the cold........" said one of the body guards.

"No Mr. Vimes is not a silly man, He would get upset if we started to bump off His officers........ we need another solution"
said Angua.

"And what would you suggest?" inquired Chrysoprase.

"There are certain chemicals that can wipe the memory and as splash of rum over Buggy will look like He got drunk on duty" said Angua.

"Ha Yes, go and get some sleeping gas from the Chemists quarter and a glass of Rum from the Drum" said Chrysoprase to a hench Troll.

Buggy was placed on a table and a large Metal Troll mug was placed over Him, with a large rock placed on top of it to hold it down. After about 20 minuets the mug was lifted and Buggy dropped into a sack filled with the gas...........


.............. Buggy a woke with a splitting Headache. It was dark in here and the smell of Rum was over powering. It took a few minuets before he realised that He was still in the pocket of Chrysoprase's Jacket. Buggy carefully poked His head out of the pocket and saw the inside of a wardrobe. He made His way down to the floor and carefully pushed the door open. He was in a Hotel room, Chrysoprase lay fast asleep on a Troll bed. Buggy made His way to the door and gave it a knock. He then ducked behind a chair next to it. The door opened and a Body Guard peered into the room, buggy made His move and shot between the legs of the Troll.

"Stop, stop someone stop that thing" shouted the troll, but it was to late, Buggy was out of an open window and away into the Night.

"Got away all right did He?" said the Voice of Chrysoprase.

"Yes Sir, worked like a treat" responded the Guard..............


And now Buggy was back at the Watch House and in front of the Commander............

"What happened then Buggy?" Vimes inquired.

"I can not remember Sir, I recall Sidney dropping Me off and a feeling of cold, but that is it..... I awoke in a Wardrobe covered in .......... Rum....... but I can assure you I never touched a drop Sir" said Buggy.

"OK.......... not a good start on your first undercover mission was it, take the rest of the Day off and tomorrow you are back on Sky patrol. Never mind it was a long shot, I will get Angua to work on another plan............"

Buggy left the Watch House head held low, Vimes watched Him as He headed down the Street.........

"Went like clockwork Commander" Said the Voice of Angua.

"Yes I know, but I feel terrible putting Buggy in this position..... I still think we should have let Him in on the trick" said Vimes.

"If it had gone wrong He could have blown my cover, now Chrysoprase trusts my judgment. I did blow an operation and expose a spy........."

That is how the Watch cracked the Breccia........ Vimes, Angua and Buggy Swires all unknown Hero's in the fight on crime.
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Postby chris.ph » Thu Oct 16, 2008 5:47 pm

brills mate carry on the good work :)
measuring intelligence by exam results is like measuring digestion by turd length
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Postby mspanners » Thu Oct 16, 2008 6:37 pm

Glad you liked it, had a little extra time to work on a plot with a twist for this one as I am off work with the flu!

Aching all over....... sounds like the lines from a song!

PS Thanks to TonyBlack and a tip I got on touch with CMOT Dibbler and the Watch badge has arrived ...... so now all I need to do is assemble all the parts and I will have my Vimes outfit ready for Halloween, cheers mate. 8)
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Postby Dotsie » Thu Oct 16, 2008 6:44 pm

Then we will need a picture! No need to leave it till Halloween, we've been waiting for this for ages!
What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!
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Postby mspanners » Thu Oct 16, 2008 7:51 pm

I am looking for a Brown shirt ( no not the one with a Swastika one it ! ) and a Brown cape,forgot about them........ shirt should be easy but may have to make the cape out of curtain material........... soon as its together I will post some pics.

Thats all I need now, got the Back and Breast Plates from India, the Helmet from the UK, Badge from CMOT Dibbler,Short Sword from a Joke Shop and Knee length shorts from Burtons. Already had the sandals from last Year when I went as Rincewind and won first prize. 8)
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Part 1

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:51 pm

----------- The Docks ---------

The fish stank, Fifty Dollars worth of shrimp, eel and loud mouth cod all gone to waste,possibly.....................

" I can't sale this to anyone, even in a Gumbo pie special.......... fifty Dollar is to much to ask........ tell you what it could be used for cat food though.............and as I am in a generous mood I will give you Ten Dollars for the lot, can't say fairer than that......... em? ....what do you say, any more and I am cutting my own throat. "

"Come on now Mr Dibbler, it aint my fault that the cart from Genua was held up and they ran out of ice for the freezing......... I am sure you can make a Klatchian Curry out of this stuff.........." Responded Chalky the troll, whole sale importer and retailer.

"Yes, yes......... but Klatchian cuisine is a limited market, this stuff was going to be sold on to the local traders for fish and chips and so on....... can't see them wanting this even if I let them have it at trade price....... I would be really cutting my own throat, or one of them would! See sense............ Ten Dollar is all I am will to give for this stuff ....."

After much scratching and flaking of Chalky's head a deal was struck and CMOT Dibbler had enough fish product to poison quit a few hundred late night revelers the following week..............

------- The palace --------

"Well Mr Dibbler I see from the reports by our Medical practitioners that you have made them a little richer, and luckily for you, your self too. How is the sale of stomach powders going these days? Still getting the Minerals from the potters guild at knock down prices?"

Dibbler stood in front of the Patrician with His hat held in His hands wringing the rim in the style usually seen in a movie when a Mexican is asking for help from a gun slinger ........

"Sorry your Majesty but I never intended to make so many people ill........... and make so much cash from helping them recover........." He stopped speaking as He looked up to see the glare from the Patrician upon Him.

"Sir will do at a pinch MR Dibbler ,Majesty is a Royal term and I am not a King..... Even if I have the powers of one .As you know I am very concerned about the well being of the city and all of its inhabitants and do not look kindly on ANY threat to either of them.And I am feeling inclined to make an example of you, can you suggest why I should change my attitude in this case?"

"As you say Sir I have made a small amount on the remedies I sold and would be more than willing to compensate anyone who can prove positively to Me that thay were made ill by eating one of the Fish products I made, I will refund the cost of the fish in full no quibbles." Spoke Dibbler.

"Very generous of you Sir, but how would this proof be.......... err... proven?"

"Well if they produce a sick bag and it contains the fish in it I will give them back their Money" Said Dibbler.

"No,No.. that will not do. I am thinking that what we need to do is to make sure that this sort of problem doesn`t reoccur......... This is my offer to you Mr Dibbler. From the profits made from the sale of the Fish and the remedies you will fund a project to decrease the time taken to import sensitive foods and products from the far reaches of the Disc. I also propose to place you at the head of a new department , a Public Health Department funed by the Tax raised by Mr Moist von Lipwig when He takes over at the Tax department. Until than the funds you raised will have to do, my investigators have estimated that you have made a tidy sum of Six Hundred Dollars..... that will have to do for now.If this offer is not to your liking please feel free to explain you complaints to one of my inquisitors........."

"No Sir that will be fine" Said a quaking Dibbler.

"Good, and now I will start you in you new job. Mr Dibbler I employ some of the best minds on the Disc and will place the best of them at your service. Follow me" Said lord Vetinari.

-------------- Meeting Leonard ----------------


The Patrician walked to the wall behind the desk and pressed on a small patch next to his official picture. A door slid aside and opened into an antechamber. Sat on a low bench was a thin man with long flowing Gray hair around a large bald spot and a beard to match. He was dressed in the fashion of a ancient Quermian scholar.In His hand was a foot long wood device made up of Three pieces with gradients engraved on them and a small magnifying lens that he was sliding along the device.A note pad covered in Mathematical scribbling sat on His knee with a Pencil fixed to it by a lenght of fine chain.

"This is Leonard of Quirm Mr Dibbler, I have already briefed Him on the tasks I have set you and He is at your disposal for the time being. Make the most of Him.... so Gentlemen carry on" and with that the Patrician left the room.

"Hello Mr Quirm" Quavered Dibbler.

"Ho there you are, so sorry got carried away calculating the required out-put from the new engine using various fuels...I fear we will have to call on the help of the Alchemists in developing a substance that will produce the required energies.." Spurted out Leonard of Quirm.

