|Harold in Space|
|Season 2, Episode 14|
|Air date||August 6th, 2020|
Diesel's Good Deed
Harold in Space is the fourteenth episode of the second season of the Many Adventures on the Island of Sodor.
Every engine and vehicle is proud to be who they are on the Island of Sodor. Whether they are on rails, or road, or water, or even in the air, everyone is happy to be the machine they are and cannot think of being anything else. Harold the helicopter is especially proud to be who is. He can fly high in the sky and look over everything that happens on the island. From west to east and north to south, Harold can see everyone and everyone can see him. He enjoys his work patrolling the island and there is nothing that he likes more than being a helicopter.
One day, Harold was doing his usual afternoon patrol of the island. He looked all around to make sure everything was safe and in good order. Then as he was approaching Ulfstead Castle, he looked down below and saw Percy, Rocky, and Harvey standing next to Ulfstead Mine, looking confused.
"Hmm, I wonder what they're doing down there," he thought, and flew down towards them.
"Um, are you two sure this is where Sir Robert wants us to wait?" Percy asked Rocky and Harvey. "The mine's still boarded up, you know, so we can't get in."
"I'm sure of it, Percy," replied Rocky. "He said to come here and when we do, wait until he gives us further instructions. Right Harvey?"
"Aye he did," said Harvey. "He said to just wait until he arrives and gives us our jobs."
"Well, alright then," said Percy. "If that's what he said, then I guess we'll do that."
Then at that point, Harold landed nearby by them. "Hello all," he called.
"Hello Harold," they called.
"If you don't mind me asking, what are you doing here at the mine?" asked Harold. "Are you lost?"
"No, no silly," chuckled Percy. "We're here because Sir Robert told us to come here."
"Oh I see," said Harold, then he thought. "But…in that case, why did he tell you all to come here?"
"Because we'll be helping him with a special event that he's planning on having inside Ulfstead Mine," explained Rocky.
"Ooh, that sounds rather interesting," chuffed Harold. "What is his special event by the way?"
"Well, from what he's told us," began Percy, "there was news going around that a special type of star is said to be flying across the Mainland and Sodor within a week and to celebrate it, the Earl is planning on having Ulfstead Mine redressed to look like outer space."
Harold was surprised. "Wow, I must say, that sounds like quite an event."
"I'm sure it will be," added Harvey. "The Earl said the mine will be filled with planets, stars, and all sorts of other…uh, space things and it'll feel like you really are in outer space."
Harold was amazed. "That does sound pretty exciting now, and having it inside the mine is a little interesting. Why here?"
"Because the way Sir Robert sees it," added Percy, "all the twists and turns within the mine and passing all those planets will be like going through space in a spaceship."
"And Rocky and I will be helping to set them up in the mine as well," puffed Harvey.
"Ah I see, that makes sense, I guess," replied Harold. "I have to admit, the Earl does have quite an imagination and this event will surely show it."
Just then, they heard a pair of whistles and then they saw Samson and Stanley arrive with a trainload of odd parts.
"Ah, here we are Stanley," said Samson. "Right on time, and right where we need to be, at Ulfstead Mine with everything needed for the space convention."
"That's right," said Stanley, "and looks like we arrived at a good time. Percy, Rocky, and Harvey must be ready and waiting for us. Right you three?"
"That's right," they replied.
“Oh and hello Harold,” said Stanley. “What brings you here? Have you come to help too?”
“No, no. I was just here to see what was going on,” replied Harold. “Percy and the cranes told me everything and it sounds like it will be something.” Then he looked at Stanley and Samson’s flatbeds. “Are those for the event by the way?”
“You are correct, Harold,” said Samson proudly. “These special props are for setting up all the planets, stars, and galaxies inside the mine. More will be coming in during the next few days, but the sooner we get started, the better and we can see just how glorious it will all look when it’s completed.”
“I can’t wait to get started too,” chuffed Stanley. “I don’t know why, but space always sounded fascinating to me and I can’t wait to see it finally. Well, at least in some way.” Everyone chuckled at his remark.
