The Bridge to the Moon:

or Learn German The Avengers Way

Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Chapter 8
Chapter One: March 1, 1965: >>> Go to page 2.

Emma Peel relaxed on her couch, reading the Agatha Christie book Cards on the Table. She was not an especial fan of that detective writer, except for her early works featuring “adventuresses,” such as The Secret Adversary, The Man in the Brown Suit and Destination: Unknown. But Cards on the Table was her favorite, because the evidence deduced by going over the clues in the scoring of the game of bridge was essential to the solution of the murder. She re-read it at least twice a year, traditionally just prior to participating in a bridge tournament.

In another four weeks…she was going to fly over to Germany to take part in the European Bridge Tournament, held in Berlin in an attempt to keep that besieged city in the cultural loop of Europe.

Emma took a sip of tea and turned a page.

The doorbell rang.

Emma glanced up at the clock. 7 pm. Who could it be at this hour? She wasn’t expecting anyone.

Emma went to the door and peered out through the peephole. On the other side, the pop art “woman‘s eye” opened up, letting her visitor know he was being observed. It was John Steed. And he was carrying a stack of books in both arms.

Emma smiled, and murmured “Hey ho“. Looked like Steed had another assignment for her.

She opened the door.

“Guten Tag, Frau Peel,” Steed said cheerfully, entering the flat and placing his burden down on a convenient table.

Emma raised an eyebrow at him. “Guten Tag, Herr Steed,” she replied.

She joined him at the table and glanced through the first few books, reading the titles aloud. “German For People of Average Intelligence. The Smarty's Guide to German. Quite Quite Fantastic German.…”

She laid the last tome down and raised her eyebrow at Steed. “You’d have done better to bring me some books on bridge, Steed.”

“Not a bit of it, Mrs. Peel…considering you’ve written enough articles on the game to fill a book, yourself. But you don’t know how to speak German, do you?”

“I know enough to be able to order dinner at a restaurant. That’s all I need to know, surely?”

“Mrs. Peel, I’m surprised at you," Steed said in a surprised tone. "I thought you never let a chance go by to learn some new subject.”

“I don’t, but why German? I’m only going to be in the country for a week.”

“Ah, but what a week it might be, especially if you know the language. Things are going on over there, Mrs. Peel. In Berlin, especially. Interesting things.”

“I’ve been waiting three years for this bridge tournament, Steed.” Emma said warningly. “The top players in Europe will be together for the first time. I don’t intend to miss it.”

“No more you need to, Mrs. Peel,” Steed exclaimed cheerfully. “But you’re not going to be playing bridge all the time, are you? You’ll be going out to look around the town, surely.”

“Accompanied by my fellow bridge players, I have no doubt..”

“Yes, well, to oblige me, Mrs. Peel…learn ten words a day, won’t you?”

Emma’s other eyebrow rose. “Ten words a day? At that rate I’ll know a grand total of 300 words by the time I get to Berlin. That’s not going to get me very far.”

Steed grinned. “Well, you know your own skills best. I’m shooting for ten words a day, myself.”

“I thought you already knew German? You spent so much time in and out of there during the war.”

“Fifteen years ago, Mrs. Peel. My German served me in good stead at the time, but I admit that I’ve gotten tremendously rusty now. It will be fun to sharpen my skills again.”

“So, you’re going to be joining me?”

“Both in learning German and in Berlin next month, yes indeed, Mrs. Peel. Here…I don’t think you saw this.”

Steed ran his finger down the stack of titles in the stack, selected a sheaf of papers, and tried to pull it out quickly, without tipping the stack over. It was an attempt that failed. While he was busy picking up the books that had fallen to the floor, Emma gazed at the papers he had just given her.

“Erste Reise nach dem Mond,” Emma murmured. “I know enough German to know what that means… First Trip to the Moon. What is this, a Jules Verne novel?”

Steed grinned. “No, Mrs. Peel. It’s not a manuscript of fiction. At least, we don't think it is. The boffins believe it’s a journal of a trip that might have actually happened. But we need to find out.”

Emma’s eyes flamed with sudden interest. The exploration of space was a particular passion of hers.

“Sit yourself down, Steed, and let me pour you a cup of tea. We may as well get started on our German lessons tonight.”

>>>> Continue to page 2.

This ebook is intended as a piece of trivial enjoyment, and is no substitute for learning German from a qualified source.
This work provides vocabulary, not grammar.

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