Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Wild Blue, Black and Tan Yonder (Not Necessarily in That Order)

Chapter 9

Tasha and Shasta brushed themselves off, and saw that the blimp was now on an even keel. But all was not well. Tasha was still wearing the headset, but it was no longer receiving a signal. Carefully, Shasta traced the cable from the headset down to where it ended, which should have been a plug on the panel. It wasn't.

The end of the cable was hanging loose, and to make matters worse, where the plug should have been were two bare wires. 

They looked at each other, and over to the control panel. The plug was still in its jack. Tasha reached out for it, but Shasta grabbed her paw, and said, "That's electric. If Snoopy's transmitting, you could get a big shock."

"So what do we do?", Tasha asked.

Shasta sat down in the pilot seat, and said, "We're going to have to try to land this thing ourselves."

"But we don't even know how to steer it."

Shasta grabbed the throttles, and said, "We've got two propellers. If we run them at different speeds, that will make the blimp turn, just like soldiers steer a tank by moving the tracks at different speeds."

"I should have known that. My grandpaw used to drive a tank."

Shasta moved the port throttle forward, pulled back on the starboard, and the blimp started turning. It was then that they saw the storm moving back across the field. Shasta kept the blimp in a twist turn, and said, "But we can't land in this weather."

"So what do we do?"

"The only thing we can do is keep flying around until the storm clears."

"But you don't have a license to fly this thing. And besides, won't Badyear be mad at us for taking their blimp?"

"Look, if we land now, the blimp'll be torn to pieces by that storm. This way, when we bring back the blimp, it'll still be in one piece."

Shasta brought the starboard engine up to full speed, and they headed off to the sunlight.

On the ground Snoopy saw the blimp heading away, and said, "What are they doing?"

Ernie looked up, and said, "They're probably trying to outrun the storm."

"But what if they get lost?"

"Shasta's a pilot, and it looks like she's already figured out how to steer it."

"But what if they run out of gas?"

"Oh my dog! I knew we forgot something!"

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