“Well you know, out of all of us, I think the only one who could actually go to space, since he’s up in the air all the time, is Harold,” said Percy. “Isn’t that right, Harold?”
“Hmmm, not exactly Percy,” began Harold, “because...”
“Well no he couldn’t,” interrupted Samson, “because you see, space is not part of Earth and it is right outside of the Earth’s atmosphere. That also means there is no air up there either, so no one would be able to breathe without a spacesuit and an oxygen tank up there and...”
“Um Samson,” Rocky cut in. “I think Harold could’ve explained all of that himself, considering he’s the one that actually is in the air and knows all of that.”
“Oh, oh right,” said Samson meekly. “Uh, terribly sorry Harold. Speaking out of term again, I guess.”
“That’s alright Samson,” said Harold, “but you are right though. Space is not part of earth and I can’t go that high. It’s too far and I’m not built to go into that atmosphere. I was made to be up in the air and remain on this planet, which I prefer anyway.”
"Oh," puffed Percy. "Well did you ever think of going to space?"
"Mmm, not really to tell you the truth, Percy," replied Harold. "Space is such a large and vast area and I already see a lot on this island when I'm up in the sky. So I'm perfectly happy being on Earth."
"You could always pretend you're in space," suggested Stanley. "Did you ever imagine that?"
"Well, I might have, sometimes," chuffed Harold, "but the way I see it, imagining isn't the same as the real thing. So imagining I'm in space wouldn't be as exciting as being in space itself."
"Well then perhaps we can help you with that," suggested Rocky.
"Aye," agreed Harvey. "How about when the mine's finished and set up with all the planets and stars, one of us gives you ride around inside? Maybe that will change your mind about imagining."
Harold smiled. "Thanks for the suggestion, you two, but you all really don't have to do that. I'm still perfectly happy about being up in the sky and no where else."
Percy chuckled. "Sounds to me like you still don't exactly approve of rails, Harold," he said cheekily. "There are some uses to them you know and using them to take a tour around the mine is one of them."
Harold could tell Percy was joking with him. "Alright Percy, we don't have to start that again. You know I approve of rails by now."
"Yes I do," laughed Percy. "I was just trying to convince you to take that ride, that's all."
"Well I appreciate your offer like you all said," sighed Harold, "but it's frankly, not going to happen. As a helicopter who's part of the Search and Rescue team, I have to be alert in case there's an emergency and I don't have time for something like a tour. Speaking of which, I should really get back to the rescue center and fuel up before my next patrol." Then Harold started whirling his arms and prepared to take off. "Good-bye everyone, and good luck with everything."
"Good-bye, Harold," called everyone else, then Harold took off into the sky and buzzed away.
"Do you think Harold really meant that he didn't want that ride?" Stanley asked.
"Who knows," puffed Percy. "He does take his job seriously with patrolling the island, so he might be serious."
"Quite so," added Samson. "Besides based on the entrance to this mine, Harold would be too big in size and diameter to fit through there and we would need to make some adjustments to…" Then he saw everyone was giving him an awkward look. "Um, ahem, yes well, should we get started then?" Everyone smiled and agreed, then they set to work.
Later, at the Search and Rescue Center, Harold was telling the rescue team about the event and what the other engines were telling to him.
"Well what's wrong with pretending you're a spaceship, Harold?" asked Flynn. "That sounds like it would actually be quite fun. Plus there's no harm in being two things at once. Take me for example: I can run on rails or road and I have no problem with that, so what's so bad about being a spaceship?"
"Because I never really think about space," replied Harold, "and I'm not really that interested in it. As I told Percy, Rocky, and all of them, I prefer to stick to Earth and everything that it involves."
"Hmm, that sounds fair enough," chuffed Butch, "but you know like you said they also said, imagining can be quite fun, so if not a spaceship, you could pretend to be something else here on Earth. Like…mmm, ooh! A tow-helicopter! How does that sound? Having a hook on your back and tow things through the sky? That would be interesting."
"Or how about being a helicopter that rides on water?" added Captain. "You have those floaters after all, so you could use them to swim and your back propellers to go to other places without being in the air."
