The Changes by Peter Dickinson Part Ten
Nicky and Jonathon have managed to get inside the mine although they are pursued by Mr. Furbelow. They lock him out and then proceed into the mine. Nicky advises that they do not use torches but simply rely on old oil lamps to light the way. Jonathon takes a torch and switches it on to try to find the right passage through to the entity. The force becomes too much for Nicky and she has to retreat back. Jonathon is not affected by the unseen force whatsoever although he can feel a sort of physical barrier. He comforts Nicky whilst they decide what to do next. Before they can decide they hear Mr. Furbelow shouting that "he is mine, you do not know what you are doing, he is mine." It suddenly goes quite and they fear something has happened to him. They open the mine door and find he has collapsed and fallen down the quarry. He is not too badly hurt but they help him back to the caravan and into bed. They then return to the passageway in the cave.
Travelling down a section of cave, they feel a small rumble which shakes the torch from Jonathon's hand. Both he and Nicky fall to the ground but are unhurt. Nicky can feel the force getting stronger but insists on continuing. The pair enter a clearing and are confronted by a large monolithic type rock. The rock appears to call out a warning but only Nicky can see and hear it coming from the rock. The warning is what Mr. Furbelow heard and wrote in his diary, the warning about unbalancing the world. Jonathon concentrates hard and can feel the power, the fear within the rock but still cannot hear its words.
While they are listening Nicky hears the rock call her name. Jonathon tells her to go to it. Nicky approaches the rock and starts to talk to the rock about the problems the world is facing. She also explains that the disturbance of the rock was an accident and should never have happened.
The rock then relives her thoughts, of what she has seen and felt. She then approaches nearer to the rock and says thank you to it. She then hastily leaves as the cavern starts to cave in. The whole world shudders as the rock starts to put right what had got out of control. Nicky talks of Merlin and that he was the "it" and that it slept until awakened by Mr. Furbelow and the quarry workers. She states that our pollution and machines were putting things out of balance and that it had to act in order to put things back into balance.
Mr. Furbelow wakes up unharmed but has no memory of what has happened. He thinks Nicky and Jonathon are on a walking holiday and so offers them a cup of coffee. Jonathon and Nicky decline the offer, leave the quarry and head for home. Nicky is especially looking forward to seeing her parents and the new baby at last provided of course they decide to come home and stay in France.
And so ends a great piece of childrens drama writing. Beautifully shot using lots of different locations, excellent acting from all concerned. I doubt very much we would ever get a ten part drama for kids these days. Pity we do not get to relive these classics on DVD or VHS.
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