“Famous Five 01 - Five On A Treasure Island” By Enid Blyton 2. Chapter One. A GREAT SURPRISE. Contents/Next. "MOTHER, have you heard about our. Famous Five 01 - Five On A Treasure Island By Enid Blyton Famous Five 05 - Five Go Off in a Caravan By Enid Blyton 1 Holiday said Dick. 'I never though. Famous Five 04 - Five Go To Smuggler's Top By Enid Blyton Famous Five 05 - Five Go Off in a Caravan By Enid Blyton Enid Blyton 2. 1 Holiday said Dick. '.
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“Famous Five 06 - Five On Kirrin Island Again” By Enid Blyton 2 one!' 'Your father would talk to you about it first, and ask your permission, and see if you. “Famous Five 02 - Five Go Adventuring Again” By Enid Blyton 2. Chapter One CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS. IT was the last week of the Christmas term, and all the. Fifty years ago, I was an avid reader of Enid Blyton's Famous Five books. I was introduced to these books at Primary School where, one summer term, my.
The children chatted of this and that as the train ran over the moorlands of Dorset and pulled nearer and nearer to the border with Devonshire. After a while, George fell silent. Dick nudged Julian. George heard him and smiled. It was surprising how George was getting over her awkward shyness. I had joined Gaylands only because they took pets, and then they went and changed their policy.
I had a terrible time deciding between Tim and Anne and all my other school friends. I can't wait to see him again. Soon the train was running down the coast. After a while it pulled into a small station. As the children scrambled down from the train, a big brown dog rushed at them like a whirlwind, barking madly.
There was quite a commotion as dog and owner seemed to go mad. The four asked the porter to keep their luggage to be picked up later and set off for Kirrin cottage down the coast road. Kirrin Bay lay before them, dotted here and there with fishing boats. Small cliffs and rocks partly blocked the view from the road. Around a corner, they saw a small island standing at the entrance to the bay.
Suddenly she came to a halt and stared at a tall aluminium tower in the middle of the island, glistening in the sunlight. The fishermen take trippers to visit the island and make a bit of money. Its good for the village you know. They have mouths to feed after all. It belonged to my mother and she gave it to me. Father had no right to do any such thing. I am going to Kirrin Island right away and take down that wretched tower.
Kirrin village always looks to the Kirrins for help in difficult times and your family never let them down before. Its time you stopped being so silly".
But George refused to listen to reason and was mutinous all the way to Kirrin Cottage. As they entered the gate, Aunt Fanny opened the door with a warm welcoming smile, which died as she spied George's face. I want to talk with you about that. Before anyone could say anything, George pushed past her mother and flew upstairs.
Timmy leapt after her. The others let her go, for they knew George considered crying to be girlish and hated it. You know Kirrin belonged to my parents, but Quentin is a Barnard-Kirrin too, a distant relation of the family.
In fact our unusual name made me get acquainted with him when we were both at Cambridge. He has spent his whole life devoted to science, but now suddenly he has rediscovered his family roots. With all the recognition he has been getting, he wants to resurrect the old Kirrin family lands and estates.
He wants to rebuild Kirrin Castle on the island, maybe even build a causeway to the island and live there, like the old time Kirrins. Nobody can convince him otherwise. He is now hard at work on the old map of Kirrin which you children found and a few other maps he has dug up from some very old library collections.
The children listened is a horrified silence. Destroy the island they all loved and cherished? Change the landscape of Kirrin for ever? This could not be happening! How are you ever going to convince George to agree to this? Cambridge University where Uncle Quentin studied has offered him a Professor's chair and a chance to build a new experimental fusion reactor. But I am afraid that would mean leaving Kirrin and living in Cambridge.
That's why I haven't told Quentin about the phone call yet, or he would want to leave today. The three children went upstairs, talking about the startling turn of events. They left George alone, for they knew she was too upset to listen to them. Anne peeped into her room and saw George sobbing into Timmy's thick coat.