"Uh, that's true," stammered Harold, "but…"
"Well he also has those wheels on the bottom of his floaters," cut in Flynn. "So he could use them to ride on the roads like me. Then we could be a pair of road rescue buddies!"
"Hey!" scoffed Butch.
"Oh, and along with you too, Butch," added Flynn meekly.
Belle, who said nothing yet, could tell that Harold was looking flustered with all the suggestions. "Um, guys. I think we're overwhelming Harold a little bit. So how about we stop suggesting all these things and leave him be? Besides, I agree with him. If he wants to be a helicopter and nothing else, then that's perfectly fine. Not everyone has to pretend they're something else, you know, and don't want to imagine either and there's nothing wrong with that."
The others looked at each other and agreed.
"Yes, I guess you're right Belle," chuffed Butch.
"Yes sorry if we went too far, Harold," added Captain.
"It's alright, everyone," soothed Harold. "I know you're just trying to help and that's fine."
"But you know, the possibilities of you being on the road…" began Flynn.
"Ahem!" interrupted Belle, eyeing Flynn.
"Uh, never mind," finished Flynn hastily. "Say I think I remember there's a fire that needs to be put out at Brendam Docks. You two want to help me go put it out?" he asked Butch and Captain.
"Uh…sure, yeah I could help," replied Butch.
"Yes, quite so, I'll help you too, Flynn," agreed Captain quickly. "Full speed ahead!" Then the three of them hurried away from the rescue center.
Belle just rolled her eyes, then she turned to Harold. "I hope they didn't overwhelm you too much, Harold. I was just trying to stop them before they suggested anything else."
"Don't worry, Belle," chuckled Harold. "I'm used to others telling me I could be something else. Percy tends to do that a lot and it doesn't really bother me anymore, so all this talk about me pretending to be a spaceship is not really new."
"Well like you said," added Belle. "If you're happy being a helicopter and nothing else, then that's perfectly fine. Besides, I think you work best as a helicopter anyway and I wouldn't want you to be anything else either."
"Thanks Belle, I appreciate that," smiled Harold. "I must get back to patrolling now, so I'll see you later."
"Bye Harold!" called Belle, then Harold took off into the sky once more.
For the rest of the day, Harold carried on with his usual patrol of the island. The more he patrolled, the less he thought about being in space and what everyone was telling him earlier. He was also feeling much better and back to normal as well and wasn't worrying anymore either. He patrolled so much during the day, he did into the night as well.
"Well, everything has been present and correct all day," Harold said to his pilots. "Better get back to the rescue center now."
"I'll say," chuckled one of his pilots. "That was the most patrolling we've ever done in one day and I'm beat. So I'm ready to head back when you are, old boy." Harold laughed, then he set off back to the center.
As he did, Harold was still looking down at the island making sure there was no trouble, then his eyes slowly wondered upward towards the sky, and he paused.
Harold's pilots were surprised. "Everything alright, Harold?" called one of them. "Did you spot trouble?"
"No, no I haven't," replied Harold. "But…, it's just, look at the sky."
Harold's pilots looked out the windows at the sky. There was not a cloud in sight and there were stars everywhere, far as the eye could see.
"What about the sky?" asked one of the pilots.
"Well, I just never seen so many stars before," chuffed Harold, still looking at the sky. "Let alone any clouds in the sky. It looks so…amazing and-and beautiful. I guess I never really noticed just how interesting it looks at night, and I like it."
"Mm, yes the sky does look amazing at night," said one of the pilots, "but we need to get back to the rescue center, old boy. We're tired and need our sleep, and so do you."
"Huh? Oh yes, yes, that's right, we do," said Harold, finally looking away from the sky. "Well here we go." Then he continued onto the rescue center, but as he was heading there, Harold kept looking at the stars and sky and the more he did, the more he was secretly getting more and more interested in what exactly is in space.
Down below, Percy was taking the mail train. As he puffing along, he saw Harold up above and noticed he seemed a little distracted with the sky. This got him a little curious.