".. and call me Leonard Mr dibbler, I am pleased to meet you"

"I think you have got ahead of me Leonard, what new Engine and new fuels? And how will this help me in the task I have been set?" responded Dibbler.

"We need to get foods and so on across the Disc at accelerated rates to keep them fresh. As the roads are in poor conditions or infact non existent on some parts of the Disc I propose a flying Machine that works within the Atmosphere in the nature of Birds.We can not use a Space faring Vassal as I have been stopped from making another one by the Gods, but at this time the Technology required to raise a flying Machine be means of flapping or the use of a screw is alas also non existent. There fore I will need to develop an Internal Combustion Engine that will be light enough and powerful enough to raise the Vehicle under its own power. External combustion is out due to the Weight penalty and the risk of fire......... and I need to find a Fuel that is Liquid or Gaseous to make the Engine run reliably ........ I have tried pellets of Number 4 powder as a fuel but getting the ratio of air to fuel and rate of insertion into the Engine proved to difficult. I had a number of near misses trying to get that to work. Are you all right Mr Dibbler?" Asked Leonard.

A glazed look vanished from Dibbler face "Ya, sorry got slightly over ........ errrr......... whelmed... then. Looks like I am not actually needed as you have already come up with a solution to the problem"

"I can handle the technician details but unfortunately I lack your skills at negotiation. This project has to be run on a tight Budget. Mr Dibbler it will be your job to find the parts I require at bargain prices, after all the cheaper we can do this the more Money you will have left from your profits."

A grin appeared on Dibblers face. "Nice to be working with you........" said Dibbler grasping Leonards hand and shaking it vigorously.
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Part 2

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:53 pm

--------------------- Parts ---------------------

Dibbler and Leonard sat at a table outside a Cafe, note book at the ready.............

"Here are some of the things I require" said Leonard, as he passed a sheet to Dibbler.

"Lets have a look............ A boat Hull Forty Feet long ............ Bamboo cane Two Hundred Feet ...........Thin Canvas sheeting Two Hundred and Fifty Square Feet ............. Seventy Five Feet of High Tension Cable and Twenty Gallon of Boat Doping Fluid and paint brushes. Emmm most of this should not be a problem as I know for a sunken boat that is abandoned and a few Trolls should be able to rescue it. The canvas....... I have loads left over from the sets we had when we were shooting the Clicks...... Bamboo too. May have to buy the cable and doping fluids unless I can sort out a trade deal with the wholesale suppliers I use. Any thing else?" Said Dibbler.

"Well yes, I will have to cast or get cast an Engine case and a few other parts and need a special Metal...... I have to try to keep the weight down by using the new Metal I have been investigating. I call it Aluminininium and I believe there is a large deposit of its ore at Copper Head, can you get enough for me to cast the engine?......... I have a small amount of the Metal already, if you can get around Half a Ton of ore I can smelt it in my lab."

"Do the Dwarfs know it is a valuable ore?" asked Dibbler.

"No, I believe it is a bi-product and dumped as waste spoil in the Copper Mines there. At the moment it has no use as it is a very soft Metal and valueless........ but with a few impurities I can make it strong enough."

"Good, good .... I can offer to take some off their hands for a small fee, if they get interested I can say I will be used as ballast in shipping." said Dibbler.

"I have to go and see the Alchemists as I have made a choice of Fuel, they can manufacture the required blends that I will require. I have decided to use a substance Call glyceryl trinitrate........... I was considering the use of Fat or Oil based Fuels but the Health risk and damage to Nature would have been to high and if I have used fat the smell of frying food would have been unbearable ....! The only down side to using this substance is that it is Very sensitive to shocks. I will need to develop some sort of damper and baffles in the fuel system to prevent premature detonations." Leonard said.

"Premature detonations?" inquired Dibbler.

"Yes that is how my new Engine will work, it is basically an air pump driven by the air and fuel mixture exploding inside it. A set of bungs connected to a shaft are driven up and down, up and dow,up and down and so on by the exploding mixture. All we need to do is fix a Air Screw or blades to the end of the shaft and we will have a means of propelling the ship of the Air forward."

"Ho, sounds ..... safe." intoned Dibbler.

"No risk no gain Mr Dibbler" responded Leonard.

"Right I will have to get a move on, lots to do" said Dibbler as He stood up.

"Yes me too, I will see you in a Week or two. You can find me in the Boat shed at the docks. Ask Sergeant colon or corporal Nobbs for directions as they have both been there. Good luck Mr Dibbler"

---------------- construction -----------------------

The boat sat in a framework just inside the wide double doors of the Shed at the yard, an army of young Apprentices at work spripping the planking from its sides.

"What do you want us to do with the wood Mr Dibbler?" inquired a high pitched spotty youth.

"Pile it up next to the Roadway lad, I have a Troll picking it up later today. Big market around here for seasoned Wood."

"Hello." Said Leonard as He walked through the door way, "Things are going well I see."

"Ya,the lads Lord Vetinari got for us from the Guild of Artifactors are doing a fine job of stripping the Hull, but you know if the flying machine is to launch from water it will need all that wood replacing or it will sink!" said Dibbler.

"Quite right Mr Dibbler. I intend to make the flying machine as flexible as possible as we may need to launch from paved roads, snow or water so I intend to replace the wood of the hull with the canvas you supplied and then seal it with doping and pitch to give it a light but water tight seal. I will also use some of the material to manufacture a box kite construction that will serve as the wings. A smaller box kite will be attached to the rear to allow steerage via a set of pulleys and cables. The wings will have to bend to give lateral control in flight and this too will be done with the use of strung cables attached to a tiller arrangement."

"And the Engine?" asked Dibbler.

"The Engine has been cast, thank you. The Artificers are at this moment finishing off the casting and honing the part ready for assembly tomorrow. I have done some more research and developed a means of mixing the air and fuel at the calculated ratios required to give the correct burn rates for the device.I call it the correct air fuel mixing device."

"And when will you be testing it?" inquired Dibbler.

"On our maiden voyage." responded Leonard.

"Your the Scientist Leonard........ on a different subject it appears the Librarian has got wind of your impending voyage and will be along for the first ride. I tried to tell Him you can cope without His assistance but He insists in going along for the ride."

"And you understood Him?" responded a querying de Quirm.

"He hung me out of one of the Windows of the Tower at UU, until I insisted he go along for the ride." said Dibbler, a glazed look of recalled fear in his eyes.

"Ho well that's settled then, Me and You and the Librarian on the first flight."

"Hold on, who said I wanted to go on this death machine!" spurted out Dibbler.

"But you must." said the deadpan voice of the Patrician as he entered the Shed followed by a number of Palace Guards.

"I insist......... who knows what may go wrong during you voyage, what parts you may need to precure Mr Dibbler" He said.

A despondent and beaten Dibbler stared at the skeletal frame that was to be the flying machine.

"Your Lordship ,We will be assembling the wing and tiller parts tomorrow. I think the Engine will be ready by thursday. The lads have volunteered to work over night in finishing off the hull and sea trials will begin as soon as the doping and pitch have set. Various other parts and assemblies are nearing the fitting out stage, seats steering handles and so forth. Baring any unforseen mishaps the flying machine should be ready by Monday." Leonard said.

"Excellent, now I have a small request for you chaps. I need a package delivered to the Sheik's palace in Klatch, Mr Von Lipwig tells me it is a Six Month round trip to deliver mail and I need this parcel deliver within two weeks. Think you can do it?" Vetinari inquired.

"By direct flight over the sea it should not be a problem. The Three of use can take turns at the tiller..... depended on the speed we attain I estimate the trip will take no longer than a day or two at most." said Leonard.

"That is good news, well gentlemen I will be watching your launch on Monday from atop the Palace spire. Gods Speed to you all." said the Patrician as He exited the shed.

"Right I am off too, I must see how the Engine is getting on. The lads here are doing a fine task so I will see you on Monday for final fitting and fettling. Good day Mr dibbler" said Leonard as He to exited the Shed.

