003:1/2 The adventures of James Bond Jr.

I just found this article, and I think there's no thread for this book so I decided to start one. Have you read it ? What did you think of it ? Some say that Arthur Calder-Marshall wrote this book but I guess it's not 100% confirmed yet.



  • DariusDarius UK
    edited November 2015 Posts: 354
    Hmmm... interesting.

    I pains me to admit that this one passed under the radar, although this book is still readily available used, although it's now long out of print.

    The mystery of the author's true identity is what intrigues me the most though. It's possible, indeed highly likely, that IFP are remaining tight-lipped about this for legal reasons, which suggests that if the real author were to be revealed, it would trigger litigation for breach of contract, assuming the real author was contracted to another publisher at the time of publication. If this is the case, then the real author is likely to be a major bankable "name" writer of the time, especially since the secret remains carefully guarded until this very day. This means then that this author's work is still likely under copyright.

    I suppose the only way to gain clues here is to buy a copy of this book and read it. The game's afoot! ;)
  • 007InVT007InVT Classified
    Posts: 893
    Good thread.

    There is a rumour that John Pearson wrote it but I think that's unlikely. Why it's STILL so hush hush is mystery, since no one really cares except for a few of us probably.
  • ClarkDevlinClarkDevlin Martinis, Girls and Guns
    Posts: 15,423
    It was not known who wrote The Adventures of James Bond Junior 003½, although many authors had been named as possibilities including Roald Dahl and Kingsley Amis. Amis was usually seen as unlikely since a year later he released Colonel Sun under the pseudonym Robert Markham, however, unlike R. D. Mascott, Amis's authoring of Colonel Sun was never a secret. Amis's writing style was also not similar to Mascott. Roald Dahl on the other hand did share some similarities specifically with one book he wrote in 1975, Danny, the Champion of the World. In 1967, Roald Dahl completed the screenplay for You Only Live Twice for Eon Productions, the same year The Adventures of James Bond Junior 003½ was published. Although there was evidence to suggest Dahl may have written 003½, there was equally as much evidence to suggest he had not.

    Several authorities attributed the novel to Arthur Calder-Marshall. Calder-Marshall had written a number of similar books especially in style and his descriptions of characters and environments in his books The Magic of My Youth (1951) and The Scarlet Boy (1961). It had also been suggested that the initials R. D. are a play on the name Arthur, which is typically shortened to Artie.

    Several years ago, the now defunct 007Forever.com website made a detailed case for the claim that Arthur Calder-Marshall was indeed the author behind the R.D. Mascott pseudonym. This incredibly detailed analysis focused greatly on the writing style, and compared specific paragraphs from "003½: The Adventures Of James Bond Junior" to several of Calder-Marshall’s novels which were published at roughly around the same time.

    As reported at Her Majesty’s Secret Servant, the identity of Mascott was kept a secret for decades until it was confirmed by his executors to be Arthur Calder-Marshall (August 19, 1908 – April 17, 1992).

    Taken from Wikipedia:
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    Interesting stuff, @dragonsky.

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited August 2018 Posts: 11,718
    Possessing a copy of the Random House US edition, I can begin comment.

    The opening passages.
    003½: The Adventures of James Bond Junior, R.D. Mascott, 1968. (1966)


    It's not easy to be the nephew of someone as famous as James
    "007" Bond.

    The younger James Bond has played "secret agent" so often
    that his friends think it's just another game when he says there's
    something going on at a nearby estate.

    But James wonders why the new owner has sealed off the
    grounds with barbed wire and vicious dogs. Is he just a mad
    millionaire? Or is there method in his madness?

    With the help of an unlikely ally, a grubby, shop-lifting girl
    named Sheelagh, James undertakes a daring adventure in which
    he displays the same courage and resourcefulness that made his
    uncle famous.

    So I'm absorbing the set-up of this James Bond as the son of Captain (David) Bond, he's an only child living with mother and father, but with frequent moves kind of isolating him over time. And apparently dealing with the family association as nephew of James Bond the VERY well-known secret agent, the wink-wink-nudge-nudge--he can't live up to HIS reputation. But apparently will try.
    The Reason Why Not
    Dar es Salaam

    "Tell me, what's it like, James, being overshadowed by 007?"
    Mrs. Frame asked. "And why ever did that father of yours call
    you James, knowing the trouble it'd cause you?"

    James told her that he'd never met James Bond. His parents
    never saw him--he was always on some mission or other.

    "But I wrote to him once. You know, as man to man. I thought,
    well, we had something in common."


    "He sent me a sheath knife. But he didn't really say much--
    not like he understood, I mean."

    Some interesting stuff in Chapter 1 obviously for a younger audience.
    But am I supposed to have "dirty thoughts" for "a grubby, shop-lifting girl" I'm left wondering.

  • Posts: 5,492
    The french edition :


    And yes, I have it, having bought it in 1973 or so. Funny thing, the man who did the cover and the interior illustrations was Maurice Paulin, who, among other things, did the same for a young readers spy series (for the same publisher) called Langelot. More details here :


    As for the Sheath knife, I guess it would be that model, Bond being british and all :

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    That's an awesome image @Gerard, I did a quick search for more of a throwing knife but settled for something else obviously. Yours is on the mark.
  • edited July 2018 Posts: 5,492
    An interior colour illustration, showing James Jr. And Sheelagh :

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited August 2018 Posts: 11,718
    The Girl behind the Fence

    [James on his way to the Merck cottage.]
    Where the Windlehurst footpath joined the bridle path there
    was no undergrowth, except for some weeds growing close to the
    wire fence. Through these weeds, James saw someone in the
    pasture, close to the wire. As he walked quietly down, he saw
    that it was a girl.

