Part 19: Fight for the Splendour

Nicko: Ok, on we are for another mission. I have a good feeling about this one.
Adrian: You have?
Nicko: Ehm, just a manner of speaking, talk about positive vibes.
Adrian: Hm. And for a second I thought you already knew where we are.
Nicko: No, I'm afraid I don't know yet.
Bruce: But we can find out. There's a village over there. Let's have a lookie.
Steve: Wait! I'd prefer to first check the area around here, before we venture into town.
Dave: Bonne idée.
Janick: Why do you speak French all of a sudden?
Dave: Umph. J'ai déjà pris la BP.
Bruce: He already took the Babel Pill. Great, so we're in France.
Adrian: But we already had the French Revolution …
Nicko: There are other important periods in French history, Adrian, my friend.
Adrian: Oh yeah? Name one!
Nicko: Ehm …
Adrian: See?
Bruce: Naw, seriously, there are tons: Louis XIV with his Versailles, the Hundred Years War …
Steve: Knowing our luck, we have probably landed in that period.
Janick: Hmm, the Hundred Years War was against England, right?
Bruce: Indeed.
Janick: Ok, so we better take those pills as well. Wouldn't want to be caught speaking English here.
Adrian: Good point.
Bruce: I won't take a pill this time, if you don't mind.
Steve: But we DO mind … care to tell us why?
Bruce: Ehm, well, I know some French. And I want to practice a bit, what with the tour and so on. I want to shout "Scream for me Parc des Princes" in perfect French.
Steve: Bruce! You'll get us into trouble again.
Bruce: No, don't worry. I'll be quiet, for most of the time, ok? I'll just be listening and occasionally dropping in the odd word. Like "bonjour" and "merci". Nothing more. Promised.
Steve: Now why don't I believe that?
Bruce: No idea.
Dave: What's the mission this time?
Adrian: Oh, right, I have the paper: "Bring back a historical hat." Huh?
Nicko: A hat? Interesting. A French hat.
Steve: So we have to be in a period where some specific hats were worn.
Bruce: This DOES sound like French Revolution again, though. The Phrygian caps, remember?
Janick: Yeah, but that doesn't make sense. Why would they send us twice to the same time?
Steve: Maybe because they didn't manage to behead us the first time around?
Bruce: You really have a negative attitude towards BBC.
Steve: Not altogether unfounded. And stop speaking English. In case someone overhears us.
Bruce: Relax, Steve. There's nobody around.
Steve: You never know. Ok, let's go down to the village, we won't find a hat in this meadow. Mabye we can just buy one.
Adrian: Oh yeah, no problem. We have loads of French money …
Steve: Fuck! I forgot about the money.
Dave: Maybe we can steal one.
Nicko: Davey! I wouldn't have thought this of you, hehe.
Dave: Well, since we have stolen that book from this Nipple-guy's library, I realized that was the easiest way.
Adrian: Nipple-guy?
Bruce: He means Assurbanipal.
Dave: That's what I said.
Janick: Ouch! Damn!
Steve: What is it, Jan?
Janick: I tripped over a stone. Damn, this hurts.
Dave: Everything ok? Can you walk?
Janick: I'll try. Ouch! No, I think my ankle's sprained.
Nicko: Show me. Fuck me old boots! It's already starting to swell.
Bruce: Great, so if we have to make a runner this time, you won't make it.
Janick: That's encouraging. Thanks so much, Bruce.
Steve: But he's right. You better not come down to the village. Damn, but I wanted us to stay together.
Dave: Let's split in two groups. Two of us stay with Jan, and the other three try to find out what's up with that hat.
Steve: Ok, might be a good idea. Bruce, you stay with Jan.
Bruce: Why me? I wanted to check out the village.
Steve: Yeah, but you also refuse to take the Babel Pill, and you promised to keep a low profile. One cannot "check out the village" by keeping a low profile. Not you, anyway.
Bruce: What's that supposed to mean? I want to have some fun too. Besides, you need me. I might know historical facts that you don't.
Steve: And you might get us into trouble, which I won't.
Bruce: You could also get us into trouble. I'm just saying: Spanish Inquisition.
Steve: Well, that was only one incident …
Dave: Don't quarrel, guys. What if we just pull sticks? Wouldn't that be more neutral?
Nicko: Good idea. Two small sticks and three long ones. The small ones stay with Jan. Take one, Bruce.
Janick: Why am I symbolized by a small stick?
Steve: We'll not be having that discussion now.
Janick: Hm.
Bruce: Shall I take this one? Or that? Maybe rather ...
Steve: Just take one, ok?
Bruce: Ok … hehehe! Mine's a large one! Hehe, I'm back in the village agaaaaaain!
Steve: Stop singing. And talk French, will you.
Bruce: Ok! Retour au villaaaaaaaaaaaage!
Steve: …
Bruce: Ok, ok, I'm quiet. Zip.
Adrian: I have a small stick.
Adrian: Very funny ... So I stay here with Jan. Great. For once I have the easiest part. We can have a little siesta in the shade of that tree.
Steve: Damn, I also have a small one.
Dave: That means, Bruce, Nick and me are going to the village.
Steve: I feel quite uncomfortable with this group splitting.
Nicko: And why?
Steve: Because I think that neither you nor Dave can keep Bruce from roaming around.
Dave: We'll do our best.
Steve: Still, I would feel better if I could come as well.
Bruce: Hey, I don't need a babysitter!
Steve: Oh, you don't?
Bruce: No! By the way, we pulled sticks, so now accept the fact that you have a small one.
Nicko: Don't worry, Steve, we won't leave Bruce alone for a minute.
Dave: Yes, and we'll bring back that hat, promised. See you later, guys.
Janick: I feel a bit bad now. Thinking that we had to split up because of me.
Adrian: Don't worry. It's quiet nice here in the shade. Does your ankle still hurt?
Janick: Like hell.
Steve: In half an hour, I'm gonna get them.
Adrian: Be reasonable, Arry, in half an hour they can't be back yet. The village isn't that close. And stop running around, you're making me nervous.
Steve: Hm. I hate it, when I don't know what Bruce is up to.
Janick: There's a girl approaching …
Adrian: Damn! Trouble.
Steve: She looks like a peasant girl. Maybe she just passes us by.
Marie: Good day, sires. Do you want an apple?
Janick: Yeah, sure, why not. At least there's something good in this situation. What's your name?
Marie: My name is Marie, sire. Are you hurt?
Janick: Ehm, yes, my ankle is sprained.
Marie: Oh, let me help you. I can make a paste to put on the ankle. It will heal in a minute.
Janick: Ok, thanks. If it doesn't bother you too much.
Marie: Not at all, sire.
Adrian: Is it just me, or is she giving Jan the come-on?
Steve: Hm. I just hope this doesn't mean any trouble. I wonder what the other three are doing right now?