If she only knew what else was in store for her. Anne blinked back her tears and turned away. Julian saw her face and tried to cheer her up. Things will turn out fine. Haven't they always? Uncle Quentin will just get involved with something else and forget about all this.
I will ask father to speak to Uncle Quentin, you know he will always listen to our father", said Julian. Why, we didn't meet George for ages because of that old quarrel. Julian glared at him.
Can't you see Anne is upset? Come on, let us go down to the shore and have a bathe. That will make us feel better. The three children went down the rocky path to the shore.
They did not see George and Timmy slipping away down the cliff path that led to the fishing cottages. But George had a bone to pick with the fishermen who lived there. Soon, she turned a corner and came to a cove with many boats tied up. She saw a tall gangling youth unfurling a sail and ran towards him.
But the boy took no notice and instead, gave a rousing welcome to Timmy, who leapt around him adoringly. Georgina" said the boy. That made George even angrier, if that was possible.
She hated being called Georgina even more than being called Miss. I haven't heard any thanks yet". George calmed down a little. Of course I am grateful about you looking after Timmy. But why have you let trippers run all over my island? I didn't even know the fishermen could find the way to land on Kirrin Island. When even you could row to the island by the time you were ten, it is not going to be difficult for a fisherman to do it, you know".
But we need the jobs, Master George. We were all planning to move away until your father came up with his grand plans for Kirrin. It's the only thing that made us stay on as his tenants. We can't live on fishing any more. This tripper business is just a temporary arrangement, until the excitement over your fathers big award dies away. As George heard all this, her insides suddenly went cold with fear.
Until now she had raged and yelled for every small thing and usually got her way. But looking at the grave face of this friendly fisherboy, she felt helpless in the hands of a relentless fate. With a heavy heart, she ran back the way she had come. She spied the other children on the beach and ran to them in distress. It took the combined effort of the three children and Timmy to calm her.
In the middle of all this commotion, nobody noticed a girl walking up to them. She looked a lot like George with short curly hair cut almost as short as a boy's.
She walked up to Dick and punched him on the shoulder. What brings you this way? Jo had a worried look on her face. He had a surprising bit of news from one the prison inmates and sent me to give warning.
Jo has surprising news The four children gazed at Jo in surprise. They remembered her father, Simmy, as a thoroughly bad lot. Why would he send Jo to warn them of possible trouble? Jo saw the look they gave her, and went red. He's heard about everything you've done for me and he realises it's thanks to you that I've got a good home with my foster-mother while he's inside. This is his way of paying something back, see?
Julian had just told his cousin about Professor Hayling's telephone call, thinking that he might as well get all the bad news over and done with, and George's spirits were low.
Whatever Jo had to say, it surely couldn't make things much worse than they already were. Jo sat down on a rock next to Anne and looked round at her friends' expectant faces. This sounds interesting. Jo ran her fingers through her short curls. He's resented your family ever since that time at Faynights and he's always told his cell-mate that he intends to take revenge on the Kirrins one of these days. Anne looked at Jo's flushed face, and sighed. How she longed for a quiet, uneventful holiday.
As the train had rattled and clattered towards Kirrin that morning, she had pictured endless days of bathing and boating, the peace broken only by the haunting cries of gulls as they soared through a sky of cornflower blue. She and Julian had talked of bringing their sketchbooks down to the beach to sketch the fishing boats, the island and the rocky coastline.
Julian was getting rather good at painting in watercolour and had promised to teach Anne all that he knew. Now it seemed that the Five were to fall headlong into yet another adventure. Anne stared at the sand and wished she could bury her head in it, as ostriches were popularly reputed to do. George's fists were clenched and her eyes blazed. Timmy won't allow him within a mile of Kirrin! They looked at one another, startled, and then smiled.
Jo made a face at George but carried on anyway, eager to have her say. I'm warning you of Pottersham's threats in confidence, like, because you're my friends. The last thing my Dad needs is for the police to come along asking him questions about Pottersham—some of the other inmates might not be too thrilled about that, if you know what I mean.