    She was kneeling down, half-turned from him. The pattern of
    her cotton dress was so faded it was indistinguishable. Her straw-
    berry colored hair looked as if it hadn't been washed, combed or
    brushed for ages. He could not see what he was bent over, but
    from the way her shoulders shook and the strange noises she
    made she seemed to be crying.

    The girl did not hear his approach and James got close enough
    to see that she was staring at something brown and furry, round
    which blue bottles were buzzing, angry at being disturbed.

    James knelt down, not two yards away. She took no more
    notice of him than of the blue bottles. Tears ran down her
    freckled, grubby face, leaving clean streaks. Every so often she
    sobbed. She was only a kid, but she was beautiful in a wild way.

    As he did not want to scare her by speaking, James willed
    her to turn and see him.

    Suddenly she looked round. She had long, light lashes, like a
    cow's. But her green-yellow eyes were like a cat's. For a moment
    James thought that she was scared. Then her eyes blazed. Her muscles
    tautened, as if, like a crouching panther, she might suddenly

    Needless to say James is humbled (or should be) by her reaction to their meeting. And the chapter touches on death and danger.

    Unknown to me, the British term "blue bottles" for bluebottle fly or bottlebee.
    Maybe Richard Chopping's real world inspiration for his cover art.


  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    The Silent Guardians

    There was no mention of dogs, no need of it. As James stopped
    opposite the gate, an Alsation ran out from the farmyard like a
    bull trotting into the bullring. He looked round and then, seeing
    James, he bounded barking toward him. Close behind came an
    Alsation bitch, trying to make up for slowness by baring even

    Despite the protection of the barricade, James stepped back-
    ward. They were magnificent beasts. There was such a ferocity in
    the baring of their teeth that they seemed spoiling to get at him,
    and such power in their bodes that James thought they could
    clear the barricade if they wanted. He had to reassure himself
    that they were guard dogs, trained not to go out and attack but
    to stand and defend.

    I took notice of the author using an opportunity to introduce the word "bitch" into his book for young adults. In another passage I'm surprised by something sometimes taken as a phallic symbol, can't guess the intent here. Maybe I'm overly sensitive on these points.



  • Posts: 2,490
    Thanks for sharing parts of the books here, really appraciate it
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited August 2018 Posts: 11,718
    When is a Public
    Footpath Private?

    ..................................................At the back there was a map
    of the estate. The Windlehurst footpath was marked as public
    and the path on the other side of Breakneck Lane leading to
    Underfold was also marked as public, but the middle bit crossing
    the Hazeley Hall Estate was not. So Mr. Merck was legally within
    his rights to block the path from Lower Farm to Breakneck Lane.
    Perhaps, thought James, that was why Mr. Merck had bought
    Hazeley Hall. It gave him a large estate from which the public
    could be barred. He now understood the silence of the two men.
    He had made a fool of himself. He put back the catalogue.

    The only way to get to Mr. Merck was to go right up his
    front drive. Should he bicycle there or what?

    Just then Nobby Scales drove up in his mail truck. Nobby's
    delivery round took him along the Windlehurst road, down
    Breakneck Lane right past the entrance to Hazeley Hall, and
    then over the river to Marsham.

    James opened the window.

    "Hey, Nobby!" he shouted. "Give me a lift!"

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    The Occupier, Hazeley Hall

    .................Nobby Scales was a very knowing character.
    There seemed no job he hadn't had before becoming a
    mailman. As a result of this wide experience, he had a fund of
    inner secrets.

    "Of course, knowin' it from the inside..." was a favourite
    beginning to his sentences, or "Strictly confidential..."

    "There are things I could tell you," he would go on, nodding
    his head and either winking or laying his index finger on the
    side of his nose, "what would make your 'air stand on end, they

    What what these things were, he never specified.

    "Cor," he would say when pressed for details, "if you seen
    what I seen! You wouldn't credit it. You just wouldn't credit it!"

    Being a mailman suited him no end, especially the postcards.

    "That card what the Commander got from Ma Sales. You
    shoulda seen that card, you reely should. Strike a light! Wonder
    it didn't burn the post bag." His voice sunk to a whisper. "All
    in code, of course. They say 'e'd retired!" He shook his head.
    "Once in Naval Intelligence, always in Naval Intelligence! All
    the world knows that."
    Short of spoilers hopefully, there is surprising violence in this chapter. And what I thought was misrepresented on the book covers is shown to be accurate after all. Plus of course it's hard being a civil servant.
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    The Shoplifter

    ..........................In Marsham change is more noticeable than
    in a town--who has a new car, a new hat, a new shop front.
    Even the people you don't know to speak to, you know by sight.
    And in three months they can alter astonishingly, James thought.

    There was time to kill before he could meet Squirrel and the
    Pride, so James wandered around the village. He went into Wool-
    worth's to buy a quarter-pound of assorted sweets. At the candy
    counter, he immediately saw the tow-haired girl from Lower
    Farm. She was standing next to a large woman who was order-
    ing several different kinds of sweets. The woman had a loaded
    shopping basket over her arm.

