Script by John Finnemore
Transcript by Ariane DeVere
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This week, Vaduz!
HERC: Carolyn, ten minutes.
CAROLYN: Yes, all right, Herc. So, last recap: if the phone rings, answer it and take a message. If an email comes in, reply to it. If ...
DOUGLAS: Hang on. I’m taking notes.
ARTHUR: But, er, don’t worry about faxes, guys, because Mum’s put me in charge of the faxes.
MARTIN (quietly): Are you sure, Carolyn? Because some people do still have fax machines.
CAROLYN (quietly): Yes. Yes, some people do. We don’t, though. (Louder) And, most importantly, I will have my phone on at all times. Call me at once if anything happens at all.
HERC: Er, i-if I could just clarify that a little. Do not call her, no matter what happens.
CAROLYN: Don’t listen to him. Call me if anything goes wrong, or if we get any bookings.
HERC: Those are just two of the circumstances under which you should not call. Other such circumstances include the following: any circumstances.
CAROLYN: Ignore him.
HERC: Ignore her.
DOUGLAS: What a peaceful holiday you two are going to have.
CAROLYN: It is not a holiday; it is a ... trip.
HERC: It’s a holiday – the first holiday I’ve had for years.
DOUGLAS: I suppose normally you’d just wait for the next honeymoon to roll round.
HERC: Douglas is wittily referring to my four marriages, Arthur, as opposed to his mere three.
ARTHUR: Wow! Is that true? You two have got seven ex-wives?
HERC: Between us, yes ... I think. There isn’t any overlap, is there, Douglas?
DOUGLAS: I’d have to check my paperwork.
ARTHUR: Seven! That’s enough for a netball team!
HERC: What a chilling thought.
DOUGLAS: Of course, if Carolyn contributes her two husbands as well, we’re well on our way to a football team.
CAROLYN: Thank you, Douglas. That will do.
HERC: I-I think I’d put my second wife in goal.
CAROLYN: Hercules Shipwright, did you just do a ‘My ex-wife’s so fat’ joke?
HERC: Certainly not! She happens to be a professional goalkeeper.
HERC: No. She’s huge.
DOUGLAS: Your turn, I think.
MARTIN (making an annoyed sound, then picking up the phone): Hello? MJN Air. Captain Martin Crieff speaking.
THERESA (over phone, in a Central European accent): Hello. I would like a quote for a booking this Friday.
MARTIN: Certainly. May I take your name?
THERESA: Yes. I am Princess Theresa of Liechtenstein.
MARTIN (laughing sarcastically): Are you?
THERESA: I am, yes.
MARTIN: What a coincidence.
THERESA: In what way?
MARTIN: Oh, it’s just that I’m the Lord High Arch-duke Martin of Crieffstonia.
MARTIN: Now what can I do for you?
THERESA: Well ...
MARTIN: Is it a dragon?
MARTIN: D’you need rescuing from a dragon? Only I know what you princesses are like.
DOUGLAS: Er, Martin.
DOUGLAS: This is nothing to do with me.
MARTIN: No, of course not!
DOUGLAS: No! Really!
MARTIN: E-e-e-e-excuse me; can you wait a minute?
THERESA: My pleasure. It will allow me to catch my breath from all the hilarity.
MARTIN: Seriously, Douglas – this isn’t one of your mates?
DOUGLAS: Who is it?
MARTIN: The Princess of Liechtenstein!
DOUGLAS: No. The Princess of Liechtenstein is not one of my mates.
MARTIN: Right! Fine! Then you talk to her!
DOUGLAS: With pleasure. (Into phone) Hello. This is First Officer Douglas Richardson. I do apologise. We’ve been getting some hoax calls this week. Now, how can we help you?
THERESA: Well, I am Princess Theresa of Liechtenstein and I was hoping to charter you to fly the king and I from Vaduz to Fitton.
DOUGLAS: But of course! To fly The King And I? Well, this is The Sound of Music to our ears! Why, not since we flew Madam Butterfly to the South Pacific have we had ...
MARTIN: Douglas! It’s nothing to do with me either!
DOUGLAS: Yes it is; but I must say, answering it yourself first was a very artistic touch.