If Mother got it into her head that we were in danger here at Kirrin, she'd probably decide that moving to Cambridge was quite a sensible option after all. It would break her heart as well as mine to have to do that, and I won't allow Pottersham to drive us out of our home. Why, we Kirrins have lived here for centuries, and to let scum like Pottersham bring an end to that would be…well, it would be…".
The others groaned and Jo fell on him, pummelling him with her fists till he begged for mercy. Timmy joined in, always ready for a game of rough and tumble.
Julian glanced at his watch and gave a sharp exclamation. We really ought to be getting back for tea.
Are you coming, Jo? The others nodded. Anne shivered, in spite of the hot sun. What a solemn word for such a beautiful summer's day. Joan the cook, who had been out shopping when the children had first arrived, was delighted to see George and the others, and gave them a warm welcome. Then she turned to the gypsy girl. All the better for having got rid of you for the afternoon, I'll be bound," she added, with a twinkle in her eye.
Her chocolate sponge is nearly as good as yours now—not quite, but she's getting there. I certainly make sure she gets plenty of practice! No-one can beat you though; you're the tops! Now, sit yourselves down and mind Timmy doesn't wolf all the cake. I haven't been called that, not regular anyway, since I were a young lass.
Except by you saucy young things, that is! No, it's plain Joan suits me these days, and there's naught wrong with a good plain name, neither. It was a jolly tea. Uncle Quentin came in from picking up the children's luggage from the station and proved to be in an extraordinarily good mood, still excited about the prize he had been awarded for his work. At long last, his contribution to Science was being recognised.
No wonder he felt like the King of the Castle. His wife smiled at him as she poured out his tea. She wouldn't mention Professor Hayling's telephone call just yet. It would mean Quentin making a big decision, one way or the other, and at the moment he was so relaxed. Even the news of Pottersham's escape, which he'd heard on the wireless, hadn't upset him for long.
Best make the most of his good mood while it lasted. The children helped clear away the tea-things and then Aunt Fanny proposed a game of Charades before Jo had to catch the bus home. This suggestion met with general approval, but George asked to be excused. She slipped off upstairs, followed by Timmy, who padded silently after her like a shadow. Julian frowned, wondering what she was up to, but he soon forgot his concerns as a hilarious game of Charades got underway. It lasted for ages, until Uncle Quentin got into such a muddle trying to mime "nutrinos" that the game ended in utter confusion—or "fusion," as Dick remarked with a grin.
George reappeared at suppertime, fending off her cousins' questions about what she had been doing. Anne shrugged. She was becoming used to George going off alone for hours at a time. Her cousin had done the same thing at school throughout the term, and in London too.
Curious, Anne had at first questioned her about what she had been up to but George had been so much on the defensive that Anne had eventually given up asking. Let her cousin keep her secret, whatever it was! George found herself unable to get to sleep that night. She kept thinking about her conversation with Alf—no, James! Timmy padded after her and flopped down at her feet. George patted him, pleased to have him with her. His presence was comforting.
A full moon flooded the landscape with silvery radiance and George could see her island quite clearly. The castle ruins, looking mysterious in the moonlight, reached jagged fingers to the starry sky. The aluminium tower was visible too, of course, smooth and gleaming, and she frowned.
Kirrin Island looked so serene now, but during the day it was swarming with trippers. Her very own island, she thought, and a lump came to her throat. How could Mother contemplate moving away?
Kirrin was in the family's blood. When George was younger she had vowed that, once she was grown up, she would live on Kirrin Island with Timmy. An unspoilt Kirrin Island—not an over-developed one with a causeway leading to the mainland.
Ugh—how could Father even think of such a thing? Now she was older George had different plans for her future, but she had taken it for granted that Kirrin Island would always be there, waiting for her, whenever she needed some time alone. Timmy licked George's hand and she fondled his ears absent-mindedly, listening to Anne's soft breathing. Was James right when he said that Kirrin couldn't survive for much longer as a fishing village? Would things have to change, whether she liked it or not?