    A stranger would have thought that the girl was the large
    woman's daughter, waiting patiently for her mother to finish.
    James, standing on the side, could see the girl's hand creep up
    between the shopping basket and the body of the large woman.
    It went up quietly and was as quietly withdrawn. Then the girl
    moved away, as if she was interested in something else.

    To make some sense of the story, I'll start with very brief descriptions of the chapters then keep up with the rest. Spoilers, obviously.
    Chapter 1: The Reason Why Not Dar es Salaam
    James resists a family outing to Dar es Salaam--he has his own agenda and business to take care of. To recover belongings from Hazeley Hall, where Mrs. Frame allowed him access to a one-room cottage. Some observations on 007 and the family relationship.

    Chapter 2: The Girl Behind the Fence
    James on his own is surprised that his access to the cottage is blocked by a sign that warns "KEEP OUT--DANGER FIERCE DOGS". The owner Mr. Merck isn't so accessible. James comes across a blond girl and death--she's crying over a dead (Alsation) puppy. He's first sorry, then is compelled to deny being responsible for the death.

    Chapter 3: The Silent Guardians
    Another footpath access to Lower Farm is blocked by wire and warning signs. Alsatians roam the grounds--fierce guard dogs, trained to stand and defend rather than attack rationalizes James. Two odd men stand in the distance, the blond girl appears. James shouts an appeal to them and the girl, it's not answered. She eats a banana. A red-haired woman pulls her away and inside. James is outraged by what he sees as public rights of access being violated.

    Chapter 4: When is a Private Footpath Public
    James shares the details with Mrs. Raggles, leaving out the dead puppy and the girl. A more adult conversation for him, he's frustrated but recognizes Mr. Merck is within his rights to buy up land like Hazeley Hall and deny access. But he wants his belongings and hitches a ride on Nobby Scales' mail truck.

    Chapter 5: The Occupier, Hazeley Hall
    Actions evolve that place James in the vehicle entering Hazeley Hall. He's witness to a ferocious Doberman pinscher on a chain, and this part of the mail run is described as a gauntlet. Following a contentious interaction with Mr. Merck, Nobby snaps and shockingly runs down the chained dog with his truck. The frantic mood continues after their hasty exit, James is sickened by the death. He's ready to support Nobby and go to the police, Nobby refuses that help.

    Chapter 6: The Shoplifter
    At Woolworth's James observes the blond girl Sheelagh shoplifting, her interests include sweets and draw-rin' stuff. He offers better drawing materials when he retrieves them from Hazeley Hall. She's doubtful.

    James refers to Sheelagh as:
    "The bog-rose! ... A favorite flower of mine.
    But sooner to flower than the cultivated varieties."

    Andromeda polifolia Marsh Andromeda, Bog rosemary

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    The Pride of Lions

    ..........................The Pride of Lions had been James' idea
    during his last year at Marsham Primary. He had been encour-
    aged by Alfie Maws, the landlord of the Lion and the Unicorn,
    whose son Bobbie was in the same class. Alfie Maws had con-
    verted the stables at the public house into a sort of gym and
    game room. But most of the activities of the Pride had been
    centered on the ammunition dump on the grounds of Hazeley
    Hall, with the permission of Mrs. Frame. That was why James
    wanted to see Squirrel Joram, who became King of the Pride
    after James went away to prep school and the others moved into
    the Secondary Modern. The Pride must resent the fencing-in of
    Hazeley Hall as much as he did--perhaps more.
    "So where are we?" Bill Asher said. "Back where we started."

    "You don't know judo," James said.

    "For crying out loud!" Squirrel raised a laugh.

    James waited for the laugh to end. "I've been learning it. The
    principal's easy. You don't go against. You go with."
    "What d'you go with with with?" Squirrel asked. And there was
    another laugh, but the Lions were excited at the exchange.

    "The guard dogs."

    James told them about Nobby Scales's killing the Doberman
    pinscher. "I think there's only the two Alsatians tonight," he
    said. "They won't have had the time to get another guard dog. Just
    two guard dogs for the whole of Hazeley. One of them may be
    chained, in place of the Doberman pinscher."

    "Or they'll padlock the front gate and leave both dogs loose,"
    Squirrel said. Squirrel was a sharp second-in-command."

    "That's right Squirrel," James said. "We've got to find out.
    But the point is, these dogs bark. They bark like mad."

    "So what?" asked Charlie North.

    "We were talking of being a nuisance," James said. "Ringing
    someone's doorbell and running away--that could be against
    the law. But making somebody's dog bark! That's judo. You don't
    trespass. You're just there. They make their own nuisance. And
    if they're scared of somebody getting in..."

    There was a murmur of appreciation. "Keep 'em up all night.
    String 'em up and down the wire."

    "Operation Barker!" Squirrel said. "It's an idea. But, golly,
    can we do it?"
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited September 2018 Posts: 11,718
    Operation Barker

    James' party and Squirrel's set off together at dusk. Jon Long
    was waiting for them where their ways parted. he came to meet
    them as they hove into the night. He looked perplexed. "It's jolly
    queer," he said. "I done like you told. But it didn't work out."

    He had presented himself at the at the barricade and had rattled on
    the wire with a stick. But there was no barking. Just this one dog
    came loping over. But he didn't bark. He stood watching Jon and
    when Jon put his hand on the barbed wire, he growled and
    showed his teeth. Jon walked along the wire fence and the Alsa-
    tian followed him silently, stopping when he stopped, moving on
    again when he moved.

