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Lead story by Michael Odell in the Renault Times, Nov 6th

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GLORIOUS FIFTH

Guy Fawkes Day was celebrated at the clubhouse yesterday, with a bonfire and fireworks to which most of the modern novels contributed.  The guy was ably constructed by characters from The Charioteer, using clothing provided pre-war, and went up in flames amid loud huzzahs.

Unfortunately, not all Modern characters were in a position to attend.  Most of the actors were previously engaged in a production of Pygmalion, while a number of key medical professionals were on duty.  Rev. Straike was heard to say of the latter that their devotion to duty over personal pleasure was commendable.

Several of the Ancients were heard to compare the bonfire with funeral pyres of their own day.  Said Alexander the Great, “It is really much more enjoyable when they burn an effigy.  You aren’t mourning the loss of someone you love.”  There was much agreement that the spectacle, though not on the same scale as the destruction of Persepolis, was nevertheless highly enjoyable.

There followed the main fireworks display on the parade ground.  Aware that there would be attendees unfamiliar with the effects of explosives, the organizers wisely chose to begin with the smaller flares and fountains, which had the desired effect on the audience.  Nearchos, in particular, was fascinated by what he termed “tame Greek fire” turned to the purposes of entertainment.  Xenophon was heard to comment that he was glad the horses were safely stabled, unable to see the flames.  However, Ptolemy pointed out that many forms of fireworks clearly had military potential.  The rockets, in particular, achieved great applause, especially at the finale, when several aerial starbursts lit the heavens simultaneously.

Smaller fireworks were also available for those interested in such amusements; and Aristotle was seen trying out both squibs and sparklers before buttonholing Mic Freeborn to ask for details of their construction.  Sadly his keen interest led to a slight mishap (but fortunately Mr Scot-Hallard was on hand to stitch his wound).

The evening was rounded out with a veritable banquet of traditional Bonfire Night food, courtesy of housekeepers from all the modern novels.

Michael Odell
Special to the
Renault Times.