Key Teacup Travels


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Here they come, my two intrepid explorers,

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Charlotte and Elliot.

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I'm their great aunt Lizzie, you see,

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and I wonder which one is coming to see me today.

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Ah, so it's Charlotte's turn.

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Here she comes,

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racing to hear another tale from an epic adventurer.

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TAP! TAP! TAP! TAP!

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And what wonderful adventures they were.

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So long ago and so far away.

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I collected a few souvenirs along the way.

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But my most precious possession of all

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is my extraordinary collection

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of teacups.

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You've still got your coat on, Charlotte. Come on.

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No time to count the clouds, we've got stories to tell.

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Now...

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let's have a lovely cup of tea.

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But first we need...

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A teacup.

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Which one?

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That one.

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Oh.

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The Bronze Key.

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What a choice, Charlotte.

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I do really love that story.

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This will be just perfect to drink now.

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So...

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-are you ready?

-Ready.

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Then let me tell you the story

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of Great Aunt Lizzie And The Adventure Of The Small Bronze Key.

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Ahem.

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Oh, yes, of course. Let me tell you the story

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of CHARLOTTE And The Adventure Of The Small Bronze Key.

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It all began

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long, long ago

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in ancient Britain,

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an island of green forests,

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majestic mountains, silver rivers

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and tiny villages.

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After trekking deep into the wild Celtic lands,

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Charlotte found herself one bright morning

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on a narrow shepherd's track.

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She followed it down from the hills,

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along a dry stone wall,

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past a hut, where an old shepherdess stitching sheepskins

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gave Charlotte a friendly wave.

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On she went

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until, on the edge of a forest,

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she came to a rundown little shack.

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From inside the hut

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came the unmistakable sound of an argument.

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Mum's not here any more, we need to move on.

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-You know what Mum would want.

-We've just not got any money.

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It was Mum's wish for us to stay here together.

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But we need to eat and winter's around the corner.

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We've already eaten the food we saved from summer.

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Well, we can just get work nearby, then.

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We've tried all around here, Donalda.

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We don't have ANY choice.

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We're going to have to leave.

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But this is our home.

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And all we have is this key. And if we leave...

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..we'll never come back.

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There was no door in the doorway,

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but where there is a key, thought Charlotte,

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there must be a lock for unlocking.

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Excuse me,

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I wonder if I can help.

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-I hope so.

-Have you thought of selling things for food?

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-We've already sold almost everything.

-What about that key?

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What's that for?

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That's the only thing we DO have left.

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That's the key to the box,

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which our mum hid in the woods from Vikings.

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But she never told a soul exactly where.

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Do you have ANY clues?

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Not really. Just that we would find it together.

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But we've always looked for it together.

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Maybe I could help you look for it.

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Well, it's worth one more try, I suppose.

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Charlotte and the brother and sister

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set off in search of the long lost box.

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And, of course, Charlotte had an excellent idea.

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Let's split up. You go that way, you go that way, and I'll go this way.

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OK. See you soon.

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Round and round they went, without a clue.

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They couldn't find it anywhere.

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-This is hopeless, I give up.

-Don't go.

-There's no point.

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We've already looked everywhere.

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If we leave now, then... we'll never find it.

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-I'm not looking any more. It's silly and a waste of time.

-Donald, wait!

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Charlotte didn't know what to do.

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Maybe the brother was right.

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Perhaps they were wasting their time.

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We've looked everywhere.

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Maybe we should just give up.

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I used to love this place.

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We would sit here as Mum collected fruits in the autumn.

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Our together place, she called it.

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And that was what gave Charlotte one of her brilliant ideas.

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-Dig!

-What? Why?

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Your mum said you'll only find it together.

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Maybe she meant here in your together place.

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Dig!

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They dug like fury.

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Might they find the hidden box at long last?

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The box!

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And so Charlotte and Donalda rushed back with their treasure

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to tell the fantastic news.

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Donald, look!

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-We found it in the together place.

-Oh, the box!

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You finally found at! You finally found the box!

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Now all we need is the key to open it.

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But no matter how hard they tried,

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the lock wouldn't budge.