Dave: Any idea in what time we are, or what hat we have to find, Bruce?
Bruce: No, not yet. The clothes look older than French Revolution, though.
Nicko: There's a pub over there. Let's have a wee libation and maybe we find something out there.
Dave: Bruce, do you seriously think you can follow the discussion without a Babel Pill?
Bruce: Yeah sure. I understand you right now, and you're talking French.
Dave: Right. I forgot that.
Nicko: But how would we explain your accent? You don't sound like a native speaker, Bruce.
Dave: We could say he's an exchange student.
Bruce: Hehe, might be a good idea. But not from England, could be too dangerous. Let's say I'm from Austria.
Nicko: Fuck me old boots! Why Austria?
Bruce: Just like that. I like Vienna.
Dave: Can you speak German?
Bruce: Ehm … no … just a few words. But anyway, the guys in that pub won't know German either. Don't worry.
Nicko: Ok, let's have a drink.
Bruce: Arry would kill us if he knew, hehe.

Marie: There you go. This paste is cooling down the inflamed ankle. You will feel better soon.
Janick: Thanks a lot, Marie. I already feel better.
Marie: Don't make me blush, sire.
Steve: I want to know what Bruce is doing right now. I can't bear this.
Adrian: Calm down, he is not alone. Dave and Nicko will keep an eye on him. Have one of those apples, they're really good. They taste much more applish than the ones back home.
Steve: You honestly think they will restrain Bruce if he comes up with a crazy plan?
Adrian: Hm. Probably not, huh? You think we should go check?
Steve: On the other hand, I don't want to leave Jan alone here …
Janick: I'm fine and in good company, you can go, if you wish. I'm sure Marie won't hurt me.
Steve: Hm. I won't be long. I'll be back in half an hour, even if I don't find them.
Adrian: Then I'll come with you. I think Jan will be safe here.