Dibbler stood alone in deep thought , surrounded by happy young lads who knew the machine they were building for Him, and at the lowest possible costs, was nearing finishing and none of them would have to fly in it.......
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Part 3

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:54 pm

--------------- Afloat and Fueled--------------------

Well today is the day the Flying machine will sink or swim, thought Leonard. The finished machine sat at the top of the ramp that lead into the river, a square cut out of one end of the shed to allow the passage out on the waters.

"Are we ready to go?" asked Dibbler.

"Almost, just need to fill the fuel reservoir and charge the system........" replied Leonard.

"Is that it" asked Dibbler pointing at a number of glass bottles filled with a yellow brown oily fluid.

"Yes the alchemists made it for me, I got it done at cost price but I also had to relinquished the rights to my idea of lightning lemons to the Guild"

"I will start to fill the tank for you" said Dibbler reaching for one of the bottles.

"NO NO, please leave that to me Mr Dibbler, the fluid is very temperamental and I have devised a special method of filling the reservoir" insisted De Quirm.

"Ok, may I watch?"

"You may, but please do not touch anything unless I ask you....... or I fear we may become airborne in a manor other than I intended!" said De Quirm.

The flying machine, the hull's ribs showed though the thin fabric, the wings atop the hull with the Engine sandwiched between the upper and lower wings, the Engine had the look of a metallic snowflake... six cylinder heads sat in a radial pattern around the gear set on the end of its crankshaft from which A pair of chains were linked to a pair of Four bladed propellers set a Third of the way along in each of the wings. The wings were stowed length wise front to rear of the hull,and a smaller version of the box kite wings was attached to the rear of the hull. At the front end were a pair of seats and a set of controls. Behind the centre point of the hull where the wings were hinged was a single seat, in an ideal spot for someone to keep and eye on the Engine.

Sat atop the upper wing was a cylindrical shaped tank, brass pipework feeding into the gubbings of the Engine. An exhaust lead from the engine to the rear of the machine, with a large flat surface about Two feet square halfway along its lenght.

"Very impressive, I think I can see what most of the parts do but why is there a flattened section in the exhaust tubing?" asked Dibbler.

"The gasses and waste bi-products from the Engine are feed clear of the ship, or we may be overwhelmed by the fumes. I thought why waste all that heat, if you look in the small locker under the Engineers station seat you will find a frying Pan, some salted Bacon, a little lard and a few fresh Eggs ........... we will not starve on this trip!" replied Leonard.

"And now to fuel the reservoir" said Leonard picking up a long glass rod which He inserted into the top of the reservoir via a large hatch.

"Can you please pass me one of the bottles Mr Dibbler... but please be careful not to Jar them........."

Dibbler very carefully lifted a bottle and passed it to De Quirm. Leonard removed the cork with gentle care and then proceeded to pour the fluid into the reservoir tank by allowing it to slowly trickle along the glass rod so it did not splash. He then placed the empty bottle into a large tank of water, allowing the bottle to fill with water before letting it sink to the bottom. They repeated this until all the bottles were safely emptied.

"Now to prime the system" said Leonard.

"Prime it?" said Dibbler.

"Yes, the fuel is quite viscous and needs to be force feed into the fuel and air mixing device before enters into the Engine, being so volatile the only way I could safely think of pressuring the system is with a balloon inserted into the top of the fuel reservoir.As the fuel is used up the pressure inside the balloon drops, so I have affixed a gauge here that is calibrated between full and empty" He said as He inserted a large rubberised bag into the top of the tank and proceeded to pump air in to it. He then bolted the lid on and attached the gauge to a small connection on the balloon. It read full.

"The balloon has the added benefit of preventing the fuel within the reservoir from sloshing around and detonating uncontrollably"

"Nice" responded Dibbler with a deadpan voice.

"And now we are ready to go, the palace will be delivering the package in the morning and the Liberian is at this moment doing a little research..... I have been lead to believe that will help us on our quest. I think we can launch the Ship now and rotate the wings into position out on the river." Leonard said.

"Come on Mr Dibbler, all aboard...... "

Leonard and Dibbler clambered onto the Flying machine, Leonard leaned over and pulled on a small lever next to the launch rail. A clanking sound was heard and the flying machine slid down the rail onto the river surface and through the exit at the end of the shed.....

Out on the river Leonard and Dibbler pulled and pushed on different sides of the wings and they swung around 90 Degrees and locked into place with a loud click. Leonard passed a light weight paddle and He and Dibbler rowed the machine next to a small jetty and tied up the boat.

On the jetty was a detachment of the palace guard "Evenin sir, Lord Vetinari sent us to keep an eye on the vassal and give a hand if required" said the Captain as he gave a text book salute.

"Thank you , just make sure no one is allowed near it over night, everything is set for the ......... ho no I nearly forgot" exclaimed Leonard and He speed off into the growing dusk.

"Where are you going?" shouted Dibbler.

"I need to see Lady Sybil Vimes, I nearly forgot the Dragons!" came back the fading response.

Dibbler looked at the Captain.

"Don't look at me, I haven't any more of an inklings then you do"...........


-------------- Maiden Voyage ----------------

The mist hung over the river, a flotilla of ship were scouring the river in a vain attempt to clear it of various rubbish, a pile of logs, dead dogs, netting and bottles amongst other things was on the other bank of the river. The pile was already being scavenged by gnolls in search of a banquet...

The Librarian was already at the jetty, a large volume under His arm with the writing AERONAUTICS FOR BEGINNERS on it. He was wearing a tight fitting Leather cap with tinted glass lenses set in a flap the covered His eyes.

Dibbler sat in the Engineers seat with a fluffy woolen jacket and a scarf wrapped around His neck.

Leonard was wearing a Gray boiler suit and sturdy wool lined boots. He also had a woolen leather jacket and a pair of goggles. Under each of his arms were tubes of metal, sealed in at one end and open at the other. The snouts of Swamp Dragons could be seen protruding from the open ends of the tubes.......

Waiting for them was William de Worde and Otto Chriek with His iconograph set up ready for action.

"MY my, I am surprised to see some many people,someone had been busy talking" said Leonard, looking at Dibbler.

Crowds were gathering on the opisite bank of the river.

Written in bold White paint on the sides of the Flying Boat were the words .......... Harga's House of Ribs, you have tried the best now try our Ribs. The wood ribs showing through the fabric were painted in a Brownish sauce colour.....

Leonard shook His head in disbelieve.

"Can we please have a few words before the flight chaps?" asked De Worde as Otto lifted the black fabric tent that covered the viewer on the iconograph box. He raised a tray of black powder and said "Cheese, much better than... Bloo..... Blooo...... Blood" and then triggered the flash. He issued a scream of agony and spun around smoke billowing off a few exposed parts of His person. His mad dance slowed and then He was normal again.

"He is developing a resistance to the light, just smokes now instead of reducing to dust. The Factor 3000 skin cream helps as well..." explained William.

"That's nice, well done Mr Chriek" said Leonard.

"We are here to represent the Technological advances that the City has made and are proud and excited to be going on this Historic ground breaking trip. When Men can travel so easily between the wide spread parts of the World then I can see a day when we will understand each other better, and then what piece will reign."

He gave a cheery wave and turned to the flying Boat.

He climbed onto the air ship handing the tubes to dibbler.. "Please strap the tubes to the swinging bracket either side of your seat Mr Dibbler, open ends facing to the rear if you will" Leonard checked the pressure in the fuel Tank and gave the balloon a few final pumps of air. The Librarian climbed into the seat net to the pilots seat, and made Himself comfortable.

"I say old boy, were did you get the book on flying from? I thought this voyage is a first.........." asked Leonard.

Dibbler spoke up "It is a first, He intends to write it as we go along, take a look in the book..... the pages are blank!"

The Librarian opened the book and riffled the the pages, all of them blank. "Ook OOk OOOk" He said excitedly.

On the banks of the river were a multitude of people, all curious as to wither the ship of the Air would clear the river. The gamblers Guild had set up stands and were doing a brisk trade, the Thieves making the most of the crowds to give the apprentices some pick pocket training.

