(New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

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(New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:59 pm

Hooray, the writing forums are back up!

Yay! It’s October! Happy Halloween, everyone! This story started as a joke on the "Meanwhile in Australia" thread, but I had a plot bunny hopped by and … well... here is this year’s seasonal offering. It's a bit more ridiculous and silly than some of my recent stuff, so I really hope you find it as funny as I do. Thank you very much for reading.

Part 1

The day following their adventures in Biggles in the Orient, the squadron (minus Henry and Angus, who were still in hospital) lounged about their mess in a rather desultory fashion, for the afternoon heat was intense. Taffy had limped in, having obtained a pair of crutches from somewhere, and Biggles had a dressing on his arm, but otherwise they were remarkably unscathed from their wild week.

The Air Commodore had visited them earlier that morning, to tell them they could expect to return to Rawlham in a few days, as soon as transportation could be arranged, and in the meantime, they were to rest and recuperate. Nobody raised any objection to this. On the contrary, they were all delighted to have a bit of free time.

Shortly after lunch, they all looked up as the door swung open breezily and Johnny Crisp sauntered in. “What cheer, chaps,” he greeted them, tossing his hat onto a side table.

“Hullo, Johnny,” chorused a half dozen rather drowsy voices, but no one rose or moved in the slightest. It was too hot.

Johnny flopped into an empty chair and kicked his feet up onto an end table. “Hasn’t anybody got any energy?” he asked plaintively.

“No,” grunted Algy, without opening his eyes, from where he lounged on a settee with his feet dangling over the arm.

“I might do, if I hadn’t just lost a pint or two of the red stuff,” Taffy said, gesturing weakly at his bandaged leg.

“No, you wouldn’t, you lazy bastard,” Ferocity laughed, reaching over and ruffling Taffy’s hair. “You can’t blame everything on that scratch.”

“What about you, Biggles?” Johnny asked hopefully. “You’re practically famous for having boundless energy. Surely you can’t be lying about doing nothing.”

Biggles yawned and stretched, catlike. “I’ve just saved the world – not to mention, I’ve had a knife in my arm. Give me a day.”

Johnny grinned. “What if I said I had news?”

Biggles cocked an eyebrow at him. (That was about as much energy as he was willing to expend.) “What sort of news?”

“Interesting news.”

Biggles still declined to move. “Well, that’s what sort of makes it news, now, isn’t it? If it weren’t interesting, it …”

Algy cut him off before he could pontificate at length on the definition of news. “All right, Johnny,” he said, swinging his legs to the floor and struggling half-heartedly into a sitting position. “Out with it.”

“My dhobi-wallah told me this morning that his sister’s friend’s cousin…”

“Hang on,” Biggles broke in. “His sister’s… friend’s… cousin? That’s quite a gossip chain you’ve got there. How true is this nonsense you’re about to spew?”

Johnny looked pained. “If you’re going to be snippy, I shan’t tell you,” he grumbled.

Biggles laughed. “Okay, okay. Go ahead. But I’ll take any tale you’re about to tell with a gigantic grain of salt, if you don’t mind.”

Ahem.” Johnny cleared his throat before beginning his tale.

TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Mon Oct 08, 2018 1:00 pm

Since we're a bit behind, I'm not going to have to parcel it out quite so much as I had originally intended. Here's Part 2.

*

Part 2

Johnny continued “As I was saying, before I was so rudely interrupted…” he paused here to glare at Biggles, but his eyes twinkled and they all laughed. “My dhobi told me that there were some wolves spotted around the boundary of the airfield.”

Biggles laughed shortly. “Pariah dogs more likely – possibly jackals. Still…that’s your big news?”

“That’s not all of it,” Johnny replied, gesturing for them to be quiet. “It’s also a full moon tonight.”

“And?”

“Well, apparently there’s some local folklore about werewolves. My dhobi seemed quite concerned about it.”