The next day, Harold stopped at Dryaw Airfield at one point to fuel up. As he landed, he noticed a large poster on the station building for Sir Robert's space convention. He could also hear the passengers talking excitedly about the event as well, and was getting even more curious too.
Just then, he heard a whistle and saw Percy puff in with a passenger train. "Hello Harold," he whistled. "Anything new from the sky? Or from space?"
Harold smiled slightly. "Ha, ha, very funny," he muttered, "and to answer your question, no just the usual and nothing new." Then he looked back at the poster. "Speaking of which, how is the preparations for that space convention going?"
"Oh it's going pretty well," replied Percy. "Rocky, Harvey, and the workmen have been working hard with setting up the planets and stuff and it's looking very exciting. There's some work that still needs to be done, but everything is almost complete and I can't wait to see it when it's finished."
"Hmm, sounds interesting," Harold said slowly and thoughtfully.
Percy frowned, then he remembered what he saw last night. "What's the matter, Harold? Are you interested in the event now by any chance?"
"Huh? Oh uh, n-no, no," stammered Harold. "I'm just glad to hear that the convention's almost done, that's all. The sooner, the better, I guess. Ahem, well I best be getting back to patrolling now, so take care Percy, and good-bye." Then Harold hastily took off into the sky.
Percy was very surprised. "That's odd," he thought. "He took off pretty quickly when all I did was ask him a simple question. I wonder what's going on with him." He was beginning to sense that Harold was most likely hiding something.
Throughout the day, Harold noticed some engines carrying strange props that he knew were for the space convention and he grew more and more curious. So curious, that he even flew near the mine to see what was inside a few times. Of course he had no luck looking inside and could barely see anything due to the construction and because he was caught a few times as well by Harvey, Rocky, and Stanley.
"Um, Harold?" asked Stanley, who was there. "Are you looking for something? This is about the third time now you've been around here and Rocky, Harvey, and I are a little concerned?"
"Oh uh, yes, yes, I was looking for a…uh…um, a lost sheep around the forest near here," chuffed Harold, and he spun around and looked quickly in the trees nearby. "Nope. No luck again still. Oh well, better check again later. Good-bye." He hurriedly flew away again.
"Hmm, what do you suppose that was all about?" asked Harvey.
"Who knows, but Harold has been acting strange lately," chuffed Rocky. Stanley could tell something was up with Harold too.
Later, he met Percy at Knapford Yards and told him about Harold. "He said he was looking for a lost sheep nearby Ulfstead, but he seemed to look more towards the mine than the trees and he was there about three times," he told him. "I'm pretty sure it wouldn't take Harold three tries just to find a sheep."
"Hmm, he was acting a little strange when I talked to him earlier too," puffed Percy. "I asked him was he interested in the event and he got all flustered and panicky then he left quickly as well. Something's definitely going on with him."
"I'll say," agreed Stanley. "I think he might be interested in the event after all and he's too proud to admit it."
Percy thought for a moment. "You might have a point there, Stanley," he puffed. "I'll check with someone from the rescue center to see if they know anything about that." Then Percy puffed away.
When he arrived at the rescue center that evening, he saw Belle and Flynn filling their tanks with water. They were surprised to see Percy.
"Hello there Percy," called Flynn. "Is everything alright? Is there a fire that needs putting out?"
"No, everything's fine, Flynn," replied Percy. "I just have a question about Harold. Has he by any chance been acting a little strange lately?"
Belle and Flynn looked at each other, then back at Percy. "What do you mean?" asked Belle.
"I mean has he been possibly talking about the space convention at Ulfstead?" continued Percy. "Stanley and I have noticed that he's been showing some interest, but he doesn't seem to want to admit it."
Belle and Flynn paused for a moment. “Hmm, now that you mention it, Percy,” chuffed Belle, “he has been a little distracted and looking up at the sky multiple times whenever he returns from his patrols.”
“And he also talks about what he’s seen being delivered to the mine for the event and seemed rather curious about it too,” added Flynn. “So I think you might be right, Percy. He is interested in the event after all.”