"Now Gentlemen this is what we need to do to get aloft. We will paddle out into the centre of the river, and face into the wind, if you look at the ribbon fixed to the pole on the front of the Vessel that will indicate the speed and direction of the air flow......... Mr Dibbler you will please open the small brass tap on the rear of the fuel tank upon my request, you need to then lift the tin tubes so the brackets are overhanging the sides of the hull, they should slide in position quite well as the mechanism is sprung loaded. I will then ignite the boosters and with that we will be accelerated forward and the force of the air passing through the propelling blades will spin them and also the Engine. This will force Air into the Fuel Air mixing device and thus a mixture will enter the spinning Engine and start the burning process and thus we will be aloft. All clear on that? Good..... Off we go....."

With that Leonard cast off,He and Dibbler paddled the vessel into the midstream turning into the wind. The Librarian made himself busy by waving at the crowds and doing back flips to roars of delight...

"Sorry I forgot to mention the Engine is quite loud we need these" Leonard pulled a block of Quermian cheese from under the co-pilots seat and took out a sampling cutter, he proceeded to cut out Six inch long samples of cheese.

"Ook?"

"No don't eat them, just push one into each ear, else you will be quite deaf by the end of the trip!"

The three adventurers plashed the ear plugs home and Leonard indicated to Dibbler to open the tap on the Tank.

He then pulled on a lever marked BOOSTERS........... mirrors dropped in place and Dragons flared.

Whooosh, band, pop, klunk, GREEEEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR........

The Vessel speed down the river, blades spinning wildly the Engine Roaring away, the speed built up and then the hull cleared the surface..........

The wings rocked from side to side and from His seat looking over the side Dibbler had a lovely view of the Water, Bank , Sky, People, Bank, Water, Bank, Water than Sky.....

"I think I have it now , Yes Yes slow careful movements and there we are" the Flying Ship settled down to a slow swaying movement almost as though it was bobbling on the waves, gaining hight. The librarian was scribbling notes as fast as he could in the book resting on his knees....

"Mr Dibbler you look very Green" said Leonard as he looked back.

Dibbler leaned over the side and had a great view of the spent Dragons, now released from the thin Metal tubes, spiraling back Home to Lady Vimes. He threw up..... the crowd below scattered as His breakfast hit the streets below. The Gnolls closed in....

"Leonard Leonard!! We have forgotten Vetinari's package " shouted a desperate Dibbler recovering from His moment.

"No, I have made arrangements for an aerial pickup, can you please stow the tube again Mr Dibbler?" said Leonard, and he turned the ship in the direction of the palace increasing the power to the Engine and pulling back on the stick.

As the ship tilted to the side Leonard had a glimpse of Sir Samuel Vimes chasing along the path that ran alongside the river. He appeared to be waving a fist at them in anger.

"That is an unusual thing.... I wonder why He is chasing us........?" said Leonard

"OOK...?" said the Librarian scratching His Chin and rear at the same time.

Dibbler said nothing and sunk lower in His seat as to make him self invisible to anyone outside who may be angry at Him.

"Mr Dibbler?"

"He may want the City Watch boat back, I thought they had given up on it after it sunk the last time........" Shouted the man.

"Ho dear we are in for it........ best press on though" said Leonard.

High above the Palace floated a Red Balloon with a thin string trailing from it, Leonard aimed the ship at it, the string hooked up on a loop fixed next to the co-pilots seat. There was a small tug and then trailing behind the vessel was a small box.

"If you could be so kind as to retrieve the box I would appreciate it"

"Oook"

The box was recovered and stowed under the co-pilots seat. It was about Six inch long and felt chilly to the touch.

"Now off we goooo......." shouted Leonard as He turned towards the coast and gunned the throttle.

Dibbler threw up again......... the Librarian ate a Banana.
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Part 4

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:55 pm

------------ The Trip ---------------

"We will folllow the River to the Coast, I intend to swing a right at the Mouth of the River and folow the coast for a while until we reach Chirm and then head across the straights to Ell Kinte and on to Gebra, this will allow a us to make the trip with the possibility of a safe place to put down if we need to." Shouted Leonard.

Dibbler groaned a response, as He wiped sweat from His forehead, He still looked Green.

"Oook Ook Ooook!" Shouted the Librarian, pointing to the right side of the Air Ship.

"Where?"

"Oook"

Leonard leaned over and looked.......... A few Hundred feet below were a flight of Swans, all gracefully moving through the cloud scape in the normal V formation........ but at the Head of the V was a black figure sitting on a Broom stick........

"Lets take a look" said Leonard as He throttled back, the Engine pop popping as it settled into an idle and then banked the Ship over and began descending.

As they drew up parallel to the lead figure it became clear that the rider was the well known and feared Granny Weatherwax.

"HO THERE" shouted Leonard

"WHAT THE HELL" said Granny as She swerved in shock at being taken unawares......

"Sorry, should have fitted a horn to warn others of our approach" said Leonard.

The Swans slid back in the V formation allow the ship to take up its place in the V.........

"Larks you could have given me a Heart failure, what are you doing up here you fools?" She responded.

"We are on a Quest at the request of Lord Vetinari, Gebra is our destination. And you?"

"On my way Home, I have been Visiting a Friend in Sto Lat.... your going the wrong way if you are heading for Gebra don`t you know."

"Yes but by going this way we will be able to put down near land for most of the trip, if Leshp were above the waves I may have been temepeted to do a direct trip."

"Good idea, seeing that you are in that contraption. I would never trust that thing to keep Me in the Air....../ No.... I would rather stick with My trusty Magic Broom thank you so very much."

"Yes a Broom may be a tried and tested way of Flying but as we all know it is limited in speed and the places were it is safe operate. Take your Broom over the edge would you? No..... and with a little training non Magical operators could be plying the Air transporting People and goods are around the disc within a few years." Said Leonard.

"Hell no... I will have to put up with fools racing around the Sky at all times of the Day revving up and causing trouble and generally be in the way." Granny said and sighed shaking Her Head.

"Why all the Swans? Asked Dibbler.

"Ho they just happen to be going in the same direction as I was, they form up like this naturally and I quite like their company on the trip. They are a little like the Dolphins of the Air in that respect, you know like the way they travel in front of a Ship...."

"Well it was nice to speak with you but we are on a quest so I will say fare well, and do not worry about being buzzed by Air Ships as I think we will be working at different altitudes. When I have ironed out the bugs." Said Leonard. He gave Granny a cheery wave and shoved the throttle forward........... the Engine coughed then roared into action, the vessel sprung away from Granny in a cloud of noxious fume. She sneezed .....

"Darn noisy smelly thing will never catch on............ I hope. Do they know how chilly it gets up there........ " She thought sat a top her Broom.

The Air ship disappeared into the base of the cloud cover....

"How is the Book coming on?" Leonard asked the Librarian.

"Oook" said the orangutan handing it to Him.

On the pages were Diagrams of the Ship, the controls with arrows pointing this way and that showing how the Vehicle was controlled. Next to the Pictures were notes. "Oook ook oo ooo oook" and so on they read. And on the back page was a partially completed Map, an on going job.

Aerial cartography, good idea......... the idea of more accurate mapping pleased Leonard.

"Very Good idea sir, may I have a copy at the end of the trip?" asked Leonard as He handed the Book back to the Librarian.

"Ook" said He said nodding His Head.

As they climbed through the Cloud cover the covering the ship became damper and damper......... the Librarian had to wipe due from the glass of his goggles.....

Eventually they broke through the clouds and into brilliant Sun shine.

The view was spectacular, the clouds looked like snow covered mountain ranges and the Air was crisp and fresh with no taint of Humanity or pollution that the crew had grown up with back in Ahnk.

"Smells funny don't it" Said Dibbler. "Nice view though.."

"OooooK" responded the Librarian making sketched of the panorama set out before him.

"I think I would like a rest now, keeping the Ship on coarse is some what tiring. Would you like a go at the controls? Leonard asked the Librarian.

A leathery hand grabbed the back of His neck as He was hoisted from the Pilots seat and dumped behind it. The Librarian vaulted into it in a second........ a extremely wide grin on His face. The slow undulations that had been part of the flying characteristics up to now stopped.

"My my.... you are a naturel flyer!" exclaimed Leonard.

"Makes sense, any ape that can't keep His balance in the tree tops will not live long enough to have young of their own."
said Dibbler as He recalled the article He had read in the Times about Ponder Stibbons ideas on Evolution.