    Once Jon put his hand up and grasped the wire as if he was
    going to climb up it. Immediately the Alsatian sprang for the
    wire and nearly had Jon's fingers.

    There were no lights downstairs at the farmhouse. But there
    was one light in an upstairs room. Jon blew his whistle several
    times, but no one came. At last the curtain in the lighted room
    was drawn. A girl looked out. (Jon didn't say what girl, but
    Jimmy was sure that it was Sheelagh.) She didn't call out and
    Jon did not blow the whistle again. There didn't seem any point.

    "Well," Squirrel said, "there's no one there--only the girl. And
    the dog won't bark. So bang goes Operation Barker!"
    The others looked at James.

    James didn't care about Operation Barker. It was a pretty silly
    idea to begin with. He'd thought of it just as an exercise to get
    the Lions used to working together as a team, so that they'd be
    ready when "the balloon went up." He looked at the other
    five--or rather, four, because at that moment Jon Long said, "I
    must be pushing," and made off back to Marsham. James didn't
    dare to take them into his confidence. They'd just laugh and tell
    him to stop playing 007.

    "No," he said. "Operation Barker is more important than ever!"

    Combined Operations

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    Combined Operations

    Bobbie Maws said nothing, but Bill Asher said, "Aren't you
    taking this rather seriously, Jim?"

    "It's either something or nothing," James said. "If it's some-
    thing, it's serious, dangerous. If it isn't it's a waste of time. But
    either way it's not a game."

    He walked on without the other two.

    After a few moments of muttering, they followed him. But
    when they reached the bottom of the hill, where the ditch broad-
    ened into a sort of a boggy swamp, the lights of a car appeared
    reflect round the corner of the crest.

    "Down!" shouted James, throwing himself face down in the
    bog. It was too much for Bobbie Maws and Bill Asher. They
    turned and started walking back toward Marsham.

    About ten yards away, they stood in the road, trying to
    thumb a lift from the downcoming car.
    Looking up, James could see that it was Sir Cuthbert's Jaguar.
    The Commander might have stopped to give James a life (if
    his clothes hadn't been sopping). But he didn't stop for the
    sons of a tavernkeeper and a pharmacist. He raised his head-
    lights and sounded the horn. As the Jaguar swept by without
    dropping speed, James saw there was a woman beside the Com-
    mander, not Lady Conningtower, but a blond womand, much
    younger, who was leaning forward and laughing.

    Bobby and Bill jumped back onto the verge, swearing with

    James stood up. the front of his shirt and trousers were
    dripping wet.

    "Come home, Jim," Bill said, "you can't go on like that.
    You're not 007 you know."
    James does go on in the dark. Reaching a barbed wire fence, he sights two men in a truck by the point of light appearing with each drag on their cigarettes. Hazeley Lodge is in view.

    A second military truck arrives, the first joins it. He sees Miss Hubbard's Ford Anglia come and go. A black Humber automobile appears at the exit.
    He could have sworn it was the bearded face of the
    ginger Negro, under a dark, peaked cap.

    As it turned the corner, the Humber's lights leapt full on;
    and from the dome in the centre of the roof flashed the blue
    winking eye of the police!

    CHAPTER 10
    The Wrath of Mrs. Raggles

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited September 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 10
    The Wrath of Mrs. Raggles

    But a furious Mrs. Raggles pounced on him the moment he
    came in. "Yes, I know you telephoned earlier, but that's no
    excuse," she said, "not for being this late!"

    She held him away from her, looking at his torn and sopping
    clothes, his face and hands deliberately smeared with mud for
    camouflage. "If I'd known what I'd let meself in for, I never
    would've promised I'd do for you. And never again. Get up
    them stairs, James Bond, and wash yer face and 'ands, and put
    yer pyjams on."

    If he hadn't felt so exhausted, James would have protested.
    But Mrs. Raggles had been building up her fury all evening.
    "You nearly had me ringing the police," she shouted upstairs.
    "Wait till your Dad and Mum hear about this. You'll get a
    paddle-bum. Good mind to give it you meself."
    "You just try!" he snapped.

    "I would an' all, if you was mine."

    "Well I'm not!" He turned and shouted down the stairs.
    "I'm nobody's. I'm MINE!"

    As he washed himself under the shower, James thought about
    the words that had just sprung out of his mouth: "I'm mine."
    As the shower freshened him, he realize that this was what
    happened when you grew up, you became yours, nobody else's.
    So did your problems.

    Mrs. Raggles was not impressed. Had James told her too
    much or hand't he told her enough? Or was she frightened of
    anything which had to do with Them? James felt her disap-
    proval build up, like an abscess beneath a tooth. It burst as he
    finished the tart. She plucked the empty plate away from him.
    "Well, that's quite enough of that!" she said. "An' the sooner
    you get to bed the better, me lad."

    "But Mrs. Raggles, you don't see..."

    "I see only too well," she said. "You've got that uncle of
    yours on the brain. Your Mum warned me. And I'm not going
    to have any of that 007 nonsense in this house, not while I'm
    responsible." She tossed her head. "That I won't!" She did it so
    vigorously that spoon and fork fell from the plate.