Dave: Should I get ush another beer? Thish brew ish damn good.
Nicko: Yep, and the waitresses are rosy and buxom. Check out the blonde one over there.
Dave: She's amazing.
Bruce: Guys, I don't think we should drink too much. Might I remind you that we don't have money?
Nicko: I figured it all out. Davey here pulls some tricks and we get the booze money by gambling.
Dave: Like in Greece, remember?
Bruce: Yeah, that's a splendid idea. Look, guys, meanwhile I'll have a lookie around town, ok?
Nicko: Arry won't like that.
Bruce: Steve is not here, and if you don't tell him, he won't know, so. Come on, guys. I promise I'll be back in half an hour.
Dave: Ok, why not. Meanwhile I make sure we can pay this brew.
Bruce: I completely trust that you will, Davey. Have fun you two. See ya.
Janick: My ankle feels already way better. All thanks to you, Marie. ... You have a wonderful name. It suits you.
Marie: Monsieur, don't say that.
Janick: Do you live nearby?
Marie: Yes, over there in that farm house. But I was on my way to the village to sell my fruits. Do you want another one of my apples?
Janick: I'm sorry, Marie, but I won't be able to pay you. I don't have money with me.
Marie: You don't have to pay me with money, sire.
Janick: How could I pay you then?
Marie: What about a little kiss?
Janick: A kiss? Ehm, … eh … ok, why not.
Guillaume: What do you think you're doing there, sir?
Marie: Guillaume! It's not what you think.
Janick: Who's that?
Marie: My brother …

Dave: … sorry, you losht again. Means you have to pay for the round.
Victor: Well, I'll pay my honour's debts, of course. You guys are really good at this.
Nicko: If it's for some good beer, we're the best.
Victor: Listen, you seem like two strong guys. And you're very adventurous, aren't you?
Nicko: We are born for adventure. *hic* Oops, I think I had one too many.
Victor: No, a real man can take more than that. Have another one. It's on me.
Dave: Well, then we acshept.
Victor: As I was saying, you look like guys that stick together. Do everything for your mate, no betraying, etc. That's very laudable. We need such guys.
Dave: What do you mean?
Victor: Oh, nothing specific. Look, can you just make your sign on this paper?
Nicko: A fan? Sure, mate, I'll sign first.
Dave: Maybe we should first read …
Nicko: No, I can't read French anyway. The guy is ok, I can tell. No harm in giving the kid an autograph.

Bruce: Eh, excusez-moi, je suis où?
Man on horse: You are in Neuilly, sir. Are you lost?
Bruce: Oui. Moi, de Autriche.
Man on horse: You are from Austria. Well, what a coincidence. Are you with our Queen Anne?
Bruce: Queen Anne! Ehm, Reine Anne. Roi Louis?
Man on horse: Yes, Louis XIII and his queen, Anne of Austria. I am D'Artagnan, the captain of the musketeers.
Bruce: D'Artagnan!

Janick: Look, I can explain. She was giving me her apples.
Guillaume: WHAT!! My sister is not giving her "apples" to anyone.
Janick: NO. Not those "apples". Real apples. I was only paying for them.
Guillaume: With a kiss? Sir, you have soiled our family honour.
Janick: I am sorry, I didn't mean any harm.
Guillaume: Take this!
Marie: No, please don't.
Janick: What's this?
Guillaume: It's my glove. Pick it up.
Janick: Ok ok, no need to shout. Why?
Guillaume. You have accepted the duel.
Janick: The WHAT!
Guillaume: Marie, go to the farm and get Claude. He will be my witness. Sir, I allow you one witness as well, of course.