MARTIN: Look at me. It’s not me!
DOUGLAS: Well, it’s not me!
THERESA: Okay! So this has been a lot of fun, but ha-have we perhaps reached the point where one of you might consider googling the words ‘Theresa’ and ‘Liechtenstein’?
MARTIN: Douglas, look. I’ve just ...
DOUGLAS (smoothly): Your Royal Highness. How may we be of service?
(Sounds of people on a beach in the background)
CAROLYN: Yeah, of course I am, Martin. Tell Arthur to meet me at the airport.
(She hangs up her phone. Crunch of approaching footsteps on the sand.)
HERC: Ah, Carolyn, there you are. Now, you know you were saying what fun wind surfing looked?
CAROLYN: I don’t recall saying anything of the kind.
HERC: Well, you were very drunk at the time.
CAROLYN: I was not!
HERC: Nonetheless, you did say it, and accordingly I have booked us lessons this afternoon.
CAROLYN: Oh, that’s nice(!) Anyway, I am going to Liechtenstein.
HERC: I think you might be over-reacting a little.
CAROLYN: Martin just called. He’s just had a booking from the King of Liechtenstein.
HERC: Well that’s obviously Douglas doing a funny voice.
CAROLYN: You would think so, yes, but apparently not.
HERC: Well, the boys can cope.
CAROLYN: What, with a king? Of course they can’t!
HERC: I didn’t realise you were in such thrall to royalty.
CAROLYN: I don’t give two hoots for royalty!
HERC: I think you give four or five hoots.
CAROLYN: I do not.
HERC: And not just any old hoots: low and reverent hoots, like an owl at a Jubilee.
CAROLYN: No! I’m sorry, Herc. I really have to go.
HERC: No! You don’t. Not on the second day of our first and only holiday in sixteen months together.
CAROLYN: Look, I told you when I agreed to come, I’d have to leave if work came up.
HERC: And I told you I didn’t agree and wasn’t listening.
CAROLYN: Oh, honestly, Herc. It’s not a big deal.
HERC: Well, in fact, it is a bit, because it’s important to me that we spend time together ...
CAROLYN: Oh, don’t.
HERC: ... because I love you.
CAROLYN (tightly, awkwardly): Yes. So you keep saying.
HERC: I do, don’t I?
CAROLYN: Yes. Yes, and I wish you wouldn’t. It makes you sound like a Disney toy.
HERC: Actually, Disney didn’t come up with the concept of expressing love. Other people have found it important as well.
CAROLYN: Well, who?
HERC: Most of humanity.
CAROLYN: Well, there you are, then. You know what chumps they are.
HERC: Who, humanity?
CAROLYN: Yes, by and large.
HERC: ... Well, granted. But still.
(Flight deck door opens.)
ARTHUR: Okay, chaps. I’ve been, er, practising bows. Do you think, er, this one ... (short silence while he does his bow) ... or this one?
(Another short silence, followed by the sound of something being caught in one hand.)
ARTHUR: That’s a slightly fancier one.
DOUGLAS: Isn’t it just? What happens if you don’t catch your hat?
ARTHUR: Yeah, I thought of that. Er, I can extend the bit at the end to include picking it up.
MARTIN: Just a simple inclination of the head from the neck, Arthur – that’s enough.
ARTHUR: Are you sure? Doesn’t sound very king-y.
MARTIN: Quite sure. I’ve been brushing up on protocol.
DOUGLAS: Of course you have.
MARTIN: Also, never look at the king directly.
DOUGLAS: Are you sure you’re not confusing him with the sun?
MARTIN: And don’t hold eye contact. Just-just glance up and look away.
DOUGLAS: Even if we’re looking at him through smoked glass?
ARTHUR: Okay, I’m gonna go and practise.
(Flight deck door closes.)
DOUGLAS: So ... Martin. What sort of team would your exes make?
MARTIN: What? No team. You know I’ve never been married.
DOUGLAS: Mmm, but what about ex-girlfriends?
MARTIN: I’m not telling you that.
MARTIN: That’s private.
DOUGLAS: Absolutely. Forget I asked.
MARTIN: How-how-how-how many people in a bobsled?