Percy thought for a moment, then they heard a whirring sound and saw Harold land on his helipad. “Good evening everyone,” he called. “Any new rescue reports during my patrols?”
“Nope, still the same, Harold,” replied Belle.
“Oh well that’s good to hear,” chuffed Harold. “Better no one’s in trouble than not, I suppose.”
Then Percy had an idea. “Speaking of rescuing,” he began cheekily, “any luck with finding that sheep at Ulfstead Mine, Harold?”
Harold froze. “Oh yes, the sheep,” he said. “Well, you see...it ran away...uh, even farther from the mine and...I didn’t receive anymore reports, so...I didn’t know where to look, so, I’m postponing it until tomorrow.”
“Mm-hmm,” said Percy. “Well that’s too bad about the sheep, but I heard from Stanley that you were looking more at the mine than the trees next. Are sure you weren’t making the sheep story up to cover up the fact you are secretly interested in the space event?”
“What? No, no, good heavens no,” stammered Harold. “The mine just happens to be next to where I’m searching and I got a little distracted, that’s all, but I assure you all that I am still not the least bit interested in that space event.”
Belle, Flynn, Percy and even Captain and Butch, who were there too, all gave him an unconvinced look.
Harold then knew he was caught. “Alright, I’ll admit it: yes, I am interested,” he sighed. “As I was flying at night, I happened to look up at stars and they all looked amazing and beautiful and that’s what got me curious in the event, as well as space.” The others smiled.
“I knew it!” Exclaimed Percy. “I knew you were hiding something and it had to do with the space event.”
“But why didn’t you just admit it in the first place?” Flynn asked Harold.
“Well, because I didn’t want to go back on what I said before about space and imagining and all of that,” explained Harold. “I thought it would make me look silly if I said I’m interested in space right after I said I didn’t, and I didn’t want you all to know.”
“Well there’s nothing wrong with that,” soothed Belle. “People change their minds all the time. So if you say you don’t like something at first, then you decide you do, then nobody’s going to tease you for that. We think it's kind of nice that you're interested in space rather than not."
Harold smiled. "That makes me feel much better. Thank you Belle."
"So since you're curious about space now," chuffed Percy, "how about that tour we were talking about? Hmm? I bet you would like to go on that now, wouldn't you? And pretend you're a spaceship as well?"
"Well, I would, to tell you the truth, Percy," said Harold, "but at the same time, like I said before, I'm still part of the rescue team and on duty as well, so I wouldn't have time to go on that tour. Besides, although I'm sure the event will look nice, it wouldn't be the same as being way up there in space and pretending to be a spaceship wouldn't be the same as being a real one. So thank you Percy, but I don't think I'll do it anyway. Now if you all will excuse me, I need to do one last patrol for the day." Then Harold took off again.
The rescue team was upset, and so was Percy. "Well, at least he showed an interest in space," sighed Flynn.
"Yeah, but still not convinced to go on that tour," added Butch. "Kind of wished he would change his mind and just go for it."
"But like he said, he's still part of our rescue team," reminded Belle. "So he did have a point about being on duty and not having time, though for something like this, he could make an exception. I wonder what else we could do to try and convince him."
Then Percy had an idea. "Leave that to me," he whistled. "I think I might have a way to change that old whirlybird's mind. I know him well, so I'm sure this will work." Then Percy raced off, leaving the rescue team confused.
Percy raced to Ulfstead Mine first. When he got there, Samson, Harvey, and Rocky was sitting outside, finishing up for the day.
"Guys, guys! Few quick questions," puffed Percy. "How much longer it is going to take to finish up the mine?"
"Nearly finished, Percy," replied Harvey. "Just a little bit more to do tomorrow and it should be ready by tomorrow night."
"Great, and do you think the mine tunnel is fairly wide and big enough for…well, something big?" added Percy.
"I think it is," chuckled Rocky. "If a big breakdown crane like me and a tall one like Harvey is able to fit through it, then anything big can as well."
"Perfect, that's all I needed to know, thank you!" puffed Percy, then he raced up to Ulfstead Castle.