Adrian: Let's go to that pub. I have a feeling they might be in there.
Steve: You're right, there they are. … Where is Bruce?
Adrian: Oh no, not again.
Dave: Hey there you are, guysh. Nick and me have a new friend. *hic* Hish name'sh Victor.
Steve: What are you doing there, Nick?
Nicko: Signing an autograph for our fan here.
Steve: Don't sign this. Have you read it before?
Nicko: No, why? I don't read everything before I sign a fan's autograph.
Steve: We're somewhere in time, somewhere in France. Think, Nicko. This is not a fan. Give that to me.
Victor: Too late, mate. Your friend has just enrolled for two years in the King's Army. We need strong men like him.
Adrian: What? Are you serious?
Steve: Nicko! How could you? And where the fuck is Bruce?
Dave: Ehm, he just wanted to stroll around a bit. He wanted to be back in half an hour.
Steve: And how long ago was that?
Dave: Uhm, I forgot the time.
Steve: Let's go and find him.
Victor: Yeah, but your friend stays here. I wouldn't want him to desert the very first day.
Steve: WHAT! My patience is deserting me, and fast. You give me that paper.

Bruce: Mes amis sont dans bar, là-bas.
D'Artagnan: Are those your friends who are fighting outside the pub?
Bruce: Ehm, looks like it. I better take that Babel Pill now. ... Adrian, what are you doing here? And why is Steve fighting with that guy?
Adrian: There you are, Bruce. Nicko enrolled in the French army, and now Steve and the other guy are fighting over the paper.
Bruce: Oh, damn. Ehm. Wait. … D'Artagnan! My friend has gotten into some kind of problem.
D'Artagnan: I see. Let me do this. I am the Captain of the Royal Musketeers. Stop fighting immediately, you two!
Victor: D'Artagnan! I was only doing my duty. Recruiting for the king's army.
D'Artagnan: These are strangers. Let them be. Give me that paper.
Steve: Thanks, man. I appreciate. You see, it was a misunderstanding.
D'Artagnan: I believe you. Consider your friend a free man again. This paper is void.
Nicko: Thanks, mate. Is he really D'Artagnan, Bruce?
Bruce: Looks like it. Hehe.
Steve: And where have you been again, Bruce?
Bruce: I found out what time we are in, okay? And I met D'Artagnan.
Marie: Sires, there you are. You have to come back, quick.
Dave: Who's the bird?
Adrian: That's Marie, she helped Jan.
Dave: Why didn't I sprain my ankle?
Steve: What's up? Any trouble?
Marie: My brother is challenging your friend to a duel. We have to be quick, or he will kill him.
Bruce: What!
Adrian: Damn. Trouble again.
D'Artagnan: A duel! This is against the law. I'll accompany you. Lead the way.
Janick: Look, I can explain this. It's all a misunderstanding.
Guillaume: You dishonoured her. That's not a misunderstanding in my point of view. You will fight and die like a man. Are those your friends approaching?
Janick: Thank God, there you are.
Steve: So, what's up here? Jan, what did you do?
Guillaume: The rascal was dishonouring my sister.
Dave: Jan! You are married!
Janick: Hey, it was only a kiss. No harm in that.
Steve: Only a kiss? Where's the harm in a simple kiss? On the cheek?
Janick: … ehm … well … she IS French, you know …
Bruce: Hehehe, I got that pun.
Steve: This is not funny. So, what does the guy want from you?
Guillaume: I have challenged him to a duel. You can be his witness, if he so chooses. This is Claude, my brother. He will be my witness.
Janick: I don't know the first thing about fencing. I'm as good as dead.
D'Artagnan: I understand the brother. Your friend dishonoured his sister. Although duels are illegal, I am inclined to turn a blind eye on this.
Bruce: But Jan can't win. Can't you make them stop, please?
D'Artagnan: Your friend has the right to ask somebody to fight in his stead … weren't you telling me that you're a good fencer?
Bruce: Right … I see. Ok, Guillaume. I will accept the challenge for my friend here. Fight against me, if you dare.
Guillaume: I accept. Take your position.
Steve: Bruce, are you sure you can win?
Bruce: No, but I will die trying. Stupid pun, I know. But I don't have an épée.
D'Artagnan: Take mine.
Bruce: I'm honoured. Wow. D'Artagnan's épée.
Adrian: You make it sound like it's Excalibur. Aren't you scared?
Bruce: No, I'm excited.
Steve: You're crazy.
Janick: Hey, Bruce, I appreciate this.
Bruce: Don't mention it. And now, stand back.
Guillaume: En garde!