Ahead of them and poking through the clouds was the top of Para Mountain, the clouds were pushing and riding around the peak on the Ankh side and dropping most of their moisture as rain in a vain attempt to rise above it. On the other side of the peak were clear skies...........

"We will go over the top to clear the turbulent Air" said Leonard. "If you can clear the top of the peak by at least Five Hundred Feet we should be in the clear" He said to the Librarian.

"Oook oook" was the response has the Pilot maxed the throttle lever and pulled back on the control stick. The Ship pointed its nose at the heavens and up they went.......

The Air grew thinner and thinner, the chill become Bone achingly cold.

"Leonard, I don't feel to googgg urrg" said Dibbler as He slumped in the Engineers seat and passed out.

"Ha ha ha......... flying flying weeee........." Leonards responded.

The Librarian had already lolled back in the pilots seat the controls were moving about at their own will.

As He looked around in a Drunken stupor Leonard noticed sheets of Ice forming on the wings, the dew they had picked up on the passage through the clouds was freezing solid on every surface.... and sat on the top of the wing was a dark figure in a Black robe, over its shoulder a scythe.......

"Hellooooo no unbaid plasengers aer are allow in the .......... HA ha."

"YOU ARE VERY CLOSE TO THE END OF THE LINE. A FEW MORE MINUETS AND YOU COULD BE MINE..... IF I WERE YOU I WOULD CONSIDER GOING A LITTLE LOWER NEXT TIME.YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO DESCEND NOW AS YOU HAVE CLEARED THE MOUNTAIN.... HO HAVE A NICE KNAP" Said DEATH.

Leonard said nothing........ He had passed out.

In the ever thinner Air the ice was getting thicker, the wing on the left side started to vibrate as sheets of ice delaminated away and the Air flow over the surface of the fabric was disrupted, the Engine running on thinner and thinner Air stalled. The Air Ship dipped to the left and started back down spinning like a sycamore seed in a flat spin.........
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Part 5

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:56 pm

---------- Turn Back? ---------------

The Air Ship dropped ..........as the altitude lowered the Air thickened.

The Librarian opened a Blood shot eye and what He viewed made no sense....... White Cloud tops were passing in front of Him in a Blur from Left to Right and the Ship was making loud groaning and banging noises..... He looked back and saw Leonard still laid out in the bottom on the Hull and there was a smell of burning......... then He notice Dibbler slumped against the Hot plate on the Exhaust and held there by the centrifugal force of the spinning Ship, His face resting on it and His Beard singed away. Reaching out with His extra long arms the Librarian tugged Him off the hot plate and down to a place of relative safety inside the hull. With a muzzy and splitting headache He turn back to the controls.... as the Ship was just about to plunge into the clouds. "Oooook" HE said and grabbed the control stick, pulling and pushing did nothing........... the Ship was inside the clouds now, how far until we hit the sea.......... what to do?

A thought struck him, He had viewed Birds diving for food and realised they always plunged head first at their target and appeared to be in control... He had never seen any diving in a wild spin ( well not live Birds, but He had seen them do this after receiving a crossbolt shot from one of Ridcully's hunting outings )..... how to recover a dive? Glancing around He noticed the string stowed under the seat they had recovered after picking up the Patricans Parcel ......... now for... yes. Ripping Dibblers Leather jacket from His still body He tied the string around the arms and then tied it to the bracket used to hold the Dragon booster pod on the left side of the Hull then flung the jacket into the slip streaming Air. It flew under the rear wing and trailed our behind the Ship. The decelerating nearly launched Him from the Ship but he managed to recover to the pilots seat, the nose of the ship was already dropping and the spin stopping.

Leonard made a groaning sound and sat up rubbing His forehead "Wheer ur wee" He mumbled...

The Ship had stopped its mad spin, but the nose did not want to pull up and this was unfortunate because the view ahead had cleared and the Sea was rushing up at an an alarming rate.

The Air blasting through the propelling blades had caused them to spin up and restart the Engine.

"OoooK oook ooooooK" The Librarian screamed at Leonard.

"Whaa?" He said.

"OOOOK OOOOOK" replied the Ape pointing at the string and making a cutting motion with His free Foot.

Leonard looked around then spotted what the Ape had pointed at.

The Librarian was now stood up in the front and pulling very hard on the control column, Leonard suddenly understood and pulled a small Lancure multitool from one of His pockets and unfolded the various attachments "Lets see, corkscrew , magnifying Glass, File, Screwdiver, Compass, Adjustable Spanner....... yes here it is........ Scissors" He said smiling and glanced back to the Librarian. The Librarian was grinning at Him............. sort of. He was showing a lot of Yellow pointy teeth.

Leonard cut the string...... the trailing Jacket disappeared behind them at a frightening rate.

The ship was very low now, the nose rose up and the crew felt very heavy......... there was a massive sound like someone doing a belly flop into water from Five Miles High. They had hit the Water..........

"It could have been worse, at least we are all alive" said Leonard.

The others gave Him a long look.

The side of Dibblers face was red raw from the burning it had received. Leonard had applied some of Nanny Oggs patent skin cream to it from the emergency locker.

The Ship was in tatters, most of the fabric on the wings was shredded but the bamboo frame had survived intact. The Engine was ticking over and the Coast line was ahead about Two miles away.

Leonard clambered over the remains of the wing and inspected the Fuel TAnk.

"We were very luck, the tank has slid down the brackets, if they had all been tight...." said Leonard after inspected the locking clamps, He found some of them had been undone....... if all the clamps had been tight the blow from crashing into the Sea would have detonated the fuel.......... and the only person He had seen atop the wing was............ Death?

"I think we have cheated fate.......... thank you" He mumbled to Him self.

"THAT'S OK. I WILL SEE YOU LATER ANYWAY ...... BUT THEN AGAIN I WILL SEE EVERYONE LATER....." wispered a voice in His ear.

Leonard shivered.........

"Were are we?" Asked Dibbler.

"We cleared the Mountain so we are close to Chirm, we can put in there and make repairs" Said Leonard.

"You must be joking ,I have no intentions of going on with this flight. One near miss is enough for me!" said Dibbler.

Leonard looked downcast. The Librarian was busy sorting and trying to recover the pages of His book from the surface of the Waters.

"We will head to Chirm, you may be able to pick up a coach there Mr Dibbler........ I understand your feelings on this. Both Me and the Librarian Volunteered for this trip but I understand that you were recruited under different circumstances... "

"Right on" replied Dibbler.

With the aid of the Librarian Leonard remounted the reservoir and then throttled the Engine up and with used of the a Paddle turned the Vessel towards the shoreline and Chirm.


---------- Repairs ---------------

The shore was a gravely cove, a boat ramp lead into the waters and a small industry was set up in order to service the local fishing industry. As they approached the ram a small crowd had gathered upon hearing the sound of their Engine.

"Turn the valve in the fuel line to off will you please Mr Dibbler" called out Leonard and the coasted up on to the Beach head next to the ramp. The Librarian leapt from the Vessel, startling a few of the on lookers, and tied up the Ship to one of the wooden posts. Under His arm was the soggy book........the trio removed the cheese plugs from their ears, Leonard and Dibbler tossed them into the Sea and the Librarian ate His.

Leonard retrieved the package from under the seat and He and Dibbler steeped off the Ship on to the Beach. Dibbler made off towards the Town.........

A repair shed was built a few feet from the top end of the ram, a big built man stood at the entrance to it, he was the shop forman. Leonard and the Librarian approached Him.......

Dibbler trudged along the dirt path that wend its way from Little Chirm by the Sea to the Village of Chirm, he felt bad.

Why had His life been so filled with upsets and disappointments...... He had lead a fairly Honest life, up to a point. He had never intentionally hurt anyone or robbed a Bank, some of His deals had been a little unethical but basically He considered that He was a good Man. One of the Gods had got it in for Him He was sure.

He ached, His face stung from the burn and He was dog tired......... get a good meal, find a barbers shop and get the unburned side of His face cleaned up and book a Room for the Night in the best Inn he could find. A few drinks and in the Morning book a seat on the next coach back to the City. Good plan.

