Algy And The Rescue Flight: Chapter 1. Danger On The Coast

By Sopwith

Disclaimer: I do not own, or claim to own, any of the Biggles series characters used in this work. This fan fiction was written for entertainment purposes only and should not be considered part of the official storyline. 

Flying Constable “Ginger” Hebblethwaite peered over the top of Flying Sergeant Algy Lacey’s cubicle and said, “Algy, there’s a report of someone stuck out on the coast and the coastguards are asking if we’d mind flying down and picking up the chap as they can’t seem to do it on their own. He was in a plane that came down on a cliffy bit and they don’t fancy climbing up after him. I’d go, but—” He gestured to his arm, broken recently in a crash-landing in the Bahamas. 

“Righto, I’ll go.” Algy stood and reached for his jacket. “Let Biggles know when he comes in, will you? Has Bertie come back from lunch yet?”

“He’s just gone.”

“Pity. I would have liked someone along for company, and I can’t take you because you need to stay here and look after the ‘phone. Well, so long. Should be back by suppertime.”

“Give our love to old Jones.”

“Of course.” And with those words, Algy donned his jacket and went out. 


When Algy set off in the Auster, he was not really anticipating any trouble. In fact, as he had said to Ginger, he fully expected to be back before suppertime. Coast rescues were so frequent as to have become routine in the Air Police office, so he could perhaps be forgiven for not taking a more serious view of the matter. 

He was whistling softly to himself as he approached the coast, having already established radio contact with the coastguards to ascertain the approximate position of the fallen plane. 

Flying over the general area, he was slightly annoyed to find that Ginger’s description of “cliffy” had not been far off the mark; he could see that he would have to choose his landing place very carefully. “Not such a piece of cake as I’d thought,” he murmured ruefully to himself, the whistled tune dying mid-note on his lips. “Oh, well. Where are they, anyway?” 

His questing eyes soon found a tangle of metal that showed where the plane had crashed. The occupants, he reasoned, should not be too far off. Sure enough, a few feet away, two figures had materialized and were waving wildly to him. 

“All right, all right,” muttered Algy. “Calm down, I can see you. Give me a minute to decide how to get down.” Fortunately, there was a flat-ish surface quite near the two men, one that should be wide enough for him to get the plane down. Nevertheless, it would be an exaggeration to say that Algy was happy about the situation as he took the plane low in preparation for landing. Like every experienced pilot, he knew only too well the perils of landing on unknown grounds. An unseen stick, a rock, or a hole in the ground could all end up causing tremendous damage to an aircraft, so it was with great caution that he eased the Auster in. 

He breathed a sigh of relief as the wheels grounded to a halt without any signs of damage. “If only the take-off goes as smoothly as the landing,” he said to himself with grim humor, as he pushed open the door of the plane and jumped out. 

He did not have to go far before he spotted the two men hurrying towards him as though their lives depended on it. “Hallo!” he greeted them. “The coastguards sent me. Are either of you hurt?”

Neither of the men replied, which puzzled Algy somewhat, but he supposed that they were out of breath from running. In any case, the fact that they were running at all seemed, more than anything, to be proof of their well-being. 

The men drew level with him, and Algy opened his mouth to repeat his question, but then abruptly shut it again as the man in the lead pulled out a gun and pointed the wrong end of it at Algy’s face. “Get back in the plane and start flying,” he ordered curtly. 


“What?” Algy was astounded, to say the least. 

“You heard me. Get back in the plane and start her up. Now. We don’t have much time.”

“Now look here—” began Algy heatedly, not prepared to submit without a fight.

The man with the gun took a step forward so that the muzzle of the gun was less than an inch from Algy’s chest. “Get in the plane and take off,” he ordered softly, in a nervous voice that nevertheless held a ring of authority. “Don’t make me tell you again.”

