chapter 23
chapter 22
chapter 21
chapter 20
chapter 19
chapter 18
chapter 17
chapter 16
chapter 15
chapter 14
chapter 13
chapter 12
chapter 11
chapter 10
chapter 9
chapter 8
chapter 7
chapter 6
chapter 5
chapter 4
chapter 3
chapter 2
chapter 1

The Famous Five: The Final Adventure.
A Tribute to Enid Blyton.

Chapter 23.
A Full Circle.

"We all knew the moment we stepped out into the bright sunshine of The Mayfair Hotel courtyard, that a mysterious force was guiding our every move."
   "Yes, that's absolutely correct," agreed Dick, dragging his eyes from the delightful food that adorned the table in front of him. "But no way was it frightening... more of an exciting sensation and we were aware that each of us felt the same, even Timmy."
   The young woman at the head of that table smiled and continued to fondle Timmy, who had his head upon her lap and was looking dolefully up into her face. "Tell me of your journey to The Palace," she said.
   Anne leaned forward. "The sight that confronted our eyes in the Hotel courtyard was truly amazing. Many, many Coldstream Guards, their silver breastplates glittering in the sunshine, sat astride magnificent black horses. Some were even having great difficulty in keeping their high-spirited mounts under control. The clatter of iron hoofs on the cobblestones was almost deafening in the enclosed area. Amidst all this turmoil stood a perfectly calm Wandle Robert, harnessed to one of The Queen's own open carriages."
   Anne took a sip of chilled grapefruit juice, allowing Julian to pick up the story.
   "After we had settled in the carriage and the two footmen had climbed on the back, the procession was ready to begin. Half of the Mounted Guards, riding in perfect double formation, led our carriage out into the street. The other Guards brought up the rear. I am not sure what we were expecting, but the roar of the crowd that greeted us was beyond imagination. Both sides of the street were simply jam packed with children cheering at the tops of their voices. Yes, children. That was certainly a surprise. Not a grown-up in sight. We then turned into the road that runs alongside Hyde Park. The newly erected terraces were teeming with more children waving Union Jack's and throwing coloured streamers. The carriage was almost full of streamers by the time we had reached Regent Street."
   George chuckled at the memory. "Timmy was having trouble keeping his head clear. But nothing would have prepared us for what was to come, would it Ju.? The sea of red, white and blue balloons, stretching out as far as the eye could see, each side of The Mall. And Buckingham Palace glowing in the distance! I am right, it was glowing, wasn't it?"
   The others laughed. "Yes, George. It wasn't your imagination. There was definitely some strange light radiating from The Palace."
   "We trotted on down The Mall," continued George, "and at the very instant the procession passed by, each child released his or her balloon. The effect was spectacular. A sort of multi-coloured Mexican wave."
   "And finally into The Palace grounds, to a welcoming fanfare of trumpets," recalled Anne. "Through the large archway to the inner quadrangle, to be greeted by The Queen and Her entourage of ladies-in-waiting. The five of us stood in a line. I curtsied and Julian and Dick bowed. What did you do, George?"
   George laughed. "I made a bow, of course. It was a decision I made early on, when we were instructed to be 'as natural as possible'."
   "Meeting The Queen. What can we say about that?" said Dick, grinning. "She is so... so gracious and friendly. And didn't she make a fuss of Timmy? We were ushered inside The Palace, up a delightful curved stairway and into the room next door, where The Crown Jewels are on temporary display. Her Majesty chatted away merrily all the time, as if she had known us for years. She revealed many interesting facts concerning each piece of jewellery and how she hates wearing the large Crown of State, because it is so heavy. She then thanked us profusely for recovering The Crown Jewels, before presenting us with our medals." Dick fingered the solid gold medallion hanging around his neck, that The Queen had given him… was it less than an hour ago?
   "I don't know about you three," said Anne, "but I was having great difficulty concentrating on what was being said. The energy coming from this room was so intense. It was even flowing through the cracks and keyholes of the adjoining double doors... a sort of dull, throbbing glow. And when The Queen announced that there was a very special person for us to meet in the next room, I am sure my heart stopped beating.
   "When the double doors were slowly opened by two servants, a warm, gentle breeze enveloped us. And there you stood, arms outstretched, softly glowing... the source of energy that was drawing the five of us inevitably towards you. The Queen's last words will forever echo in our ears...