The Story So Far: There still isn't much of a story really, but the clues are all there, providing you know where to look. It's a complex web of intrigue - so complex in fact that nobody seems to know what the fuck is going on. We're only up to Episode Six, and already the comedic devices appear to be mined to exhaustion. Stiffy, the priapic comedy dog appears to have vanished off the face of the earth, and at the end of the day, a bunch of stupid stereotypical rich kids who do absolutely everything to excess and talk like buffoons can only be amusing for a finite period of time. The author explains:
"I was hoping to start slowly, and gradually build up to a crashing anticlimax, but I lost track. It was a long time ago when I originally wrote this drivel, so I don't really recall whether I just got bored with it, or went on the piss for a while, or went away on holiday or something. So I've had to radically revise it for today's demanding audiences. I mean - who wants to be reading this shit when you could be playing FIFA on the Playstation, or watching porn on your laptop?
"Anyway, as I just said, this was written a long time ago, and it's been cut and reworked more often than Jordan's baps. Episode Six originally opened with a conversation with a dispirited Cornish fisherman, who bemoaned the European Community and fishing quotas for slowly strangling the life out of the Cornish fishing industry. So I cut that out for a start. And then I decided to sex things up a bit. Readers just love a bit of hardcore thrusting. And as a spoiler - and just for Lynton, my mate - Stiffy the dog does make a triumphant return, and is an integral element in the story. But he'll just have to wait for Stiffy - until I'm good and ready. (ooh! Errr!) So there..."
Later...the chums had yet another sighting of the mysterious man of the clifftops. He was mooching around in a suspicious manner, again, in the same area where The Spiffing Six had spotted him previously.
Excitedly, they gave chase.
Being slightly less drunk on this occasion, their progress was hugely improved, as they traversed the rocks with a far greater degree of agility and sureness of foot. Indeed, at one stage they actually appeared to be gaining ground on the elusive figure, but - once again - disappointingly, he vanished from view at some point around the head of the cove.
Not to be outdone, the chums continued onwards, each with one eye firmly locked on to the approximate point from whence the mysterious figure appeared to have disappeared.
So to speak.
Abigail's enquiring mind clicked into overdrive as she tried to assess the situation.
They had no clue who the man was, or what he was up to, but the odds were short enough to suggest that he was up to no good - otherwise, why would he sneak about in such a furtive manner? Further to that; if he wasn't up to something criminal, or at the very least, subversive, then why on earth would PC Bottomshaft take an interest?
And what about the lights they'd all witnessed down by the cliffs, during the night? What was that all about? Who could possibly be behind it all? And then - if there was some perfectly legitimate reason for such clifftop related activities, then why should it become necessary to conduct them under the cover of darkness?
None of it made any sense.
But, of all the questions a curious observer might possibly ask, the most pressing had to be: Where does the mysterious person disappear to?
As the chums approached the point of the cove, Abigail was determined to find the answer to at least some - better still - all of those questions.
They found nothing. Only rocks. And then some more rocks.
"But he must have gone somewhere!" Abigail whined. "People can't just physically diasappear into thin air!"
"Not usually old girl," Spanky said sympathetically. "But in this case that would appear to be exactly what's happened."
"But that's impossible!" Abigail protested.
Tugboat, Martina, and Flob maintained a discreet silence. They simply stood and listened, trying very hard not to start whistling and kicking imaginary pebbles about, so as to avoid embarrassment to all present.
"Yes, I know it's impossible," Spanky said quietly. "We both know that he must be around here somewhere - but where? We've been searching hard for quite some time now, and we can't find any trace of him. He must be laying low in some kind of hideout or something."
"Probably camouflaged," Tugboat said, breaking his silence.
"Camouflaged?" Abigail mused.
"Yes," Tugboat said. He was starting to get a little excited. "If this chap has some sort of a hidey hole, then he surely doesn't want anybody else knowing about it. He'll camouflage it, so that nobody else in the whole wide world will know it's there, 's obvious really..."
"Yes, I know that," Abigail said, rather tetchily. (She was of course lying. She didn't know any such thing.)
But it did make sense. Albeit in a 'weird science' kind of way.
They resumed their search.
As they did so, Abigail considered what Tugboat had said about camouflage. It seemed fair to say that somebody who wanted to hide away for whatever reason, would go to extreme lengths to conceal the whereabouts of said hiding place. But of course, this didn't answer any of the already numerous questions which the chums had already raised - it merely added more.
There had to be a clue to all this somewhere, had to be a way to penetrate the cloud of mystery which lingered so malevolently over Puddleby Cove.
"I say! Fellow chaps and chappesses! I think I've found something!"
The squealed declaration from close by grabbed Abigail's attention immediately. She whirled around to see Tugboat holding something triumphantly aloft, like a trophy.
"Look!" he screeched. "Look at this!"
Abigail and the others rushed over to where Tugboat was frolicking madly about.
"What have you found?" Spanky said.
"Yes, and please keep still for a moment," Abigail said. "You're doing my head in."
"Feast your eyes on this little beauty!" Tugboat held out his prize for inspection.
Flob could only giggle. Stupidly. The newcomer was quite clearly and transparently, stark raving bloody bonkers.
