“I should have said, I am sorry, I have to wear industrial-strength ear-plugs sometimes to get a good night’s sleep, as her snores can be loud, as you have found out, Smithers, old boy.”

Smithers smiled and decided to brew some coffee as he realised today would be a long one.  

“The sun is just about to rise,” said Ralphie looking out of the window towards the waters of The English Channel, “on another lovely day, let’s hope we can get things sorted out today.”     “I agree,” said Tompkins, “let’s find out what’s going on amongst the people we know and the people we thought we knew.”        

He decided to have a shower and change clothing. He kept a spare set of clothes at both this safe house and Aunt Jemima’s, just in case something untoward happened. He returned to the kitchen to find the others tucking into a full English breakfast. The smell of eggs, bacon, and beans made his heart swell with pride. Filly had set aside a massive plate for Tompkins and he sat down to eat, taking three rounds of toast from the large plate in the middle of the table. The Union Jack tablecloth and placemats were a nice patriotic touch as the sunlight illuminated the utensils hanging on the wall above the counter.

        “Is there any hot water left?” asked Filly, “I think you’ve drained the English Channel, Clifford, how long were you in there for?”

        “Not long,” replied Tompkins, “about 5 minutes, I think.”

        “And the rest,” replied Filly, finishing her tomatoes with a flourish, “I’d like a go now, before we head over to Stalky’s place.”

        “Absolutely, Filly, that sounds like a plan.” Tompkins winked at his wife as she headed away from the table.

        “I have to say,” he continued between mouthfuls of food, “I have to say these sausages are nowhere near as nice as the kielbasa sausages I had yesterday at Newhaven. Those were lovely.”