DOUGLAS: There’s five in a basketball team, if that helps.
MARTIN: It doesn’t.
DOUGLAS: Ah. I don’t think there’s anything with three.
MARTIN: No ... (he sighs) ... there wouldn’t be.
DOUGLAS: Hang on; I’ll look it up.
MARTIN: There’s really no need.
DOUGLAS: There’s three players in a pétanque team! You know, boules – like old Frenchmen play.
MARTIN (with a resigned tone): Go on, then.
MARTIN: Well, I know you only asked me so I would ask you. What sort of a team would your ex-girlfriends be?
DOUGLAS: Hmmm. Well, you know the start of the London Marathon ...?
MARTIN: Yes, all right!
DOUGLAS: Shut-down checks complete; and fuel remaining is ... one thousand six hundred litres.
MARTIN: One thousand six hundred. Got it. Right. Let’s go – quick, quick, quick.
DOUGLAS: We’re still early.
MARTIN: Yes, but we could be earlier.
(Knock on cabin door.)
OTTO (European accent): Er, hello?
(The door is opened.)
OTTO: Hi. I am Otto.
OTTO: I am your ground handling agent today. Er, we hope ...
MARTIN (hastily): Yes, good-good-good. We’d like to take off at five.
OTTO: Ja, sure, sure. In the meantime, d’you want cleaning services?
MARTIN: Er, no thank you. We take care of that ourselves.
OTTO: Okay, yeah, sure. So, catering services?
MARTIN: No, we do that too. Okay, thanks ...
OTTO: Check-in desks?
MARTIN: No, again, we ...
OTTO: ... you do it yourselves, sure, yeah. How about ...?
MARTIN: No, I’m sorry. We really have to go. We are actually, as it happens, collecting the King of Liechtenstein, so anything else, just-just assume we do it ourselves.
OTTO: You have a little portable refinery up there in the tail, maybe?
(Martin sighs in exasperation.)
OTTO: Or will His Majesty be bringing a couple of barrels of his own brew?
MARTIN: Okay, sorry, yes, we want refuelling. We’ll need three thousand litres.
(In a car)
ARTHUR: Shall I offer to take his crown, or will he want to keep it on for the flight?
DOUGLAS: Just a minute, Arthur. Martin ...
(Clinking of metal.)
DOUGLAS: What are you doing?
MARTIN: I know you’re going to laugh.
DOUGLAS: Are you putting on ...?
MARTIN: It is correct protocol to wear one’s decorations when greeting a foreign head of state.
DOUGLAS: Medals?! When did you get medals?!
MARTIN: During the ten years I was a ... member of the Air Cadets.
DOUGLAS: I see. What’s this one?
MARTIN: That’s my Cadet Forces Medal.
DOUGLAS: For ...?
MARTIN: Being in the Air Cadets.
DOUGLAS: Impressive stuff! And the other one?
MARTIN (hurriedly): Doesn’t matter.
DOUGLAS: It does matter.
MARTIN: You’ll only make fun of it.
DOUGLAS: Martin, let us be perfectly clear: the good ship Douglas Making Fun of Martin’s Medals set sail the moment you took the decision to put on some medals. The voyage is now well underway, and I can only suggest you relax and enjoy it. What’s the other one?
MARTIN: ... It’s ... my Millennium Star.
DOUGLAS: Is it?! And that’s awarded for ...?
MARTIN: I think you know what it’s for.
DOUGLAS: I have a wild hope, certainly, but surely it’s too good to be true.
MARTIN: It was awarded – by the Queen – to all serving members of the Armed Forces and Cadet Corps ... to commemorate the new millennium.
DOUGLAS (delightedly): It is! You’re going to meet the King of Liechtenstein wearing a medal you got for being alive in the year two thousand!
ARTHUR: I wish I’d known. I could have got that one.
(In a restaurant)
HERC: Thank you for staying.
CAROLYN: Yes, yes, yes. You already said that.
HERC: And I’m saying again: I really appreciate you staying.
CAROLYN: Yes-yes-yes. All right, fine.
HERC: Because ...
CAROLYN: Yes-yes, thank you. That’s lovely.
HERC: ... I love you.
