Part 13: East-Enders

Adrian: Hmm … not much of a vegetation here.
Nicko: Yeah, and pretty cold too. Stiff wind.
Dave: What is this place?
Janick: Hmm, no idea. Let's read the mission: "Bring back a historical stone."
Steve: That's easy. There's pebbles over there. Let's pick one up and go home.
Janick: I don't think they are too historical though.
Adrian: I hate the addition of the word "historical" in our missions. They would be much easier without that.
Steve: Yeah, but BBC obviously don't want to make it easy for us.
Nicko: Can you believe that this is already our 11th time-travel?
Adrian: Yeah, can you believe we're so stupid to do yet another mission? After all we've been through?
Dave: 11 missions? That many already? Cool.
Steve: What's so cool about that? 11 ways to die.
Bruce: 11 holy paths to hell ... But to be fair, one must acknowledge that not all of our missions were life-threatening …
Steve: We nearly got burnt alive, eaten by dinosaurs, sacrificed on the altar, beheaded … do you need more?
Bruce: Well … we also met Shakespeare and Edison. Those two were friendly.
Steve: Edison had a mind to call the police …
Adrian: Hmm, right. Anyway, apart from these boulders, I don't see too many other stones which could be qualified as historical.
Dave: Maybe those pebbles are historical after all. Maybe they are part of some kind of religious site.
Steve: Let's hope not. I wouldn't want to be caught by some religious zealots while stealing their holy pebbles.
Nicko: Anyway, it's 'kin cold, so let's walk a bit to warm us up. Wouldn't want my flu to come back again.
Steve: Oh, no, we wouldn't want that. I still have my ears ringing from your sneezing on our last mission.

Bruce: I think I know where we are but I hope that I'm wrong …
Steve: You sound like it's dangerous, so you're probably right.
Bruce: Well, this looks a bit like the Chinese steppe. So this historical stone might be a stone from the Great Wall.
Adrian: Ehm, problem is … I don't even see a Small Wall here. There is nothing here.
Janick: So, what if you're right? Where's the problem?
Bruce: First problem is that this wall wasn't really built because the times back then were so peaceful. Second, we don't look too Asian, so we will have a hard time blending in, don't you think? And third problem is that I forgot the Babel Pills in the Time Machine.
Steve: WHAT!
Adrian: Oh damn, does that mean we can't communicate with the guys?
Bruce: Unless you speak Chinese … I'm afraid, no.
Janick: Ok, we don't look Chinese and we don't speak Chinese … I guess they won't be too friendly towards us.
Nicko: I think we better go back and fetch some pills.
Steve: Yeah, that's probably a good idea. But this will cost us so much time. Damn!

Nicko: I was so sure we passed this rock formation …
Adrian: I told you we should have turned left.
Dave: Damn. Are you saying we are lost?
Bruce: Lost … in a dream of china, lost … in a paradox.
Adrian: We're not in a dream, this is bitter reality. And it's bitter cold to boot.
Bruce: Isn't this adventurous, guys? We're in a time we don't know, we're in a place we don't know and we don't speak their language. This is so ...
Steve: STOP!
Janick: Why? What?
Steve: Nobody makes another move, before we have assessed where we are exactly. This is not funny anymore. It's cold, it looks like it's soon starting to rain and I'm sick of trampling around in this wasteland. We need to find the time machine, or we will never get back to the future.
Dave: I loved that movie.
Adrian: Ok, remember when we passed the reddish rock formation … I'm sure we had to turn left there.
Nicko: Who are you? Davy Crockett? I was pretty sure we had to go right, though.
Steve: Well, this way doesn't lead us anywhere. So we better go back to that rock formation and try the other path.

