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Stop in the Name of Pants!

Louise Rennison

  Louise Rennison

  Stop in the Name of Pants!

  Confession of Georgia Nicolson

  To my groovy and fabby and marvy family and mates

  (including my extended family at HarperCollins

  and Aitken Alexander).

  Stop in the Name of Pants!, my latest work of geniosity,

  is dedicated especially to absent mates.

  (Who have selfishly gone off to have fun. Yes, you know

  who you are, Jeddbox and Elton.)

  And also to absent mates who aren't really absent but

  lurking about somewhere pretending to be absent.


  A Note from Georgia

  Deep in the Forest of Red Bottomosity

  Once More into the Huffmobile

  Turbulent Washing Machine of Love

  Viking Hornpipes a-gogo

  Big Furry Paw of Fate

  Why Can’t Everyone Just Speak English?

  Hark, What Owl through Yonder Window Breaks

  Fisticuffs at Dawn

  Groove on, Groovsters!

  Having the Hump Scale

  Losing It Scale


  About the Author

  Other Books by Georgia Nicolson



  About the Publisher

  A Note from Georgia

  Dear chums, chummettes, and er…chummly wummlies,

  I write to you from my bed of pain. Once again I have exhausted myself with creativitosity writing Stop in the Name of Pants! I am having to lie down with a cup of tea and a curly wurly.

  But that is how vair vair much I care about you all, my little pallies. I am a fool to myself, I know.

  I ask only one thing in return and that is this…all of you must dance the Viking disco hornpipe extravaganza in classrooms and recreation facilities throughout the world. It doesn’t matter if there are only two or three of you. Just stand up proudly, get your horns and paddles out (oo-er), and dance!!!

  Loads and loads of deep luuurve,

  P.S. Some of you don’t know what the Viking disco hornpipe extravaganza is, do you?

  P.P.S. Please don’t tell me you didn’t know that Vikings had discos.

  P.P.P.S. Or that they shouted Hooooorrrn! P.P.P.P.S. For those of you who haven’t bothered to keep up with my diaries because you are just TOO BUSY, I have put instructions for the dance at the back near the glossary.

  P.P.P.P.P.S. What have you been TOO BUSY doing?

  P.P.P.P.P.P.P.P.S. I suppose you have been TOO BUSY to even know what the “Having the Hump Scale” is as well.

  P(xP).S. So I have included that at the back. My so-called friend Jas (who has the hump pretty much all of the time) would be at No. 4 with you by now.

  P(P+Px10).S. I really luurve you and do not mind that you are lazy minxes. That is your special charm.

  Pip pip.

  deep in the forest of red bottomosity

  saturday july 30th

  camping fiasco

  11:30 p.m.

  In my tent of shame.


  The rest of my so-called pals are still out in the woods with the “lads” and I have crept back to the campsite aloney. I can hear snoring from Miss Wilson’s tent and also Herr Kamyer’s. I bet there will be a deputation of voles coming along shortly to complain that they can’t get any sleep because of the racket.

  11:32 p.m.

  I’m going to forget about everything and just go to sleep in my lovely sleeping bag. On the lovely soft ground. Not. It’s like sleeping on an ironing board. And I do know what that is like, actually.

  11:33 p.m.

  I said coming on this school camping trip would be a fiasco of a sham and I was not wrong.

  11:34 p.m.

  I was right.

  11:35 p.m.

  I wonder what the others are doing?

  11:36 p.m.

  Anyway, the main thing is that I am now, officially, the girlfriend of a Luuurve God. And therefore I have put my red bottom behind me with a firm hand. I will never again be found wandering lonely as a clud into the cakeshop of luuurve. Or picking up some other éclair or tart or fondant fancy. Ditto Eccles cakes and Spotty Dick or…shut up, brain.

  11:37 p.m.

  So speaking as the official girlfriend of a Luuurve God who has put my red bottom behind me with a firm hand and who will never be wandering around looking for extra cakes, can someone tell me this….

  How in the name of God’s panty hose have I ended up snogging Dave the Laugh?

  Also known as Dave the tart.

  two minutes later

  Oh goddy god god. And let us face facts. It wasn’t just a matey type snog. You know, not a—“It’s alright mate, I’m just a mate accidentally snogging another mate,”—sort of snog.

