"Can you believe this?" said Thomas to Percy and Toby in the sheds
"Believe what?" asked Percy.
"Despite the strong headway we've been making into having more females presented
in our show, we're still being accused of sexism," Thomas explained.
"That's just unfair," said Toby. "Think of all the
positive female role models we have on the show."
"Yeah," added Percy. "Like Mavis, and Emily, and Elizabeth...well, Mavis
and Emily at any rate."
"That's right," Thomas nodded, despite not having a neck. "And all the other females too."
was a pause.
"Like who, Thomas?" asked Percy.
"Well, there's...Mrs. Kyndley, for one."
"Yeah, she teaches young girls
that they can always count on a man to rescue her," Toby agreed.
The engine considered this.
"Well, fair enough. They
may have a point. But what about...Molly?"
"Ah yes," said Percy. "Er, what exactly did she do again?"
know...did the thing."
"True, I guess," said Toby. "But she didn't really teach much, did she?"
Another pause came.
and Clarabel!" exclaimed Thomas suddenly. "You two are good role models, right?"
"Yes, Mr. Thomas," said Annie.
you say, Mr. Thomas," said Clarabel.
"There you are, you see?" Thomas beamed.
"And there's Henrietta," Toby added.
asked Thomas and Percy.
"Henrietta!" Toby frowned. "My coach, remember?"
"You mean the one who didn't say much?" asked
"That's right, yeah."
"And hey, what about you Toby?" said Percy. "You're a good influence on young girls."
I'm not a girl, Percy. So I can't be considered a role model."
Percy paused. "You're not a girl?"
"Er, no. Isn't that
obvious?" asked Toby.
"Then why do you wear a skirt?"
"I don't wear a skirt. These are my cowcatchers, silly."
like a skirt to me," Percy muttered.
"Well it's not, it's my cowcatchers, you twit!" said Toby angrily.
calm down. Looks like it's somebody's time of the month," said Percy subtly.
"Look, just shut up Percy! I am not
a girl!" Toby nearly screamed.
"OK, calm down honey," said Thomas, in a calm manner.
"Well it's just he's so...wait.
What did you just call me?"
"Oh sorry. Would you rather I called you 'sweetie'?"
"Oh, this is just ridiculous!" said
"Hey, chill out love. No need to get your pretty head upset," said Thomas.
"Don't give me pet names!"
Daisy rolled up. "Typical, isn't it? You men are all the same!" she said to Thomas and Percy. "Come with
me Toby, us girls have to stick together."
"DARGH!" screamed Toby. "Sod this for a game of soldiers!"
And he puffed
"What was all that about?" asked Percy.
"Hormones," explained Thomas.