"Hmm, I wonder what that was about?" chuffed Samson.
Up at the castle, Percy told Sir Robert all about his plan for Harold, hoping he would agree to it.
"Hmm, well I see no harm in doing that," said Sir Robert. "So yes of course we can do that for Harold. Oh, but you may want to check with his pilots too to make sure they're alright with this."
"Oh yes, of course, sir," replied Percy. "I'll go ahead and do that too. Thank you, Sir Robert!" Then Percy raced back to the rescue center.
By the time he got back to there, Harold had arrived back and was already asleep, but his pilots were still there, so without waking up Harold, Percy quickly and quietly explained his plan to them. The pilots listened and they liked Percy's idea as well.
"We'll keep it secret until tomorrow night," they promised Percy.
Percy was delighted. "Great!” He whispered excitedly. “Oh he will be surprised with this." Then he puffed away to bed.
The next day, everything was normal. Harold did his usual patrol of the island and this time, he didn't go near Ulfstead Mine. He didn't even try to fly near it to see what was going on. Percy could see him while working and was a little surprised about this, but he sensed that deep down inside of him, Harold was still interested in seeing the mine, and unbeknownst to Percy, he was right.
At last, evening came. Harold was still flying around and patrolling the island, and still thinking about space and the convention.
Just then, Harold suddenly felt himself starting to go down. "Whoa, what's happening?" he exclaimed.
"Oh dear, sorry old boy," called one of his pilots. "Looks like you're running out of fuel. We have to land immediately."
"Really? That's odd," puffed Harold. "I'm sure I still had plenty of fuel left in me."
"Still though, it's best that we land and call for help," said the other pilot.
So they carefully and safely landed next to some railway tracks and one of Harold's pilots called for help.
"I just called and Percy will be collecting you shortly to take you back to the rescue center," said the pilot. "Belle will be bringing Rocky to put you on the flatbed as well."
Harold was confused. "That sounds like a bit much for just running out of fuel," he said. "Can't someone just bring me a fuel tanker for filling up?"
"Not this time, old chap," said the pilot. "Orders are orders, and we must listen to them." Harold thought something odd was going on.
A little while later, Percy, Belle and Rocky arrived and Rocky carefully loaded Harold onto the flatbed.
"There you go Harold," said Rocky. "All set and ready to get back to the rescue center."
"Um, yes, thank you Rocky," said Harold. "I appreciate the help."
"Now Percy," said Belle. "Do you remember the way to the 'rescue center' from here?"
"No actually I don't Belle," said Percy, pretending like he didn't know. "Could you show me please?"
"Absolutely, just follow me and Rocky. We'll get you and Harold there," replied Belle, then together, they all set off. Harold could definitely sense that something was going on now.
On their journey, it grew dark and the stars were coming out. Harold gazed at them.
Percy, who was pushing him could tell. "Stars look pretty nice tonight, don't they Harold?"
"Huh? Oh yes, quite nice indeed," replied Harold. "Never knew there was so many of them, and they do certainly light up the sky. Shame that we can't go up there and see them."
Everyone exchanged smirks. "Well some of us can't," said Belle, "but you will…tonight."
Harold was confused. "What? What do you mean?" He asked. Everyone began sniggering a little bit. "Wait a minute," said Harold. "We're not going to the rescue center, are we? We're going to Ulfstead Mine!"
"Yep, you got it," chuckled Rocky. "It was our plan the whole time." Harold was a little cross.
"Now Harold," puffed Percy. "We know what you said yesterday, but we all think deep down inside, you really want to go on that tour and we want to help you with that. Even if you don't believe in imagining, we think it will be worth it if you tried. So what do you say? Are you ready to go to space, in a way?"
Harold thought for a moment, then smiled. "Alright you win," he said. "After putting it like that, I'm ready to go to space. How much longer until we get there?"
"Not too much long," chuffed Belle. "We're almost there." And they continued on.
Soon they were approaching Ulfstead Mine. Many people were there and were excited to see the inside of the mine. Samson, Stanley, and Harvey were there too.
