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Doctor Bonkers!, страница 1


Doctor Bonkers!

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Doctor Bonkers!

  Doctor Starkly-Bonkers has created the Doombuster, which can destroy WHOLE PLANETS.

  But it’s been stolen, and a great mix-up of history has been unleashed. OH NO!!!

  Rosie has the cosmic pyjamas and it’s up to her and her brothers (and their fearsome cat, Bandit) to face Vikings, Egyptians AND dinosaurs to save the world …

  JEREMY STRONG once worked in a bakery, putting the jam into three thousand doughnuts every night. Now he puts the jam in stories instead, which he finds much more exciting. At the age of three, he fell out of a first-floor bedroom window and landed on his head. His mother says that this damaged him for the rest of his life and refuses to take any responsibility. He loves writing stories because he says it is ‘the only time you alone have complete control and can make anything happen’. His ambition is to make you laugh (or at least snuffle). Jeremy Strong lives near Bath with his wife, Gillie, four cats and a flying cow.

  Are you feeling silly enough to read more?


  (A Cosmic Pyjamas Adventure)









  (A Cosmic Pyjamas Adventure)









  Illustrated by Rowan Clifford



  Published by the Penguin Group

  Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

  Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA

  Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4P 2Y3

  (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)

  Penguin Ireland, 25 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd)

  Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia

  (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty Ltd)

  Penguin Books India Pvt Ltd, 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park, New Delhi – 110 017, India

  Penguin Group (NZ), 67 Apollo Drive, Rosedale, North Shore 0632, New Zealand

  (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd)

  Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty) Ltd, 24 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa

  Penguin Books Ltd, Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

  First published 2010

  Text copyright © Jeremy Strong, 2010

  Illustrations copyright © Rowan Clifford, 2010

  All rights reserved

  The moral right of the author and illustrator has been asserted

  Except in the United States of America, this book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, re-sold, hired out, or otherwise circulated without the publisher’s prior consent in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser

  British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

  A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

  ISBN: 978-0-14-193059-6

  This is for Adele, and for Ivor too.

  One day he will need to know all about Vikings

  and dinosaurs and ancient Egyptians.

  I think he should be warned.

  With many thanks.


  1. Big Trouble

  2. Doctor Who?

  3. A Lot of Beards and One Sore Bottom

  4. A Nice, Quiet Viking Chat Round the Campfire – As If

  4¼. Meanwhile …

  5. Bandit Shows the Way. Pity it’s the Wrong One

  5¼. Meanwhile …

  6. What a Load of Rubbish

  7. A Bit of a Pile-up

  7¼. Meanwhile …

  8. Bow Down Before the Supreme and Mighty Commander!

  9. It’s Grab-a-Dino Time!

  10. Can a Big Mess Save the World?

  10¼. Meanwhile …


  11¼. Meanwhile …

  1 Big Trouble

  War had broken out in Rosie’s bedroom. It was only a small bedroom so the noise was unbelievable. It sounded as if King Kong was running wild in a saucepan factory.





  So what was going on? Who was at war? Three armies were involved. Actually, they weren’t exactly armies. Armies have lots of people in them. These only had one person each.

  The smallest army was six years old and called Alfie. He had plastic Roman armour on his chest and was waving a toy space-gun. He was also wearing a North American Indian chief’s headdress. He looked a little odd, especially as the chief’s headdress had pushed his ears right out, making him seem a bit like a charging elephant, only smaller.

  The other two armies were both nine. One army was called Dylan and the other was Rosie. They were twins. Sometimes they loved each other and sometimes they hated each other. At the moment they hated each other.


  Rosie took another swipe at Dylan’s head with her pillow, missed him by miles and sent her alarm clock flying across the room instead. Meanwhile, Alfie was shooting both of them to Utter Death with his space-gun.

  ‘Peeyoooooo! Peeeyoooooo!’ (Those were meant to be Utter Death Laser Rays shooting out of his gun.)

  So what was this war all about? Dylan’s PlayStation. Rosie had ‘borrowed’ it. You know what that means. She’d snaffled it when Dylan was halfway through a game. He had put it on Pause while he went to the loo and by the time he got back, there it was, gone.

  ‘I hadn’t finished!’ he yelled at his sister. ‘You stinking sneakbag. I was halfway through. I was on Level Three and now you’ve ruined it! I’ve never got to Level Three before and now I have to start over again.’


  That was Dylan crashing back against Rosie’s wardrobe as he tripped over all the pillows and the duvet cover lying on the floor.

  ‘Peeyooo! Peeeyoooooo!’ went Alfie, adding to the body count even though his frantically feathery headdress had slipped down over his eyes and he couldn’t see where he was shooting. (He killed the curtains three times.)

  ‘STOP!’ That was their mother, putting her head round the door.

  ‘But Dylan was –’ began Rosie, just as Alfie started with, ‘But Rosie was –’

  ‘STOP!’ repeated Mum. ‘Look at this room. It’s a disaster area. Give me that game right now and you can all tidy up and put the bed straight. After that it’s bedtime.’