George didn't know. She wandered over to the other window, which overlooked the moors at the back of the house. They too were bathed in the light of the moon, a vast sheet of silver and shadows, stretching away as far as the eye could see. Suddenly, Timmy pricked up his ears and George felt his body stiffen. She gazed intently across the moors and it was then that she saw something most peculiar.
Golly—whatever could it be? She must wake her cousins at once! They all crowded impatiently round the larger window in George's bedroom. It had taken George a long time to wake Dick from his deep slumber: Julian had jumped up, alert, as soon as George shook his shoulder.
Timmy let out a low growl. She tried to see what her brothers and cousin were looking at so intently. A cloud obscured the full moon for a second, and they could see nothing except a brooding darkness. Anyway it's too dark to see anything," muttered Dick who was still sleepily rubbing his eyes. Just at that moment, the moon seemed to sail serene and clear from the cloud which had hidden its silvery magical light, and the four children could see this mysterious night time world where everything looked so different from the sunny landscape they knew so well.
They could see now why George had woken them so urgently. They could make out, uncertainly, figures moving. But there was something strange about them. What can they be wearing? Pass me your field glasses, George. They're jolly good ones, and it might just be possible to see something, if the moon doesn't go behind a cloud again.
And those people, whoever they are, must be standing on something or else we could never see them. There's no hill there, is there? No-one has looked after the house and grounds since the owners moved away suddenly. It's been empty and neglected. He put George's field glasses to his eyes but at that moment a dark cloud covered the moon, and all was darkness once more.
Do you want to wake Uncle Quentin and Aunt Fanny? There, on the track to Arden Hall, they saw lights: Then a second burst of light, as rays raked across the moor. The four children, and the ever watchful Timmy, gazed out of the window for another quarter of an hour, but the moon stayed hidden, and there were no more lights.
They could hear nothing except some mournful hooting from a nearby copse of trees. And especially not with Pottersham on the loose. He's got a real grudge, and he's on the run from prison," replied Dick. Anne paled, and felt glad that the other children couldn't see her. Why did adventures and mysterious happenings always have to happen to them? The thought of a desperate man, bent on revenge, scared her terribly, but she was determined not to let anybody see it, and she was grateful for the covering darkness.
We don't know anything is going on yet, but if there is, we don't want to stumble on it in the dark. They all gazed intently, but it was hard to recognise any features now that the moon was hidden.
We don't want to make matters worse. And now we must go to bed. Anne's yawning, and we'll need to be fresh in the morning. The four children went back to their beds, a little thoughtful and subdued, but, apart from poor Anne, with a little excitement at the thought of what they might discover the following day. I do hope this isn't an adventure, was Anne's last thought as she fell asleep. The children discussed the night's happenings over breakfast, as soon as they were alone. George told her mother that the five would like to go and explore the countryside, now that they were together again, back at Kirrin.
It's a lovely day," responded Aunt Fanny. She went off into the garden, ready to enjoy a lovely peaceful day in the garden, with the children out from under her feet, Quentin busy and happy in his study, basking in the recognition which was his at last, and the shadows over their life at Kirrin lifted at least for a little while.
She was pleased that George was no longer the shy, solitary girl she had been, though she did still worry that George could be secretive still. What had she been up to last night whilst everyone else played charades?
You're wagging the packets of sandwiches off the table," cried Dick as dived across to grab the food, skidding as he did so. They took the packets of food which Joan had prepared for them. Dick peeped into the packets to see if Joan had included some of her special fruit cake. Yes, she had. What a good sort Joan was! They followed the track across the moors, away from the sea and Kirrin Island. George glanced back and saw the village basking in the sun, and the cornflower blue sea sparkling under the clear sky: Little waves danced on the shore, and the bay seemed safe in the clasp of its protecting cliffs.
George sighed with satisfaction at the lovely scene, then scowled as she saw the sun glinting on the aluminium tower, and watched Alf—no, James—begin to row a boatload of trippers, with their loud voices, gaudy clothes and cameras, across the bay to her island. How she hated the award that might take Kirrin away from her, or her away from Kirrin.
