Tunnel surprises are baffling but the Army reached the Land of Thorsotania

Tunnel surprises and the land of the Dictator is reached. The army lie in wait.

Chapter 7

There are baffling surprises in the tunnel

Ebuke was the focus of attention for Eddie and Ollie. The next morning, they gulped down breakfast eagerly awaiting their visit to old Judas Hugglebottom.
They’d hardly slept that night excitedly wanting to hear more about the Pettapedes’ entry into the world of the Thorsotate People.

They found Judas ambling around his shabby clay home. Gnarled fingers clasped a battered old tin mug with Old Judas slowly sipping the contents. Probably, hot water poured onto any edible herb related plant found in the woodland.

From Judas’s long-standing experience with nature, he’d know what could be eaten and what couldn’t. The little fire beyond his shack was smouldering and on last embers — he had boiled his water for now, collected from the misshapen old tin rain bucket. His lovely purple blue eyes widened as he spotted the boys.

Judas beckoned them to sit inside and listen to the continuation of his legendary story. Eddie and Ollie needed no persuasion and leaped onto the yellowing flattened grass, bottom bumped down and anxiously awaited Judas to begin.

“The glaring green light loomed larger as General Gallisum and his charges approached. They crept with much caution along the tunnel, which by now glowed in green hue. It felt like a suffocating cloak wrapped around them. The General raised his arm signalling his army to wait. There was a faint distant regular thudding sound, as if in beating rhythm. He decided that his charges should continue. The light became blinding. Although bedazzled, the Pettapedes loyally followed their trusting leader into the unknown.

The Pettapedes pursued their slow low manoeuvres, the noise of stomping became more intense. The fog of dazzling green light surrounding them slightly diminished. Very gradually they moved through. The rays of green light began to widen and spread. In the far distance were bewildering outlines which puzzled the General. On closer approach the Pettapedes had clearer vision.
Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig; Chins up; Chests out.” An army of troops in two wide formation were exercising military disciplines.

The Pettapedes were baffled by fluorescent green outlines, bouncing and moving along in line. On closer investigation the strange vision turned out to be edging of helmets belonging to a battalion of soldiers. They were obeying commands from their drill master. The sounds of crushing rock fragments under countless boots echoed through the deep underpass.

The General and his charges crept along keeping a hairs breadth from the cavernous walls. They pursued with watchfulness. The noise of the Stomp stomp; Thud thud; Shwig shwig becoming more intense as each step of the Pettapedes was taken.

Through the verdant light General Gallisum signalled STOP by raising his hand — there were important tunnel visions. Remember, through exceptional powers, only the Pettapedes could see each other whilst remaining invisible to others.

They came to a grinding halt as the soldiers appeared to be marching towards them. On assessing the scene, the General noticed that on his left side there was the beginning of another tunnel branching and bending away to the left. He held his Pettapedes still. They watched as the army marched towards and in front of them, diverting their course by entering the other tunnel. Tunnel visions of vivid green outline of helmets less visible as the soldiers marched away.
Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig;

General Gallisum instructed his charges to “up” their speed and follow the same direction. After span of time, a vast openness appeared in the distance. Reflecting into the tunnel was yet more eerie green glow. The Pettapedes proceeded with care.

There was a quiet, a hushed still atmosphere. The soldiers had disappeared. Soon the army found themselves enshrouded with more green light.

“Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig; Shwig shwig;”

They advanced, and after a long carefully manoeuvred traipse a surprising vast openness appeared before them.

The soldiers had disappeared. Soon the army found themselves enshrouded with more green light. They advanced, and after a long carefully manoeuvred traipse a surprising vast openness appeared before them. High rugged grey mountains that stretched afar lay under an endless drab green haze. THIS was Thorsotate land, the secret world of Thorsotania.

To the right was a great square of chalky openness. The previously marching soldiers were centred, standing rigidly to attention. There was an aura of lifelessness about it. What seemed a lifetime, a uniformed figure covered from head to toe in fine chained armour, with flowing dark grey cloak emerged from a wedged stoned archway belonging to a small detached fortification. He chinked over to the drill master and saluted.

The Pettapedes watched as he handed over a scroll. The drill master promptly unwound the document, then immediately ordered the Thorsotate Army to about turn and march quick time. They headed towards a pass which led through a grey, craggy mountainous hillside. The soldiers disappeared from view.

General Gallisum and his charges laid in wait. No further action could be seen. It was soundless, unearthly, ghostly. They awaited within this alien landscape. The initial tunnel visions went through the Generals mind.
Later the eight legged loyal creature soldiers were instructed by their General to relax for a while. General Gallisum looked high and low and curiously could find no signs of life. The Thorsotate people must be hidden within their cavernous hide outs going about their living duties from one sleep to another.

The General was haunted by persistent thoughts of the day that Teleleggit brought the news to the Shamoshelimyticleletite. Stealing the power of their mammoth leader, and thus destroying the colourful and beautiful land of Cavenarea filled him with outrage. Such greed must be prevented.

At risk also was the Powgence Stone which shone perpetually, sustaining their enriched and trouble free life. All the time their King and the Powgence Stone radiated forceful supreme strength, the Land of Cavenarea and the loyalty of its citizens would carry on through eternity.

High Minister Takute and the Amorites wouldn’t know how to defend themselves. They wouldn’t know how to handle aggression and intrusion into their placid cultivated but disciplined life — they were totally defenceless.

General Gallisum tossed and turned during the Pettapedes rest times. Dictator Ebuke’s tactics and plans HAD to be accessed. He squirmed in despair as he and his army stood inside the drab green grey world of Thorsotania. Cavenarea will NOT be sabotaged by Dictator Ebuke’s ugly leadership.

The magnetic charms of his heritage will NOT be threatened. The Pettapede Army will not leave until every vestige of information had been collected. Gallisum was sure the
Shamoshelimyticleletite will know of a way to rescue his beloved people from the potential atrocity of the dictator.

Eddie and Ollie too detested all thoughts of it. They had become part of this unbelievable world. To them it had assumed form of reality. They squatted besides the camouflaged Pettapedes, these lovely beautiful perceptive creatures. They would never ever desert them.”

A sweet aroma of smouldering kindling broke their bubble. They coughed and perceived a kindly presence around them.
Of course! they were in old Judas’s clay hut refuge and he was stood towering above them. Looking down with thoughtful expression, Judas had his arms folded. A furrowing questioning eyebrow raise with shaking of his head indicated that that there was no more telling of the tale that day.

OH, IT WAS SO UNFAIR. With heavy hearts, and unwillingness the boys found their feet. Eddie and Ollie had surrendered and with diligent authority they were waved on their way. They obediently trudged in the direction of home, but disappointed they’ll have to wait to learn of Dictator Ebuke’s plans.

Old Judas on seeing the looks they gave him as they were leaving, told him all he wanted to know, and that was…he had indeed found two very precious friends.

NEXT – CHAPTER 8

The Thorsotate People are worried

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