"Ooh, this is exciting," chuffed Stanley. "The mine is all complete and I can't wait to see it finally."
"Oh it is a sight," chuffed Harvey. "I'm sure you all will be most please with it."
"Yes it will be quite exciting indeed," agreed Samson. "I'm especially looking forward to seeing all the constellations, like the Little and Big Dipper, Orion, North, and Cassiopeia, all magnificent sights and…" He noticed Stanley and Harvey looking confused. "Oh, have I said too much again? Terribly sorry, you two. Speaking out of term again, I guess. Speaking...out...of...term." Stanley and Harvey just gave each other puzzled looks.
Just then they heard some whistles and at that point, Percy puffed in with Harold, with Belle and Rocky behind. Everyone cheered when they saw them.
Sir Robert was delighted to see them too. "Ah excellent, glad you all could make it," he said to them, "and I hope you're prepared to go to space in a few minutes, Harold."
Harold smiled. "Yes I am, sir. As ready as I'll ever be."
"Great," said Sir Robert, then he turned to the guests. "Ahem, ladies and gentlemen. I would like to thank you all for coming this evening. Preparing for this event took a lot of time and effort, but it is finally ready and I know you all will enjoy it very much. Now I know we all are excited to see what kind of stars and planets you will see, but first, we must send our first spaceship to test it out and make sure it is clear for take off for everyone, so to speak." Everyone chuckled at that remark, even Harold a little bit. "So with that being said, our very own Harold the Helicopter will be the first to go to space and see it for the very first time, with the help of Percy of course, then everyone else can join in. Now everyone, let's do the proper countdown for them for blasting off, backwards from ten. Ready? Ten…nine…eight…" And everyone else joined in.
Harold was secretly getting excited, Percy could tell. "Ready Harold?" he whispered.
"Ready," replied Harold.
"Four…three…two…one…blast off!" cheered everyone, then with a heaving and a pushing, Percy and Harold set off into the mine.
It started out dark at first due to the tunnel, but then when they approached the larger area, they were amazed. The entire area was filled with bright colors and large props, all resembling outer space. There were planets everywhere, stars glittering wherever you looked, galaxies spread across different areas of the mine, and everything looked spectacular.
Harold was most speechless, and so was Percy. "Wow, this is amazing," chuffed Percy.
"I'll say it is," said Harold, when he could finally talk. "Sir Robert really went all out with this set up, and I must say, it really does feel like we're in space for real now. Shall we continue with the trip, Percy?"
"Yes let's," agreed Percy eagerly, and he moved on.
The two friends went all around the mine checking everything out. They passed by the sun; rode past the Earth; crossed over the moon; rode around Saturn's rings; and past through many constellations of stars.
"Wow, seeing all these stars up close is even better than seeing them from Earth," chuffed Harold.
"Really? Earth is just down there, so I don't see much of a difference from right here," said Percy cheekily, then the two of them laughed.
They were having great fun the entire time, and even Harold had to admit this was definitely worth everything and he was having the time of his life.
At last, the two friends had finished their tour and exited the mine. When they came out, everyone was waiting excitedly for them.
"So Harold," said Sir Robert. "How was your and Percy's space adventure? Is it safe for the rest of us to go in and see?"
"Absolutely, Sir Robert," chuckled Harold. "Everyone is clear and ready for take off, and Percy and I can assure everyone they will have a blast. Right Percy?"
"Right Harold," replied Percy. "So what are you all waiting for? Space is there waiting for you." Everyone laughed and cheered.
Soon, everyone was preparing to go into the mine for the event, all excited to see what was inside.
As they were preparing, Harold whispered to Percy. "You know, Percy," he said. "I have to admit, I was being very silly lately."
"How so?" asked Percy confusedly.
"Well, about everything regarding this event," explained Harold. "Mostly saying imagining isn't the same as the real thing. I just never really thought of imagining before and after that ride, I think imagining is actually better than the real thing. So I can't actually go to space, but just imagining I am is just as much fun."
