Roxton:"Blast this rain! I was going to explore the eastern range of the plateau but it looks like we are all stuck indoors for a while.I say we make the best of a bad situation.We have enough food to last a week or longer and Summerlee's says this weather pattern shouldn't hang on for more than...what was the time frame on that Professor?"
Summerlee:"John,I think these storms should last only one more week. And because we were previously in a somewhat drought situation before the storms hit I see no forseeably damage surrounding the TreeHouse.It's flooding right now, but the ground will soak it all up in no time, don't you agree George?"
Challenger:"Yes I believe that to be true Summerlee. These weather patterns are begining to run in cycles so Summerlee and I can better predict when it will blow up a storm."
Marguerite:"All I know is it's boring up here with nothing to do.Malone has his so-called story of the century to write.Challenger his experiments and you Professor Summerlee, you and Veronica have your painting to keep you occupied.Why even Roxton has his guns to clean and clean and clean."
Roxton:"For your information Miss Krux, these rifles have saved your pretty behind on more than one occasion so let's not argue among ourselves.And it's important to keep one's firearms in tip top shape.You never know when a t-Rex might want you for it's next meal.Although I must say it wouldn't get much of a meal out of you Marguerite."
Marguerite:"What Lord Roxton, do you mean by that remark?"
Roxton:"All I meant was, you are shall we say a mere slip of a girl."
Marguerite:"I can hold my own Lord Roxton and when this rain lets up I'll show you how much!
Roxton:"Don't be upset Marguerite.I didn't mean anything by that remark so please accept my apologies."
Malone:"See Marguerite. Roxton's trying to make amends so what do you say."
Marguerite:(pauses for a second then looks at Roxton)"Very well Roxton.Your apologies are accepted on one condition."
Roxton:"Very well my dear. What pray tell is that ONE condition."
Marguerite:"The next scouting party we go on I'm in charge."
Veronica:"Are you crazy Marguerite? You know nothing about booby traps or hidden dangers in the jungle.You are going to get us all killed. Ned, talk some sense into her."
Malone:"She's right Marguerite. And I know you HATE to hear when Veronica is right but she makes a lot of sense.Roxton has hunted on safaris in Africa and has military experience behind him to back him up.He has gut instinct on these matters. How much hunting and military experience does an heiress have? Shopping in fashionable boutiques in London doesn't count."
Marguerite:"Listen here little man.I'm no Veronica (sneers at Veronica) but I think I deserve a chance to prove myself."
Challenger:"Marguerite brings up a good point.If by chance, if any one of us were separated from the rest of our party would we be able to survive by ourselves until we were reunited. I think we all could use some survival training skills and I think John is the right man for the teaching job.(looks at Roxton)Well, old man what do you think of this purposal."
Roxton:"Sure Challenger no problem! And I suggest Marguerite be my first pupil.(looks at Marguerite)Are you willing to learn something new Marguerite?"
Marguerite:"I can take anything you can dish out your lordship?"(curtseys to Roxton)
Roxton:"Very well then Miss Krux we start bright and early in the morning.I suggest you retire early because I promise you a full day's work tomorrow! So off to bed with you now!"(laughs)
Marguerite:"We will see about that."(Marguerite turns and walks away)
Summerlee:"John, I don't think you should have made Marguerite mad at you.You might need her help someday.Try not to be too hard on her tomorrow epecially for YOUR sake."
Roxton:"Ok Professor.I'll be easy on her.I just think she has a lot to learn about this jungle we live in. But your right it's probably a good idea to keep Miss Krux on good terms with me."
Summerlee:"That's a good man. I think we should all retire for the evening.Goodnight everyone."
Everyone retires for the evening.
The next day Roxton awakes to find Marguerite standing over his bed!(rubbing his eyes he says)"I must be dreaming.You've come to share my bed and I must have forgotton all about it.I knew there was something IMPORTANT I was supposed to remember but for the life of me I just couldn't think of it.Well that's ok.We can make up for lost time.Come here!"(grabs Marguerite and pulls her close to him)
Marguerite pulls herself off of Roxton and straightens her clothes and replaces her hat back on her head."Don't flatter yourself Roxton. We've got an appointment with the jungle today or did you forget that."