Biggles stared at Johnny. “Seriously?”

Johnny shrugged. “All I’m saying, is that if the staff are acting a bit jumpy tonight, you’ll know why.”

“Oh good,” Biggles said. “For a minute there, I thought you were warning us to be on the lookout for werewolves.”

Johnny looked hurt. “What? No. Of course not. Werewolves aren’t real.”

“Aren’t they?” asked Biggles, to a general titter of mirth.

Johnny blinked. He wasn’t sure if Biggles was teasing him or not.

“No… no, of course not,” Johnny said, but this time he sounded less certain.

“Hypertrichosis is a real medical condition,” Biggles said. “Its sufferers have often been mistaken for werewolves in history.”

“Hyper … what?” asked Tex, scratching his head.

Hypertrichosis – it causes extreme hair growth all over the body. One of the more famous examples is Jo-Jo the Dog-Faced Man, who toured extensively with PT Barnum, the circus gent,” Biggles said.

“How do you know these things?” Taffy asked, rather plaintively.

Biggles merely grinned.

“Never, and I mean never, start playing any kind of quiz game with Biggles,” Ginger said, laughing. “You’ll lose – badly. I think he must have read the entire encyclopedia one of those times he was down with malaria.”

Biggles shrugged. “You’re not far off.”

TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Frecks » Mon Oct 08, 2018 1:54 pm

Well done KK. Very good - looking forward to the next instalment.

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Kismet » Mon Oct 08, 2018 1:56 pm

Lovely. Life feels much more normal now.
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Tracer » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:26 pm

Love your dialogue, KK. Always.



GORDON BENNETT! I posted and it WORKS!!!!!!

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:40 pm

Thanks chaps and chappesses. :D :D I am so glad to be back to my usual routine, I cannot tell you how frustrating it was to not be able to post this.
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Frecks » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:52 pm

It must have been KK especially as it is a seasonal story.

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Spitfire666 » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:58 pm

Hooray! RAAFSG told me to look out for this one - glad to see it at last. Looking forward to the next episodes. :D

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Mon Oct 08, 2018 4:01 pm

Since I got started a week late, here's Part 3.

Part 3

“But… but…” Johnny seemed at a loss for words. “Hairy people, medical condition. Okay, I get that. But… werewolves aren’t real… right?”

Biggles’ eyes twinkled merrily. “Probably not.”

Probably?” Johnny seemed concerned.

“There’s also a mental illness, the name of which escapes me at the moment, that makes people believe they’re animals,” Biggles continued professorially. “That might account for some of the werewolf legends from olden times.”

Bertie perked up. “Oh, I say chaps, I had a great-uncle who thought he was a barn owl. Used to hoot at people.”

“Oh?” said Biggles, looking interested. “You’ve piqued my curiosity… what happened to him?”

“Well… he was in the loony bin for a while,” Bertie admitted.

“Runs in the family, apparently,” Tug muttered under his breath.

“What was that, Carrington?” Biggles asked sharply.

“Nothing, sir.”

Ahem... Anyway,” Bertie continued, pointedly ignoring them both. “He got out of the sanatorium for some reason, and he was all right for a couple years, but one night he tried to fly off the church steeple in the village.”

“How’d that work out for him?” Algy asked curiously.

“Not well,” Bertie said flatly, vigorously polishing his eyeglass.

“Oh, oh,” said Ginger, as if he had just remembered something. “What about that time in Australia?”

Biggles blinked for a second. “Australia? When?”

“You know, that time we were with Dr. Duck,” Ginger said, nudging Algy with his toe.

“Oh, right,” Algy said with a wink. “Australia.”

“Who – or what – is Dr. Duck?” Johnny asked, confused.

Taffy, Ferocity, and Tex talked over one another, trying to explain.

“He was this rich, wacky scientist…”

“He had Biggles fly him all over the world…”

“They were looking for weird flora and fauna…”

Biggles rather futilely gestured at them to settle down.