She wished her father had never found nutrinos. What did she care about cheap energy sources? Why did her life have to change, just when everything had seemed so perfect? Timmy sensed George's unhappiness, and nudged her gently with his nose. She bent down to stroke him, and he licked her hand.
Anne glanced at George. The sensitive little girl had some idea of George's feelings, but she knew how much George would hate any sympathy. The five walked across the moor, using old tracks where no motorised vehicle had ever driven. All was quiet and peaceful, with just the sound of a skylark high above them. The sun beat down, and they grinned in pleasure at being out together in the country, worries for the moment forgotten.
Even Timmy seemed to grin, as his tongue lolled out in the heat. Their path crossed a little stream, more of a brook, but with clear, clean water. Timmy put his head down and lapped eagerly, and the four children scooped water in their hands and drank: There was silence, apart from the Timmy's noisy gulping.
His sharp ears had picked up something that the others could not yet hear. The droning noise grew louder, but they could see the moor for long distances in every direction, and there was nothing in sight. Then George cried out, and pointed upwards. They saw the small plane, at first a speck in the sky, get bigger. He squinted into the sun, but it was hard to follow the plane's flight.
The four children moved uneasily, feeling exposed out there on the moor, as the noise of the engine increased. Then, it dwindled as the plane passed. Was it getting ready to land?
It's nothing to be bothered about. The four children and Timmy continued, only Timmy unaffected by the incident. Their path sloped gently upwards, and the bare moor gave way to clumps of trees, though the landscape was still empty and uninhabited.
The track widened and deepened, and there were scrubby bramble bushes at its sides; they were no longer so exposed, and their view was now more restricted. Maps are no help in this empty landscape. They all knew exactly what he meant.
The beautiful silvery moonlight changed the landscape as if by magic, and landmarks were hard to spot in the open glare of day. And when they had tried to locate the spot, there had not even been moonlight to guide them. They paused, and Timmy lifted his head, his ears pricked up. As the four children gazed round, George suggested that they climbed up a little in order to see over the hedge.
Anne shivered a little: They moved towards the side of the track. Anne stumbled and screamed as a figure on a black horse leapt the hedge and galloped down the track. The figure, head bent low over the horse's mane, disappeared down the track in the direction of Arden Hall almost before they had taken in its presence.
Timmy barked loudly, Julian tried to console the sobbing Anne, and Dick ran fruitlessly after the horse and rider. There had been few clues to follow except for the occasional hoof mark spotted by George and Julian, but there had been nowhere else to go.
The rambling ruins of Arden Hall were a sorry sight indeed after such excitement with talk of past adventures. Everything about it from its moss covered stonework, shattered windows and rotten doors whispered of sadness and neglect.
They were all thinking the same thing but it was George who broke the silence. Anne, who had been in charge of the food Joan had packed for them, thought they had better head back. Anne didn't care that the brambles pulled at her skirt or that the others were searching for clues. In her mind she was a young girl playing in this very garden before the years of abandonment had crept in and settled over Arden. On summer days there would have been glorious parties and fun games for the children. Dick, who had been quietly watching Anne, stopped and bowed at the waist.
Timmy, who had grown bored of waiting for the children to throw sticks, was chasing his tail, sending fluffy dandelions into the air making him sneeze. The children all collapsed in giggles.
Not just the money the tourists are bringing, but work for the people. Only Anne noticed that the old woman's expression changed, as she busied herself clearing the table. A Captain Charles Wallace and his lovely wife Charlotte lived there. Or should I say Georgina? He was very friendly with our son, you see. They had been shown the secret passage some years ago, but Julian was the only one who could remember how to open it.
He found the small dent in the panel near the floor, and it slid open with ease. Uncle Quentin would have a fit if you poked your head out of the hole in the study," cried Julian.
We found them in a coat pocket belonging to one of the artists, hanging in the cupboard. Mrs Saunders will be wondering where we are.