"What is it?" Martina asked. Squinting a bit, because she couldn't quite see it properly. Whatever it was.
Abigail's stomach lurched. She was convinced that she was going to be violently sick.
"It's a balloon!" Spanky said.
"With spit in it!" Tugboat added. "It's got a knot in it though - I wonder if I can blow it up again..."
"Put it down at once!" Abigail shouted. "That is not...a balloon...It's something...quite - different,"
Tugboat stared curiously at the used condom as if he'd found buried treasure. Like pieces of eight, or gold dubloons or something.
Spanky struck a defiant pose, hands on hips, huffing and puffing indignantly. "So - if it isn't a balloon; what is it? It looks pretty much like a balloon to me. God, Abigail, I don't know what's wrong with you these days. It seems rather like you're determined to argue with anything and everything any of us says. What's the matter with you?"
By that time, poor old Flob was sitting on a rock, hunched over double, with his head between his knees, laughing so hard that he looked like he was going to fall entirely apart at any given moment.
"It is not a balloon!" Abigail said.
As far as she was concerned, and despite Flob's manic laughter, there was nothing remotely funny about the situation. Not in the least.
"Of COURSE it's a BALLOON!" Tugboat countered. "I'll prove it to you! Look - I'll blow it up!"
He started to raise the used condom to his lips...
"Don't DO that!"
Abigail slapped his hand away so viciously that Tugboat dropped his 'prize.'
"Abigail?" Tugboat looked terribly upset. "You just slapped me...Why did you do that?"
Abigail felt like screaming.
"Tuggers... That was NOT a BALLOON - it was a bloody used condom! It's disgusting! And you were going to put it in your mouth, for heaven's sake! You could have contracted all manner of obnoxious diseases off that thing! Don't they teach you anything at that school of yours? Don't you read books or magazines? Don't your parents ever tell you anything? You're all so damned stupid at times! God! You know, sometimes, I despair. I really do!"
Abigail stormed off and sat down on a rock, alone, to sit and ponder. A bit like the Princess Of Hearts that time at the Taj Mahal.
Moodily - but minus the paparrazi.
The others resumed their search for real clues. It seemed prudent to leave Abigail be for a minute or two. Even Flob seemed to have gotten over his giggle-fit, and had resumed mooching about among the rocks, occasionally shaking his head and chuckling softly to himself.
Out of the corner of his eye, Spanky was keenly watching Abigail. He quite genuinely didn't get what her problem was, but he knew for sure that something was amiss.
He decided to do something about it. He couldn't stand idly by and leave a beloved chum feeling so down in the dumps. He walked over to her, and sat down on an adjacent rock. He could tell that this wasn't going to be easy, given the way that Abigail was staring glassy eyed out to sea. It just wasn't her at all.
"It isn't that bad, is it, Abigail?" Spanky said softly, his voice tender as the crashing surf.
"Yes, it is. Actually," Abigail sniffed.
"I'm...truly sorry to hear that...chum..."
"Oh, dont be so bloody patronising Spanky! Can't you get it through your thick, stupid skull, that I'm getting jolly bloody bollockingly frustrated, because pretty soon, all of this is going to be over?"
"Oh no it isn't old girl," Spanky said, with a calm confidence. "The Spiffing Six will go on forever."
"No we won't," Abigail said, in a dull monotone. "That's the problem - although you do seem to lack the mental agility to grasp the safety rope."
"I do. Of course I have the mental agility -"
"No you don't Spanky! Can't you see that we're all growing apart? We're growing up. None of you lot even recognised that used condom for what it really was. Tugboat thought it was a balloon, for heaven's sake. None of you seemed to know that it was a condom - not to mention where it's probably been! Much less what it had actually been used for!"
"I jolly well knew exactly what it was," Spanky lied.
"No you didn't."
"I did so too!"
"If that's the case; then why were you prepared to let Tugboat but the beastly thing in his mouth in order to blow it up then?"
"Awww...I was just kiddin' Abs. I'd never have actually allowed him to go through with it."
"I am not lying."
"Yes you are Spanky, and that's a huge part of the problem. But I shan't allow myself to worry about that right now. I'm going to have myself a good time, and I'm going to get to the bottom of this sodding mystery, if it's the last thing I ever do," Abigail said.
With grim determination.
"That's the spirit Abigail!" Spanky said. "Let's all jump to it and jolly well find some spiffing clues!"
There was little to compare with going about official Spiffing Six business, when it came to raising a girl's spirits.
They found little of any import, even after a further four hour long search. They'd left no stone unturned, but it was getting dark and the chums were all ravenously hungry, so, by mutual consent they agreed to suspend all further activity and return to Aunt Peg's, for a feed, and some much needed shuteye.
They left Flob, alone, perched on a rock, muttering something nonsensical, about lava lamps and cottage cheese...
Coming Up In: The Mystery Of Puddleby Cove - Featuring The Spiffing Six - Episode Seven
Abigail has an awakening...Stiffy the priapic pooch makes a much appreciated return...and things generally start to go downhill. Rapidly.
Or, as they say in the Sudan - "It's all gonna go tits up - I can feel it in me water."
Today's helpful tip - To find the beginning of this load of of old bollocks, follow the links back to Episode One. It ain't fucking rocket science.