Adrian: See? I was right. There's the TM.
Nicko: Ok, boyscout, I admit it, you were correct. This time. Happy now?
Dave: Bruce, what are you doing?
Bruce: Climbing up on that hill, to have a better view.
Steve: Don't run too far.
Bruce: No, I won't, don't worry. Just a quick run to the hill … WOAH! Heyyy, guys, come up here. I don't believe my eyes.
Janick: What is it?
Adrian: Probably trouble.
Steve: Can it kill us?
Dave: Does it bite?
Nicko: Should I film it?
Bruce : Hehe, yeah, Nick, you better film this. I guess I was correct with the place, but wrong with the time.
Adrian: So, this is China after all?
Dave: Hmm, and that's the wall? I imagined it bigger.
Steve: This reminds me more of 'Adrian's Wall.
Dave: H has a wall?
Adrian: I don't have a wall.
Steve: I meant 'Adrian's Wall, not Adrian's wall.
Janick: Hadrian's Wall. In Northern England. The Roman safeguard.
Dave: Oh, that. I haven't seen that one yet.
Bruce: Yeah, not much left of it anymore. Anyway, today the Great Wall is indeed bigger, so we must be in a period before they finished building it. Can't remember which dynasty though: Shang, Wung, Ming, something like that.
Dave: Ming? I have a vase at home from that dynasty.
Adrian: Ha, your vase has been bought on Portobello Road, so I doubt it's a real one.
Dave: No, it was really Ming, I swear. It says so on the label.
Adrian: Aha, that's a reason to believe it.
Janick: Do you think we can just walk over to those workmen and ask for a piece of stone from the wall?
Bruce: Honestly? No I don't think it will be that easy. Not the way we look anyway.
Nicko: Yeah, and problem is, if we sneak up on them, they will think we are enemies, and attack us.
Steve: Anyway, I have already swallowed that pill and you better do so as well, before they see us. We better be prepared.
Dave: What does he say?
Bruce: Argh, I have déjà-vu. Let's take the pill as well. I always wanted to speak Chinese. Do you think it's Cantonese, or Sechuan or Mandarin …
Steve: Who cares?
Nicko: I have an idea. I think one of us should disguise himself as a Chinaman.
Adrian: How would we do that?
Nicko: Easy enough. I have matches here. If I strike one we can paint our eyes so that they look longer on the edges. That's what they do in the movies.
Bruce: Ok, who looks most Chinese of us all?
Nicko: Not me. I am tall and blonde.
Janick: That would rule me out as well.
Steve: My hair is too curly.
Adrian: Hmm … so we need a small guy with dark, straight hair, preferably looking a bit funny …
Bruce: Why do you look at me now?
Dave: You fit the profile.
Bruce: Hey, I'm not a serial-killer.
Steve: If you say so.
Nicko: Do you accept the mission, Bruce? If yes, I'm gonna paint your eyes.
Bruce: Ehm, I don't know. I don't think me walking over there to negotiate with these guys is a good idea.
Steve: Believe me, I am not comfortable with that thought either.
Bruce: What do you mean by that?
Steve: I mean, you'll probably make a mess out of it again.
Bruce: Hey, I can be serious if I want. Ok, I'll handle the mission. Nick, paint me!
Nicko: Ok, let me apply the make-up then. And stop blinking all the time.
Bruce: Ow, this hurts! You almost poked my eye out.
Adrian: Ha! He doesn't look like a Chinese at all. More like an L.A. glam rocker.
Dave: A tattooed millionnaire.
Bruce: I am not tattooed.
Janick: What if they don't believe him?
Bruce: Guys, you won't let me down, will you?
Steve: As soon as they start to show hostile behaviour, you run. You're in good shape, I'm sure you can outrun the little Chinese. The TM is not that far away. Dave and H, you go back and be ready for take-off.
Adrian: Ok, will do. Let's go, Dave.
Steve: Nicko, can you zoom in on Bruce, so that we see what's happening down there?
Nicko: Okeydokey.
Steve: Jan and me will go half-way with you, Bruce, so that we are nearer in case you need help. As far as I can see, there are only 5 workmen down there. We might be able to tackle them. We will hide behind those bushes.
Bruce: Ah, you're crawling through the bushes with it open wide, hehe.
Steve: Hey, I'm doing this to help you, so stop monkeying.
Bruce: Ok, ok. I'm going. See you later.

Bruce: Hallo, guys. Big project you have started here.
Li: Good afternoon, my name is Li. Are you the replacement for Wu?
Bruce: Eh? Li? Wu? Replacement?
Li: Yes, Wu broke his arm. They told us, they would send a replacement. What is your name?
Bruce: Eh, Bru …
Li: Bu? That's a strange name. Not from the area, are you?
Bruce: Not exactly, no.
Li: Anyway, you can start over there. Take the stones from that pile and fit them into the wall. Go on. We have no time to lose. The warring tribes are not sleeping.
Bruce: Warring tribes? Are we in danger here?
Li: Sigh. We have lost 3 men in a raid last week. I hope they will leave us alone today.
Bruce: Ok, we better start working then.

Janick: What is he doing now?
Steve: Looks like he's helping them build the wall. Damn, we don't have time for this. Why doesn't he just take a stone and make a runner with it?