Dave: They are both very good. I hope Bruce doesn't get hurt.
D'Artagnan: Your friend is very skilled. I am amazed.
Adrian: Ouch! Bruce just got a scratch on his arm. Damn!
Janick: I feel so bad. This is all my fault.
Steve: Yeah, why on earth did you have to kiss her?
Janick: She asked me to. Are you saying you never kiss your female fans?
Steve: No. Not the ones that are likely to have brothers who want to kill me for it.

Guillaume: Parry this! And that!
Bruce: Hehe, fight for the honour, fight for the pleasure …
Steve: And he can still sing.
Bruce: Fight for your LIFE! And you are without weapon, my friend! Hehe. Now, how does the point of an épée feel on your throat?
Nicko: Yay! He has removed the sword from the guy's hand. Looks like he has won.
Marie: My brother!
Bruce: So, Guillaume. What do you say now?
Guillaume: It was an honourable fight. I miscalculated your prowess. You deserve to win. Don't spare me.
Adrian: Wow, that guy prefers death to dishonour. Crazy.
Bruce: I shouldn't spare you, you think? But the lady here has tears in her eyes. Don't you think you might have misjudged the situation after all, huh?
Guillaume: Maybe I did.
Bruce: Maybe you did. What have you seen exactly?
Guillaume: Your friend was kissing my sister.
Bruce: On the cheek, surely? An innocent kiss, right?
Guillaume: … Right.
Janick: Pooh!
Bruce: Ok, I spare your life. Take your sister and go home.
Marie: Thank you, sire.
Guillaume: Marie, let's go home. Come on.

Dave: You were great, Bruce! Seriously, this duel has been amazing.
Nicko: And I have it all on tape. The fans will go crazy next Friday evening.
Janick: You saved my life, mate. Thanks.
Bruce: Hehe, I must say, I was a bit rusty in the beginning. I should take up training again.
Steve: Well, you won't have time for that during the next months. We're on tour.
Bruce: Aw, I'll make time for the odd tournament in-between two gigs.
Steve: …
D'Artagnan: I agree with your friend. Your fencing skills are exemplary. You are very skilled. I am glad I lent you my épée. But now my friends, I have to leave you. Or else I'll be late for a meeting with the queen.
Bruce: Then I better give you back your weapon. Thank you so much. It was an honour meeting you. Can I ask you a last small favour?
D'Artagnan: What would that be?
Bruce: Do you need your hat? I simply love this Ostrich feather. Is that a real one? And I always wanted to have a musketeer's hat. You sure have a spare one at home? Please?
D'Artagnan: You want my hat? That's unusual. But I feel you are worthy of it. Are you considering taking the cape and becoming a musketeer?
Bruce: Well …
Steve: I'm sure he IS considering it, but he has other important engagements that he has to keep. Right, Bruce?
Bruce: Yes. I was just about to say the same thing. But your hat, that would be something. A keepsake.
D'Artagnan: If I can make you happy with that. Here, take it. It was an honour meeting you all. You stick up for each other, when there is trouble. That's the true musketeer spirit.
Bruce: One for all and all for one. Yep. That is Iron Maiden.
D'Artagnan: Farewell, my friends.

Nicko: One for all and all for one? Wasn't that a bit cheesy, Bruce?
Bruce: Naw, I just had to say it at least once. Anyway, D'Artagnan must be used to that slogan by now.
Adrian: Great bloke, your D'Artagnan. Good thing you still thought about the hat. I completely forgot the mission in all this excitement.
Bruce: Hehe, but I didn't. I guess the hat of a famous musketeer like D'Artagnan qualifies as historically important, wouldn't you agree?
Steve: Yeah, there we completely agree for once. Well done, Bruce.
Janick: What an adventure. But I must say, Marie's paste was really great. I am able to walk again without too much pain.
Steve: I'm glad to hear that. Our first gig is in just two days. Can't disappoint your Polish fans. Ok, let's get back to our own times. Enough excitement for today. I nearly lost my drummer to the French Army and my singer in a duel. That's enough for one trip.
Adrian: I agree. Let's push the buttons.
Dave: Janick?
Janick: Hm?
Dave: How was her kiss, mate?
Bruce: Oh, Davey!