  Alfie pushed his headdress up his forehead and swung the Utter Death space-gun in Mum’s direction. ‘Peee–’ he began, but Mum stopped him in his tracks by simply lifting her single Finger of Warning. (Mum’s Finger of Warning was much more powerful than any space-gun known to Humans, Aliens or Alfie.)

  She closed the door on them. A dark silence fell upon the three armies as they tidied up.

  ‘Mum’s ruined everything,’ Dylan muttered. ‘Just when we were ha
ving fun.’

  ‘I was winning,’ claimed Alfie.

  ‘You were so not!’ chorused the twins.

  ‘It’s too early for bed,’ complained Rosie, sitting on the edge and scratching at her new pyjamas. They were a bit itchy on one sleeve. She soon discovered why. There was a small piece of paper stuck inside.

  Rosie pulled it out and smoothed it flat.

  These are Cosmic Pyjamas. Some people say it is not wise to wear the top half and the bottom half at the same time. Beware.

  That was a bit odd. She showed the note to Dylan, who snorted.

  ‘You wouldn’t wear the bottom half without the top, would you? And you certainly wouldn’t wear the top half without the bottom! Anyway, I don’t see anything cosmic about them.’

  ‘Well, I like the pictures,’ Rosie said firmly. ‘There are all kinds of things.’

  It was true. The pyjamas were covered with little drawings. There were buildings and plants, mountains, forests, animals, people – all sorts.

  Bandit came wandering in. He was the family cat and a bit of a monster. He was large, fluffy and totally ginger from his head to his bottle-brush tail. He was also annoyingly nosy and wanted to know about everything.

  Bandit leapt on to the bed and began padding about on as many people as possible. He licked their ears, stuck his tail up their noses and invited them all to admire his bottom. The invitation was ignored.

  ‘Bandit, you are a PAIN in the PANTS!’ said Dylan, struggling to look at the pictures on the cosmic pyjamas.

  ‘I’m hungry,’ announced Alfie.

  ‘You’re always hungry,’ Dylan complained.

  ‘Because you ate half my chips. You always steal my chips because you’re bigger than me and horrible and you’re a CHUNKY CHIP ROBBER MONSTER!’ And just for good measure Alfie shot his big brother. ‘Peeyow!’

  Rosie let out a little squeak. ‘I think that picture moved,’ she whispered.

  ‘Which picture?’ demanded Dylan. ‘You’re bonkers.’

  ‘That one,’ Rosie murmured with an anxious frown.

  They all stared at Rosie’s left knee. It was a picture of a cloud. The cloud was shrinking and growing. At the same time a little mini cloud came puffing out of the big one, only to vanish quickly.

  ‘How can it do that?’ asked Rosie, a wee bit alarmed. Pyjamas were not meant to have moving images. The three of them peered even closer. Bandit decided to take a look too. He went marching in, pushing his fat ginger body between the children. He put one paw right on top of the trembling cloud.


  In a flash the children found themselves hurtling through the air. Was it space? Was it anything at all? It was impossible to say. They seemed to be half flying, half falling, with colours of all sorts whirling around them, as if they were tumbling through a vast tunnel of light and dark. And then –


  They landed.

  They rolled about for a moment on the dusty ground, then picked themselves up. Bandit gave a little mew as if to say, Er, what did I do? Or maybe he was asking where on earth they were.

  That was a good question. Were they on Earth at all? Dylan pointed at a huge cloud. It was approaching them fast, bowling along the ground. With it came the sound of non-stop thunder. The children waited, holding hands. Alfie held Bandit’s tail. And then they realized what was making the cloud.

  It was an army, a vast army of Vikings. Most of them were waving nasty, pointy swords. They were all yelling. And some of the Vikings seemed to be driving Second World War tanks. TANKS?!

  ‘Run for it!’ yelled Dylan. They turned tail, took two steps in the opposite direction and stopped dead. Charging towards them from the other side was another army! They weren’t Vikings this time. It was a rampaging army of ancient Egyptians. They were brandishing nasty, pointy spears and firing off arrows. And many of the ancient Egyptians were riding in chariots, pulled by galloping dinosaurs. DINOSAURS?!

  ‘What’s happening?!’ screamed Rosie. ‘It must be a nightmare!’

  But it wasn’t a nightmare. It was really happening.

  2 Doctor Who?

  The ground shuddered beneath them as the two howling armies thundered towards the children. The Viking tanks were firing at everything they saw, including themselves. The dinosaurs were charging around in circles, mostly out of control, screeching and wheezing, bellowing and yelling. The noise rose to a deafening roar. Bandit’s frightened fur was sticking up so straight he looked like a giant ginger hedgehog.

  ‘What do we do?’ yelled Rosie.

  ‘I don’t know!’ Dylan yelled back.

  ‘I want to go home!’ cried Alfie.

  ‘!!!’ squeaked Bandit.

  The sand and earth at their feet danced and swirled as a huge, flattening wind came slapping down from above.


  They looked up through the dust and were astonished to see a small spacecraft slowly descending. Landing gear sprang out from the sides as it set down right next to the children. A hatchway hissed open and a metal ladder unrolled to the ground.