CAROLYN: Yes, I am aware. The information has been duly noted. Thank you for your feedback.
HERC: And do you ...?
CAROLYN (her voice getting increasingly high-pitched): No-no-no-no-no-no-no-no-no!
CAROLYN: Not, ‘No, the answer’s “No”,’ ... ‘No, don’t ask.’
HERC: So the answer’s not no.
CAROLYN: I said, ‘Don’t ask’; don’t ask, don’t tell, like gay American soldiers before two thousand and eleven.
HERC: Well I’m not a gay American soldier before two thousand and eleven; I am, in fact, none of those things. And I am interested in whether or not you feel as strongly about me as I do about you.
CAROLYN: Why? Look, we’re-we’re doing very well as we are. Why-why can’t we carry on like this?
HERC: But what if we wanted to get married?
CAROLYN: But we don’t want to get married, though, do we? Not in the least tiniest little bit.
HERC: I might want to.
CAROLYN: Yes, Hercules, but let’s face facts: you wanting to get married is like other people wanting to sneeze. Besides, ‘Knapp-Shappey’ is bad enough as a surname. I’m damned if I’m going to become ‘Knapp-Shappey-Shipwright’.
HERC: Yes, I see what you mean. It does sound a bit like a soft shoe shuffle.
ARTHUR: Wow! It’s an actual castle!
DOUGLAS: What did you expect Vaduz Castle to be?
ARTHUR: I dunno. World of Leather was very disappointing.
MARTIN: What do we do now?
MARTIN: Can you just knock at a castle?
DOUGLAS: I don’t see why not. What was your plan: jangle your medals together?
(Knocking on the door, which is then opened.)
THERESA: Hello. Oh, are you the pilots?
MARTIN: Er-er, er, yes. Hello. Er, we’re-we-we’re here to see, er, Princess Theresa.
THERESA: I know, yes. Hello.
MARTIN: Hello. So-so is she in?
THERESA: Yes she is in ... front of you. Hello. Come in.
MARTIN: Oh. Right.
(They go inside.)
MARTIN (clearing his throat): Your Royal Highness, if I might introduce myself. I am Captain Martin Crieff.
THERESA: Oh, I remember you! You’re here to save me from a dragon, yes?
MARTIN: Terribly sorry about that.
THERESA: Oh, no, don’t worry. It happens a lot!
MARTIN: ... Okay. And, er, and this is First Officer Douglas Richardson, and Mr. Arthur Shappey Esquire, who will be providing customer service.
ARTHUR (quietly to Douglas): Mr. Arthur Shappey what?
DOUGLAS (quietly): Esquire.
ARTHUR: What’s a squire?
DOUGLAS: You are.
MARTIN: The head of our company, Mrs Carolyn Knapp-Shappey, presents her compliments and her profound apologies not to be here in person, but rest assured, she will be waiting to greet you on our arrival in Fitton.
THERESA: Really? Why?
MARTIN: ... W-well, you know, to provide an ... official reception and-and to ... sweep the building for ... assassins.
THERESA: Ooh! Right. Well, d’you get a lot of assassins in your airport?
DOUGLAS: We do in the winter months. I think the cold drives them inside.
MARTIN (through gritted teeth): Douglas!
ARTHUR: Excuse me, your Princess.
THERESA: Theresa is fine.
ARTHUR: Er, Theresa. When do we get to see the king?
MARTIN: Arthur! I-I-I’m so sorry. He-he...
THERESA: Oh, no, no, no, it’s fine. I’ll get him. (Calling out) Maxi! Your pilots are here!
MAXIMILIAN (a teenage boy, excitedly): Yaaaay!
THERESA: And you can come and meet them as soon as you’ve finished your carrots!
(Running footsteps, then a heavy door is pulled open.)
MAXIMILIAN: I have finished them.
DOUGLAS: Martin? I fear you’re looking directly at the king.
(In the car)
MAXIMILIAN: Green truck. That counts double.
ARTHUR (indignantly): What?! No, no, that’s not how you play!
MAXIMILIAN: It is in Liechtenstein.
ARTHUR: No it’s not!
MAXIMILIAN: It is, because I’m the King of Liechtenstein and I say it is. A hundred points to me!
