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Here they come! My two intrepid explorers.
Charlotte and Elliot.
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.
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 teacups.
You've still got your coat on, Charlotte. Come on!
No time to count the clouds. We've got stories to tell.
Now, let's have a lovely cup of tea.
-But first, we need...
The Roman lamp. What a choice, Charlotte!
I do really love that story.
This should 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 Roman Lamp.
-Oh, yes, of course.
Let me tell you the story
of Charlotte And The Adventure Of The Roman Lamp.
It all began long, long ago,
in an ancient empire where towns and cities of marble and gold
nestled among the hills and fields, in a land we now call Italy.
After journeying for days across the Roman Empire,
with its magnificent temples and cool covered walkways,
Charlotte found herself in a quiet town.
From over the rooftops, she heard the echo of a voice.
She followed the sound along the street
until her eye was caught by a stall, standing alone,
selling what looked like little pots.
Lamps. Anyone want to buy a lamp?
-Lamps, anyone want to buy a lamp?
-Would you like to buy a lamp, madam?
-What kind of lamp?
It's a new kind. Gives a lovely light.
Made in my own workshop in Rome, of the best quality.
-Do we need a lamp?
-We have one, mistress.
Then we won't be buying a lamp.
Goodness, is that the time? Quick, we need to do my hair!
-They're really good. Lovely and bright.
Charlotte was absolutely convinced there must be a better way
-to sell lamps.
-Lamp. Lamp. Anyone want to buy a lamp?
-Come and get your...
-Do you want to buy a lamp?
Made in my workshop in Rome. Makes a lovely bright light.
-Have you sold many today?
All right, one.
Not any. In fact, I haven't sold many all week.
-I don't know what I'm doing wrong!
Well, perhaps you could sound a bit more happy about your lamps.
What do you mean?
Charlotte picked up the little lamp and looked at it closely.
It had a small hole where you put the oil in,
and another where the wick went so you could light it.
She held it up high to show the passers-by, and started to call out.
Lamps! Lamps for sale!
Some of the best, brightest lamps in the Roman Empire right here!
Now you try.
Come on. Get your lamps.
-A bit louder.
-Come and get your lamps!
Best, brightest lamps in all of Rome! Come and get your lamps!
Best, brightest lamps in all of Rome!
Suddenly, from out of nowhere...
-..Charlotte heard an extraordinary screeching noise.
Who or what could be making such a raucous din?
Charlotte's inescapable curiosity wouldn't let her wait to find out.
-The noise seemed to be coming from a nearby house.
Charlotte crept towards the open door and peered in.
There, inside the house, was the servant girl,
elaborately dressing her mistress's hair.
Ow! That hurts!
-You're so clumsy.
-It's not much longer, mistress.
No! That's it!
Get off me.
That spoilt mistress's behaviour was astonishing.
But still, Charlotte picked up the comb and went in.
Charlotte returned the comb to the servant girl,
and with some trepidation took a good, close look
at the mistress's hair.
-What lovely hair!
-It doesn't feel lovely.
Let me have a look in my mirror.
I am exhausted. Haven't even had time for a drink all morning.
Would you like a cup of water?
-But without warning, the miserable mistress screamed again.
Oh, dear, what had she done?
Oh, no. The lamp!
It was looking very much the worse for wear.
-Oh, what will she say?
-I'll go and get a new one.
Make sure you get back before it's dark and she needs a lamp lit.
-She's not very patient.
-That man at the market sells them.
I'll be as quick as I can.
Charlotte thought making amends
would be as easy as falling off a log.
But, of course, it was never going to be as easy as that.
The lamp-seller was gone! But didn't he say his workshop was in Rome?
That was miles and miles away.
It wasn't even lunchtime, and already it had got so messy.
-Come and get your lamps!
-She'd done her best to help that lamp-seller.
She'd picked up the comb the grumpy woman threw away.
She'd tried to get a drink for the servant girl.
And yes, she'd knocked over the lamp,
but that wasn't entirely her fault.
-Oh, no. The lamp!
-And she thought buying a new lamp would be a doddle.
She couldn't go back to the poor servant girl
without the lamp, could she?
There was nothing else for it but to get her skates on -
to Rome, to the lamp-seller's house.
So, off went Charlotte in her old, battered boots.
She scrambled up the rugged 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, she set off once more,
until there before her was the magnificent city of Rome.
But there was no time to admire the view.
Charlotte had to get that lamp.
The streets of Rome were quiet when she arrived
at the house where the lamp-seller lived.
Charlotte tapped politely on the door.
But there was no reply.
Then she heard a strange, low, rumbling noise.
He must've decided to have an afternoon nap.
So she tried calling through the gap.
Excuse me, I'm sorry to bother you, but I need to buy a lamp!
She waited to see if he'd heard, but nothing.
She just couldn't wake him up.
Charlotte had a look in her bag for a bit of inspiration,
and pulled out...
..an alarm clock.
Oh! What's all that noise?! Oi, wha...
Oh, hello! What are you doing here?
I need a lamp, please, and I need it really quickly.
The thing is, I sold so many this morning, I haven't got any left.
And that's thanks to you, because you helped me.
Tell you what, I'll give you mine.
-It's my pleasure.
-Great doing business with you.
Hurry along, now.
Thanks, and bye!
Back came Charlotte in her old, battered boots,
over the plains and down the mountainside.
And eventually, after a very long journey indeed,
she made it back into town.
Keeping an eye out for the mistress,
she crept to where the servant girl was waiting.
I got the lamp!
It wasn't quite as easy as I thought.
It's perfect! Quick, let's light it.
It's a lovely light. But where's your mistress?
Oh, the moment I finished her hair she went out.
I was so worried you wouldn't get back by the time it got dark,
but now I've got a whole evening free
and a lovely lamp to light it with. Thank you!
Will she be upset about the old one?
She'll never notice.
I'll just put it out with the rubbish in the morning.
-Now, let's have a nice sit down and a drink.
And that was that. The whole kit and caboodle.
Charlotte And The Adventure Of The Roman Lamp.
I liked the bit when the lady was having her hair plaited.
What about the snoring man? I thought you'd never wake him up!
Maybe I should've got the mistress to help. She was very loud.
-She certainly was, and very bad-tempered.
-Yes, she was.
-Not sure she deserved a new lamp.
-But the servant girl was so nice
and she would've got into terrible trouble.
You're absolutely right, Charlotte.
Well, I never! 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!
Great Aunt Lizzie tells the story of Charlotte and the Adventure of the Roman Lamp. A servant in ancient Rome must replace her broken oil lamp before it gets dark and her impatient mistress finds out. Charlotte goes on an epic quest for a new lamp.