He entered the main and only Street of Chirm, the Village consisted of about Sixty or so Houses and cottages either side of the narrow Road. Tucked in between the Houses was a Shop selling General goods, a Barbers/ dentist/ chemists shop and the Inn. The inn had a sign hanging out front with a picture of a Drunk lying across the main door step and the words " The Halfway Inn" painted on it in bright Green.

Dibbler entered the Inn, inside was dark and close, the noise of the local trade died as He entered... all eyes were on Him.

"Hello" He said to the not unpleasant looking Woman whom stood behind the Bar, She pulled a pint of Old Woodys Beer........ "I would like to Books a room of the Night please" He said.

"Ye would would ye?" responded the Woman.

Dibblers caught a glimpse of His refection in the mirror behind the Bar, His hair was matted and stuck out at all angles, one side of His face looked Cooked and the other half was bearded........ and he had seen better looked clothing on a tramp. He was wet, had muddy boots and still had His goggles perched on top his head.

"I can pay...." He placed a soggy Dollar note on the Bar.

A smile magically appeared on the face of the Barmaid "Ahnk cash is very welcome in these part,this will be fine".

She finished pouring the Pint handed it to a Barfly and told Him to follow Her. A door to the rear of the Bar lead up some rickey steps to a Large room with a Double and a single bed it it.

"This room is all yours for the Night, Breakfast is at Sun up and inclusive. I you intend to do any entertaining please remember to quite and not cause any disturbance to the other guests." She pulled back the Sheets on the Double and aired the bedding. "Hope you don't mind my asking but what happened to you, you look terrible.......... was it bandits? "

"No, bandits I could cope with just give them your money and they ride away........." He said and the retold her of the adventure He had endured....... She sat on the end of the Bed listening with Her mouth open and a look of shock on Her pretty face.

"Woooow!!" She spoke when He finished "That sounds exciting, I wish I could do something like that one day, it is sooo boring here. Same faces Day Day out, pull a Pint, boring."

"Yes well I have had an adventure or two in my life, managed a band a few Years ago, The Band With Rocks in and ran a Company in the Flicks industry" He said.

Her eyes opened wide "I loved that Band, I a have all their sheet music and went to a concert in Ahnk. You must Be Dibbler, I remember your name on the music sheets as it was written in bigger letters than the bands" She said.

"Yes well anyone can play an instrument but the skill is in running the band don't you know......" He said chest visually swelling with pride.

"If there is anything else you need just ask, or leave a note on the pad nailed up next to the till if I am out" She said rising to leave, She then stopped and asked "If you are free later I have the evening off, the Cook here is quite good..."

Dibbler smiled " Six Thirty ok with you? " He asked.

"Fine, but please tidy up a little..........and by the way I am Jenny" She said smiled and left the room.

Well well, things were starting to look up at last ......... He picked up the Key left on the small table and left to get a shave and new set of cloths.......


Leonard and the librarian approached the foreman " Good-day " Leonard said "I would like to inquire as to the possibility of employing your services in relation to the repair and renovation of our Vessel. "

The Man looked over the top of His Eye Glasses and examined the pair, as though He had never seen the likes before. He then glanced at the Airship............

"Had a bit of trouble have ye? Pirates attacked?" He asked.

"No, we are Aeronauts, pirates would be hard pressed to stop us.... while we are up that is." Leonard then explained what had happened.

"Well I have never heard such a tale in my Whole life, you must be the bravest or maddest.........erm ......... men on the Disc..."

He headed to the Ship and Leonard explained what was required. He also asked for some extra parts as He had plans for upgrades to the Ship.

"We can get the canvass and tin sheet, the Copper tubing I already have........ I will be able to do the work tomorrow...... Em ........should come to about One Hundred and Fifty Dollars inclusive of parts and Labor."

"Mr Dibbler......." said Leonard, He looked around and glanced at the Librarian......... "He's gone into Town, we must find Him before He spends all the money!"

"Ooook o***K" bellowed the Librarian as He knuckled off toward the Village on what will be seen to be a fruitless mission to rescue the cash. Leonard chased after Him, it is quite surprising how fast an orangutan can Knuckle along........

Dibbler stepped out of the Shop, clean Shaven on the unburnt portion of His face, Hair trimmed and in the Best Suit and Shoes the Tailors shop had in stock He made His way back towards the Inn, a jaunty step at His feet.

The Librarian came scuttling into the Village, Leonard chasing after puffing and panting. The Librarian caught sight of Dibbler and screamed "OOOOOOOOOOOKKKKKKKKKK" waiving His long arms wildly above His head he ran toward Dibbler.

"Oook ooooook?" He said holding out His hands cupped in front of Him.

Dibbler stopped and stared with a questioning look on His face "Sorry....?" He said.

The Ape lost His temper and grabbed Dibbler around His ankles and hoisted Him upside down into the Air, He then Violently shook Dibbler. There was a tinkling noise as all the remainder of the cash scattered across the road. There was about Twenty Five Dollars lest in the cash float.

"Put Him down, put Him down" said Leonard as He examined the small scattering of cash in the ground. "Not enough....... Ho dear."

The Librarian lowered Dibbler Hands first onto the street and then sat down on the Road and thoughtfully started to pick His nose.

Dibbler set about recovering the Money.

"Well that was nice I must say, there is me recovering from a near death situation and you go and scare the life out of me, what did you do that for? asked Dibbler.

"We need One Hundred and fifty Dollars to have repairs made on the Airship Mr Dibbler, do you have any more cash on you?" replied Leonard.

"No and I never had that amount on Me in the first place..." said Dibbler.

"Well that it then, may as well find a place to hold up for the Night while I formulate a new plan." Leonard said.

"I have a book in the Inn and it have Two beds, we can share. Come on Gents follow Me."

They made their way back to the Inn,the Librarian got a few strange looks from the Inns Midday drinkers but no one felt brave enough to complain about an animal in the Barroom.

Dibbler picked the key up at the Bar and gave a Wink to the Barmaid and they made there way to the room.

The Librarian made Him self at Home by collapsing onto the Double Bed and spreading out to occupy it.

"Have you made any plans Mr Dibbler?" inquired Leonard.

"Well yes I intend to have a nice Evenings Meal, have a good Nights rest and in the morning I intent to book a ticket back to the city on the next Coach through here and then never leave the ground again!" He responded.

Leonard nodded.......... the Librarian was asleep His book clutch tightly to His expansive Chest.
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Part 6

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:57 pm

---------- Dibbler's Day -----------------------

After they had tidied up and rested the Trio made there way down to the Bar, it was a lot busier than at lunch time as a most of the Farm workers had finished for the Day, the Evening had started to draw in. And Word had got round about the Trio, there was a loud round of applause as they entered the Bar. Three free pints of ale were sat on the Bar waiting for them. The Librarian and Dibbler downed them in one gulp but Leonard sniffed His......

"Ho dear....... not an alcoholic beverage, I never drink alcoholic beverages. They do terrible things to your brains don't you know!" Leonard said.

"If we insult these nice people by refusing their hospitality they may just do something terrible to you brains anyway so shut up and drink up" whispered Dibbler in His ear, as the onlookers watched them.

Leonard downed the Pint. "Emmmm.... not an unplezhant exsperance... can I have anuther one?"

"Blimmy, that went right to you head! You really don't drink do you ?" asked Dibbler.

"NAaa but I could get ta like .. it" slurred Leonard as He downed another.

"Hello" Said Jenny as She appeared in the stair way,in a low cut evening dress. Some wag in the Bar wolf whistled....
and Leonard said "Corrrr...... Hic."

"This way please" and they were shown to a Table by the Inn Keeper.

"Sorry that the Menu is a little limited but the Sheep are Lambing at the moment so all we have is Fish or Chicken, will the ........ Gentleman eat meat?" inquired the Keep as He indicated towards the Librarian.......

"I think He will eat just about anything He can subdue, you see although He looks like an orangutan He is, in fact, a Wizard" said Leonard.

"Glad to hear He is not a fussy eater, we are a little short on Fruit at the moment, plenty of Veg though.." Said the Keep as He took the order.

