Locoyard’s Thomas the Tank engine spends every November on the layout to celebrate Movember. This year he decided to arrive early and on the morning of Halloween, Thomas was being prepared for a day’s work. Thomas likes visiting locoyard, as it’s always full of steam locomotives and this year is no exception. He got chatting to a new member of the fleet, a fellow blue 0-6-0 tank engine, number 23 Jinty, who was going to be prepared in case Thomas broke down. “I was the first locomotive to run at locoyard” Thomas boasted to the Jinty “and I know it like the back of my hand”. Thomas was feeling particularly confident this morning. “I’ve never let locoyard down before” he said “and I don’t need any back-ups, so why not take the day off?” Thomas said to Jinty.
An hour or so later, Thomas was nearly ready to run with his boiler nearly at full pressure. All of a sudden his safety valve blew and he disappeared in a cloud of steam! Thomas’s driver was very worried and told Thomas that he couldn’t run today. So everyone looked to Jinty who hadn’t even had a fire lit yet… When they found out that this was because of Thomas, everyone was shocked, especially Annie and Clarabel who looked on with dismay.
Locoyard’s manager stepped in, worried that trains wouldn’t be able to run for another 2-3 hours “We have to do something that we don’t like doing” he said, “we will have to hire a diesel.”
Within a few minutes, Diesel purred into the yard and scoffed at Thomas, who still had steam escaping from leaking pipes. “I will sort out this mess that you grubby steam engines have created” he said.
Diesel then said with some malice, “and I’ll also stop this Movember madness taking place!”Diesel took Annie and Clarabel away to the station and then returned with the crane…
The Locoyard Manager came over and asked Diesel what he was doing. Diesel replied “Thomas is clearly very sick, I was going to take him away to be repaired”.
“No!” said Thomas, “It’s a trap!”
“Don’t be silly Thomas” the Locoyard Manager replied, “Diesel is right, you need to be repaired. Look how hard he is working because of your big mouth Thomas!” He turned to Diesel, “Take Thomas away for repairs Diesel and then be a good chap and haul today’s services.” Looking over to Jinty he added “And someone get Jinty steaming please, we don’t want a repeat of this morning’s embarrassment.”
Thomas was loaded onto a low-loader and the Locoyard Manager went away for a cup of tea.
Diesel whispered to Thomas, “now I’m taking you away and putting you out of sight in the secret sidings until this Movember fad passes!”
Poor Thomas was powerless to say anything and his leaking pipes left his mouth dry. However, Jinty could hear what was being said. Fearful of Devious Diesel he kept quiet until Diesel had left.
Jinty told the Locoyard Manager what was said after he returned with his cup of tea. The manager was very angry at Diesel and also very worried for poor Thomas. “When you’re ready Jinty, we’ll go bring Thomas back.
Meanwhile, Diesel was taking great pleasure in trying to prove to everyone what a useful engine he is, honking his horn at any opportunity! Annie and Clarabel were not too impressed and missed the chuffing of Thomas. Diesel was not used to hard work and by the end of the day he returned to the yard and fell straight asleep.
As Diesel slept, Jinty and the Locoyard manager found Thomas and brought him back to the yard. “I’m sorry” said Thomas, “this was all my fault.”
“Well in the future, try not boast so much” the Locoyard Manager told him, ” as we all know how important you are for our Movember celebrations.”
“What will happen to Diesel?” Thomas asked.
“He is going to take part in Movember whether he likes it or not!” the Locoyard Manager replied.
When they got back to the yard they managed to repair Thomas and then used the crane to put Diesel in a place where he couldn’t cause any more trouble…
Both Thomas and Diesel were now ready to start the Movember celebrations! So watch this space folks!