ARTHUR (frantically): There aren’t any points!
MAXIMILIAN: There are in Liechtenstein.
THERESA: Maxi! Stop being horrible! I’m sorry – Maxi is going through a stage where he’s very pleased with himself for being accidentally born king. (She chuckles in embarrassment.) They all go through it! For my father, it lasted sixty years!
MARTIN: So you’re Maxi’s sister?
THERESA: I’m the oldest; he’s the youngest. Six sisters, then Maxi.
DOUGLAS: Good lord!
THERESA: Yes. My father’s motto was, ‘If at first you don’t succeed ...’
DOUGLAS: And what takes His Majesty to Fitton?
THERESA: He’s going back to school.
ARTHUR: Ah, lucky you! I really miss going to school.
MAXIMILIAN: Then you’re stupid. I hate school.
THERESA: No you don’t. You just hate all the other boys.
MAXIMILIAN: No – they hate me. They won’t call me by my proper title.
DOUGLAS: Children can be so cruel.
MARTIN: I-I suppose you must stick out a bit, being royal.
THERESA: Not at this school. He shares a desk with the Sheikh of Qatar.
MAXIMILIAN: Yes, but he’s only a prince. I outrank him.
THERESA: Maxi, I keep telling you: people don’t make friends by telling other people how much they outrank them.
MARTIN: That’s true, actually!
DOUGLAS: Yes. Captain Crieff – as you can see – is a grizzled veteran of the Air Cadets.
THERESA (giggling flirtatiously): Oooh! Oh my, yes!
(She touches his medals, which jingle.)
THERESA: What are these?
MARTIN (trying to sound nonchalant): Oh, those are just my decorations.
THERESA (impressed): Oh! You come with decorations. Like a little Christmas tree! What are they for?
DOUGLAS: Ooh! Can I tell her?!
MARTIN: No! This is-this is my Cadet Forces Medal; and, um, this is my Millennium Star.
THERESA: Well, now! I think we can do a little better than that. You have provided aid to the Royal Family, so straight away you can have the Star of Liechtenstein ... (clinking as she adds the medal to Martin’s bar) ... the Wreath of Liechtenstein ... (another clink) ... and, er, ooh, I don’t know what the last one is called ... the Little Wobbly Stick of Liechtenstein.
MARTIN: Errr, thank you.
MAXIMILIAN (whining): Theresa! You can’t give him that! That’s our highest honour!
THERESA (exasperated): Well someone’s gotta have it! (To Martin) Now, do you renounce Satan?
MARTIN: Errrr, yes!
THERESA: Super! That gives you the Holy Cross of St. Lucius!
MARTIN: Okay, I think you might be teasing me.
THERESA: Maxi, do we have a medal for Teasing Recognition?
THERESA: Shame. (Flirtatiously to Martin) You really earned it.
(Martin laughs nervously. There’s a few seconds of silence.)
MAXIMILIAN: Black dog.
ARTHUR: Oh, come on! That’s not even a vehicle!
OTTO: Okay, and sign here. You’re all ready to go.
(Sat comm bleeps.)
CAROLYN (over sat comm): Martin? How is everything?
MARTIN: Everything’s fine, Carolyn. We’re just about to leave.
CAROLYN: Really? No-one’s been thrown in a dungeon or anything? (She chuckles.) Good lord. And how fares the King of Liechtenstein?
MARTIN: He’s fine. He and Arthur are playing Top Trumps.
MARTIN: I’ll explain later. Don’t worry. I’m in complete control.
CAROLYN: Well, good, because our flight home has been delayed by three hours. We won’t get to Fitton in time to meet you.
MARTIN: It’s fine, it’s fine. She’s ... she’s really not that sort of princess.
DOUGLAS: Er, Captain ...
MARTIN: Gotta go!
(Sat comm off.)
DOUGLAS: Could you just double-check this fuel order?
MARTIN (taking the paper from Douglas): Er ... (high-pitched) What?! Three thousand litres? Why have you loaded three thousand litres?
OTTO: Because you asked for three thousand litres.
MARTIN: No I didn’t. I said, ‘We’ll need three thousand litres.’