“Okay, I think I’ve got the gist of it,” Johnny said, laughing.

“Go ahead, Ginger,” offered Biggles, signaling a mess waiter for some lemonade. “I’m sure we’d all like to hear this tale.”

“Well,” began Ginger. “It all started when Dr. Duck – otherwise Donald – had brought us down to Australia researching the Cooper Creek spirits. Which, as you may recall, turned out to be talking ravens and not ghosts at all. Anyway, we were renting some rooms in Sydney while we made preparations to return to England, when suddenly Donald bursts in, with a newspaper clipping in one hand, and his valise in the other.”


TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Kismet » Mon Oct 08, 2018 4:05 pm

Nice banter, kk. I love the idea of were koalas.
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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Tiffinata » Tue Oct 09, 2018 7:32 am

Yay!!!!

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Re: Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Foolscap » Tue Oct 09, 2018 5:31 pm

Nicely set up, KK:-)
Looking forward to more.
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:32 pm

Part 4

“The clipping was about a terrifying event in the Australian town of Wonglepong,” Ginger began, trying to sound mysterious and spooky, but falling well short of the mark.

Wonglepong?!” several voices chimed in at once in incredulity.

“Yup. Wonglepong.”

“Now you’re just making stuff up,” Tex grunted. “There is no such place.”

“That’s a pretty strong statement from a man who claims to be from someplace called Cactusville,” Algy muttered, and everyone laughed.

Ginger continued huffily once the laughter had abated. “No, I’m not making it up. Look it up in an atlas. Wonglepong. It’s in Queensland. Now shut up and listen.”

“Okay, okay,” grumbled the others good-naturedly.

“Where was I? Oh yes. Wonglepong. Anyway, the news clipping said some local youngsters had been out hiking when they claimed they were attacked by … something.”

“The Wild Werewolves of Wonglepong?” Johnny asked. Taffy snickered.

“Oh no. Something much, much more terrifying – or so everyone thought.”

“What was it?” several voices asked.

“Were-… koalas.”

There was a stunned silence for a few seconds, followed by guffaws and snorts of laughter.

“Were-koalas?” Ferocity asked, laughing so hard he had trouble finding his breath. “Were-koalas? I thought koalas were the cute fuzzy things that look like soft toys?”

“They may be fuzzy, but they’re far from ‘cute’ let me tell you,” Ginger said, affecting a hurt expression. “According to the local folklore, they lure you close to them by pretending to be all soft and cuddly, but then, when you least expect it… BAM.” He clapped his hands together and a number of the lads jumped at the sound, laughing at one another even as they did so.

“You’re just pulling my leg,” Johnny asserted confidently.

Ginger shrugged. “Please yourself,” he said, tipping his chair back and closing his eyes. “I won’t tell my stories to an uninterested audience.”

Ferocity made a rude noise. “Come on, Ginger,” he pleaded. “Don’t mind Johnny.”

“Yes, tell us,” Taffy said, reaching for his lemonade and taking a large swig. “It’s not like we’ve anything else to do. Anyway, who cares if it’s true? I like a good story.”

The others adopted comfortable positions and settled in for one of Ginger’s stories.

TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Kismet » Wed Oct 10, 2018 5:53 pm

Are the were-koalas drop bears? I'm enjoying this one, KK. And I'm going to look up Wonglepong.
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Wed Oct 10, 2018 5:55 pm

They are not quite the same thing. ;)

Wonglepong was suggested by RSG. So hats off to her! It's apparently quite close to where Mrs. OzB grew up as well!
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by HostileCacti » Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:46 pm

This is sooooo good!!

