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If only Kemp had listened to the Invisible Man's speech more closely! The story would have stopped at Kemp's House. Throw a bucketful of Un-washable ink at him! He is done. And of course Wells missed another thing - as Sir Arthur C Clerke so cleverly pointed out - once a man becomes invisible he also becomes blind. Light would go past the eye sockets.
He leaves No 305, Park Lane, London and sets off to Ruritania to attend the coronation, due to be held in three weeks’ time. Stops in Paris where he meets George Featherly and Bertram Bertrand and learns about Lady Antonitte de Mauben. She hopes to marry Black Michael – the Duke of Strelsau. Rassandyll takes a ticket to Dresden so as not to raise suspicion of George Featherly. De Mauben also travels in the same train. Rassandyll gets off the train at Zenda which is situated 10 miles from the Ruritanian frontier and 50 miles before Strelsau – capital of Ruritania. Checks in to a small inn in Zenda where he meets Johann – Duke’s keeper. Only a one day left to go, Johann arranges Rassandyll’s luggage to be forwarded to Strelsau since he, Johann, is said to have a relative living there. It would be tedious for Rassandyll to travel 50miles and back to Strelsau to attend the coronation within the same day. Rassandyll can stay in Johan’s relatives place in strelsau and atten the festivities with much comfort. Luggage dispatched Rassandylle decides to visit castle of Zenda just before he leaves for Strelsau. Castle is made of two portions, one new one old, both parts encircled by a moat. From the side of the castle a drawbridge can be lowered or drawn bank. Once it is lowered it connects in to a chateau on the outerbank of the moat. This chateau is the country house of the Duke of Strelsau. He meets the king himself along with his advisors/bodyguards Fritz and Sapt. They goes to the hunting lodge situated to the West of the forest. Rassandyll cancels his plan to go to Strelsau the day before to keep his appointment with Johann’s relative. Instead he decides to stay that night with the king in the hunting loge. People in the hunting loge are Johann’s mother – Holf, and Joseph. The next morning king found to be drugged. Rassandyll goes to the coronation as king, dressed in his clothes, before the guards come to escort him, boarding in to a special train from Hofbau. In Strelsau he marches with Sapt, Fritz and Marshall Strackenz to Cathedral and is anointed and crowned as king. Meets Michael and Princess Flavia. Gets in to the carriage with her and travels through the crowd cheering and reaches the palace. He leaves king’s dressing room and through a secret passage with Sapt at 5 o clock in the evening and leaves capital on horse back. Fritz guarding the dressing room. Upon hearing a second set of hoof beats he hides with Sapt at a wooded junction where the left turn goes to castle of Zenda and right to hunting lodge. They see Duke accompanied with Max Holf, brother of Johann. They goes to Castle. Rassandyll and sapt go to the hunting lodge where they find King missing and Josef killed. Mother Holf had also gone. A group of Duke’s men come to obliterate the evidence in hunting lodge and Rassandyll attacks them with Sapt and then they flee. A bullet touches Rassandyll’s finger which turns out to be good execuse for the difference in hand writing than that of the real king. They reach palace the next morning and Rassandyll promotes king’s popularity in visiting the grand new avenue of Royal Park. Visits princess. Black Michael visits them with three of his killers. Rassandyll shakes hands with them. Arrangements set to murder Rassandyll in a summerhouse at the end of new avenue. Warnings form Antonitte de Mauban foils the attack. Early nest day Michael leaves capital accompanied with his wounded body guards. Grand ball. Dance with Princees Flavia. Rassandyll really falls in love with her. He is faced with a strange situation ; Save the king and loose the princess and the kingdom. If the king dies he becomes king. Visit to Marshall Strakenz. A rescue plan code named “Boar Hunting” arranged. On the failure of Rassandyll’s return the Marshall should proclaim the Princess as the ruler of the kingdom. “Boar Hunting” attack to be launched from a French manor house that belongs to a relative of Fritz. Situated 5 miles from the castle of Zenda. Optimum striking distance. Attack force consists of Rassandyll, Sapt, Fritz and 10 of the King’s Special Guards, carefully chosen. Visit from Rupert of Hentzau –youngest and the most deadly of assassins - with two other killers of the Duke. Apologizes to Rassandyll for not being able to provide lodgings for him at duke’s