PROOF OF SALE
Squaddie, after his
six months out of service following the dreadful accident, is finally back in traffic. Sodor Castle and Gordon are particularly
pleased, having felt over-worked covering in his absence. When talk turns to James’ new role assisting on the Kirk Ronan
line, Squaddie remembers his favourite working from the old days; The Cunarder, a Pullman Boat train from Southampton to London.
His musings are interrupted though when the Fat Controller arrives with a rather abrupt stranger who, after expressing his
distaste for Squaddie’s unauthentic livery, declares his interest in purchasing him!
The big engines are horrified at the thought of losing Squaddie. Despite declaring
Sodor to be his home, he admits he would dearly love to haul boat trains again; something James is highly dubious of! Next
morning, Squaddie learns he is to run light engine on the Kirk Ronan branch for trials, his excitement driving the other engines
to distraction! Come the run, he’s delighted to see a harbour once more, not to mention the gleaming white ocean liner
Squaddie learns he is to haul an empty rake of carriages along the branch as a test run, and
enjoys his time resting alongside the big ship ‘The Sodor Explorer’ very much. The trial goes well and he talks
endlessly about it, to the continued boredom of the others. When Henry jokingly suggests the wharf be renamed as ‘Squaddie’s
Wharf’, James is unenthusiastic, little realising that Henry’s suggestion is about to become true!
Despite the new sign on the Wharf, Squaddie reveals his disappointment at the line being
taken up at the harbour, bringing his trips to Kirk Ronan to an end. There is worse to come, when the Fat Controller reveals
he is being transferred immediately, and Dilworth arrives to take him away. The engines re distraught, particularly Gordon,
who gets a shock next day to find Squaddie stood at Barrow waiting for him! The Fat Controller explains that Squaddie has
been hired for the new Boat Trains, meaning the Island’s memorial engine will around for many more years to come.