    James makes an awkward phone call to the Commander, but Lady Conningtower picks up. He'll have to talk to the Commander the next day, about seeing him in the Jaguar. (What he didn't share: Sir Cuthbert was accompanied by a young blonde woman.)


    CHAPTER 11

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 11

    He heard when they reached the fallen oak, because of the
    Alsatian's barking. The dog had found James' scent and came
    running down the side of the field, his barking growing louder
    and louder until he stopped beneath the standing oak. There
    he stopped, alternately barking and trying to leap up the tree.

    James's heart beat so hard that he was afraid the girl would
    hear it down below. Then Sheelagh started calling, "Jimmy!
    Jimmy!" Her voice was pleading, not a bit like a key snitcher's.
    James climbed quietly down until he could see her face turned
    upward. She spoke to the Alsation and he stopped barking and
    went and sat on his haunches away from the tree.

    "What you doin'?" Sheelagh asked. "Come on down! Don't
    say yer skeered?"

    "Wouldn't you be," James asked, "if I had that dog?" But
    he felt silly, seeing the Alsatian so obediently tame.

    Sheelagh stroked the dog's head. "It's Satan," she said. "He
    won't hurt you, if I sez so." She knelt by the dog, pointing up
    the tree at James. "Satan!" she said. "Friend! Friend!"

    So James continues his plan to get to the cottage and retrieve his possessions.


    CHAPTER 12
    Not Quite a Boy,
    Not Yet a Man

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited October 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 12
    Not Quite a Boy,
    Not Yet a Man

    James went to the cottage and opened it. He thought what a
    pity he should meet a girl who'd be fun to play with, just when
    there were more important things to do.

    He took out his large box of colored pencils. It was a folly to
    give her all, and pettiness not to. He would be foolish, he de-
    cided, not petty. He selected three sizes of brushes, half a dozen
    poster paints, an HH and a BB pencil, a big used sketching pad.
    That was the lot.
    Then he thought better. Sheelagh would prefer a completely
    new sketching pad half the size of a big one partly used. He
    did them all up in brown paper and sealed the package with
    tape. And with a felt-tip pen he wrote NOT TO BE OPENED TILL
    LATER. He was not going to have her looking over his gift and
    haggling with him about whether the drawing things were what
    she really wanted.

    "But what'll I do when you're gorn, Jimmy?" she said forlornly.

    "Draw, girl, draw!" he said. "I want to see what you've done
    when I come back."

    And though he had never intended this, as he said these words
    he realized that he had an opportunity to use Sheelagh to spy
    on her own people.

    No, said part of James that he was still a child, No. But the
    other part of James said, Yes. And why not?

    CHAPTER 13
    Mrs. Raggles Gives a Blessing

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited October 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 13
    Mrs. Raggles Gives a Blessing

    "I'd beat the daylights out of you, if you was
    my boy," said Mrs. Raggles, "which mind you you're not, so I
    won't. But just you look at that clock. Twenty past ten! You go
    out mushrooming and you don't even find no mushrooms! It's
    not fair to me, Jimmy. What're you up to?"
    James could tell Mrs. Raggles what he was up to. He wasn't
    certain himself. "I don't want breakfast anyway," he said,
    though he was ravenous. "So don't bother."

    If he had asked for breakfast, Mrs. Raggles would have told
    him he was too late. As it was, she hurried off to cook up an
    enormous meal, which she could insist on his eating. James
    wished that Sheelagh was as predictable as Mrs. Raggles.

    The half-folded Daily Clarion was lying on the table. The one
    banner headline in huge capitals was a single word:


    £2 M GOLD GRAB

    "Don't you see Jimmy, you can't do nothing on your own,"
    Mrs. Raggles said. "It's not for you or me. It's for Them." She
    was very serious. Though James did not have Mrs. Raggles' be-
    lief in "Them," he couldn't see at the moment what he or the
    Pride could do. He looked crestfallen. And he was not playacting.
    He felt it.
    "If you make some sandwiches, I could take the bike," he sug-
    gested. "Maybe go for a swim in the lake. See what Squirrel's

    Mrs. Raggles made a hopeless gesture with her hands. "I've
    given me word to your Dad and Mum," she said. "What'll they
    say?... They'd never forgive me... I'd never forgive meself
    if anything happened.

    He had learned that, as far as grownups were concerned--
    apart, of course, from the paid tormentors of the young like
    schoolmasters--to be a schoolboy is to wear a cloak of invisibility.
    Nothing he thinks or does can matter to adults.
    James helped Mrs. Raggles make the sandwiches and fill a
    thermos with iced lemonade. "We might make a long day of
    it," he said, "but you're not to fuss, see!"

    When he went to the door, Mrs. Raggles, having seen every-
    thing packed in his saddlebag, suddenly took hold of his head
    in her hands. "You're a proper little devil, Jimmy," she said
    and kissed him on the forehead. "Bless you and keep you out of

    If anyone had been looking, James would have blushed with
    shame. But as it was, the kiss and the blessing lightened his
    heart as he cycled away.

    CHAPTER 14
    Young Fool, Old Fools

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited October 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 14
    Young Fool, Old Fools

    He could see Sir Cuthbert's boredom building up. James's
    story wasn't a simple one. It was built up from a number of
    little things, none very significant in itself, but, in James's
    mind, very suspicious when taken together. They seemed not to
    penetrate Sir Cuthbert's mind. The Commander licked his lips
    and put his hand into his jacket pocket and felt the half-bottle
    of gin.