  It was, frankly and to get to the point and not beat around the whatsit, a “phwoar” snogging situation.

  thirty seconds later

  In fact it was deffo No. 4 and about to be No 5.

  four seconds later

  Anyway, shut up, brain, I must think. Now is not the time for a rambling trip to Ramble land. Now is the time to put my foot down with a firm hand and stop snogging my not boyfriend Dave the Laugh.

  one minute later

  I mean, I am practically married to Masimo the Luuurve God.

  ten seconds later

  Well, give or take him actually asking me to marry him.

  five seconds later

  And the fact that he has gone off to Pizza-a-gogo land on holiday and left me here in Merrie but dangerous England to fend for myself. Being made to go on stupid school camping trips with madmen (Miss Wilson and Herr Kamyer).

  He has left me here, wandering around defenseless in the wilderness near Ramsgate, miles away from the nearest Topshop.

  three seconds later

  And how can I help it if Dave the Laugh burrows into my tent? Because that is more or less what happened.

  That is le fact.

  I was snuggling down under some bit of old raincoat (or sleeping bag, as Jas would say in her annoying oooh isn’t it fun outdoors sort of way)…anyway, where was I? Oh yes, I was snuggling down earlier tonight after an action-packed day of newt drawing when there was tap tap tapping on the side of the tent. I thought it might have been an owl attack but it was Dave the Laugh and his Barmy Army (Tom, Declan, Sven and Edward) enticing us out into the forest with their promise of snacks and light entertainment.

  four seconds later

  I blame Dave entirely for this. He and I are just mates and I have a boyfriend and he has a girlfriend and that is that, end of story. Not, because then he comes to the countryside looking for me and waving his horn about.

  We were frolicking about in the lads’ tent, and Dave and me went off for an innocent walk in the woods. You know, like old matey type mates do. But then I put my foot down a bloody badger hole or something and fell backward into the river. Anyway, Dave was laughing like a loon for a bit but then he reached down and put his arms around me to lift me up the riverbank and I said, “I think I may have broken my bottom.”

  And he was really smiling and then he said, “Oh bugger, it has to be done.”

  And he snogged me.

  When he stopped I pushed him backward and looked at him. I was giving him my worst look.

  He said, “What?”

  I said, “You know what. Don’t just say ‘what’ like that.”

  “Like what?”

  I said with enormous dignitosity, “Look, you enticed me with your shenanigans and, erm, puckering stuff.”

  He said, “Erm, I think you will find that you agreed to come to my tent in the middle of the night
to steal me from my girlfriend.”

  I said, “It was you that snogged me.”

  He looked at me and then he sighed. “Yeah, I know. I don’t feel very good about this. I’m not so…well, you’re used to it.”

  My head nearly exploded. “I’m USED to what??”

  He looked quite angry, which felt horrible. I’d seen him angry with me before and I didn’t usually like what he had to say. He went on: “You started all this sounding the horn business ages ago, using me like a decoy duck and then going out with Robbie, then messing about with me and then going out with Masimo. And then telling me that you felt mixed up.”

  I just looked at him.

  I felt a bit weepy, actually. I might as well be wet at both ends.

  My eyes filled with tears and I blinked them away and he just kept on looking at me. I couldn’t tell what he was thinking. Maybe he had had enough of me and he really hated me.

  Then he just walked away and I was left alone. Alone to face the dark woods of my shamenosity and the tutting of Baby Jesus.

  ten seconds later

  And I didn’t even know which way the tent was.

  The trees looked scary and there was all sorts of snuffling going on. Maybe it was rogue pigs. Pigs who had had enough of the farm life, fed up with just bits of old potato peelings to eat, nowhere to poo in privacy. Maybe these ones wanted a change of menu and had made a bid for freedom by scaling the pigpen fence late at night. Or perhaps they were like the prisoners of war in that old film that Vati’s always rambling on about. The Great Escape. When the prisoners dug a tunnel under the prison fence.

  That’s what these pigs must have done.

  Tunneled out of the farm to freedom.

  There was more snuffling.

  Yes, but now they were hungry. Runaways from the farm just waiting to pounce on some food. If they found me they would think of me like I thought of them. As some chops. Some chops in a skirt. In sopping knickers in my case. Out here in the Wild Woods the trotter was on the other foot.

  I could climb up a tree.

  Could they climb trees?

  Could I climb trees?

  Oh God, not death by pig!!!

  The scuffling got nearer and then a little black thing scampered out of the undergrowth. It was a vole. How much noise can one stupid little mousy thing make? A LOT, is the answer.

  I should make friends with it, really, because with my luck I will be kidnapped by voles and raised as one of their own. On the plus side, it would mean I would never have to face the shame of my red bottomosity, just spend my years digging and licking my fur and being all aloney on my owney.

  I started walking along.

  Dave appeared out of the darkness in front of me. I just ran over to him and burst into tears.

  He put his arm around me.