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The key's bent. Donald, you must have bent it!

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-I didn't! You must've bent it just now.

-No, I didn't.

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Maybe I can find a blacksmith to fix it.

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-I don't know where you'd find one.

-We've never used one.

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I saw a shepherdess on the hillside,

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she might be able to tell me where I can find one.

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Can I take the key?

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Charlotte looked at the bronze metal key.

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It was little and felt rough.

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She was amazed how something so small could be so important.

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I'll be as quick as I can.

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Charlotte thought that getting the key mended

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would be as easy as falling off a log,

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but, of course, it was never going to be as easy as that.

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-Hello, young lady.

-Hello.

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I'm looking for a blacksmith to mend a key.

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-There's a blacksmith in the next village.

-Great. Thank you.

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But the only way to get there from here

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is to cross the meadow in the glen

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and follow the steep path up the mountains.

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It's a very hard journey just to fix a key.

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It wasn't even lunchtime, and already it had got so messy.

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She had persuaded the brother and sister to look again for the box.

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This is hopeless, I give up.

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-She had worked out the together clue from their mother.

-Dig!

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She'd helped the sister dig out the box, but the key got damaged.

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And she had thought getting a new key would be a doddle.

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But she couldn't just leave them

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with an unopened box and a bent key, could she?

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There was nothing else for it but to set off to the blacksmiths

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over the hills and far away.

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So off went Charlotte in her old battered boots.

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She scrambled across the ancient highlands until...

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when she was almost out of breath...

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the path ran out.

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There was only one way to get to the other side.

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Charlotte took a de-e-ep breath.

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Safely across, she set off once more until high up on the moors

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she found the small town where the blacksmith lived.

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But there was no time to stop to admire the scenery.

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Charlotte had to mend that key.

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The afternoon sun was shining

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when Charlotte made her way into the village

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-and found the blacksmith's shop.

-Hello?

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Hello?

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-Can I help you?

-I've got the key, but it's bent.

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Do you think you could mend it for me?

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I should think so. Let me have a look.

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Oh, yes. I can straighten that, no problem.

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But I'll have to clean the edges, or else it will bend again.

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Only problem is I need oil for that,

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and I've just ran out.

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So near and yet so far.

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But Charlotte wasn't beaten yet.

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She looked in her trusty bag

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and brought out a little can.

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-Is this enough?

-Oh-ho-ho! It certainly is. Thank you.

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All sorts of tapping and scritching and scratching noises

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came from the workshop. But, quick as anything,

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the blacksmith handed Charlotte a perfect little bronze key.

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-That should do the job.

-Thank you.

-My pleasure.

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-Bye.

-Bye-bye.

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Back came Charlotte in her old battered boots,

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across the ancient highlands and down the mountainside.

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With weary legs and a determined smile,

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she got back to the little shack,

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where Donald and Donalda would be waiting.

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They were STILL arguing.

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I got it mended.

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-BOTH:

-Thank you!

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Now we can finally open the box.

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What ever is inside,

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-we're going to share. Agreed?

-Agreed.

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-And no more arguing?

-Agreed.

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Carefully does it.

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Wow!

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-Gold!

-Two huge gold coins!

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This is enough to buy everything we need!

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-You mean, we can stay here? In this house?

-Of course!

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Let's eat all the nuts right now

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and tomorrow we can go buy lots more.

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Yes. Let's.

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And that was that, the whole kit and caboodle.

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Charlotte And The Adventure Of The Small Bronze Key.

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-I thought that brother and sister would argue for ever.

-So did I.

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-I like the way the blacksmith mended the key.

-Yes, that was very clever.

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He could make lots and lots of different keys.

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My goodness, time does fly when you're having fun.

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Come on.

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Your mum will be here in a minute.

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Your coat.

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Now how did that get there?

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Home time now, Charlotte.

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Thanks, Great Aunt Lizzie!

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Cheery-bye, Charlotte!

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Great Aunt Lizzie tells the story of Charlotte and the Adventure of the Small Bronze Key. A penniless brother and sister must work together to unearth a hidden box of treasures. Charlotte goes on an epic quest to find a blacksmith who can mend an important key.


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