OTTO: ... Okay, is that sounding any different to you, because ...
MARTIN: No: ‘We’ll need three thousand’ in the tank and we already have sixteen hundred, so ...
OTTO: Well, maybe I am a simple soul, but I heard, ‘We need three thousand litres,’ and what I thought was, ‘Oh, I know, I’ll give them three thousand litres! They’ll like that!’
MARTIN: Yes, but ...
DOUGLAS: Yes, well, whoever’s fault it is ...
OTTO: It’s his fault.
DOUGLAS: I know. But the good news, Martin, is we’re still under maximum take-off weight.
MARTIN: Oh, good.
DOUGLAS: The less good news is that when we get to Fitton, we’ll still be way over maximum landing weight.
MARTIN: ... Right. So we can go up but we can’t come down.
DOUGLAS: Exactly. We are Newton’s worst nightmare.
(On board another plane.)
STEWARDESS: Your Bloody Mary, madam.
CAROLYN: Thank you so much. I do like being a passenger. She doesn’t know I know she hates me.
HERC: Not all cabin crew hate their passengers, you know.
CAROLYN (laughing cheerily): Oh, bless you!
HERC: So, before we leave the subject entirely ...
CAROLYN: What subject? Oh, no, not that subject.
HERC: Marriage is definitely off the table?
CAROLYN: Well ... I’m not saying that. I’m just saying ... why can’t we carry on as we are?
HERC: Well ... because things change.
CAROLYN: What changes?
HERC: Well ... for instance, if ... if we’re not in this for the medium-long term, I should probably go to Switzerland.
CAROLYN: Well, that’s a bit of an over-reaction.
HERC: I did that joke already.
CAROLYN: It’s funnier now.
HERC: No it’s not.
CAROLYN: Oh yes it is, because the stakes are higher. Why would you go to Switzerland?
HERC: Because if I don’t, I’ll be out of a job.
HERC: Because Swiss Airways are going international next year.
CAROLYN: Oh. Bully for them.
HERC: ... by buying up lots of smaller airlines such as Air Caledonia.
HERC: ... with massive redundancies. Now, as a senior captain, I have the option of keeping my job if I move to Zurich; or I can take redundancy.
CAROLYN: And get another job?
CAROLYN: Well, I don’t know.
HERC: Well, nor do I. Fifty-six year old pilots are far less in demand that you’d think.
CAROLYN: I’d assume they’re in no demand whatsoever.
HERC: I realised, even as I said it, I was talking to the wrong person.
CAROLYN: Well, you should go.
HERC: Oh. Should I?
CAROLYN: Yes, of course you should. I don’t want you to give up your job for me. I’m not asking you to do that.
HERC: You don’t want me to stay?
CAROLYN: Well, I-I ... I’m not asking you to stay.
HERC: I understand that. Do you want me to stay?
CAROLYN: ... I don’t want you ... not to stay.
HERC: I will stay if you want me to.
CAROLYN: I don’t want to be the reason you stay.
HERC: Yes. That’s noted. The thing is, though: you would, as it happens, be the reason I stay, if I stay. How do you feel about that?
CAROLYN: ... I don’t know.
HERC: Don’t you? That’s okay. No. Mull it over, though.
MARTIN: Fitton Tower, this is Golf Echo Romeo Tango India.
FITTON ATC: ’allo, chaps! Timed that well. Come straight in. Cleared number one for the approach.
MARTIN (slowly): Yyyyes. Actually, Karl, we’d like to hold before landing.
KARL: ... Y-you want me to put you in the hold?
MARTIN: Yes, we do.
KARL (laughing in disbelief): After all the bellyaching you normally give me?
MARTIN: Even after that.
KARL: ... Why?
MARTIN: We just do.
KARL: All right then! Golf Tango India, once round the holding pattern. Enjoy the view!
MARTIN: No – we need to hold for ... (he mutters calculations under his breath) ... about twenty circuits.
MARTIN: Yes! Is that all right with you?!
KARL: No, it’s fine with me. You aren’t half gonna get dizzy, though. Enter the hold at Arden; maintain flight level seven-zero, and advise when you’ve had enough and wanna go on the dodgems instead.