Adrian: Hey, Nick, what's up? Me and Dave have started to worry in the TM, so I came back to check. Any problems?
Nicko: Hmm, Bruce has started building the Chinese Wall by the looks of it. This could take some time, I'm afraid. We're talking centuries here ...
Adrian: Oh damn. 'Arry will throw a fit if he has to wait that long. … What's that cloud over there? Can you zoom in on it?
Nicko: Yes, no problem. This camera has a fantastic zoom … O-ho. I better go warn them.
Adrian: Ok, I'll fetch Dave, in case we need to help.

Steve: … It's always the same story with Bruce. Why does he have to linger each time?
Janick: Hey, Nick? What's up?
Nicko: A good reason to cut the mission as short as possible … Genghis Khan or some distant cousin of his are approaching on ponies.
Steve: Damn! We're in trouble again. And all that because of Bruce. How many?
Nicko: Only a dozen or so, by the looks of it. But they look fierce and they're fast approaching.
Janick: We have to warn Bruce.

Li: Ok, guys, let's get ready for trouble.
Bruce: Why? What's happening?
Li: See that dust cloud over there? That's another nomadic tribe coming for a raid.
Bruce: Shit! What shall we do now?
Li: We take our weapons and fight. If we must, we die for the great cause.
Bruce: What? I don't want to die for any cause.
Li: Here, take that sword, I hope you can use it.
Bruce: Ehm, yeah, I guess so.
Steve: Shhh, Bruce. It's me. We have to leave. There's trouble ahead.
Bruce: 'Arry! Yes, I know, look we can't just leave them. They're preparing for a fight.
Steve: Are you nuts? There are skilled warriors approaching on horseback. No way we could fight them. The Golden Horde or something. We have to leave.
Bruce: But … look, if we leave them, they don't stand a chance. But if we help them, we could win the fight.
Li: Who is this, Bu? A friend of yours? Will he fight for us?
Bruce: 'Arry? Please?
Steve: Damn, it's too late anyway. Ok, we'll help you. Jan, Nick, come on and take some weapons.
Adrian: Hey, we came just in time. Are we preparing for a fight?
Janick: Looks like it. Bruce wants to help his newly found friends.
Li: Great, now we are 11 warriors. We have a good chance to win this battle for once.
Steve: For once? Does that mean you have never won before?
Li: No, we are only workers. Not much trained in fighting.
Adrian: Great! What a prospect.
Bruce: They're approaching. Let's show them we are not afraid. GERONIMOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Janick: Ow, my right arm is wounded.
Steve: Damn. Dave, get Jan out of the line of fire.
Dave: You are safe behind this wall. Look at Bruce! He is pretty skilled with the sword.
Janick: Yeah, good we have a professional fencer among our ranks. I never thought he would be able to kill though.
Dave: I think he is just trying to wound them. He hasn't killed anybody yet.
Janick: Look at Steve! He just threw a Mongol off his horse. Is that karate he's doing?
Dave: I think it's Taekwondo. I know he took some lessons a few years ago. Comes in handy now.
Janick: H is being attacked by two riders. You better help him.
Dave: Ok, see you later.

Bruce: Take this! And that! Hehe, you thought you had an easy game with us, didn't you? SO WRONG!
Nicko: Yeah, go home now and fuck your old boots!
Adrian: Yeah, run, you cowards, you.
Steve: And remember, Iron Maiden can't be fought.
Bruce: Hey, 'Arry, I should have been coming up with that one.
Steve: Yeah, well, too late for that. I came up with it over twenty-five years ago.
Nicko: You seem pretty happy with our achievements.
Steve: You know, I am. It felt good fighting these guys. Reminded me of the East End gangs.
Bruce: Well, you can't be any more East End than this, hehe.
Dave: They've disappeared in a cloud of dust. Looks like we have won.
Adrian: Yeah, what a battle! Thanks Dave, for covering my back. I hadn't seen the guy coming.
Dave: Don't mention it. You saved me with the dinosaurs, so now we're even.
Nicko: Jan, are you ok?
Janick: Yeah, my arm is bleeding, but nothing broken apparently. I'll live.
Li: Strangers, we don't know you, but you helped us when we needed help most. We are eternally grateful and in your debt. If ever you need help, trust on Li and his four masons. This day will be memorable to us forever.
Bruce: We were glad to help, Li. But now we have to leave you. You better practice your sword play, my friend, I have a feeling you might need it again one day.
Li: I will, Bu, don't worry. Thank you all. Good by.

Adrian: At last back at the TM. Anybody brought a stone?
Steve: Damn, the stone, I didn't think of it.
Bruce: I took one as soon as I got there. I still have it in my pocket.
Nicko: Ok, great, we're off then. What an adventure it was this time. 'kin great.