    It wasn't until James was floundering in the middle of his
    story that he saw he was asking the impossible of the Com-
    mander. Sir Cuthbert wanted to cover up his lie about the Naval
    Reunion dinner. If he rang up Sergeant Daintree or the Criminal
    Investigation Department, there was a strong chance that it
    would be discovered that he hadn't been to any Naval Reunion.
    James came to a stop in the middle of the sentence.

    Sir Cuthbert leaned over and opened the door for him. "Nice
    of you to put in the picture, laddie," he said. "I'd suggest
    this is your big chance to get in touch with Uncle James. Just up
    007's street, eh?"
    Jimmy got out. He was a fool to ever have thought old
    Conningtower would be willing to help. He closed the door.

    "Or," added Sir Cuthbert through the window, "he might
    advise you not to be a silly little boy."

    Rage made James tremble. "Thank you for your advice, sir,"
    he said. "I'll tell my father how helpful you've been." He turned
    and walked across the road, for the moment anxious only not
    to let Sir Cuthbert see how wounded he felt.

    When he looked around, the Commander was replacing the
    top on the bottle of gin.


    CHAPTER 15
    Caught like a Rabbit

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 15
    Caught like a Rabbit

    The truck was a one-ton Bedford. But it wasn't like the ones he
    had seen the night before. There was no camouflage for one thing,
    and, for another, the tarpaulin hood was newer. At the wheel was
    the dark man in the black jump suit, and sitting beside him was
    Mr. Merck. They were engrossed in what they were doing. But
    the Alsatian bitch running behind the Bedford wasn't. When she
    came to where James had crossed the carriage way, she stopped,
    sniffed, and then barged to call the attention of the men in the
    truck. But the engine made too much noise for them to hear.
    They drove on.
    He could hear the dog's indecision. The Alsation couldn't
    climb. She didn't want to leave the tree. But her barking did not
    recall the men in the truck.

    From the different barks James could hear how she ran off
    toward the truck to try to attract attention and then ran back
    again. If the dog could have cut herself in half, she would have
    done so.
    "Oh God!" James prayed. "Help me!"

    But the answer to the prayer made his heart sink. The tone of
    the dog's voice changed to an excited greeting. She had at last
    attracted notice. She was coming happily to the foot of the tree.
    It was only a matter of minutes before someone climbed up to
    him. And then what on earth could he say?

    CHAPTER 16
    Sheelagh's Boy Friend

  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 16
    Sheelagh's Boy Friend

    The bitch fell silent. There was nothing
    meaningful in the confusion of sounds: a threshing machine in
    Undercote Park, a car shifting to a lower gear going up Break-
    neck lane, pigeons mating in a nearby tree.

    Then from below came a pleased whine.
    Someone was climbing. James couldn't see who it was. The
    leaves were too thick. In a sencs, he was out of this world--not
    the way a Viscount was, but weighing 112 pounds he could climb
    beyond the reach of heavy men like Mr. Merck or the chap in the
    jump suit. The jockey might try to climb up, but if he did,
    James would kick his stupid face in.
    He had his 007 sheath knife. He hadn't used it except for cut-
    ting the bracken camouflage. But now he had his fingers on its
    hilt. He would show it, he thought, but not use it.

    Then he shoved it back in its sheath. He had been crazy to
    think of brandishing it. The only way to get out of this mess was
    to be Sheelagh's boy friend with pockets full of things like bubble gum.
    All of a sudden, his fears seemed foolish--because it was Shee-
    lagh who was climbing up. She looked at him and laughed.

    James was so glad to see that grubby, snubby, beautiful, green-
    eyed face again , he almost said, "Oh, Sheelagh, I could kiss you!"
    But instead he gave her a slangy greeting. He said, "Witcher,
    "Donal! Zat is enough now, Donal!" Mr. Merck's voice was
    high, but it carried command. He came up behind Donal and
    pushed him aside as if he was a gate. He towered over Shelagh.
    "Who is zis boy. Vot's he doing here?"

    "I told you to speak to no strangers," Donal snarled from
    behind Mr. Merck. "I'll give yer such a tannin'."

    "Jimmy's a friend o' mine," Sheelagh barked back. "E's no
    stranger. 'E's my friend, see?"
    James looked up at Mr. Merck. He was more dangerous than
    a dozen Donals. And he wasn't stupid. "I'm sorry, sir," James
    said. "Didn't I ought to be here, sir? I didn't know you were
    doing anything secret."

    "Secret?" Mr. Merck was caught. If their activities weren't
    secret, why were they acting so strangely? If they were secret,
    what was it they were hiding? "Vere you come from?" He was
    puzzled by James's accent.

    CHAPTER 17
    Aunt Mo
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited November 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 17
    Aunt Mo

    As they came into the Lower Farm yard,
    Sheelagh squeezed James's hand more firmly. She nodded towards
    the back door. Auntie Mo, the red-headed slattern, shirt sleeves
    rolled up, was sitting on a backless kitchen chair in front of a
    zinc washtub. With her left hand she held a white chicken be-
    tween her legs, and with her right she plucked the feathers
    sharply and dropped them into the tub. Her head was bent and
    she was engrossed.
    Sheelagh pointed to the stable on the far side of the yard and
    put a finger to her lips. Together they tiptoed towards the stable,
    leaving as much distance as possible between them and Auntie
    Mo. Jimmy watched her skilled movements. She did not tear
    the skin. But she was so savage that she seemed to get pleasure
    from exposing the flesh beneath the feathers. Like Mr. Merck
    and Donal she was remorseless, James thought. Whatever she did,
    she would never say sorry, because she'd done it on purpose, or
    wouldn't admit it even it it was a mistake.
    He knelt on the worm-eaten boards, while Sheelagh sat on
    the pail, turning her drawings round for him to see them.
    "Nobody ever done that for me," she said.