  A voice boomed from the spacecraft. ‘Get in! Quickly!’

  The children scuttled up the ladder and practically fell into the machine. A moment later they were whisked up into the sky.

  Alfie was hugely impressed. ‘We’re in a real space ship!’ he breathed, his eyes like shiny planets.

  Dylan sighed with relief. ‘That was close.’ He and Rosie stared down from the window and watched as the two armies collided and locked together in battle, raising even more clouds of dust.

  A rather cross voice piped up behind them. ‘Fighting, fighting. Why do humans spend so much time fighting?’

  They turned and found themselves gazing up at a tall and ancient man. He was so tall he had to stoop to stop his head banging against the ceiling of the little spacecraft. He was as thin as a wisp of grass, with a poky nose, popping eyes and a tiny round mouth that looked as if it had been stolen from a goldfish. His extraordinary hair stuck out round the sides of his head, giving the impression that if you ever needed a chimney sweep’s brush, he would do the job very well.

  ‘Well, who are you?’ rasped the old man and, without waiting for an answer, he went straight on. ‘I’m Boctor Starkly-Donkers. I mean Stocktor Darkly-Conkers. No, no! No!’ The man shook his head hard, slapped both cheeks and finally managed to say, ‘Doctor Starkly-Bonkers. Yes! That’s it! Doctor-um dum-di-dum, just like I said a moment ago.’

  Rosie chewed her lip for a second and then asked, ‘Could we just call you Doctor?’

  ‘Aha-ha-ha, yes! Excellent idea.’ The doctor’s bulging eyes fixed on Bandit. ‘You’ve got a cat,’ he declared. ‘I like bats. I mean rats. Hats. Mats. Gnats. What you’re holding,’ he eventually decided.

  ‘Are you really a doctor?’ asked Rosie.

  ‘No, not at all. I just call myself a doctor because it’s easier to remember than that other word.’

  ‘What other word?’ asked Dylan.

  ‘I don’t know,’ admitted the doctor gruffly. ‘I keep forgetting it. I think it begins with a B. No, a G. T? C? V? It’s like “doctor”, but longer.’

  The spaceship went silent for a few seconds as everyone on board tried to think of something longer than ‘doctor’ that began with a B. Or a G. Or maybe a T, C or V. They all failed.

  ‘So,’ the doctor said at last. ‘Do tell me who you are.’

  ‘I’m Alfie and she’s a girl and he’s poo-pants,’ Alfie declared.

  The doctor’s eyes widened and for a moment he didn’t know what to say, so he hastily went on with a little nod. ‘I found you, then.’

  ‘Were you looking for us?’ asked Dylan.

  ‘Um, well now, I was certainly looking for something, only I don’t know what it was, but you might be it. Things don’t happen unless they are meant to happen, you know.’

  Dylan pricked up his ears. ‘So can you explain what’s happening down there?’ he asked, pointing out of the
little window. ‘There are Vikings in tanks and ancient Egyptians riding in chariots pulled by dinosaurs, but that’s stupid because they didn’t live at the same time. It’s like history is all muddled up.’

  ‘Exactly,’ cried the doctor. ‘You’re very clever.’

  Dylan beamed and turned on his twin sister. ‘See? He said I’m brilliant.’ Dylan tapped his chest proudly.

  Rosie grunted and folded her arms. ‘Anyone could have said history is muddled up. You’re not that brilliant.’

  ‘Maybe, but the doctor didn’t say you were brilliant, did he? He said I am, and he should know because he’s a doctor.’

  ‘Flopresser, I mean professor,’ said the doctor. ‘That’s the word I can’t remember. Professor!’

  ‘We’ll stick to doctor,’ murmured Rosie, who already found it difficult to follow what the doctor was saying without throwing in any more word problems.

  Bandit gave a large miaow and pawed Alfie’s leg. ‘Bandit says he’s hungry,’ said Alfie. ‘And I am too. Have you got any chocolate? Or rice pudding?’

  ‘Ignore him,’ muttered Dylan. ‘He’s always hungry, and so is the cat. You still haven’t explained what’s happening.’

  ‘No, I haven’t. It’s the Boomduster. I mean Doombuster. The Doombuster is the ultimate weapon. It can destroy whole planets. It works on the idea of reversing an atomic split.’ Doctor Starkly-Bonkers waggled his eyebrows to show that reversing an atomic split (whatever that meant) was terribly important.

  ‘Never heard of such a thing,’ said Dylan.

  ‘That’s because I invented it,’ the doctor declared with great pride.

  Rosie was horrified. ‘You mean to say you actually made the most powerful weapon in history – one that can destroy whole planets? That’s terrible! How could you do it?’

  ‘Ah, well, you see, I wasn’t trying to make a weapon,’ the doctor said hastily. ‘I was trying to build a new vacuum cleaner. I gave my grandson a birthday party and it turned into a food fight. My old vacuum cleaner broke down trying to clean up the mess and I thought I had an excellent idea for a really good new one. I could use the power created by reversing the atomic split to produce a machine with greater suction.

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