The children thanked Mrs Saunders for the cake and slice of ham for Timmy and made their way down the farm track. Somewhere near by they heard a horse neigh, probably disturbed by Timmy barking for the ham George was waving.
Don't you children go in the field to feed him though, you hear? He's a playful thing too. Broke through this fence he did this morning. Unaware of the trouble caused was a beautiful black horse grazing peacefully in the open field.
The sun on his coat made him shine like highly polished boots. She came here a few weeks ago asking the wife and me if we could rent her a room and a field for her horse while she does some research for her degree. I believe she said she was studying marine biology. The five were walking back to Kirrin cottage in the general direction of Arden Hall.
Timmy suddenly barked and ran along the path towards a pretty young girl who bent to give him a fuss, which he loved. I'm staying at the farm with Mr and Mrs Saunders. This is my cousin George, and these are my two brothers, Julian and Dick. Is that beautiful black stallion yours? What's his name? He's magnificent.
And what's your name, old boy? You're a beautiful dog," said Penny stroking Timmy's belly. It's such a pretty little village with the most wonderful beach and island.
I can't remember ever being in such a heart-warming place. Forgive me, but it looks a little odd. You must be very proud of him. Although if it was mine, I wouldn't like all those tourists going to the island. As they need the extra money, I really can't do anything about it. Maybe we'll meet again sometime? Bye for now. They continued their way to Arden Hall along the stony path with its beautiful celandines and cowslip dancing in the light breeze.
They separated and started looking for signs of something, anything to give them a clue about the lights and figures they had seen from George's bedroom night before last. Timmy had gone into the old house and was really enjoying himself with all the lovely strange smells. I never saw him go," cried George. She gave a loud whistle. Come on, boy.
George bent down and took the leather pouch from his mouth. George opened the wallet up slowly, her heart beating fast while the others watched in silence. Timmy included of course. In big bold letters it says 'RED', and there are some numbers underneath too.
It was a silent walk back to Kirrin cottage. Everyone was wondering what RED could mean. George goes missing At teatime the Five managed to demolish enough sandwiches for an army, plus three entire cakes, a hot apple pie with large dollops of ice cream, and all the remaining chocolate biscuits. Joan started to clear away the plates and dishes, shaking her head in amazement.
I put three cakes out so you would have a choice of double-chocolate, strawberry sponge, or lemon cheesecake—but you didn't have to eat them all, you know. They look as though they won't be able to move for at least an hour. Julian groaned. It seems to be loitering in my throat, unable to find room in my stomach. George laughed. But I'm pretty full myself. Let's walk around the garden for a bit.
So the three of them left Anne to help Joan and staggered outside, feeling a little sorry for themselves. Timmy, who looked like he'd had a few too many sneaky tit-bits himself, trotted out after them. The sun was beginning to sink by now, and the blue sky was becoming streaked with orange towards the horizon.
A sudden chill made George shiver. That's the trouble with living on the coast—the temperature drops so quickly in the evenings, even in the summertime. Now that Anne's out of earshot I think we can all agree that we've landed smack in the middle of something very mysterious indeed. Pottersham has escaped from prison and rumor has it he's lurking about here somewhere, looking to make trouble.
I still find it hard to believe that he's a changed man, looking out for us. Then Julian shrugged. We'll assume Pottersham is about somewhere. What else? The mysterious lights we saw a couple of nights ago, over towards Arden Hall. Were they on stilts, perhaps? They couldn't have been simply standing on stepladders, because they were moving about. And they seemed to be wearing something thick, didn't they?
Or was that my imagination? They seemed to be a queer shape, sort of rounded, like they were padded out with equipment or something. A bus time, do you think?
Nine minutes past seven in the morning? Do you remember? You wrote RED or something on the wall, over and over. And 'Red' turned out to be one of the men Jo's father hung about with.
I say—you don't think Red has anything to do with this, do you? He's supposed to be in prison, unless he's escaped and we don't know about it. Dick was puzzling over the strange message. He could still see the words clearly in his mind. I can't think what the RED could mean, but really could be a time of the day, as I said.
