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By Paul Stewart, Chris Riddell

FERGUS CRANE! you're IN nice hazard! i'm SENDING aid. Signed T. C., your long-lost Uncle Theo Fergus Crane has a nearly traditional lifestyles - having classes taught through really bizarre lecturers at the institution send Betty Jeanne, supporting his mom within the bakery. yet then a mysterious flying field appears to be like on the window of his waterfront domestic - and Fergus is plunged headlong into an exhilarating event! The field is by way of a winged mechanical horse that whisks him off to fulfill his long-lost uncle and his penguin helpers, Finn, invoice and Jackson. Fergus unearths out that his lecturers will not be relatively what they appear - they're truly pirates! Can Fergus and his winged horse store his schoolmates from the distant fireplace Island? And who else will he locate there...?

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And, as he handed Karpff, the jeweller's, outdated pass over Wittering held up a half-eaten walnut eclair and winked. definite, everybody knew Fergus – he was once Lucia Crane's boy, who occasionally helped his mom at Beiderbecker's cake counter. once they observed his face, Fergus's neighbours considered glass counters choked with cream-horns, or chocolate macaroons, or strawberry-slices, or better of all, Archduke Ferdinand's vintage Florentines … Little ask yourself they regularly smiled. ultimately, Fergus got here to Beiderbecker's Bakery itself. Boris Beiderbecker used to be a quick, fats guy with a wide ginger moustache. He baked the bread – every thing from plaited sourdough rye to malted wholemeal with a poppy-seed crust. Mrs Crane ran the cake counter. Fergus pressed his nostril opposed to the window and peered in the course of the screens of his mother's walnut eclairs and almond meringues on the counter. occasionally she labored on the until within the afternoon. yet now not this present day. except younger Lucy, who used to be serving an outdated girl with a fats dachshund, the store used to be empty. Fergus became away and headed for the entrance to the correct of the store. there has been an arched plaque above the doorway bearing the phrases Archduke Ferdinand residences. Fergus thrust the bigger of his keys into the lock, placed his shoulder to the heavy wood door and shoved. The door opened with a creak and a sigh, and Fergus stepped inside of. The hallway was once cool and clean and, because the door close in the back of him with a smooth click on, Fergus used to be struck by means of a heavy silence that looked as if it would press at his internal ear. It was once like being less than water. the following immediate, he was once struck by means of whatever else. A odor. A scrumptious odor. the main splendidly fragrant body spray within the complete global! ‘Florentines,’ Fergus murmured. Mrs Crane baked continuous in the course of the day. Croissants for the early-morning alternate; truffles and pastries for lunchtime; scones, buns and multi-layered gateaux within the afternoon. however it was once now not croissants that Fergus may well odor, nor hot highly spiced currant-buns … This was once the unmistakable nutty, chocolatey, caramelly scent of the main scrumptious tarts ever created. ‘Flo-ren-tines,’ Fergus whispered slowly. simply the identify in his mouth used to be sufficient to make his abdominal gurgle with anticipation. He closed his eyes. He might see them floating sooner than him – small roundels of toasted nuts, plump dried fruit, sweet peel and glacé-cherries, all sure including candy, buttery toffee and set on a base of darkish, velvety chocolate. He may possibly nearly style them. Fergus guessed that his mom should have been requested to stick overdue within the bakery kitchen to accomplish a distinct order. He made his means around the marble hallway, earlier the row of steel letter containers, their vendors’ names at the entrance of every little locked door. Gumm. Bigsby-Clutterbuck. Squeegie. Beecham. Mme Lavinia. Fassbinder. Crane … Fergus stopped on the final letter field. a wide parcel sat beside it, addressed to Mrs L. Crane. On one aspect was once a decal with an image of 3 penguins and the phrases The Fateful Voyage buying and selling Co. Fergus bent down and picked it up with a sigh.

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