Tea Dust Art: Remarkable Stuff

Did you notice the Black Tower in the last Earplug Adventure episode?

Yup, it’s more of my infamous Tea Dust Art. Tea dust in the bottom of a box that is shaken or tapped until something interesting appears. Good, innit?

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Junior Earplug Adventures: The Island of Doctor Wiel-Barrau (Episode 17)

And when they spotted the Black Tower through the murk…

…they actually did! Fortunately the young earplugs quickly regained both their wits and their decorum. They realised that any approach to the mysterious building was best done in daylight. So they washed their pants in a stream and hollowed out a giant pumpkin, to use for shelter. Come the morning they clambered from their temporary abode, smelling strongly of pumpkin and discovering several large pips inside their freshly laundered underwear…

But, following a breakfast of pumpkin flesh, they were soon upon their way…

Although the going was hard, it didn’t take overly long for their experienced adventuring legs to carry them all the way to the front door…

With no door bell obvious, they decided to let themselves in…

“Wow!” Magnuss exclaimed. “It’s not really scary at all! And look how spacious it looks.”

But, as they ventured farther into the vast emporium corridors narrowed; and they found themselves embroiled in a battle with claustrophobia and the colliwobbles…

In a pathetic attempt to bolster her adventurous spirit, Hair-Trigger chose to perform a popular aria in a high soprano. Unfortunately Magnuss said…

“Flipping heck, Hairy: put a sock in it. Whomever told you that you could sing was a bloody liar!”

This outburst surprised Hair-Trigger: she had no idea that Magnuss loathed poorly sung classical music. It gave her pause for thought; so they continued onwards in silence…

…despite the fact that their current environment made her feel nauseous…

But all good things must end; and soon the way opened into a vast chamber…

“I think I know what this is.” Magnuss whispered. “And it isn’t a washing machine.”

© Paul Trevor Nolan 2017

Junior Earplug Adventures: The Island of Doctor Wiel-Barrau (Episode 16)

The landing had been surprisingly pain-free, and now Magnuss and Hair-Trigger regarded the jungle into which they had fallen…

“It’s a bit…you know…jungley, isn’t it?” Hair-Trigger complained. “I’m just waiting to be speared by some blood-sucking insect.”

Magnuss felt much the same way; but as they began an impromptu exploration…

…his concerns began to fade, and…

…he thought that it was ‘kind of pretty’. Even Hair-Trigger couldn’t help but notice that, for a jungle, it was remarkably well cultivated: “There are lots of bare soil.” She observed. “And is that insecticide I detect with my sensitive olfactory organ – or ‘nose’ as it is more commonly known?

“I don’t understand it.” Magnuss exclaimed. “It’s almost as if this island jungle is just one huge garden! But who would bother? And where are they?”

“I suggest,” Hair-Trigger said, as she noticed a thinning of the jungle undergrowth, “that we go find out.”

Moments later…

…they emerged on to manicured lawns.

“A golf course – of course.” Magnuss yelled in delight. “Artificial too. We’re saved!”

But after calling out for five minutes…

 

…they began to have their doubts: perhaps there were monsters abroad after all: monsters who appreciated equally monstrous gardens. Certainly the silvery trees that lined the golf course were monstrous – in their silvery way. And even Hair-Trigger’s attempts to cheer Magnuss with levity by pinching his bum…

…couldn’t ward off the feeling of dread.

The situation worsened when…

…the golf course gave way to desert – which made Hair-Trigger shudder: she and sand had never really gotten on; it seemed to infiltrate everywhere – especially nylon knickers. And when night fell suddenly…

…they very nearly pooped in their pants.

© Paul Trevor Nolan 2017

 

Junior Earplug Adventures: The Island of Doctor Wiel-Barrau (Episode 15)

Needless to say Magnuss wasted not one solitary second…

…as he raced across the surface of the island at ever diminishing height. And equally needless to say, Hair-Trigger flew right beside him, like the really good girlfriend she was…

But then the very thing that Magnuss had most feared happened…

The power transmission from the Museum of Future Technology was interrupted, and it seemed to Hair-Trigger that her jet pack’s energy buffer was leaking the very energy it was designed to store for just such an occasion.

“Help.” She gasped as the motor stuttered and coughed like an aging plugmutt with emphysema and a wonky leg.

It took a few heartbeats before her call registered with Magnuss, who was deep in concentration…

But when he recognized the severity of the danger, he swung about in the crystal sky, and plunged earthward towards his beloved Hair-Trigger…

“I’m coming, Hairy.” His shout preceded him. “Reduce power and switch on the Auto-Lander.”

Hair-Trigger was nothing if not quick on the up-take. Just in the nick of time her emergency retros kicked in – within virtual touching distance of the jungle canopy…

Now all that the former bounty hunter and her pinky-orange boyfriend had to worry about was the monstrous creatures that, they felt sure, inhabited the jungle into which they now descended.

© Paul Trevor Nolan 2017 

 

Junior Earplug Adventures: The Island of Doctor Wiel-Barrau (Episode 14)

Adolf then explained he’d found the two of them hanging around outside the concert hall. They were both obviously experiencing some inner crisis. It seemed to him that they so wanted to be big tough-guys, but didn’t really possess either the attitude or temperament to make passers-by nervous or cause police-plugs to quake in their police regulation footwear. Then he noticed a pair of carelessly parked hover cycles at the kerb; and the answer to the conundrum had presented itself…

So, just in time for the departing concert-goers to witness their outrageous behaviour, Adolf hypnotized Colin and Plankton into believing that they were Hells Anglers biker gang members…

…and smiled hugely…

..as his cunning plan for the future came together. Because only he knew that in the act of mesmerizing the six young earplugs, he had implanted a command in their unconscious minds. One day, when the time was right, the mental message would assert itself and overrule their conscious brains. In short they would become his pawns and follow him like incredibly stupid sheep.

“I don’t feel particularly stupid.” Plankton said, once he realised that Adolf had concluded his explanation. “Yet here I am – inside your secret island. So why am I here?”

At that moment, just as Adolf opened his mouth to reply, Magnuss Earplug had a high altitude thought…

‘Ooh-er,’ he thought, ‘this broadcast power is all well and good; and I know this jet pack has an energy buffer that stores sufficient energy to allow a safe, soft landing in the event of an interruption to the power supply: but what happens if there is no land to land upon?

Out loud he said: “Hair-Trigger, we’ve been over water for too long. It has been yonks since I last spotted a mountain peak poking through the clouds…

We need to lose altitude and find some land.”

“Good idea, Magnuss.” Hair-Trigger yelled back. “I’m ready for a wee anyway. And possibly a sausage roll too – if we can find a sausage roll van or kiosk. So if we can locate somewhere with either a thick wall, dense bushes, or an outside lean-to lavatory, that would be wonderful. Let’s descend!”

It took just a few seconds to drop through the cloud cover. To their horror, Magnuss and Hair-Trigger found themselves above a chain of oceanic islets…

“Oh, Magnuss.” Hair-Trigger squealed above the noise created by their powerful jet pack motors, “a chain of tiny oceanic islets. I’m horrified: not only will there be no lavatories or meaty pastries down there; but it’s doubtful they’ll have sufficient water to keep us alive for more than five minutes!”

Magnuss concurred. “Yeah.” He said. “Let’s see if we can find a proper island.”

So, without further ado, they swooped to a lower level and scanned the sea beneath them…

…and came up trumps.

“It’s vast.” Hair-Trigger cried out in surprise….

…”With such a varied topography too. Let’s go look.”

© Paul Trevor Nolan 2017