Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Expedition Diary – Extract 3

This is a personal account of the remarkable journey undertaken, by myself and the Old Monkey, to investigate the strange anomaly within the Lost Clinkers Cooling Tower.

Expedition Diary – Extract 3

We passed through the anomaly only to discover a topsy-turvy world where Beaver Hateman rules over Homeward.

We have decided to take refuge at Badfort – seemingly my home in this world.

The building was as ramshackle as ever. Cloutman and Gubbins were hanging around outside the entrance swigging from bottles labeled Black Tom. “Watch’er, Sir, where’d you get them smart togs from then?” said Gubbins. I was nonplussed and angry. “What are you doing hanging around and drinking in this debauched manner?”
I enquired. They just laughed. “Blimey, Sir, you sound just like Beaver Hateman – good impression – like we was your party apparatchiks!” said Cloutman.

We decided to enter the inner sanctum – Beaver’s Party HQ.

We were confronted by the sight of our, almost, exact doubles.

Slumped over a broken-down old wooden table was myself, clearly inebriated, and wearing a sackcloth suit. The only discernible difference was an eye-patch which leant myself a thoroughly disreputable air. Beside myself was the spitting image of The Old Monkey, again dressed in sackcloth, swinging from a light fitting and singing a bawdy song.

“Beaver, a mighty man is he,
With large and sinewy hands,
Lying, swindling and boasting,
Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some crime begun,
Each evening sees its close;
Somebody bullied, somebody done,
Has earned a night’s repose.”

Uncle 2 (as I shall call him) looked up at us through bleary eyes. “Ha, some relation is it? – come to help in the ongoing fight for regime change? Good! We need all the help we can get. Those damn socialists have been in control for too long – with their stealth taxes and bribery. I could have been a contender you know? It could have all been mine if it wasn’t for that damn unfortunate business with the bicycle. I told them I only borrowed it – but what can you do once you have a criminal record? So I have had to bend the rules a bit? What of it?

“Quite so,” I said “but one must remain in the law, must one not?”

“What submit to state control?” exploded Uncle 2. “Laissez-faire, my friend, Laissez-faire. What we need is an economic system in which individuals, rather than government, make the majority of decisions. And that individual, old pal, should have been me. We need a free market run by myself – not all this Socialist intervention by Beaver and his goons. That’s why we continue to do battle with the Dictator, the lying boaster, of Homeward.”

The Old Monkey 2 (as I shall call him) piped up.

“Yeah, you should read my articles in The Badfort News. I’m the Chief Reporter and I say skewer Beaver, the old tyrant! What we want is more Black Tom and fine dining and you can get it if you really want.”

Uncle 2 clearly felt sorry for himself. “I used to be a member of the Trunkingdon Club, you know, until they blackballed me over that damn bike! – I’m sure that Wizard Blenkinsop got to hear about it. That’s the real reason he sold Homeward to Beaver. Thought I wasn’t up to the job. Cut too many corners”

I was finding my alter ego somewhat exasperating. “Look,” I said “Surely, reasoned argument will win the day….”

“What!” interrupted Uncle 2 “What do you know? The inhabitants of Homeward have been softened up for years by Beaver’s handouts!
They are like sheep!”

“Well,” I said “actually I have some experience of being in charge of Homeward. I have run it for years…”

“You delusional pompous ass!” cried Uncle 2. “Are you trying to muscle in with some spurious claim on Homeward?” he added.

At that point Cowgill entered the room and did a double-take as he was confronted by two Uncle’s.

“Ahhh…Cowgill…” said Uncle 2 “How are the plans shaping up for our next attack?...are the duck bombs ready?”

I interrupted “Thank God, you are here, as well, Cowgill – Where in heavens name am I?”

Cowgill just looked more and more perplexed.

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