book 3 Gaby Title.jpg
Part 91


I woke up to the sun streaming into the little box room through a chink in the curtains. What a day yesterday! I lay going over the highlights in my mind, the Chilli Peppers set and then the Sheryl Crow session, I found myself humming 'James Dean' as I watched the sunlight slowly track across the wall. Tuesday, Tuesday! Cool, the Tuxford ten! Dad's gonna take us, that's Mad, Brit, Sab and me, I'm really looking forward to it as it's supposed to be a fast course.

But there's a whole day before then! I roused myself and by the looks of the bathroom, I was the first up, well except for Dad. By the time I'd showered and dressed the girls were up and at it, Jules being the first to join me at the breakfast table.

"So what you up to today half-pint?"

I bristled at that and she's only like an inch taller herself!

"Dunno really, I suppose we could make a start on operation Sonia"

"You sure we can get away it?"

"Who's she gonna tell? It's not like we'll be doing it ourselves"

"No I guess not"

"The others still up for it?"

"What do you think? Anna's Mum went ballistic and you know we can count on Charlie."

"Okay then, I'll ring Mad, she said she'd help"

"Ooh sweet revenge"

"Revenge?" Brit queried coming into the kitchen.

"Erm" I hedged, we couldn't get the visitors involved after all.

"Oh come on guys, spill" Britney pursued

"Well I guess we can tell you" Jules mentioned

"Tell us what?" Debs joined us

"Okay, but no one else" I allowed

"Stop being so mysterious" Brit stated

"Well maybe revenge is a bit strong, it's more like getting even. You've both met Sonia right? Well..." and Jules went on to tell the Walters the whole sorry tale, well whole except for my involvement, thanks Jules.

"She sounds like a right bitch to me" Debs intoned

"I wondered why Anna had such a bizarre haircut," Britney agreed

"So what have you guys got planned?" Deb queried

"Go on Drew, it was your idea" Jules prodded

"Well it's sort of self punishment. All the girls..." I went on to explain the plot to the Americans.

"Ooh, count us in" Brit enthused

"So Drew, how come you're involved?"

"Gaby" Jules splurted

"Er yeah, Gaby told me and I said I'd help" I blustered

I have to say that it was a dastardly plan, I'm not usually vindictive, in fact just the opposite but Sonia has got it coming! Deb and Jules headed into town to pick up a few supplies while the rest of us started the serious planning. Kirsty and Karen were still unknown quantities so we assumed they were 'hostiles'.

By lunchtime the plan just needed a bit of fine tuning

"It's a pity your cousin won't be here to see the fun" Brit opined as Jules went to make the calls to set everything up.

"I don't she'll mind too much, after all she'll get to see the pictures"

"I just hope this doesn't backfire" Jules mentioned rejoining us

"No-ones gonna force her to do anything are they?"

"I guess not. Anyway it's all set for tomorrow, we're meeting at Charlie's at ten"

"Too bad we're gonna miss it huh Drew" Brit intoned

"I'm sure Jules will give us all the gory details right Jules?" Mad suggested

"Yeah, I just wish we could take more direct action" my sister lamented

"You'd be in deep shit if you did" Deb pointed out

"Yeah well. I suppose this is pretty devious"

The six of us didn't do much of anything for the rest of the afternoon; I caught Britney giving Mad some strange looks though. About four Mad and Sabrina headed back to the Peters and the Walters Bond posse prepared an early tea. Dad arrived home just before five and at twenty past the three of us departed to pick up the rest of our little team using the camper.

Mad was a bit quiet, not her usual garrulous self anyway, nerves I guess. For some reason I was a bit nervy too as Dad headed us out past Ollerton onto the Tuxford road. It was barely six when we turned up the road signposted 'A1, The South'.

"We're well early Dad"

"I thought you'd like to have a run round the course first, I'm not sure exactly where it goes myself. John was a bit vague when I spoke to him the other day."

Instead of following the second A1 sign, Dad kept straight on until we reached the entrance to a trading estate.

"This is where we're supposed to park" he swung our ponderous transport around in the wide entrance and headed back up the bit of hill.

"Look for a stripe on the kerb Drew" he slowed right down.


