Mad Dogs Essay

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Sample chapters ©Robert Muchamore. Mad Dogs will be published by Hodder Children’s books October 2007 1 1. HERCULES Even by aircraft standards the toilet inside a C5 transport plane is cramped. James Adams had a shoulder touching the plastic wall on either side of him as he leaned over the steel bowl, looking at flecks of his lunch in the disinfectant blue water. His girlfriend Dana Smith yelled from outside. ‘Are you OK?’ James had pressed the flush and didn’t hear her voice over the roaring turboprop engines as his puke got sucked away. He stood up and turned to face himself in the mirror. He’d spent the last eight days camped out in the Malaysian jungle and despite regular applications of sun block, his skin was peeling. ‘James,’ Dana repeated, this time banging the door to make sure she got his attention. ‘I’ll be out in a sec.’ There were no paper cups in the dispenser, so James washed the bitter taste from his mouth by dribbling water into the palm of his hand and sucking it dry. ‘Did I just hear you throwing up?’ He gargled and spat out the water before answering. ‘Must have been those nasty hotdogs we had at lunchtime…’ But it had nothing to do with lunch and Dana knew it. ‘You’ll do OK, James,’ she said soothingly. James dried his hands by wiping them on his camouflage trousers and had to duck under the door frame as he stepped out into the cavernous interior of the aircraft. His hands were trembling and he couldn’t help thinking he’d be visiting the toilet again soon. ‘I never realised you were scared of heights,’ Dana grinned, as she put a grubby hand on the back of his neck and kissed him on the cheek. ‘I’m not,’ James said defensively. ‘Heights I can handle, but jumping out of an aeroplane is slightly different.’ ‘I’m surprised you’ve been a cherub for so long without doing a jump. I did one in basic training. Come to think of it I did a couple

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