ARTHUR: Okay, I’ve got Harold the Fifth of Norway, and I pick Stateliness. Seven out of ten.
MAXIMILIAN: Bad luck. I’ve got me again.
(Arthur sighs in exasperation.)
MARTIN (coming out of the flight deck): Hello. Everything all right back here?
ARTHUR: Hi, Skip. Er, yeah. Maxi and me have invented European Monarch Top Trumps ... but he scores ten out of ten for everything.
MARTIN: What about Size of Kingdom?
MAXIMILIAN: It’s not a category.
ARTHUR: Yeah, I said we should have that.
MARTIN: Well, anyway, I just wanted to explain ... Theresa? Er, y-you may have noticed we’re going round in circles and ...
THERESA: Yes. Are you burning off fuel to reduce your landing weight?
MARTIN: Er, yes! How did you know?
THERESA: Oh, how much extra did you load?
MARTIN: Well, about sixteen hundred litres.
THERESA: Oh, goodness!
ARTHUR: Wow, Skip. Mum’s gonna kill you!
MARTIN: Thank you, Arthur. I’m aware of that.
THERESA: Oh! Oh, this is the anti-terrorism expert, yes? A bit of a dragon, is she?!
MARTIN (laughing nervously): Er, well, yeah, if you met her ... (he stutters) ... don’t ever say that to her, but yes.
MAXIMILIAN (mockingly): Are you scared of her?
MARTIN: ... Well, yes, I am.
THERESA: Don’t be rude, Maxi. You’re scared of the Sheikh of Qatar.
MAXIMILIAN: I’m not scared of him. I could have his head cut off.
THERESA: You have to stop saying that all the time. You can’t have anyone’s head cut off!
MAXIMILIAN: I can if they commit treason.
THERESA: They’re not going to commit treason!
ARTHUR: Ooh, I know, I know! Why don’t you command them to cut their own head off? And then, if they do it, their head’s cut off, and if they don’t do it, they’ve committed treason and you can have their head cut off!
MAXIMILIAN (excitedly): Yeahhh!
THERESA: Thank you, Arthur, but the last thing Maxi needs is a henchman.
MARTIN: Maxi, can I give you some advice?
MAXIMILIAN: You?! But you’re a commoner.
MARTIN: ... Yeah. Even so, um, when-when the Sheikh of Qatar is giving you a hard time, don’t tell him you’re going to cut his head off – even if you can ... which you-you can’t. It just makes you look like, um ... well, it makes you look like a man with a medal for being alive in the year two thousand.
KARL: ’allo, Golf Tango India. ’ow’s life on the Magic Roundabout?
DOUGLAS: Hallo, Karl.
KARL: It’s ever so restful watching you, you know. Round and round and round, like-like one of those mobiles you hang on a cot.
MARTIN: Tower, please confine ...
KARL (interrupting): Aaaaanyway: silly question, I know, because obviously you live in the air now, but d’you fancy comin’ in?
DOUGLAS: No thanks, Karl. We’ll have another five laps’ worth, please.
KARL: Fair enough. Why stop just when you’re beginning to enjoy yourself? Remain in the holding pattern; and scream if you wanna go faster!
MARTIN (exasperated): Thank you, Tower.
(Radio off. Flight deck door opens.)
THERESA: Er, excuse me?
DOUGLAS: Ah, hallo.
THERESA: Hello. I, er, just wanted to say thank you, Martin, for talking to Maxi.
MARTIN: Oh. You’re welcome.
THERESA: It’s tricky becoming king so young. So easy to let it ruin you.
MARTIN: Yes. I had the same thing when I was made Junior Corporal.
THERESA: Anyway, thank you.
(She laughs nervously.)
MARTIN: Theresa, can I – can I – can I ask you a question?
MARTIN: Er, how come you know so much about landing weights?
THERESA: Well, actually, when I was little, I-I wanted to be a pilot.
THERESA: Is that so crazy?
MARTIN: No, not at all! It’s just ... when I was little, I wanted to be a pilot!
THERESA: Well, yyyes ... I-I-I thought maybe you did.
MARTIN: How did you know?!
THERESA: Because you’re a pilot.
