Daisy the Steaming Rail-Car

"A Steam Rail-car?" exclaimed Daisy, "there's no such thing. Where did you hear such nonsense Thomas?"

"It's not nonsense, it's real," he said. Thomas was telling the other branch line engines all about something his Driver had told him earlier that day. "According to my Driver, on a railway far off from our shores, there is a real steam rail car that is still being used to this day. It's quite a famous attraction and people come from all over the world just to see it or ride on it."

"Who would've thought," remarked Percy, "a steam rail-car, I always thought they had began in the diesel era."

"Well designs of certain engines have to begin somewhere Percy," said Toby, "so maybe the diesel rail-cars were inspired by the steam rail-cars of long ago."

"There's a good chance that they were," said Rosie.

Daisy was not listening in to the entire conversation as she did not believe what Thomas was talking about. However, she soon had a reason to listen to the conversation after Emily piped up, "I bet you though that the steam rail-car is more reliable than a certain diesel-car I could mention," she eyed Daisy with a raised eyebrow.

"I beg your pardon?!" exclaimed Daisy, "I am a reliable and useful diesel rail-car. I take passengers when there are too many to ride in any of your coaches and I often take goods trains too."

"True, but you don't do those jobs well," Emily teased, "like that time you confronted a bull and Toby had to go 'shoo' it away for you, or how about the time you took the troublesome trucks and broke down before the harbour or how about..."

"That's enough!" snapped Daisy, "I might have my faults, but I'm still more reliable than you'll ever know."

Daisy was cross, she hated to be reminded of her past incidents. She backed into the sheds without another word, "good thing she went into the shed when she did, I was running out of incidents to remind her about," Emily chuckled.

"Oh Emily," groaned Toby and Percy in unison and rolled their eyes.

By the next morning, she was still grumbling, but was eager to get out of the shed, "just you wait Emily, I'll show you that I'm just as reliable as that steam rail-car, if there is one."

But because she was busy talking to Emily, she wasn't paying attention to what she was doing and instead of going forwards, she charged backwards and straight into the back wall of the shed. She wasn't hurt and neither was her Driver, but Daisy felt foolish.

"Oh yes you've shown me up," smirked Emily.

Daisy grumbled crossly out of the sheds and out towards the junction.

"Sometimes you go a little too far with your teasing Emily," Rosie said firmly, "Daisy is a useful rail-car."

"Oh I know that Rosie," Emily whispered, "Daisy's actually proven that on multiple occassions, I just make sure Daisy never hears me say that, cause she would never let us hear the end of it."

Just then, her Driver opened the regulator and she puffed out of the sheds and over to the carriage shed.

Daisy in the meanwhile had arrived at the junction where she found the empty milk tankers, "there's still some time before the stopping passenger train arrives," said Daisy's Driver, "so we might as well collect the milk tankers."

The signalman changed the points and Daisy backed up to the tankers, a little too quickly. She bashed into the trucks and knocked one of them off the rails.

"Stop that Daisy!" snapped her driver, "I know you don't like being reminded of those incidents, but that's no excuse to take your anger out on anything that stands in front of, or should I say, in the back of you?"

"I know sir, I'm sorry," Daisy apologized and took the time to calm down.

Luckily, the tanker wasn't damaged and only the back wheels were off the rails, so it was easy to re-rail and take out of the siding with the other milk tankers.

"Now behave yourself Daisy or you will get into trouble," advised her Driver.

Little did they know that they would soon get into trouble.

James soon arrived with the stopping passenger train and once the passengers had boarded Daisy, she rumbled off towards the station near the dairy. As she rattled along, one of the passengers noticed that her engine was making some strange sounds, "excuse me Mr. Driver!"

"Yes? What can I do for you?" he asked kindly.

"I think there's something wrong with your engine," she said, "I can hear some strange sounds coming from her engine."

"Really?" asked the Driver. The passenger nodded in answer to his question. The Driver went silent and listened carefully for the sound, "hmm, that doesn't sound good. I'll take a look at the engine when we get to the next station."

But they never made it. The sound grew louder and louder until there came the sound of a muffled explosion.

"What?" Daisy cried. Suddenly, she came to a sudden stop. The tankers bumped into her buffers, which made some passengers fall forwards and make the guard fall to the floor.

"Ow," groaned the Driver, who had hit the window of Daisy's cab. He got up from his seat and went back to check on the passengers, "is everyone alright?"

"I think so," they all said, "but what happened?"

The Driver and guard weren't sure, so they climbed out to find the problem - it wasn't that hard to find. Daisy's engine had broken down and now it was smoking badly.

"Cor blimey, that's bad," gasped the guard. The driver opened a hatch and got a face full of dirty smelly smoke.

"No kidding," he coughed, "it's broken down. Most likely it was damaged thanks to the bumping Daisy gave to the back of the shed and those tankers earlier. One thing's for sure, Daisy's not going anywhere for a while, we'll have to get help."

"Ohh," Daisy groaned and went a sickly green.

The guard phoned down the line and soon, Thomas came down the branch line, light engine, "hello Daisy, what have you gotten yourself into this time?" he asked. Daisy said nothing, "ah well, these things happen from time to time. I better get you to the next station I suppose."

Thomas gently buffered up to Daisy, then, while she was still blowing off nasty black smoke, he pulled her and the tankers all the way to the next station. Once there, Daisy was shunted out of the way while Thomas shunted the tankers into the dairy siding.

"Good bye Daisy, I got to go, but someone should be coming along soon to help you home!" Thomas called.

Daisy still said nothing, she felt too sick to do so, "I hope nobody else finds out about this," she thought to herself.

Luck wasn't on her side though as Emily came into view with her coaches, Alison, Madison and Cassandra. When she saw Daisy blowing off smoke, she couldn't help but laugh, "am I seeing things, or has our branch line just gotten it's own Steam Rail-Car?"

Finally, the smoke stopped blowing, "oh never mind, it's just Daisy," Emily giggled, "are you thinking of becoming a steam engine. You're quite senisble, just have your engine removed and get a boiler."

"Oh...shut...up," Daisy coughed crossly.

Emily just laughed and departed once the passengers had boarded her coaches.

It took a while, but help soon came in the form of Rosie the American Tank engine. She gently buffered up to Daisy, then she towed the broken down diesel rail-car to the junction, "don't worry Daisy, the Dieselworks crew will have you fixed up in no time."

And she was right, Benjamin and some of the Dieselworks crew members worked hard on Daisy's engine until it ran as good as new again, "there you are Daisy," Benjamin said kindly, "now you can go back and do your jobs again."

"Just don't go blowing your engine out again," Norman called cheekily from a siding.

Sidney eyed him firmly and told him to stop. Daisy said nothing and rattled off back to the junction. The Fat Controller had, of course, heard about Daisy's accidents. He was cross with her, but he let her off with a warning and she promised to keep her temper in control.

However, for a long time afterwords, some of the other engines, like Emily, would see her and say, "oh look, there's Daisy the Steaming Rail-Car and I thought she didn't believe they were real." They laugh over their own jokes, but Daisy thinks they're just being very silly engines indeed.