Dibbler sat across from Jenny, Two Wine glasses of red wine between them, Leonard and the Librarian sat at the other and of the table, Four empty pint glasses between them, and Four more full ones..........all on Dibbler's tab.

"Mr Dibbler, I told you my name and now I would be nice to know yours, I can't go on calling you Mr Dibbler all Night!" She said.

"Oh how ungentlemanly of me, my first name is Claude or may be Max if you must call me by my Second name" He said, grinning at Her.

"Max , that's a nice name. Tell Me Max why did you go on this trip of yours? By the sound of it you had it make in the city got your own business and all"

He thought about making up a tale of dare and bravery but decided to try a new approach, telling the truth. He explained how He had managed to poison quite a few important Guild members and how He had ended up on this Trek. She laughed ......... this was something new to Dibbler as usually all He had got from Women was a slap in the face or the cold shoulder. Maybe being honest had its good points.........

Half a glass later the food arrived piping hot, trays of fresh Veg and a Whole Chicken golden roasted was placed between them.

"Are you as Leg or Breast man Max?" asked Jenny.

Dibbler reddened "Pardon ?" He replied..... She gave Him a coy look and giggled. "The Chicken....." She said.

"Ah, may I ..... " He responded and cut the Meat.

They ate.... the World went on about them, but they were oblivious to it in their own little world. The food, the Wine and the company were all they needed....

At the other end of the table the Librarian consumed Two whole Chickens, a platter of Fish Three trays of Potatoes and Two boats of rich thick gravy. Leonard lay with His head in His plate dead drunk to the world....

The Night went on, Jenny paid a visit to the ladies room so Dibbler had half of an hour to speak to the others. Leonard
had awoke, and was ravenously hungry having missed out on the food. He went to the Bar and returned with Five bags of salty nuts and Pork by products.........

"Here are the Keys to the room, I have made other arrangements tonight so don't wait up" He said.

Jenny eventually returned, and said Her good nights to the other two, then She and Dibbler went up the stairs.

"My head hurts, and I am starving... this this normal after an drink?" asked Leonard.

"Oook."

"Well I don't know why people do this to them self, I fancy another though......." He had scoffed the packaged Bar food and had a mouth drier then the Dehydrated Desert mid summer. He found half a glass of Wine left by Dibbler and downed it.

"Plans for tomorrow, we can go on but it means converting the flying Ship. I have an idea. I have a pair skids that we can attach to the Hull, in case of having to land on ice,and I think that if we can get the Engine running again, and that is if we can get some swamp Dragons, we cad drive the Ship across the straight to Klatch, the skids will lift the hull off the surface of the waves and our speed should be sufficient enough to allow us to make up for lost time. Or we can turn back like Mr Dibbler has ......."

The librarian listened but said nothing, he looked downcast.

"Nothing We can do for now so lets retire to our room and in the Morning make your decisions..."

The went to the room, the Librarian then Leonard made use of the on suit Bathroom and then settled into the beds, the Librarian in the double. Leonard turned the gas tap on the light and the room settled into darkness.........

"Good Night Librarian" said Leonard.

"Ooook oook oook" said the Librarian.

Then there was a rhythmic knocking sound on the wall,as if a headboard were being bumped against the it.......... Leonard and the Librarian bust in to fits of laughter, good Night Mr Dibbler they both thought................

------------ Back in the Vessel ----------------------

The morning arrived, Five thirty and the Cockerel sung out, setting off all the other Birds in the Village. no one could possibly sleep past sun up here.

Leonard and the Librarian freshened up and made their way down to the breakfast table. Dibbler was not there to their surprise.

"I expect He has gone to see about a ticket Home........ what do you want to do?"

The Librarian was chewing a slice of buttered toast, He put down the Mug of Tea that looked quite small in His hand and replied "Ooook oooook oooook. Ooook ook!" He speared a sausage with His fork and continued to eat.

"Good that's settled then, on we go. I will pop up to the our room and get what little we have together, must not forget the Box! Mr Dibbler said He will settle up with the Keep..... when you are ready we should make our way to the Ship and start the conversion."

They said farewell to the Keep and made their way down to the shore. As they approached they found a number of young lads, the foreman and Dibbler at work on the Ship........ the wings had been resurfaced, Leonard's modifications fitted as per His drawings and Dibbler having painted over the ad on the side of the Hull was writing the name "The Jenny" in bright gold paint.

"Uhhhh......... gentlemen.......... what's happened? Have we won the local lottery or some thing... ?" asked Leonard perplexed.

"Na, but I was chatting to Jenny last night and the cook at the Inn is the Wife of our Foreman here. Their Twenty Fifth Wedding party is in a few months and She is Klatchian. As a surprise the Foreman wants to give Her some special spices that you can't get this side of the Sea, well not at a reasonable price." said Dibbler.

"And you cut a deal?" asked Leonard.

"Right, He will do the work free if we collect the Spices for Him. I can get them in the open Market in Gebra" said Dibbler.

"Swamp Dragon's! We need Dragons..." Leonard spoke.

"All sorted, in the box in the Hull. You put them in the Booster tubes and let me get on with this......." said Dibbler as He turned back to His painting.

The modifications looked fine, a length of thin copper tube with small holes drilled ever inch or so was fastened to the leading edge of each wing. The tubes lead back to a cowling over the Engine that channeled Heat to the wings, no more chance of Ice forming on the Wings again.

Also driven by another length of chain from the Engine was a small fan that would force Air into trunking to which three rubberised lengths of hose led. At the end of the hoses small tin bowls that fitted over the mouths of Dibbler and Leonard and over the nose of the Librarian were fixed.Each had a rubber band fixed to it so to keep the masks in place..... Compressed Air should fix the problem of dizziness at altitudes.

They worked until midday, by then the repairs were completed. A large crowd had gathered at the shore to see if the Ship could indeed get into the air or would crash and burn............

"Gentlemen please insert you ear plugs" Leonard said and then "But before you do Mr Dibbler may I ask why you have had a change of Heart? I would have thought you were either going back to anhk or were going to remain here with Jenny........"

"I'll be back soon enough, don't you worry about that.Now if I were to return to the city I before the voyage is over I will have to face Vetinari, I think I would be interned for quite some time at best and the idea of not being able to see my new Love would drive me insane. Before I met Her I could face the idea of imprisonment but not now.... my choices have been made for my..........." Dibbler replied.

"Ho yes... obvious when you think about it......... now ear plugs in, we know the routine, so off we jolly well go!"

Dibbler opened the tap on the Tank, flipped the Dragon pods over the sides and Leonard pushed the little mirror lever. Whoooosh........... as they cleared the wave tops Dibbler looked back and saw Jenny stood at the end of the jetty waving a white damp handkerchief at Him..........

As the Vessel gained height the sound of Dibbler rummaging in the locker under the Engineering seat could be heard, the a few Minutes later the sound of frying Bacon, Eggs and Sausages........

"Hungry Mr Dibbler?" Leonard asked.

"Starving, I missed out on the Breakfast as I was busy chasing around organising things.... any one else want some?"
He inquired as the pan cooked away.

"Ooooook!" responded the librarian as He made His way to the rear of the Ship.

The sound of Two chaps squabbling over the last drippings in the pan made Leonard chuckle to Him self. Yesterday they were all doom and gloom but now they were a team again. He felt elated.........

As Dibbler sat consuming the dripping with a small loaf He happened to glance to the left side of the Ship. There appeared to be a slightly darker patch of Sea just inside the two peninsula that nearly enclosed the Circle Sea.......

"Have you seen Leshp, look you can make the outline of it from up here!" Leonard and the Librarian both looked over the side, and there it was a shadow in the waters.

"I have a theory about that land, have you ever noticed how the circle Sea is......... well circular, in Nature the Ank should have carved a ravine or delta at the shore, the roundness of the Sea is an enigma. I think that a long time ago, even before the original Wizard tower that the city was built around was constructed a large lump of frozen ice crashed at the shore line and excavated a crater in the manor that the craters on the moon were made. The Sea then rushed into the hollow left and thus the circle Sea was formed"

"Whaw.... that's some deep thinking for sure........ makes some kind of sense too" interjected Dibbler.