MARTIN: Oh! Yes. Yes, I am.
THERESA: You’re doing the thing you always wanted to do. You’re-you’re very lucky.
MARTIN (slowly): I suppose I am. It’s just, no-one’s ever called me lucky before.
(The sat comm begins to ring.)
DOUGLAS: Ah. And this, I’m afraid, may illustrate why not.
MARTIN (plaintively as he answers the sat comm): Hello?
CAROLYN (furiously over sat comm): Martin, what the hell is going on?
MARTIN: I thought you were delayed!
CAROLYN: We were delayed – by three hours – and yet here you still are, flying round and round in circles like a moth round a light bulb! So what – as I believe I asked before – the hell – and this had better be really good – is going on?!
MARTIN: Right. Er, look, the thing is ...
THERESA: Martin, let me talk to her.
MARTIN: Er, thank you, but it’s best ...
THERESA (firmly): I will talk to her.
MARTIN: Okay ...
CAROLYN: What? Who are you?
THERESA: I am Her Serene Highness Princess Theresa Gustava Bonaventura of Liechtenstein, Countess of Sponheim and Protector Extraordinary of the Cantons of Nîmes! (Imperiously) Who are you?
CAROLYN (humbly): Call me Carolyn.
THERESA (sternly): Are you in charge? What is the meaning of this intolerable delay?
CAROLYN: I am so sorry, Your Highness. I am – I’m just interrogating the captain and, when I find out, I assure you ...
THERESA (interrupting): The captain? What has it to do with the captain?
CAROLYN: Well ... he’s the one flying the plane.
THERESA: Of course he is – round and round in circles.
CAROLYN: Exactly! And when I’ve found out why ...
THERESA: ... on my command.
CAROLYN: O-on your ... Sorry?
THERESA: While we wait and we wait and we wait for you to arrive.
CAROLYN: For me? Why?
THERESA: To receive us, of course. We are the King and Princess of Liechtenstein. Do you think we’d simply land in any old airport without reception, without having it swept for assassins?
CAROLYN: I do ... I-I do apologise. I ... assassins?
THERESA: Yes! Now sweep for those assassins, and once you are sure there aren’t any, you may call us back.
CAROLYN: I think I can be fairly sure, even now ...
THERESA (loudly): CALL US BACK!
CAROLYN: Yes, yes, Your Highness.
(Sat comm off.)
MARTIN: Wwwwow! That was amazing! I thought you said you weren’t that sort of princess?
THERESA: No, but my mother is. That was basically her.
MARTIN: Thank you so much. You saved my life.
THERESA: Yes, well – always useful to have a princess around to rescue you from dragons.
MARTIN: Honestly, I-I-I don’t know how I can thank you.
THERESA: Well – think of something.
MARTIN: ... Okay.
THERESA: I’m waiting.
MARTIN: Okay ... I ... I am thinking of something.
THERESA (hopefully): Yes?
MARTIN: But I don’t know if it’s the same thing you’re thinking of.
THERESA: No, well, you won’t know until you try, will you?
MARTIN: Okay ... Well ...
(He breathes in deeply, blows out a nervous breath, then speaks rapidly.)
MARTIN: Would you like to go to Duxford Air Museum with me?
THERESA: Okay, so it’s not what I was thinking of ...
MARTIN: Oh God! I’m so sorry! I should never have asked ...
THERESA: No, but it’s not bad. (She laughs.) We can go tomorrow?
MAXIMILIAN (calling out from the cabin): Theresa!
THERESA (flirtatiously to Martin): See you later.
(Flight deck door closes.)
DOUGLAS (amazed): Well!
MARTIN: Did she just ...
DOUGLAS (impressed): Oh, yes! Congratulations, Martin. You’ve got yourself ... a bobsled.
[At which point, during the recording, Benedict leaped into the air, clicking his heels and punching the air triumphantly! For more details about the ‘behind the scenes’ and even ‘during the scenes’ shenanigans that went on during the recording, click here. Warning: this report also contains information about the next episode, so steer away from the bottom of the report if you don’t want even vague spoilers.]
Thanks to verityburns for all the background research she did for me while I was writing this transcript.