It has to be a bus time. Maybe it's simply a red bus at just past seven in the morning? Maybe we should take another look through, see if we can find some form of identification in there, maybe in a hidden pocket we didn't spot. He dug the wallet out of his pocket and opened it. Dick and George crowded around him with interest.
It's a funny looking business card, though—just a logo of some kind, but no name, address, or anything else. They all stared at the card. It was clean and white, and in the center was a red and yellow logo: There was nothing else.
I mean, what use is it to anyone? A secret organization? Or are we reading too much into this? He poked around in the wallet for a while longer.
There were a couple of pound notes in there, but Julian left them alone. A small zipped pocket revealed nothing, and even the small pouch on the side was empty. This is worthless. He tucked the wallet back into his pocket and they all stood staring out across Kirrin Bay, thinking hard.
Another chilly breeze tugged at their clothes, but they ignored it, lost in thought. Eventually they came back to the strange mystery of the floating people. Neither one of them could imagine what those dark figures had been up to, in the darkness near Arden Hall.
How many had there been? The others looked at her in surprise, and she frowned. She almost knocked us flat! It's too much of a coincidence for it not to be her. Who else around here has a beautiful black horse like that?
Dick shook his head and frowned. Maybe she was just taking the horse for a ride and wound up there, in the grounds of Arden Hall. There may be nothing mysterious about that at all.
Besides, didn't Mr Saunders say she was a marine biologist? What would a marine biologist want with an old, empty building? Anne appeared just then. She came towards them, rubbing her arms.
Julian, Dick and George looked at one another. Then Julian squeezed Anne's arm. We were just discussing all the funny little things that have happened over the last couple of days. Anne groaned and went pale. I did so want to steer clear of adventures these hols! Can't we just ignore all the funny happenings and pretend nothing's going on?
Oh, George, do say we can go the island and spend the afternoon there! George scowled. I shan't enjoy it if I walk around and find litter everywhere, and people lazing about on the beach and pretending they own the place. It'll just make me mad. Joan was saying just now that it's almost an exact replica of the original—not made from aluminium at all, as we thought, but some very strong lightweight plastic, like last time.
It's just that it's quite shiny and gleams in the sunlight, so looks like aluminium. It even has the glass room at the top. But she says the spiral staircase hasn't been installed this time, for safety reasons; you can imagine how many day-trippers would be clambering up there otherwise.
Do you remember how the original tower blew in the wind when we went to the top that time? I'm not surprised the workers didn't install a staircase this time round. Can visitors go inside the tower at all? There's a ladder that runs up one wall, but the bottom section has been removed to prevent people from climbing up. But there are all sorts of displays and exhibits around the walls, explaining the purpose of the original tower and what those funny little wires were for, poking through the glass.
It's all very interesting, apparently. Julian laughed and patted her shoulder affectionately. It just eats her up that other people are daring to set foot on her precious island. But as long as that tower's there, day- trippers will pay to visit the island and read up on Uncle Quentin's brilliant work. George disappeared after that. When Julian, Dick and Anne got out the game of Monopoly and sat down at the table in the dining room, Aunt Fanny popped her head in the door and looked about.
Aunt Fanny sighed. She's just like her father, obstinate and difficult. Well, I just came to say that your Uncle Quentin has a visitor in the morning, so would you mind making yourselves scarce around ten o'clock so they can talk in peace. You know how these scientists are, when they get their heads together.
There was absolute silence around the table. Julian, Dick and Anne simply looked at one another in dismay. Mr Lenoir was not their idea of friendly company. Aunt Fanny came further into the room, looking bemused. Thanks to your uncle's clever idea to drain the swamps around Castaway Hill, the town there is thriving—and Mr Lenoir is keen to offer any assistance to Quentin if he can.
But Julian knew the answer to that. Look, I know there was some trouble when you went to stay with him, but—". Aunt Fanny smiled and left them to their game of Monopoly. The three talked awhile about their adventure at Smuggler's Top, and how horrible Mr Lenoir had been, with his cold, polite laugh and quick temper.