"It should have 'ten' next to it" Dad advised pulling to a halt

"10 Start it says"

Dad set the trip meter and we set off taking the sharp left onto the A1 slip road. I got my race head on and Dad pointed things out for a still quiet Maddy. The traffic was brisk but mostly going at a fair clip.

"Five miles" Dad mentioned, "the turn must be the next slip road"

"Shorter back like Cuckney only on a dual carriageway"

"No it uses the old road going back"


"The old A1" Dad confirmed as we pulled into the slip and up the ramp. Left at the top then another left onto the old road, which was wide, but I could tell even in the van, quite bumpy. The road had wide sweeping bends and a couple of short climbs, I couldn't believe it when Dad said,

"One to go!"

Most of that last mile was dead straight and Dad slowed down to a stop at the ten-mile point.

"What do you think? Maddy you okay, you're a bit quiet?"

"I'm not sure about riding actually" Mad replied

"Oh Mad you've got to!" I told her

"No she hasn't" Dad stated, what's up lass?"

"It's the A1 bit, it's like a motorway and all that traffic"

"John assures me that by the time you get on there most of that will be gone, in fact he reckons it's quieter than Cuckney."

"Really?" Mad was looking to be convinced.

"Really. How about you get ready and if it's still busy when it's time to start you can pull out"

Dad you cunning crook! We drove on and by the time we got to the 'HQ' there were several other cars there including John's. Britney and Sab went for a walk while we finished getting ready.

John poked his head in the camper door. "Ah our little champion, congratulations young lady"

"Er thanks"

"Nationals now then, you'll be down as favourite," he told us

"Me? Why?"

"Well for the last six years the winner of the North East heat has gone on to take the National title."

"Nothing like a bit of pressure eh D?" Mad chuckled, I just groaned

"I've put Miss Peters number nine and you Gaby are number thirteen"

"Unlucky!" a slightly happier Mad mentioned. Me I don't go in for all that superstition stuff so the so-called bogey number didn't bother me.

"You two know the way?" John asked

"Yes thanks, Mr Bond drove us round" Mad replied

"Just be careful on the corners okay girls, don't want any accidents do we. I'll leave you to it, start's in thirty minutes, seven fifteen."

With that he was gone.

"You two going for a warm up?" Dad enquired a moment later as the little compressor died.

"Sure, come on Mad"

I think Mad had already decided to race so the fact that we could see hardly any traffic on the main road as we returned up the hill to the start only clinched it. Dad and the Americans were waiting on the footpath opposite.

"We've got your numbers!" Sab called over

We crossed over and the two American girls did the number pinning honours.

"Number one!" John called out across the road

"Remember what you've been told both of you" Dad stated as I checked Mad's helmet straps.

"Yes Dad"


"Yes Uncle Dave"

Dad blushed at that, Mad had never called him that before!

I watched as Maddy settled ready to start then she was off! I timed her to the first corner, twenty seconds, much the same as everyone else. Dad and the girls were up at the corner and I saw them cheer my girlfriend on.

Then it was my turn.

"Watch the turn Lass, do what the marshal says okay?" John instructed

"Uh huh" I readied myself as the pusher held me up.

"5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go!"

I launched myself away from the line and hit the first corner surprisingly quickly. The supporters club cheered as I slung the bike well over to make the corner then I was off down the slip. I got myself onto the main road as soon as was practical, glancing up the road I could see number 12 and away in the distance 11. Well that was a guide anyway. There certainly was much less traffic now, mostly rep mobiles haring homeward. The concrete surface was almost hypnotic as with great regularity my tyres hissed for a few revs then 'clunk', hissssssss, 'clunk' hissssssss, 'clunk'.

I was still in the little sprocket as I crested the first climb; wow nearly twenty-eight miles an hour! My minuteman was starting to come back towards me and on the long straights I could see eleven as well. My legs were going like a blender on the downhill's and I was holding twenty five on the ups, well until the last A1 climb where it did drop to twenty by the top.

Then there it was, the exit slip and number twelve not halfway up! I changed down for the left turn, the marshal indicating it was clear to go. As I dropped to the second corner, the marshal was waving to slow me, a car sped across the junction and with a glance I was waved through. Up out of the saddle I attempted to get back into my rhythm.

