left Sigworth's Dust: What to do with it!

Monday, 7 July 2008

What to do with it!

Cecil Mumtwip raised his right arm to silence the excitable crowd who had gathered here for this special meeting. (From this point onwards, it may be easier if I translate the script as best I can to facilitate the readers’ understanding. Full apologies to those who speak fluent Mumtwippian).

Cecil noisily cleared his throat.

‘Mumtwips, Mumtwippers and Mumtwippings,’ he began. ‘I think you are all aware why I have called this meeting?’

There was a general murmur.

‘Good. Now, at nightfall yesterday, we happened to capture a creature of unknown species...’

There came a gasp of astonishment from a Mumtwip who had obviously been otherwise engaged when the news had been spread. He was highly embarrassed when everyone turned their piercing eyes towards him, apologised and began to sulk.

‘Can we continue now Wilfred?’ laughed Cecil. ‘Good. Anyway, this new development changes our present situation.’

There followed an expectant hush.

‘I have a plan!’ Cecil said proudly. ‘Bring it forward!’

George backed away in fear as a herd of these little, yet terrifying, creatures (only half the size of Boffwunglers) scampered down the slope. It was impossible for George to see what was going on as her only source of light was now blocked off by the approaching creatures. Her imagination set to work once more. She screamed at the top of her voice and thrashed out as the lurking shadows reached out for her. It was no use. Before long she had been cornered. The amused Mumtwips simply ignored her outburst as they dodged the mis-timed blows and closed in. A dozen pairs of strong arms wrapped around her resistant body and mechanically lifted her over their heads and marched quickly up the slope towards the awaiting crowd.

‘Let go of me!’ George protested, her legs kicking in every direction, ‘and mind where you’re putting your hands. Ouch!’

She continued angrily shouting comments like, ‘Who do you think you are?’ and ‘I’m sick and tired of being thrown all over the place like a new toy!’ and was getting altogether carried away.

The Mumtwips threw her down in the centre of the circle.

‘See what I mean...’ she yelled, flicking her tangled hair off her flushed face. Then she turned a very funny colour.

Peering down at her in curiosity were lots and lots of horrid little faces, made up of tiny frosted blue eyes, small pointed noses which did not appear to have nostrils and great big mouths with a staggeringly large number of sharp, pointed teeth. It was this particular part of the description which made George shriek out loud. She had preferred the dark end of the slope.

‘Can we eat it?’ came a malicious voice.

George was lucky that she did not possess the ability to speak Mumtwippian.

‘No!’ said Cecil. ‘At least, not yet.’

‘What’s the plan?’ ventured another growling voice.

‘We caught the creature on the outskirts of the forest. I think she might come in extremely handy.’

‘As what? Breakfast?’ someone joked.

‘I don’t know where she comes from or what she was doing near the forest but it doesn’t take much to figure out that she must be some sort of spy,’ Cecil said, addressing the full company.

The wicked faces snarled down at George, who was trembling like a badly-set jelly. She felt that the beasts would be ready to ferociously rip her from limb to limb at any moment if given the command. This theory didn’t give her much comfort.

‘You think she knows something?’ asked a young Mumtwipping.

‘She might,’ replied Cecil thoughtfully. ‘It depends who sent her.’

‘What have you got in mind?’

‘I was thinking that we could use her as a trap!’