    "Knelt and let me sit," she said. Nobody ever treated me,
    like...like somebody."

    James felt embarrassed. He had no words to say even to him-
    self what Sheelagh was like. His mother and father would have
    been appalled by her. Yet Sheelagh was something more precious
    than they could ever have. He looked at the drawings.
    They were crude, but they had vigor. She could catch a like-
    ness. He recognized Auntie Mo immediately, though not what
    she was doing. "It's good," he said. "Gosh, I wish I could draw like that!"

    James didn't have to counterfeit admiration. Which was just
    as well, because he felt that drawing mattered to Sheelagh more
    than anything else. If he hadn't genuinely liked her drawings,
    they would have stopped being friends.

    Suddenly the air was rent with the cry of "SHEELAGH!
    SHEELAGH! It was Auntie Mo again.

    They stayed very quiet and then, at a gesture from Sheelagh
    they crept to the cobwebbed window. Auntie Mo was down
    in the yard, ludicrously holding the unplucked chicken in her
    hand, looking this way and that as she shouted, "SHEELAGH!"

    Sheelagh gripped James's hand. Her fingers were sticky. She
    started to laugh, very quietly but getting louder.

    "What is it? Why does she want you?"

    Sheelagh shook her head. She didn't know. "Don't she look silly?"

    CHAPTER 18
    Whose Secret Cottage?
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 18
    Whose Secret Cottage?
    D'you like it?" Sheelagh was interested in what she'd drawn,
    not when.

    "Not so good as Aunt Mo," James said. "What else you got?"

    She showed him a number of sketches which didn't interest
    him as a detective. On the coloring and composition of these he
    passed critical judgment. Then he came to the last. He had to
    restrain himself from gasping. It was a portrait, left profile as
    James had seen her the night before, of the woman who had
    been sitting beside Mr. Cuthbert in the Jaguar. "Oh!" he said.
    efa637e281288ba32a2d91f5349423f5.jpg images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ6PAADr3NChGYC1Z7FsMXxl0YvGjTVHLUcLYWUADjaIpq_pBQElw
    "You got no more right to them things than what I 'ave,"
    Sheelagh said. "An' you know it."

    "But . . ." he thought of his books, his apparatus, his tools, all
    his radio equipment, "you don't know what to do with it. You're
    dotty, Sheelagh. You wouldn't be interested in most of it."

    She flicked the picture of the Commander's girl over to him as
    a gift and, as he released her wrist, she walked over to the cob-
    webbed window. "I wouldn't want all of it," she said. "I'd give
    you some back. Just so you teach me to use the rest." She
    turned. "That's fair, ain't it?"

    What made it unbearable was that Sheelagh was smiling at
    him. It seemed to her the most natural thing in the world.
    "But Sheelagh!" James said. "Sheelagh!"


    "He went over to her. "I thought you liked me." He took her
    head in his hands and stroked her tousled hair.

    "Course I like you," she said. She put her arms round him
    and kissed him on the lips. Her breath smelt of raw onions.
    "That's why I said you could teach me them things."

    It wasn't the way any books James had read described first
    love. But this was the way it was with him. Sheelagh was the
    most awful, artful and delightful girl he'd ever met.
    half-of-onions-vector-drawing-vector-id542941796?s=170x170 hair-care-icon-vector-id806858626?s=170x170
    ...Auntie Mo and Paddie were out in the yard, Paddie cursing
    to high heaven. Sheelagh squeezed James's hand as she ran back
    to meet the onslaught.

    James tried the handle of the front door. The door was bolted
    top and bottom. He tugged at the rusty nails. They groaned as
    they shot back. But still the door wouldn't open. The lock had
    been turned and there was no key.
    He could hear Sheelagh shouting in the yard, giving as good
    as she took from Paddie and Auntie Mo. But she wouldn't keep
    them at bay for long.

    He ran into the front room. He slipped the catch of the
    window, banged the window up and went out feet first. As he did
    so, he felt a pain in one calf.

    He did not realize until he glanced over his shoulder what
    had him by the leg was a guard dog.
    3d0736dc62b1bc17f327371f186eaadc.jpg icondirect.php?lastcache=1285164965&joindate=1285160518&guid=53323&size=large

    CHAPTER 19
    Fight with a Lion
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 19
    Fight with a Lion

    James did not try to wrench his leg away.
    The dog was Satan. His teeth did not pierce the skin, but held
    him firmly in a gentle vice. "Satan!" he whispered. "Good dog,
    Satan." He bent down and stroked his head.