Percy smiled. "That's what we all were trying to tell you, you silly whirlybird," he chuckled. "We understand you were a little worried about that, but there's no harm in imagining. It's quite fun and really does make a difference. Also, I think you have to admit, even though you can't really go to space, using the rails to get there was actually a good idea, wasn't it?"
Harold laughed. "Yes, you're right. They were a good idea. Rails certainly do have their uses, and they really come in handy sometimes, and thank you for proving it once again, Percy."
"You're welcome, Harold," puffed Percy. "Anything to help an old friend. So does that also mean you want to stay on the rails?"
Harold chuckled. "Nice try, you cheeky engine," he said. "I might say rails have their uses, but I still prefer to be up in the air, where I feel most comfortable." Percy snickered.
"Um, I'm not sure you would want to be in the air now," chuffed Belle, looking at the sky. "Look."
Percy, Harold, and Rocky all looked to the sky, and noticed something was approaching the area.
"What is that?" exclaimed Percy.
"I have no idea," said Harold, "but it is big and bright."
Sir Robert looked too, and was very excited. "Oh-ho! Here it is!" he called. "The very thing this event is for! Come everyone! Let's all go up to the castle and get a better look. Be sure to have your cameras ready."
Everyone was both excited and confused, but they listened. Once the people were in the carriages, the entire party, engines, vehicles and people, all made their way quickly and carefully up to the castle.
When they arrived at the castle station, they all spread out so they could each get a good view. They waited and waited, but nothing happened.
"Hmm, that's strange," puffed Percy. "I thought we all saw something down at the mine. Where did it go?"
"Oh who knows Percy," said Harvey. "We were all probably just imagining it, but like you and Harold said, imagining can be just as much fun as…" But before Harvey could finish, everyone gasped.
There soaring high in the sky, was the special star. It glowed brightly as it shot through the nighttime sky. Everyone was amazed.
"Wow, that is quite the beautiful sight," said Sir Robert.
"Definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity," added Harold.
"That is the most amazing looking star I have ever seen," chuffed Percy.
"Actually, Percy, that isn't a star, but it's a comet," explained Samson. "Comets are made from frozen gases, rock, dust and…" Percy, Harold, and Sir Robert gave Samson a blank look. "Uh…they are very special stars, you could say," finished Samson meekly, feeling embarrassed.
The comet continued on soaring and it lit up the whole island in a bright glow.
"Wow," puffed Stanley. "I wonder what it would be like to be where that comet is. I don't know why, but I really wish I could go to space now."
Harold chuckled. "Well, you know, Stanley, with a little imagination, you might actually get your wish someday, and it will be the most fun experience you'll ever have."
Stanley, Percy and the others could only agree.
"You are certainly right about that, Harold," puffed Stanley.
"Yes, certainly right indeed,” agreed Percy, and together, they all continued watching the comet soar gracefully across the nighttime sky until it was out of sight.
- Sir Robert Norramby
- Thomas (cameo)
- James (cameo)
- Charlie (cameo)
- Stafford (cameo)
- Stephen (cameo)
- Glynn (cameo)
- Millie (cameo)
- Annie and Clarabel (cameo)
- Bertie (cameo)
- Ulfstead Castle
- Ulfstead Mine
- Sodor Search and Rescue Centre
- Knapford Yards
- Brendam Docks (mentioned)
- The Mainland (mentioned)
- A callback to the seventeenth season television series episode, Too Many Fire Engines, is made in this episode.
- This is the only episode in this season of The Many Adventures on the Island of Sodor in which Sir Topham Hatt does not make any appearance.
- The comet that flies across Sodor is based on Halley's Comet, a famous comet that passes over earth every 75-76 years.
- Stanley wanting to go to space is an inside joke to a real life event: in 2013, a Wooden Railway version of him was actually sent to space and made it back safely down to Earth.
- The flatbed Percy uses for Harold is the same one that was used for him in the seventeenth season episode, The Thomas Way.
- This episode marks the only things for a few characters in this season of The Many Adventures on the Island of Sodor:
- Belle, Rocky, and Butch's only speaking roles.
- Flynn and Captain's only appearances.