The surface was actually fairly good just not very flat! I caught number twelve as we climbed over a railway bridge then as I made the next brow I caught my first glimpse of Mad! My computer was showing nineteen thirty, maybe two miles to go? I was nearly shaken out of my skin when a dog started barking loudly as I passed but a quick glance showed a six-foot fence between it and me. Phew!

Down through the last few bends and there was both number eleven and number nine in front, if Maddy was on another twenty-eight, I'd struggle to get a twenty-four at this rate! Someone had thoughtfully put up a 'one mile to go' board, I just kept thrashing the pedals round. Into the last straight and way in the distance I could just see the finish.

"Dig in youngster!" a voice gasped next to me.

I nearly jumped out of my skin as number fifteen swept past. The big guy powered away from me despite my best attempts to up my pace then with a red haze starting to descend there was the chequered flag.

"Come on Drew!"


"Thur'een!" I gasped freewheeling, too spent even to keep my legs going. I hit the stop button on my timepiece. Nah can't be right, 24.13, I didn't even catch Maddy. Well until now that is, she was laid flat on her back wheezing like a good 'un! I pulled to a halt a slumped over my bars.

"You guys okay?" Sab called out from behind me

"Er think so" I pointed at Mad and shook my head

Five minutes later and on Dads instruction we were both pedalling slowly back towards Tuxford.

I took another swig out of the bottle Dad had given me and passed it to Mad.

"Some course huh?"

"Different, the dog get you?" she took a gulp of liquid

"Yeah" I accepted the bottle back and slipped it into the cage, "enjoyed it though, it was so fast on the way out"

"I think I was catching number eight but I lost sight at the turn thingy"

We rode up under the railway just as a GNER express shot overhead heading north, and then we were back at the camper.

I helped Dad put the bikes onto the rack while Mad got changed; Brit and Sab were busy checking out the older male riders!

"You got a change of kit Drew? That skinsuit is caked in salt," Dad pointed out

"Er no, didn't think"

"You never do!"

"You can borrow this" Mad offered from the door

"Not a dress or skirt is it?"

"No, course not"

"Hmm okay then" I agreed stepping up into the caravanette.

How do I manage it? No not a skirt or dress, oh no! Far worse, a romper suit! Well okay not strictly a romper suit; Mad called it a playsuit. It might as well have been a skirt; it looked like one but with separate legs, barely but attached to a sleeveless top. The whole thing buttoned down the front and an elasticated waist gave it a bit of shape. All in cream cotton with little rosebuds all over it. I even had to borrow a pair of pants as the garments wide legs wouldn't contain my equipment at all.

"You never learn do you" Dad mentioned when I emerged

"No Dad" I agreed colouring up

"Drew?" Sab asked

"Yeah it's me"

"He forgot to bring a change of kit" Mad advised the smirking Americans

"Suits you!" Brit told us, "cute in fact"

romper suit!
Yeah not a dress, no, this is way worse!

"There you are girls" John was back, "well done both of you, I said it was a fast course"

"What have they done John?" Dad asked

"Miss Peters here has done, lets see," he checked his board, "27.28 and this young lady" he patted my shoulder, "has managed 23.45! Excellent rides"

"Can I see?" I enquired as the girls started gigging about.

"Sure" John passed me the board and Dad looked over my shoulder as John went on, "fourteen PB's tonight!"

I moved my finger down the list, five managed 22.01, six and seven both finished with long 23's, and Maddy did beat number eight but only by two seconds. Ten did 21.23, eleven got 23.51, twelve 25.03, then me with 23.45, fifteen took me for an extra ten seconds with 22.35 then there was only one more rider quicker than me with 22.59! Kewl! I handed John the board back.

"Must go, see you next week, there's only two more Tuesdays." And he was gone

"You kids ready for home?" Dad asked

"Sure" Brit supplied

"I guess so" I pulled the crotch of the romper into a more comfortable position much to Brit and Mad's delight.

"Anyone for chips?" Dad enquired as we passed under the A1 up into Tuxford proper.