Algy cast a helpless look at his captors and shrugged his shoulders in a gesture of acquiescence. Had he been carrying a gun—or indeed, anything that could have passed for a weapon—it might have been a different story. However, as things stood, he realized that it would be suicidal to attempt escape or attack. 

He got back into the Auster and started up. The two men clambered in and shut the door behind them. Algy took a breath and eyed the stretch of coast in front of him. Remembering how hard it had been for him to get in, he hesitated, only to jerk nervously when something cold and hard pressed against the back of his neck. 

“What’s taking so long?”

“I’m trying to think!” snapped Algy, at the end of his patience. “Unless you particularly want to be smashed to bits before we get off the ground, I suggest you sit down and keep your complaints to yourself!”

To his surprise, the gunman did as he was told, removing the gun from Algy’s back and turning away to find a place to sit. For a wild moment Algy considered the possibility of giving the machine a jolt to throw the man off of his feet, and then taking his chances in a fistfight. He dismissed the idea as being too risky. 

He drew a breath in and held it as he eased the Auster forward for take-off. The needles on his instruments swung to life, gradually pointing to higher and higher numbers. Every nerve in his body was stretched to breaking point. Would he make it? There was a touch-and-go moment when he thought all was lost, and then to his amazement, the Auster rose smoothly into the air and leveled off to even keel. 

Algy gasped in relief. It was only when he glanced down at his hands that he realized how badly they were shaking. “Strewth!” he muttered to himself. “I don’t think I’d be able to do that again!”

“We’re going that way.” The voice behind him made him jump; he had all but forgotten about the men. “We’re going to need you to fly us to Riga.”


“It’s a city in Latvia.”

“Latvia! That’s behind the Iron Curtain!” exclaimed Algy. “I’m not going—” His protests were cut short as the touch of cold steel once again returned to the back of his neck. 

“I’m sorry to have to do this to you,” said the man in an even voice, “But I don’t really have any choice. Desperate times call for desperate measures.”

“What exactly are you planning to do in Latvia?” asked Algy, deciding that cooperation, for the present, was his best option. “Would I have to land there?”

The man hesitated, throwing a look at his companion, who shrugged and nodded in answer. Abruptly, the man holding the gun pocketed the weapon and said, “Are you British?”

“I certainly hope so!” said Algy indignantly. 

“We’re from MI5, and there’s a document in my pocket that has to get to our man in Latvia. Do you understand? We started out in a plane, but someone came after us and shot us down. The pilot was killed in the crash.”

Algy closed his eyes. “And I just happened to be the poor boob who volunteered to come and give you two a lift. What a stroke of luck,” he added, more sarcastically than perhaps was necessary. 

“Will you help us?”

“Put like that, you don’t give me much room to refuse, do you? You could have asked nicely, you know. You didn’t have to point a gun in my face.”

“It’s empty,” replied the other, with a faint grin. 

“My hat!” groaned Algy. “If I’d known that, I would have pushed you two into the sea. All right; first things first. I like to know the people I’m working with.”

“My name’s Camden Barnes. And that’s Dusty Benedict.”

“I’m Algy Lacey.”

Barnes had been in the act of holding out his hand for Algy to shake, but at those words he seemed to freeze in mid-air. “Algy Lacey?” he repeated slowly. “Not the same Algy Lacey who was in 666 squadron during the war?”

“The very same,” confirmed Algy. “What are you two smiling about?”

“You’re the very man we need,” declared Dusty. “You’re experienced in this sort of thing, aren’t you?”



What Barnes had to say about the matter, Algy never found out, for at that moment, the machine rocked violently, and the vicious chatter of gunfire broke out behind them.


  1. A very promising start, Soppy. You have recklessly endangered Algy three times in the opening chapter. Goodness me, I've missed the Algy Chronicles.

  2. I am organizing everything and writing new bits to old stories. Just have to get through everything sequentially.

    I've missed the Algy Chronicles too. And Algy.


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© The Algy Chronicles
Maira Gall