IN BRIEF - Steam engine's can run reliably for years with good maintainence,but they can't run without coal and his Lordship needs all hands to the pump as he runs low.
We meet Roger Varley just emerging from a job at Doctor Mopp's house,and ride with him as he goes to Winkstead Hall.It's a "regular weekly visit" where he also helps to look after his Lordship's 2 steam engines-Bessie,and an old static engine used as a water pump called Binnie.Brackett directs him to the Pump House where Lord B is already giving her a spot of oil,and he starts her up just to check she's problem-free.Which indeed she is,but they're running very low on coal,with just enough to either run Binnie for half a day or fuel Bessie for a return trip to the Wharf.At which point Brackett arrives to inform them that he's just discovered that the Hall's water tank is very low,so the decision's effectively made for them and they fuel up Binnie.
We cut to Mr.Rumpling's barge as it makes its' way to the Wharf laden with Lord B's coal.Mr.Swallow rings through to let them know it's arrived,but with no coal left for Bessie they need to borrow some to get her there.So Lord B & Brackett seek out Roger,who's now cleaning Bessie,and he suggests trying Pippin Fort as they've got plenty."Excellent ! says Lord B,and we can use the soldier boys to help us unload".So a quick call interrupts a Captain Snort inspection and Armitage & Lumley are immeadiately despatched to the Fort's cellar (unseen) to fetch a sack full.
We ride with the full contingent to the Hall,where Bessie's stoked up and everyone piles on board for the trip to the Wharf,where Mr.Rumpling's barge is ready waiting.Mr.Swallow cranes it off and it's straight back to the engine shed where Roger and the boys shovel it off and into the bunker.
A good job done,and they're happy to accept his Lordship's invitation to the 6 o'clock dance as thanks.