“Sounds like a plan,” nodded Smetherwick, “now let's be on with it before we get shot at by a ticked off bigfoot.”
There was not much cover between the goodish goblins and the badish ones. As they zig zagged towards the ASDAG and the outpost the enemy gun lined up on them. “Do you think they know we're goblins?” wondered Tunning-Cymbals.
“They probably think we're green dwarves re-wondered Smetherwick.
Vinigrette took his hat off and waved, “Cooee!“
The ASDAG lurched a little as it fired its payload. It fell about 10 yards short.
A definite shudder was felt beneath their feet.
“What!“ exclaimed Smetherwick, “was that a warning shot?”
They were a little stunned at first but continued to zig zag towards their foe. About a minute and a
half later the ASDAG had reloaded and fired another shot, this time falling behind them.
“That's it,” cried Bartram from the Talent, “we have about a minute and a half before they reload
for another shot.”
“Couldn't we just dodge around in the sky, make us more difficult to hit?”
“Of course, but it's good to be prepared, and we know how long we've got before we need to be
She settled down again and looked through the iron sights at the three ant-like TEABAG goblins.
Jamestown was puffing heavily, “I'm not cut out for all of this zig zagging, I usually get the
servants to do it for me.” He was slowing down and falling behind the other two.
“Throw us the flare gun,” said Tunning-Cymbals, “you hide behind that fortuitously placed granite
boulder that didn't seem to be there just now.
Vinigrette tossed him the flare gun and the extra flare then drooped down behind the boulder.
Traiton flipped the side door open to have a better look at what those three small green dwarves
were doing. He cracked his eyes (not literally, they're not eggs) to see more clearly. They were
This did not compute properly in his android brain. Goblins were underlings, grunts to be grown
quickly for war. What were these three doing on a British airship?
The two goblins zagged across, right in front of where Traiton stood looking at them.
“Quick zig,”ordered Smetherwick. And so they both zigged, back to the boulder.
Puffing, Tunning-Cymbals asked, “Do you think he saw us?”
“Two goblins zagging across his line of sight? I think so!”
“What happened?”asked Vinigrette.
“Traiton had got out to have a look at us?”
“Did he like what he saw?”
There was a large deafening boom as the ASDAG fired at the boulder. Shards of granite splintered from it and rocked towards the three cowering goblins.
“Great,” greated Smetherwick, as Arthur might well have done in this situation, “we come all this way to get killed by an armoured artillery gun by our own goblin kind.”
“They're not kind at all,” noted Vinigrette, “they're trying to kill us.”
“Well we've got about another minute and a half before they fire at the boulder again. Another few hits and this thing will be in pieces, leaving us no cover whatsoever.”
“How close is it to the end of the story?” asked Tunning-Cymbals.
“I think we'll die before we get there,” reiterated Smetherwick, if you pardon the wrong usage of language.
“Who's the fastest at running?” asked their leader.
Vinigrette and Tunning-Cymbals both pointed at each other.
As he shook his head he accused Tunning-Cymbals, “You know you are TC. I think you should run as fast as you can after the next shot, towards the ASDAG and fire the flare at the eye-slots, try and blind them. Bartram should see it and begin his attack.”
Tunning-Cymbals looked worried, “What happens if I miss?”
“Fire the second flare.”
“What happens if that one misses?”
A look of unbelief developed across Smetherwick's face, “You can't be that bad at shooting? Didn't you win a medal for it at the village fête in '84?”
“I've pulled my shoulder since then.”
“You're pulling my leg?”
Vinigrette also joined in, “He's trying to pull the wool over your eyes.”
(I couldn't think of any more pull clichés...)
“It'll have to be me then,” thought the goblin leader, “I'm not as fast at running but a good shot.” He pulled up his trousers and tightened his belt.
And so he waited until the steam cannon had fired another shot at the badly crumbling boulder. As fast as a hare running down Harehill he sprinted towards the enemy vehicle. When he got to within 60 feet (with only 30 seconds to go) he aimed a little high and fired the flare. It bounced, off the armour, and fell into a field, quite close to the electric shield, with a fantastic fizzle.
He reloaded, it took but a second and this time he aimed a little lower. The flare shot straight through the aiming window.
From inside he heard goblinish screams and then the side door burst open. Four goblins scrambled out, gasping for air and unable to see properly. They looked like green moles at a Gollum convention.
Bartram saw that the goblin mission had been a success and so directed the Talent towards the ASDAG.
Ann fired the front cannon and the shells bounced against the armour. She called to the yeti captain, “Get me near the open door.”
Traiton was still inside his tank thing and sat in the aimer's seat, ready to fire at the attacking airship, “A little closer,” he murmured as he set his eye against the sight.
The Talent crossed in front of the tank and so Traiton fired at it. A hit, upon the starboard fin.
Wobbling slightly, Bartram managed to stabilise her and hovered over near the door. Ann changed to a side gun and she fired at least 50 shells into the infernal machine. Most of the control mechanisms were bent out of shape, as was most of Traiton. The only thing that worked on him was his head. After a slight click he detached it and floated out of the ASDAG., right in front of Ann's Hotchkiss cannon.
“Whoops!” he exhaled (he looked a little like Lukas from The Sun Thief.)
Smetherwick and the other TEABAGs rounded up the enemy goblins, who were suffering from shock and awe, with their electric pistols.
“And now to rescue Ruhtra,” said I and had to let Smetherwick, Tunning-Cymbals and Vinigrette do it to keep the story flowing properly.