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Here they come, my two intrepid explorers -
Charlotte and Elliott.
I'm their great aunt Lizzie, you see.
And I wonder, which one is coming to see me today?
Ah! So it's Charlotte's turn.
Here she comes,
racing to hear another tale from an epic adventurer.
CLINK CLINK CLINK!
And what wonderful adventures they were.
So long ago, and so far away.
I collected a few souvenirs along the way.
But my most precious possession of all
is my extraordinary collection of tea cups.
You've still got your coat on, Charlotte!
Come on, no time to count the clouds.
We've stories to tell!
Now, let's have a lovely cup of tea.
But first, we need...
The jade flute.
What a choice, Charlotte.
I do really love that story.
This will be just perfect to drink, now.
So...are you ready?
Then let me tell you the story of great aunt Lizzie
and the adventure of the jade flute.
Oh! Yes, of course.
Let me tell you the story of Charlotte
and the adventure of the jade flute!
It all started long, long ago,
in the magnificent Empire of China,
with its towering Himalayan mountains,
lush scented fields and thick, green forests.
As the sun burned away the morning mist, Charlotte crossed a wide,
flat valley and the sound of music came floating by.
She followed the tune to a rather grand house,
where a young man called Shing and an old man called Gao
sat playing on a pair of bamboo flutes.
They played almost as one, until Shing's mother arrived.
Ah, what beautiful music.
Gao just taught it to me, I love it.
-Shing, I have a present for you.
A jade flute! It's beautiful.
It's the best money can buy.
It sounds like the wind in the cherry blossoms.
They are beautiful, Master Shing,
but playing a jade flute is not the same as a bamboo one.
Perhaps you should get back to work now.
But, Mother, Gao was teaching me!
The plums on those trees need picking,
the branches on that buddleia need pruning,
-and afterwards, feed the fish.
Shing, I have told you before,
I don't like you playing your flute with the gardener!
-Gao's my music teacher.
-No, he's not. He's the gardener.
Show me, son, how beautiful the Jade flute sounds.
I'm sure you'll get the hang of it soon.
Hello. That's a beautiful flute.
But not if you can't play it, and your teacher
has to spend all his days picking plums and pruning bushes.
Maybe if you practice in the garden,
-your friend could teach you while he works.
-That's a good idea!
-It's really difficult.
-Keep going, Shing.
Blow more like this.
It's very different from the bamboo flute. I can't get it right.
-Can you show me?
-Do you think that's a good idea?
-Um, I'm not sure that your mum...
-It'll be fine.
If you hold it like this, breathe slowly, and...
I told you to work, not play the flute!
I've had quite enough.
I want you to leave the house, right now!
Charlotte felt awful.
It was her idea to play the Jade flute in the garden, after all.
Gao bowed and left the house in silence.
With Gao gone, Shing had lost the instruction of his master.
The house fell as quiet as the night.
How different it was to when Charlotte
had first come to a house full of music.
You haven't slept for days!
Why don't you play the nice flute I bought for you?
It's too difficult. I think I'll stick to the bamboo one.
No, Shin. Try, try, try again!
I'll go and pick some delicious, fresh plums -
they'll cheer you up.
Is there anything I can do to help?
Not unless you can teach my son to make the jade flute
sound like the wind in the cherry blossoms.
-I think only Gao can do that.
Why couldn't he just do what he was told?
Perhaps he's a better music teacher than a gardener.
-But we need a gardener.
-I think you need a music teacher, too.
You could get a new one, who loves to garden!
-That is an excellent idea.
-You mean it? I'll go and get him at once!
You can't go now. You haven't eaten properly for days.
'Never one to miss the opportunity to help, Charlotte stepped forward.'
I could go and get him for you.
That would be wonderful. Thank you.
-Could you give him this, please?
-The jade flute?
Please tell him to come back and play this.
When I can hear the jade flute being played,
-I will know my friend is back.
-Charlotte wasn't sure what to do.
She held the cool, heavy flute, and waited with bated breath.
Very well. Take the jade flute to Gao, wherever he is.
Charlotte put the flute carefully in her bag,
sure that finding Gao would be as easy as falling off a log.
Of course, it was never going to be as easy as that.
I think I know where he'll be.
There's a new estate, on the other side the mountain,
looking for a new gardener.
It wasn't even tea-time and already it was all out of tune.
Charlotte had listened to Shing and Gao
as they have played their flutes.
She had suggested that Shing play near the plum trees
and managed to persuade Ji to ask Gao to come back
-as a music teacher.
-That is an excellent idea!
And she had thought finding Gao would be a doddle.
But she couldn't just leave Shing without a teacher, could she?
There was nothing for it,
but to set off over the mountain to find Gao.
So, off went Charlotte in her old, battered boots.
She scrambled up the misty mountain paths until,
when she was almost out of breath, the path ran out!
There was only one way to get to the other side.
Charlotte took a deep breath.
Safely across, Charlotte set off once more, and soon
came to a valley full of pink cherry blossoms and swirling mist.
But there was no time to be awestruck.
Charlotte had to find Gao.
-Hello. I've come from Shing's house.
-How is he?
-He wants you to come back.
-But I have a new job here, now.
He asked me to give you this.
His jade flute!
-And his mother?
-She wants you to come back, too,
-to be a music teacher for Shing.
I'll teach him to play like the wind in the cherry blossoms.
But...the people have been very kind to me, here -
I can't just leave them.
Oh, I see.
I'll wait until they return to explain.
You go ahead and thank Shing for the flute, and tell him
he'll hear his jade flute playing near the plum trees very soon.
Bye, then. See you soon!
Back came Charlotte in her old battered boots,
over the open fields and down the mountainside.
When Charlotte made it back to the grand house in the Valley,
Shing was waiting in the garden for news.
-Did you give him the jade flute?
-And he's coming back?
He should be here soon.
Thank you. I'll play my bamboo flute while I wait.
That would be lovely.
FLUTE PLAYS IN DISTANCE
Listen! It's Gao with the jade flute. It sounds so beautiful.
Welcome back, Gao.
If you make a happy home, absent friends will return.
Shall we play our flutes?
While you play the flutes, Charlotte and I will have
some lovely, fresh plums!
And that was that, the whole kit and caboodle.
Charlotte and the adventure of the jade flute.
Do you think Shin liked playing the jade flute by the end?
Especially when he heard his old servant playing it.
-It was a very pretty little green flute.
So delicate and green - the colour of moss.
Well, I'll be blowed! Is that the time already? Come on.
Your mum'll be here in a minute.
Now, how did that get there?
Home time now, Charlotte!
Thanks, great aunt Lizzie!
Cheery bye, Charlotte!
Great Aunt Lizzie tells the story of Charlotte and the Adventure of the Jade Flute. A prince in imperial China gives up playing the flute after his best friend is sent far away. Charlotte goes on epic quest to convince the prince's friend to return.