"What's more I think at the centre of the ice was the pumice rock, it survived the impact intact, safe inside the ice block. And I also theorise that the strange creatures that are found down there were brought here frozen inside the ice block........ no where else on the Disc are things like the Curious Squid found.. I truly believe that they are Alien to this world!"

"Corr, that may explain why they taste so foul...... ya sound about right..." Dibbler said.

The Librarian was furiously making notes in the margins of the map He was in the process of drawing.......... this was going to be one special book!

The ship continued the assent, Dibbler stowed the cooking utensil away and they donned the breathing masks, and because it was getting chilly they wrapped up in some blankets that Jenny had been kind enough to donate for the trip. The wings remained ice free and their speed seamed to increase with altitude.

"The thinner Air is easier for the Ship to push trough, I got the idea that it may be better to fly high from watching migrating Birds......... I try to copy nature as She has already worked out most of the problems already... but I don't understand how the Ducks fly so high without freezing or choking from lack of Air... maybe the Feathers have an insulatory nature to them........ I may try stuffing some feathers in a sack and using it as a blanket on cold Nights when we return home."

Dibbler took up the seat at the co-pilots station and the Librarian went to the Engineers seat.

The view was spectacular at the front, the panorama of the Disc spread before them like a model of the world, this is how the Gods must feel...........

"Oook?"

Dibbler looked back to the Librarian, from one of the many storage lockers the Librarian had found a Kettle and some water and some Tea.........

"Lovely, plenty of Sugar in mine and not to Milky"

"No sugar in mine" said Leonard.

The librarian brewed up. It did not take long for the water to come to the boil in the red hot exhaust and he added the Tea to the pot let it stew then poured the Tea to the requested formulas ......

Moving with exaggerated care the Librarian carried the Mugs forward.

"Aggh, it is Luke warm" Said Dibbler as He sipped the Tea...

"Yes mine too"

"Ooook?" said the Ape, He made his way back and looked at the remaining dregs simmering away in the pot... He then poked a finger in the boiling fluid........ it was Luke warm.......

"How strange, it appears the higher we get the lower the boiling point of water.... better not get to high or the tears in our eyeballs may erupt in a frenzy of gasses!" said Leonard as He leveled off.
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Part 7

Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:58 pm

-------- Hostile reception and the end of the trip? -----------

At the midway point Leonard started down an a gentile glide, as they neared the coastline a train of camels could be made out.

"I wonder if they are heading to Gebra?" Leonard said to Him self.... "I am taking us low for a good look" He shouted to the others, Dibbler and the Librarian were asleep in the rear.

As he got lower the shadow of the Ship passed over the camel train, the creatures were started by what looked to them like a Forty foot lone Eagle and they bolted sending there sleepy rider over and onto the sands. There were about Twelve riders who sprung to there feet and rapidly shouldered cross bows..... Thwang, zip and Rip went the bolts and portions of the Vessel.

"No no sorry" shouted Leonard as he gunned the throttle lever and turned away from the angry riders.

"Errm, Mr Dibbler is that an arrow bolt I see protruding from the Fuel tank?"

"Yes"

"Errrrrm.... is it leaking by any chance"

"Yes"

Leonard cut a new ear plug and handed it to Dibbler.........

"Carefully remove the bolt and push the cheese firmly into the hole, but be as quick as possible" instructed Leonard.

Dibbler wrenched the Bolt from the tank and the Yellow brown fluid started to spray around the deck of the hull, He wedged the cheese plug into place and then tore a length of blanket into a strip and tied it around the tank so to hold the plug in place.

"Um.. Leonard the fuel is all aver the place, we are going to blow up if something ain`t done about it soon!"

"Pee on it.." said Leonard.

"No need for that sort of language!"

"No, pee on it.......... you to Librarian......... the urine should neutralise it."

Dibbler and the Librarian looked at Leonard as though He was a mad man but then shrugged and got to work hosing down the Deck.....


Later ..........................



The sHip limped into port, the last dregs of fuel consumed by the Engine, on the Jetties were a throng of People all waving Anke and Klatchian flags and banners......... one of the Watchman, a sergeant made His way to the front of the crowd.........

"Salaam 'Alaykum" He said.

"Wa 'Alaykum As - Salaam" respond Dibbler.

Leonard and the Librarian looked at Dibbler with a renewed respect. who would have known He was a Linguist as well as a small time peddler.......

In broken Morpokian the Watchman said "Whe ave been exspeckating you, the Sheik will be glod to see you........pleaze fallow Me"

Dibbler tugged on Leonard sleeve "You don't need me, I will take a look around the Market place for the supplies I need. You and the Librarian can deliver the package, just remember to eat or drink anything they give you. It is considered an insult to refuse hospitality. I had to eat Monke...... Ape brain and Sheep eyeballs once to seal a deal..... hope you enjoy it!"

With that Dibbler disappeared into the Crowd.

Leonard and the Librarian were escorted to the Palace........ on the way the streets thronged with people and animals, the White washed housing a contrast to the soot stained homes of Anhk.

"Very clean living people, the Klatchians" noted Leonard.

"Oook"

"Yhes wee take a poor view on litterging, a big fine for a first offenze,hand it can cost you an Arm and A Lheg if you can no meet the costs.........." interjected the Watchman.

"Errr.... please make sure not to drop that Bananas skin when you have finished...... " said Leonard to the Librarian who had had a fruit thrust into His hand by a friendly and inquisitive young child on the Dock.

"Oook....." responded the Ape, He then ate the skin.

At the palace a celebration was in full swing, tables were set up from the Chieftains and dignitaries invited to the shindig.
Belly dancers were moving around the tables and doing their thing, i.e. keeping the various Chiefs happy.

The Sheik sat an a raised dais that overlooked the gathering, a short plump man sat upon a throne with fanning steroid muscled Black Men either side of Him, and his wives sat at His feet on the steps that led up to the throne....

"Hello Gentlemen... ?" he said in prefect Morpokian, looking at the librarian as He said it.

"Greetings sire, we come brining gifts from the Patrician Lord Vetinari. I am Leonard of Quirm and this is the Librarian, He is a transformed Wizard" said Leonard handing the box to a Man servant....

The Sheik indicated to the man to cut the seal and open the lid on the Box......... there was a scream as the sprit of an Ice demon evaporated in a cloud of Green vapour. The box was handed to the Sheik......... A very large grin appeared on His face and He handed the Box back to the servant, Leonard had a glimpse of half a dozen Curious Squid covered in ice.....

The Sheik clapped His hands and said "Have my best cook prepare this banquet, please give my thanks to Vetinari Mr De Quirm, and Gentlemen please feel free to join my Birthday celebrations!"

Leonard and the Librarian were placed at one of the bench seats next to some very well dressed Klatchians, the Librarian started to consume everything that His long arms could reach including cuts of Meat from other Guests plates. but no one complained....... well you wouldn't would you.................

They were given a suit in the palace and spent a very congenial evening at the party, but paid for it the next day with thumping heads.......... Leonard had tried to keep up round for round with the Librarian!

They thanked their host and headed back to the Docks..........

"Oh my" said Leonard as He spotted the reminds of The Jenny, the vessel had been stripped by souvenir hunters, just the Hull and engine remained............ and Mr Dibbler was absent.

Leonard looked at the Librarian "We need to get this sorted or it is a long and boring Sea voyage back to Ahnk........ I don't know how to fix this problem but I know a man who can....... we need to find Mr Dibbler"

"Oook" agreed the ape.

And with that the Two friends made their way into the labyrinthine City in search of their ticket Home,a Man called Dibbler.......

--------------- The End -------------------
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Postby Tonyblack » Tue Jan 20, 2009 1:27 pm

That was fun. :lol:

Thanks for posting it.
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Postby mspanners » Tue Jan 20, 2009 7:23 pm

Hope it was not Me that caused this, when I tried to post the Story in one file I got an error message and debug screen! ? :?: :oops:
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Postby Jason » Tue Jan 20, 2009 7:35 pm

It looks like it really got its knickers in a twist. Not to worry.
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