Edward and Fluttershy scolded the twins severely for their joke on Gordon. Actually Edward did most of the scolding while Fluttershy used The Stare on them.
Fluttershy: *sternly* That was a very bad thing to do boys. I'm very disappointed in both of you.
Bill and Ben: *intimidated* Yes Fluttershy. Sorry, Fluttershy.
Gordon: Ha! Serves you right for trying to mess with me. *blows raspberries at Bill and Ben*
Edward: Actually Gordon, their teasing served you right.
Gordon was furious.
Gordon: *grumbles to himself*
A few days later, some enthusiasts came. On their last afternoon, they went to the China Clay Works. Edward found it hard for his engine to start the heavy train.
Edward: *to his engine* Come on, old girl. You can do it.
Fluttershy: Um, should we maybe wait for a banker Edward?
Edward: No no. We've got it.
At last the engine started.
Edward: At last we're off.
Fluttershy: *cheerfully* Yay.
However, not everyone else was that happy.
Henry: Did you see his engine straining?
James: Positively painful.
Gordon: Just pathetic. He should give up and have his engine preserved before it's too late.
Duck: Shut up! You're all jealous. Edward's engine is better than any of yours.
BoCo: You're right, Duck. Edward's engine is old, but they'll surprise us all.
Rarity: I just don't understand why they chose an old fashioned engine like Edward's instead of something shiny and splendid like James's engine.
Rainbow Dash: Or an awesome express engine like Gordon's.
Applejack: Rainbow Dash, y'all know the branch lines aren't as strong as the main lines.
Big Macintosh: Eeyup. No main line engines allowed. They'd be too heavy.
Applejack: And Rarity, y'all know that Edward's engine is just as useful as James's.
Rarity: I know, but couldn't he have made it more dazzling with a better coat of paint, or some ribbons on the sides? Ooh, and maybe some gems sprinkled lovingly around the wheels and buffer beams.
Applejack: *facepalms* Typical Rartiy.
Bill and Ben were delighted with their vistors. They loved being photographed and took the party to the workings in a Brake Van Special.
Snips: We're celebs!
Snails: Yeah. Maybe they'll put our faces on T-Shirts.
Bill: Or breakfast cereals.
Ben: Or maybe our cartoon show. It'll be called China Clay Misadvantures.
On the way home, however, the weather changed. Wind and rain buffeted Edward and Fluttershy. The engine's sanding gear failed, the wheels slipped, and Edward rode in front dropping sand on the rails by hand.
Edward: *trying to stay strong against the storm* Come on! Come on! This is dreadful.
Fluttershy was getting very worried about her friend. She was afraid that he would be blown away by the wind and never be heard from again. And she was nervous about driving the engine by herself. But there was worse to come. Before Fluttershy could check them, the engine's wheels slipped fiercely again and again. With a shrieking crack, something broke and batter the frame and splashers out of shape.
Fluttershy: *gasps* Oh dear!
The passengers gathered around while Edward inspected the damage. Repairs took some time. Poor Fluttershy was very upset. She thought that she had done something wrong.
Fluttershy: *almost about to cry* I'm so sorry Edward. I didn't mean to break your engine.
Edward: *comfortingly* It wasn't your fault, Fluttershy. One of the crank pins broke. I took the siderods off, now it's a single, like an old fashioned engine.
Fluttershy: You think we can get these people home? They must start back tonight.
Edward: We can try.
They backed down to where the line was more nearly level. The engine puffed and pulled its hardest. But the wheels kept slipping, and it just could not start the heavy train.
The passengers were getting anxious. Edward, Fluttershy, and the Guard went along the train, making adjustments to the coaches. But Fluttershy was a bit confused.
Fluttershy: What are we doing, Edward?
Edward: We're loosening the couplings, Fluttershy. That way we can pick up our coaches one by one, like how we do with freight cars.
Fluttershy: *gratefully* Oh that will be much easier.
So with Edward carefully sanding in front, Fluttershy gently opened the regulator.
Edward: *to his engine* Come on, girl. You can do it.
Fluttershy: *nervously* I hope nothing else bad happens.
The engine's wheels moved causiously forward, ready to take the strain as the tender coupling tightened against the weight of the first coach. The first coach moving helped to start the second. The second helped the third, and so on down the train.
Fluttershy: *cheerfully* We've done it! We've done it!
The engine's wheels spun in excitement.
Edward: Steady girl. Well done, Fluttershy. We've got them! We've got them!
And they listened happily to the engine's steady beat as it forged slowly but surely up the hill. The passengers were thrilled. Most had their heads out of the windows. They waved and shouted, cheering them on.
Meanwhile. Sir Topham Hatt paced the platform. Henry with the special train waited anxiously too. Then they heard a whistle and at last, battered, weary, but unbeaten, Edward's engine steamed in.
Edward: We made it!
Fluttershy: *in excitement* WE DID IT! WE GOT THE PASSENGERS HOME! YAY!!! *hugs Edward*
Sir Topham Hatt stepped angrily forward and pointed at the clock. But excited passengers swept him aside. They cheered and thanked Edward and Fluttershy to the echo before rushing off to get into Henry's train. Henry's engine steamed away to another storm of cheers, but not before everyone knew Edward and Fluttershy's story.
Edward went thankfully to the shed while Duck and BoCo saw to it that he was left in peace. Gordon and James remained respectfully silent. Applejack and Big Macintosh had their own talk with Rarity and Rainbow Dash, getting them to apologize for what they had said. But all 4 were very proud of Fluttershy.
Rainbow Dash: You actually got to drive the engine by yourself without anybody else in the cab? That's so awesome!
Rarity: It must have taken a lot of courage, Fluttershy.
Fluttershy: Well I was scared at first, but we had to get the passengers home.
Applejack: Ah'd say ya did a great job there, partner.
Big Macintosh: Eeyup. *hugs Fluttershy*
Fluttershy: *blushes redder than James's engine*
Sir Topham Hatt asked BoCo to look after Edward's branch line while his engine was being mended. BoCo was pleased. He worked well, and now they run it together. Bill and Ben still tease him, but BoCo doesn't mind. He lives at Edward's staton, but is welcome anywhere because he is now one of the family.
Donald and Douglas were the last to accept him. But he often helps with their goods trains. And just the other day, they were heard to remark...
Donald and Douglas: For a diesel driver, yon BoCo's nea a bad sort of fellow.
That, from the Scottish twins, is high praise indeed. And as for Fluttershy, she's much happier that now she gets to spend some more time with Big Macintosh. Aren't you, Fluttershy?
Fluttershy: Eeyup. *cuddles with Big Macintosh*