Roxton(laughing)" No Miss Krux I didn't forget.I just wanted to see how you would react to a little romance.You now what they say all jungle work and no play makes Lord Roxton a dull boy."
Marguerite:"I'll tell you what,if I mess things up in the jungle today I promise you a romantic evening for two.Dinner, dancing and maybe even a midnite stroll by the waterfalls.Is it a deal?"
Roxton:"Why yes that sounds fantastic! But hypothetically speaking, what if you don't mess things up, what do I have to do?"
Margurerite:"Well let's see.(pauses for a moment) then says (with a sparkle in her eyes)"You can do MY assigned chores for a month. And that includes laundry detail."
Roxton:"Still not a bad deal. You mean I get to clean your (pauses) unmentionables."
Marguerite:"No, Lord Roxton! Everyone else's unmentionables!" (laughs)
Roxton has a suprised look on his face and then says"Miss Krux you have yourself a deal!" He then procedes to shake Marguerite's hand."Now it's time to get dressed."(starts to get out of bed when Marguerite stops him) "Wait until I'm in the next room if you please."(her face blushing) turns to leave the room.
Roxrton:"Why I just thought you might want a preview of our romantic evening together. But I guess first things first.The jungle awaits us milady!"
Roxton gets dressed and they leave the TreeHouse.The whole day is spent teaching Marguerite about booby traps, how to scout trails,what to look for if you've lost your sense of direction.Also to look at footprints (of animals and humans) to see how long they have passed that way.He also teaches her how to make a fire, how to snare small animals if you lose your weapons, but what he doesn't know is that Marguerite has secretly been taking lessons from Assai (Veronica's friend) for the last month.Marguerite is just imagining Roxton sweating over a hot tub of sudsy water washing with a scruboard trying to get the raptor blood out of Challenger's and Summerlee's clothes.She doesn't realize that she is laughing out loud.All of a sudden she hears a voice saying:
Roxton:"Pay attention Marguerite! This might save your life someday.I don't know what I was thinking about when I promised Challenger this. I must have been out of my mind to think you could learn all this in one day!"
Marguerite:"I've heard everything you have said Roxton. I'm not a complete idiot. I think I am quite capable of marking a trail if I get lost.She then marks the trail (just like Assai showed her)."What next your Lordship?"
Roxton seems suprised how quickly Marguerite catches on to everything he has shown her."Very good indeed! Are you sure you have never been on safari before? I mean this is quite amazing that a woman...."
Marguerite:"That a woman could know as much as a man ! Really Lord Roxton you think that women are only good for keeping up your manor and keeping your bed warm at nite. There's much more to us than meets the eye."
Roxton:"I never said that Marguerite.You seem to really know what you are doing which I agree with Malone, you couldn't have learned from shopping in London.Where EXACTLY did you learn how to do all this?
Marguerite realizes she has been caught and there's no way out of this situation so her best bet is to confess now before she's in more hot water with Roxton.
Marguerite:"Ok then I'll tell you the truth.Assai has been helping me out with this and I didn't see any harm in not telling you because you made me so mad at the treehouse.So there, now you know the whole story.
Roxton:"So I guess this means I win the bet. Let's see, that was a romantic evening for two. Dinner,dancing and don't forget the midnite stroll by the waterfalls.Yes I think that makes us about even."(gloating with a big smile)
Marguerite:"Now really Roxton you can't expect me to ....."
Roxton:"I said dinner, dancing and a midnight stroll,that's it! But later if you decide anything else, I am up for it.You only have to say the words my dear!"
Marguerite:"I guess you do win the bet considering I cheated a little! And never let it be said Marguerite Krux doesn't keep her word! So when we get back I'll make the necessary arrangements ok."
Roxton:"Cheated a little! That's a understatement Marguerite.But I glad to see you keeping your part of the bargain.Then it is settled.Yes, it will be nice for a change not to think about raptors, apemen and the like.I'll have all evening to devote to you my dear, so let's head back ."
Marguerite:"Ok let's not rub salt in the wounds Roxton! I know when I've met my match .Let's just say tomorrow nite will be a nite to remember for you Lord John Richard Roxton!" And with these words Marguerite turns and heads back to the direction of the TreeHouse.Roxton without hesitation picks up his rifle and gear and starts whistling a waltz melody and follows Marguerite back home.
(part 2 to be continued later.)