I really admire how you can get several people to join in conversation :D

I love the were-koalas. It reminds me of the description of Stitch (my favourite monster) that goes something like this:

"I don't even think it's a dog. .... I think it's an - an evil koala." :shock:

I am so looking forward to finding out more. *settling down and reaching for lemonade*
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Thu Oct 11, 2018 12:07 am

Thank you. I will post a little bit every few days until Halloween.
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:34 pm

Part 5

“Well,” Ginger began. “It was the summer of ’37 or thereabouts, which of course was winter in Australia, not that you’d know it though – it felt pretty summery to me, at least during the day. Donald’s first task was to track down the kids who’d made the initial report that had appeared in the paper. We first visited the office of the newspaper in Brisbane who’d printed the story, and got the names of these lads who lived in Wonglepong and we set out to interview them. We left the Wanderer at the port in Brisbane and drove nearly due south in a battered old truck – it was the only one we could get. Biggles drove with Dr. Duck – that is, Donald – in the cab with him, and Algy and I lounged in the back, trying not to fry like sausages in the sunshine. We pulled up at last in the town of Wonglepong. It seemed a nice enough place. It was a mix of farmland and forest, with some hills. We went to the police station and asked the sergeant to introduce us to these kids from the newspaper article, which he did, and I’ll get to that part later, but first the sergeant gave us a warning.

‘There’s been cattle rustlers about,’ he said. ‘So be careful and watch how you go. There’s even been a brace of murders.’

‘Murders!’ cried Donald. ‘Could the monster be responsible?’

And the policeman shrugged and said ‘Maybe. Some of the more superstitious folks think so. There’s an old aboriginal legend about animals that walk upright like a man, and it seems to have surfaced again. The two bodies were found a few days after the kids reported the monster in the bush, but it was impossible to tell what had killed them – wild animals and insects had already begun their grim duties.’

And then Biggles said ‘I think we need to talk to these kids before we do anything else.’ And the rest of us agreed.”

Ginger continued after a brief pause to sip his drink. “There were three or four of these youngsters, about my age at the time or a little younger, and they told us they’d been out having a picnic, when a giant koala as big as a man had rushed at them, roaring and thrashing about. They said he’d run right at them, knocking down one of the kids, and the others had beat it with sticks until it went up a tree. But here’s the strange part.”

“Oh good,” interrupted Tug sarcastically. “Because this story has been completely normal up until this point.”

“Shut up, Tug,” Ferocity grunted and waved a hand for Ginger to continue.

“Anyway,” Ginger continued with a withering glance in Tug’s direction. “They said… and I’m only repeating what they said, mind you… they said this giant koala-man was … wearing pants – that is, underpants.”

There was a stunned silence.

Underpants?” Taffy said finally. “What kind of underpants?”

“White ones,” Ginger grinned.

“You mean… like regular underpants? Human underpants?”

“See, I told you it was strange,” Ginger shrugged.

“Yeah … but… underpants? Why would a giant koala wear underpants?” Taffy was baffled.

“Why not? Why not a bowler hat and a feather boa whilst beating on a bongo drum? At this point, everything about this story is so bizarre…” Johnny Crisp said, throwing his hands in the air. “I give up.”

“Go on, Ginger,” Ferocity said eagerly. “I want to know what happens next.”

“Well, naturally, the kids didn’t want to go back to where they’d been attacked by this… creature… but they drew us a map and so we got back into the truck and drove on.”

TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by RAAF Spitfire Girl » Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:22 pm

Oooooh!!! So excited to see this one up, k_k. Drop bears and were-koalas, I'm hooked 👍 Looking forward to the next instalment.

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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:13 pm

RAAF Spitfire Girl wrote:Oooooh!!! So excited to see this one up, k_k. Drop bears and were-koalas, I'm hooked Image Looking forward to the next instalment.
Thank you! I’m thankful for all of your help with this story!
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by RAAF Spitfire Girl » Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:12 am

One day I'm going to drive back around Wonglepong...😉

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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Kismet » Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:37 pm

I got interrupted when I started reading this earlier but I have made it back! This is such good fun. A were koala in tighty whiteys. Now that's an image which will stay with me.
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:51 pm

Kismet wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:37 pm
I got interrupted when I started reading this earlier but I have made it back! This is such good fun. A were koala in tighty whiteys. Now that's an image which will stay with me.
Excellent.