"Please!" Mad replied, "I want to celebrate"

We pulled up in the little town square.

"There you are Drew, chips and a cake for me" Dad passed over a tenner


"I'll come with you!" Brit mentioned

Humiliated? You bet. There I am in a flipping romper suit queuing in a chip shop miles from home.

"Nice legs!"

"Gis a kiss gorgeous!"

"Nice arse Blondie"

Yep, the local wasters!

"Get off me!" Brit pushed one of the oiks away.

"Hey that ones some sort of foreign"

The pestering continued while we waited and was gradually escalating to physical contact. I was ready to make a run for it.

"Leave the girls alone lads," an older chap who was waiting in the queue suggested

"If you say so Grandad" and they continued on, no respect this lot. It seemed no one else would stand up to them.

"Come on Brit lets leave it"

"No way!" Brit turned to our would be assailants, "as you little worms haven't got a brain between you, the adults round here have let you play for a bit. Keep it up and you'll wish you hadn't"

"Yeah? And what are ya going to do eh girly?" the apparent leader pushed his face right up to Brits.

"You asked for it"

"Ooof!" the youth collapsed to the ground clutching his jewels.

"Why you bitch!" one of his lieutenants started to pull back a fist.

"That's enough Boyle!" a meaty hand appeared and grabbed the balled hand. "Pick turnip head up and get out of here" the three lads beat a hasty retreat, obviously the owner of the hand did garner some respect.

Our rescuer turned out to be a big bloke of about twenty.

"Sorry about that ladies, Derek thinks he's God's gift, he'll be in for it when I tell our Mum"

"He's your brother?" Brit asked obviously intrigued by the big guy.

"Half brother, him and his mates are always getting in trouble with the Old Bill"

We shuffled along and I placed our order.

"Usual Josh?"

"Thanks Jim, oh and Marcus asked if you could put extra chilli on his"

I collected our bag of fried taters and tugged Brits elbow

"Well thanks again er?"

"Josh. No sweat, if you're around here just pop in to the Fire Station and ask for Officer Nash, that's me."

"You're a fireman?"

"Most of the time" he chuckled


"Coming, well bye Josh Nash" Brit was acting real weird.

"So what was all that about?" I asked once we were outside

"Nothing. But he was cute huh?"


"A fireman too. Huuuh!" she sighed.

We sat in the camper to eat our chips and of course all Britney could do was recount the chippy incident and go on about Josh bloody Nash! Mind you at least it took the interest away from me and how I'm dressed!

"Thanks Mr Bond" Sab called as she and Mad waved us off forty minutes later

"See you in the morning" Mad added

"Night" Brit and I chorused

"Night girls" Dad added

Knock, knock!

"Who is it?"

"Just me" I was expecting this but how do I proceed, admit or deny?

"Come in Brit"

She settled herself cross-legged on the end of the bed.

"I don't believe there is a Gaby" nothing like getting straight to the point!


"Of course there is!"

"Well prove it then! I think that you're Gaby," she stated

"I'll admit that I've ended up in girls clothes a couple of times but I'm not Gaby! Ask Mad, she's her cousin too"

"I already did"


"She said the same thing"

"There you go then"

Brit looked at me strangely, like she was sizing something up.

"Look, when we go to the Peters tomorrow, we can get Mad to get some photo's out okay?"

"Hmmm, okay" well it was obvious she wasn't convinced but she levitated from the bed and with a "g'night Drew" she left.

"Bip bip bup bip" I hit the speed dial and Mad's phone rang.

"What'sup Drew? I was just dropping off"

"Sorry Mad, you've got some pictures of Gaby right?"

"You know I have, why?"

"Britney, she needs convincing I'm not Gaby"

"But you are"


"Okay, I'll see if I can find some from the school dance"

"School dance?"

"Yes dumbo, I think I've got some of Gaby with Clive"

"You didn't?"

"Not me, Bernie. And we could always get hold of Clive, after all he fancies Gab something chronic!"

"Don't remind me!"

"Well see you in the morning then"

"Yeah, night Mad"

"Night Drew"

Maddy Bell 24.04.04 Secret © 2004

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