It was very funny. A nightmare for the teachers, I mean.
But I haven't seen much of him lately for some reason. I vote for Leicester Square and Piccadilly—I already have the other yellow one, so that'll give me a set. Anne smiled and left them to it. She yawned again as she climbed the stairs to the girls' bedroom. She quietly opened the door and peered in. The room was in darkness. George must be sound asleep, wallowing in her self-pity, most likely with Timmy curled up on her feet. But it was too dark to see if her cousin was lying awake or snoozing soundly, so Anne tiptoed into the room and felt her way past George's bed to her own.
Her eyes would adjust to the darkness in a moment, so she should be able to undress without switching on the light and disturbing her cousin. The window was slightly ajar, and the heavy curtain moved a little as a breeze crept through the gap. Anne shivered. What was George thinking of, leaving the window open on a chilly night like this? It might be summertime, but that didn't automatically mean it was warm out!
She closed it gently, and locked it, then silently undressed and slipped between the cool sheets. She lay there in the darkness, listening for the sounds of George sleeping. She heard nothing. Not even Timmy stirred. Anne squinted, trying with all her might to see through the darkness to George's bed. Was she there? She seemed awfully quiet. She reached out to turn on the bedside lamp, just for a moment, just to make sure her cousin really was there, sleeping soundly with Timmy at her feet.
But then she thought about how annoyed George would be if a blinding light woke her up. With her fingers paused by the light switch, Anne hesitated a moment longer. Maybe she could pull back the curtain a little, and let the moonlight illuminate George's bed. But no—the moon was around the front of the house, over the bay, whereas George and Anne shared a room at the back, overlooking the dark moors.
It was past ten before Julian and Dick grew too tired to play Monopoly anymore. They put the game away, said goodnight to Aunt Fanny, who was reading in the living room, and headed quietly upstairs to bed. Sleep came quickly to both boys, and soon there was no sound but Dick's gentle snores and Julian's occasional mumbling.
Outside, an owl hooted once, twice. A breeze blew against the window frame, and it rattled gently. Around midnight, Julian stirred as a door closed a little too loudly downstairs. Uncle Quentin was probably heading off to bed, he thought dreamily; his uncle often forgot that everyone else was already asleep by the time he finished his work for the night.
In the daytime he always complained about people slamming doors when he was trying to work, but he seemed to forget that he was just as noisy at night, bustling about as he got ready for bed. Aunt Fanny's low, murmuring voice came, and the bustling noises stopped abruptly. But then a sharp booming sound woke him again. He bolted upright, disoriented, as the windows rattled noisily. What time was it?
Way past midnight by now. What could be happening? There it was again—a sharp crack-boom in the far distance, followed by the violent rattling of his window moments later.
This time he swore he felt the bed shake. What on earth was going on? He leapt out of bed, calling for Dick to wake up. But Dick was already awake and bounding across the room to join him at the window. In the darkness they bumped into each other and jostled for the curtains. They pulled them back and stared out. It was difficult to see anything. The coastline was a black, featureless shadow for miles around. But out to sea the moon hung bright over the bay, low enough that Kirrin Island stood out as a silhouette against the clear, cloudless sky beyond.
Even the outline of the castle ruins was plain to see. As they searched for the source of the booms, Julian and Dick became aware of tiny pinpricks of light sparkling around the center of the island, as if someone had a number of campfires going at once.
They clutched each other and stared, bewildered. Then the tiny firelights flickered and began to fade from sight—and the boys realized something tremendously shocking. Julian glanced sideways at Dick.
His brother's face was bathed in moonlight, and he looked just as astonished as Julian himself. The tower has gone! The tower has fallen! The bedroom door burst open and the light snapped on. Julian and Dick turned to find Anne standing there, looking frightened. Want to Read. Shelving menu. Shelve Five on a Treasure Island. Want to Read Currently Reading Read.
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