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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by kylie_koyote » Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:56 pm

One more bit before I go home for the weekend. Fear not friends, more coming Monday. (I miss the Halloween smilies!)

**

Part 6

“On the outskirts of town, well away from the center and sort of around the side of a hill, there was a cluster of two or three homes, but they were boarded up, and the place was pretty much deserted. Then Algy started to climb out of the back of the truck and he said ‘This place looks like a ghost town from one of those Westerns that you like, Ginger’ and no sooner had he spoken than this mangy old cur rushed out of an abandoned shed and started barking at us like mad.”

“What did you do?” asked Johnny, curiously.

“Well, I don’t have to tell you that Algy hopped right back into the bed of that truck!” Ginger said, and everyone laughed.

“You would’ve too, if you’d been there!” Algy retorted defensively.

Ahem… Anyway,” Ginger continued pointedly, getting everyone’s attention again. “Biggles thought the dog was probably just starving, so he had me toss out some tinned meat, and the poor dog gobbled it right up and thereafter was just as friendly as could be. We called him Scrappy, because he looked as if he’d been in a few scraps in his time. He was missing part of his left ear and had some interesting-looking scars across his muzzle. We didn’t think anything special about the scars at first.”

“What were they?” asked Taffy.

“Don’t get ahead of the story,” Ginger chided, wagging a finger in teasing admonishment. “I’ll get there eventually.”

The others groaned, but called out for Ginger to keep telling his story.

“We decided to have a little explore around the town. Donald pointed out some brown smears on the doors of some of the abandoned houses. I admit, I thought it was blood at first – or maybe poo – and it made me feel a bit sick, but after a quick inspection, Biggles assured me that it was actually Vegemite.”

“Wait… wait…” broke in Tug. “Why on earth would someone smear Vegemite on their doors?”

“I’m glad you asked,” Ginger grinned. “Apparently the locals thought it would keep the were-koalas at bay.”

“And… did it work?” Tug asked.

“Apparently not, as the houses were a-ban-doned,” Taffy commented, rolling his eyes at Tug… from a safe distance.

Oy! If you think that busted leg of yours will save you from a busted nose…” Tug began, raising a fist, but broke off when Biggles cleared his throat pointedly. Tug blushed and lowered his arm. “Sorry, Ginger. Go on.”

“Well,” Ginger continued. “As I said, we had a bit of a look ‘round the place. The livestock was still about – mostly cows. Some chickens pecking around. Just no people. It was eerie. Then I looked out over a field and I saw a kangaroo with a baby in her pouch.” Ginger used his hands to illustrate this, sock-puppet-style, much to the amusement of his friends. “I thought it looked very cute, and I wandered over to see if I could pet it, but I didn’t realize his daddy was there too, as well as all of his aunts and uncles, and I … well, sort of started a kangaroo fight. Biggles and the others had to come and rescue me. It’s a good thing we had the dog with us too.”

“And what was did Biggles have to say about that?” Ferocity asked, grinning.

“Well… he was a bit peeved with me,” Ginger admitted sheepishly, rubbing one hand over the back of his neck.

“A bit. A bit.” Algy snorted. “I like that. A bit, he says. I say you’re lucky to still be on the right side of the grass.” The others laughed.

TBC...
"For goodness sake stop that Yankee drawl, or you'll have us all doing it before you've finished."
"OK baby - sorry - I mean, righto."
"That's better."

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Kismet
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Re: (New for 2018) Biggles and the Were-Koala

Post by Kismet » Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:33 pm

Of course our friends down under smear Vegemite on their door jambs to keep the were- koalas away.Why did I not know this already?
'Major Bigglesworth,' said von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'

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