residence to aid boar hunting. With Fritz, Rassandyll goes to the inn he once visited the day before he attended the coronation and gets one of the girls to induce Johann, duke’s Keeper to come to meet her at second mile stone out of Zenda. He comes back to base. The very next day , Rupert visits Rassandyll at the manor house suddenly and flicks at him a dagger, fortunately not poisoned. Rassandyll lives. Johann was caught in the trap. Brought to Rassandyll. He spills beans. King is chained in an underground room in the castle, a room which you could only reach through another outer room. In this outer room would be the killers. Another room would be above this outer room where the reinforcements would be. Underground rooms can be reached by descending a flight of stairs that begins at the point where the drawbridge is lowered to connect to the chateau of duke. In the chateau would be the Duke and antonitte, their rooms on eitherside, overlooking the moat and the castle. On the hall of the chateau would be Joseph and his servants. In the room where king is bound is a pulley which –when he is killed on the notification of an attack- would be used to lift his dead body. Lifted it would be attached to a weight and crammed in to a wide steel pipe which would open in to the moat. It would come to rest in its 20 feet deep grave and then the killers would also escape from the pipe and either swim around to the drawdridge and launch a counter attack on those who entered the castle or just swim across to the other side and escape. But one would remain in the king’s room as a decoy so the Duke can later claim he did not keep any king prisoner. In his secret reconnaissance of Jacob’s Ladder –name used by young Rupert for the pipe affixed to king’s death chamber- Rassandyll stabs Max Holf (brother of Johann) to death. On the drawbridge Rupert is also attacked by Rassandyll’s men and both sides suffer losses. Rupert leaps in to the moat. Rassandyll withdraws. Strelsau’s head of Police brings news to Rassandyll of an Englishman said to be disappeared during his visit to Ruritania. Rassandyll hushes things up. In Chapter 17 and 18 where Rassandyll launches his final operation the author was not that good describing the orientation of the characters, so the reader is confused as to on which side of the moat Rassandyll is. It should be like this. Rassandyll swims a second time to the pipe and waits for his cue - feigned, preplanned cries of Antonitte De Mauban for help which should occur at 2 o’ clock in the morning. The cue is also for Sapt who would be at the chateau’s door to force it open with his men. He would have to arrest the Duke. He sees Rupert already with her trying to kiss her. As he kisses her the duke comes and orders Rupert out of the Chateau. He crosses the bridge with De Gautet and comes to the Castle and the bridge is drawn behind them. Rupert comes out a second time, evidently determined to have De Mauban that night, and swims across the moat. He clambers to the chateau on the outside and keys in to the Mauban’s room. She screams. Too early. Michael intervenes and Rupert dwells a death blow on him. He dies on the hands of Mauban. As Duke’s servants encircles Rupert he jumps out of the window of De Mauban’s room, in to the moat. Rassandyll kills De Gautet and other three assassins in the underground rooms and come out to the drawbridge where he sees Rupert with his back to him, at the middle of the bridge, challenging a huddling group of Michael’s servants. De Mauban emerges from the chateau and aims a revolver at him and then they hear Sapt’s men beating down the door of the chateau. Rupert plunges in to the moat. (He is fond of jumping in to the moat) Rassandyll, seeing that king is out of danger, jumps in after him. They emerge from the outer bank and Rupert keeps on running, Rassandyll, though wounded and weary, crying vainly for him to stop and fight like a man. Rupert stops a girl riding a horse and waits for Rassandyll. In his anger he leaps at Rupert and cuts his cheek. Then Fritz, with his men appear from the forest and opens fire at Rupert. He gallops out of sight. Fritz helps Rassandyll to his feet. Secret is revealed to Princess Flavia. She refuses to forget Rassandyll but chooses her honor and her people. “Is love everything?” She asks with tears in her eyes. She still cannot let go of Rassandyll. King survives. And the kingdom is restored back to him. With his heart full of love and sorrow, his eyes ringing with her call of love “Rudolf, Rudolf, Rudolf, My darling” , Rassandyll says goodbye to Sapt and Fritz and boards a train homewards from a little roadside station in Zenda.
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