Previously on Bloatmingle of the Yard... Bloatmingle had suffered a recurring nightmare whilst being stunned by the fall of a chandelier. Buried in a pile of ornamental crystal, he recalled the events leading up to his unconscious state... and realised that the freshly apprehended villains did not seem to be with them any longer...
“Where's Humplock? And Tommy No-Nose? And come to that – Peasmold should be back by now, even with him hobbling round in a circle on those stupid ducky feet of his!”
“Aha!” beamed Spiggot smugly. For the first time in his life he felt the intoxicating power of superior nollidge.
“H'if you poke around in that pile of fancy glass bits and stuff off of the lampshade, you will find Mr No-Nose and Dr Ercles Wossname buried in there.”
“Erm, well, Sir,” Spiggot sucked his teeth, suddenly discovering a boiled sweet lodged behind his third molar. “That's where it got to!” he exclaimed.
“Yes, WHERE did he get to?” demanded Bloatmingle. Honestly, getting information from Spiggot was like pulling teeth. Armed only with a fish hook and a length of embroidery silk.
“Well, Sir, it's like this, Sir. You will recall that I h'appre'ended the villain and indeed h'erstwhile colleague Humplock by means of sittin' h'upon 'is plump and comfortable h'ankles?”
Bloatmingle nodded. He didn't like the sound of this.
“Well, when the lampshade went and fell orf of the ceiling, Sir and landed on Mr No-Nose, Dr Ercles Wossname and yourself wiv quite a thud, Sir, I felt h'obliged to get up and do sumfink, that is to say, to ACT. Bein' as how I was chucked out of the Nativity Play at the h'age of eight, Sir, I felt the h'actor's life was not for me. No, sumfink H'IMMEDIATE was called for.”
Spiggot drew himself up to his full height and hooked his thumbs behind his braces. They pinged back menacingly and he winced.
“So I dug you out of the wreckidge of the lampshade, Sir, and, er, revived you by means of the water from that flower pot.” He indicated the vase. “H'unfortunately, Humplock took h'advantage of the situation, that h'is to say, I was no longer sittin' upon his plump and comfortable h'ankles, and he, er, buggered orf, Sir.”
Bloatmingle looked around for his pack of Beryl's Old Shag. It was lying there among the remains of the begonias. “Never mind, never mind,” he thought.
“We'd better get these dastardly villains tied up, apprehended and brought to justice before they come round!” he declared.“But they've already come round, Sir,” explained Spiggot patiently. “Or they wouldn't be 'ere, Sir. That Dr Ercles Wossname come round not two minutes before the lampshade 'it 'im!”
Bloatmingle busied themselves digging through the crystalline wreckage and eventually located the unconscious forms of Peasmold and Tommy No-Nose. The latter did not seem to have suffered any further damage by having his face pressed heavily to the floor. Luckily, Bloatmingle still had several balls of yellow scene-of-crime string, and the two felons where swiftly trussed up, looking like particularly ugly and over-wrapped chianti bottles by the time our heroes had finished. In Peasmold's case, a chianti bottle with webbed feet. They stacked them neatly against the wall.
Bloatmingle surveyed the remains of the chandelier. It reminded him of that time in Conk Street when the sardine delivery van went arse over tit through the plate glass window of Dorky Pankhurst's ice cube shop. His poetic reverie was soon to be disturbed, however...
A frightful apparition burst through the door, followed by a scream of the kind Bloatmingle had never experienced outside the rutting season in Glen Parva, and never directed at himself. The scream seemed to assume a corporeal form in the shape of a second terrifying apparition.
The first one leapt into Bloatmingle's arms. “Help me... help me...” it whimpered uncontrollably. Bloatmingle took in the wild hair, the eyes which looked as though they'd been borrowed from a documentary on squid in the Mediterranean – and the unmistakeable wart with two long hairs growing from it, sited just below the left eye.