    Satan recognized him and let go. James closed the win-
    dow and patted the dog. Then he walked slowly down the front
    path and turned into the cover of the hedge.
    ...The woman who had been in Sir Cuthbert's car, for
    example, was also Mr. Merck's girl. Did that mean that there
    was any connection between the Commander and Mr. Merck?
    If there was, Sir Cuthbert would warn Mr. Merck against James
    and he would no longer be able to get away with being Sheelagh's
    little friend. But what did the sketch of the woman which James
    had in his pocket prove? Only that Sheelagh had seen her. The
    woman might have nothing to do with the job. Mr. Merck and
    the rest were busy on.
    Squirrel looked at him curiously. There had been something
    odd going on ever since James sat down, but he'd been too
    tired to take any notice of it. "No!" Squirrel said.

    "What did they say?"

    "They said you was still playing James Bond like when we
    were in Primary," Squirrel said. "Only now you were worse than
    ever. That's why we went to Swinnyhurst."

    James had forgotten the sort of boy he had been the year before.
    But it was true that he had played 007 most elaborately. It was
    why he had been the leader of the Lions, because he had such
    invention. He had made their games excitingly real. "But don't
    you understand, Squirrel, that this is the real thing?" James said.
    "This is the crime of the century. Right here at Hazeley. The
    bullion's hid there. I know it."
    ...Squirrel got up from the tree trunk. He looked down at
    James. "You come along to the Pride yesterday and you took
    over and you want this an' that, makin' me look a proper
    muggins. What d'you want now, James Bond Junior?"

    "Nothing," James said. "I can get you in there. You can't. That
    girl whose puppy you poisoned. . ."

    "Who said I . . . ?"

    "You did, didn't you?" James looked at him accusingly.
    James got up. He had won a fight, but lost a friend. He
    looked down at Squirrel. He wanted to say, "I'm sorry, too."
    But he couldn't.

    He turned and began to run up the path towards Monkshill.
    He was alone. He would always be alone.

    CHAPTER 20
    Mrs. Raggles Makes Sense
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 20
    Mrs. Raggles Makes Sense

    Mrs. Raggles was cooking liver, bacon, potatoes, and cauli-
    flower. She looked up from the frying pan. "Don't tell me
    you've been to Swinnyhurst," she said, ":because I knows you
    It's easy," James said. "There's a girl there called Sheelagh,
    younger than me. She handles the dogs. She introduced me as
    her friend. So there wasn't any trouble. And that wire fence...
    it's just for show... it doesn't go all the way round. Most
    places it's just the old broken-down stuff Mrs. Flame had.

    Mrs. Raggles shooed him away. "Tell me over supper," she
    said. "And put some water on the table, there's a duck."
    "They said to keep out of the way," James said. "They were
    shifting something in the Bedford truck. They were jolly sus-
    picious, so I kept out of the way. But they're doing something in
    the ammunition dump we used to play in. They were hiding
    something. And I think it's bullion!"
    He opened the window, climbed out and untied the knapsack.
    Back in the living room he loaded the camera with a roll of infra-
    red film, which his father had bought for photographing badgers
    at night...

    Then he climbed out the window and pushed it to, slung
    the knapsack over his should and walked quietly down the
    drive, keeping to the shadow of the evergreens. Clouds had risen
    and the stars were hidden. It was very dark.

    CHAPTER 21
    The Trap
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 21
    The Trap

    With infinite care he undid the straps of the knapsack and took
    out the camera. The stud holding the leather lens-guard was
    stiff. The snap of its release made the dog turn his head sharply.

    ...He had not relaized how loud the click of the shutter could be.
    The dog turned at once.
    The dog lept over the camouflage net in a single bound. As
    it landed, the chain snapped.

    James jumped up. "Satan! Cerbie!" he called, low urgent, "it's
    only me! Cerbie! Satan!"

    With a deep growl the beast came at him, like a bull in the

    James switched on the flashlight. It was a Doberman pinscher,
    fangs bared. ""Help!" James screamed. "Help!" To be caught by a
    human enemy like Mr. Merck would be better than being torn
    apart by this brute...

    CHAPTER 22
    In Trouble up to the Neck
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    edited December 2018 Posts: 11,718
    CHAPTER 22
    In Trouble up to the Neck
    The beast was straining to get at him, snarling. But he couldn't
    move. His right hind-leg was gripped in the jaws of an iron man-
    trap., at which he kept trying to snap. The teeth of the trap had
    bitten through the flesh to the bone but, as James slithered away
    from the beaten track, afraid that where there was one man-
    trap there might be more, he felt no pity for the beast. If the
    teeth cut through the leg, the Doberman pinscher would
    come at him on three legs and hold him till the men arrived, if it
    did nothing worse.
    Mr. Merck picked up James's flashlight, looked at it, switched
    it of and put it in his pocket. The Doberman pinscher began to
    howl. He had expected help from the two men, but one had run
    off and the other was doing nothing to released him.
    The dog went mad with pain and fear, and Mr. Merck seemed
    to go mad with fear, too. He fired and fired and fired.

    There was a silencer fitted to the pistol, so the only sound was
    a sort of "plonk". But this madness of Mr. Merck's gave James
    the chance to get up and hobble away between the trees. The
    stick took most of the weight from his left foot and James made
    about twenty yards before Mr. Merck stopped firing.
    "Paddie!" Mr. Merck shoutet. "Schnell!! Dummkpf! Schell!"

    Through the trees ahead, James could see the gleam of the
    lake. He hobbled towards it. The lake was bounded by Hazely
    land on all sides. But if he could reach it, he could throw the
    dogs off the scent. Already he could hear the sounds of dogs and

    CHAPTER 23
    Mrs. Raggles in Action
Sign In or Register to comment.