  “OK, kittykat, I’m sorry. Come on, it’s alright, stop blubbing. Your nose will get all swollen up and you’ll collapse under the weight of your nungas and I can’t carry all of you home.”

  It was nice in the forest now. I could see the moon through the trees. And my hiccups had almost gone.

  As we walked along he smiled at me and stroked my hair. Oooh, he was nice.

  He said, “We haven’t done this luuurve business before, so we are bound to be crap at it. I do feel bad about Emma, but that is not your fault. That is my fault. We can put away our horns and be matey type mates again. Come on. Cheer up. Be nasty to me again, it’s more normal. I like you and I always have and I always will.”

  I sniffed a bit and gave him a brave, quivering but attractive smile. I kept my nostrils fully under control so that they didn’t spread all over my face.

  As we walked along I could hear little squelching noises coming from the knicker department. With a bit of luck you couldn’t hear it above the noise of rustling voles (also known as my nearly adopted family).

  Dave said, “Is that your pants squelching, Gee? You should change them when we get back. You don’t want to get pneumonia of the bum-oley on top of everything else.”

  We walked back through the trees in the light of the jolly old big shiny yellow thing, and no, I do not mean an illuminated banana had just appeared, although that would have been good.

  Then everything went horrible again; there were some hideous noises coming from the left of us….

  “Tom, Tom, over here, I think I’ve found an owl dropping.”

  Oh, brilliant—Jas, Wild Woman of the Forest, was in the vicinity. Dave took his arm away from my shoulder. I looked up at him, he looked down at me and bent over and kissed me on the mouth really gently.

  “Ah well, the end of the line, kittykat. You go off with your Italian lesbian boyfriend and see how it goes and I’ll try and be a good mate to you. Don’t tell me too much about it because I won’t like it a bit—but other than that, let’s keep the accidental outburst of red bottomosity to ourselves.”

  I smiled at him. “Dave, I…”


  “I think I feel something moving in my undercrackers.”


  And that is when I scampered off back to Loony Headquarters. That is, our school campsite. To change my nick nacks.

  ten past midnight

  I said to Baby Jesus, “I know I have done wrong and I am sorry times a million, but at least you have been kind enough not to send a plague of tadpoles into my pantaloonies.”

  sunday july 31st

  11:00 a.m.

  I must say, it was a lot easier getting our tent down than up. I pulled all the peg-type things out of the ground, Rosie and Jools kicked the pole over, and though it wouldn’t go in its stupid bag thing, we made a nice bundle of it in about three minutes flat.

  Jas and her woodland mates and Herr Kamyer and Miss Wilson were folding and sorting and putting things in little pockets and so on for about a million years.

  ten minutes later

  Rosie, Jools and me stashed our tent bundle in the suitcase holder thing at the side of the coach and got on board past Mr. Attwood. The only reason we got on without some sort of Nazi investigation and body search was because Elvis Attwood was slumped at the wheel with his cap pulled down over his face.

  Rosie said, “That’s how he drives.”

  And she is not wrong if the nightmare journey here is anything to go by.

  twenty minutes later

  We were having a little zizz on the backseat under a pile of our coats when Jas, patron saint of the Rambling On Society, came on board. I knew that because she came to the back of the coach and shook my shoulder quite violently. I peered at her. She was tremendously red faced.

  I said, “Jas, I am trying to sleep.”

  “You didn’t pack your tent up properly.”

  I said, “Oh, I’m sorry, are the tent police here?”

  She said, “You have just made a big mess of yours in the boot. We had to take it out and pack it up so that we could get ours in!”

  “Yes, well, Jas, as you can see, I am very very busy.”

  “You are soooo selfish and lax and that is why you have a million boyfriends, none of whom will stay with you.”

  She went and stormed off to sit at the front near her besties Miss Wilson and Herr Kamyer.

  God, she is annoying, but luckily no one else heard her rambling on about the million boyfriends scenario. I wonder if the boys are home yet?

  five minutes later

  Herr Kamyer stood up at the front of the bus and said, “Can I haff your attention, girls.”

  Everyone carried on talking, so he started clapping his hands together.

  Mr. Attwood jerked to life and said, “It’s time to go.”

  Herr Kamyer said, “Ja, ja, danke schön, Herr Driver, but first I vill count zat ve are all pre—”

  At which point Mr. Attwood put his foot down and Herr Kamyer fell backward into Miss Wilson’s lap.

  Quite quite horrific.

  We just watched the young lovers as they got redder and redder.

Like red things at a red party.

  Herr Kamyer tried to get off her lap, but the coach was being driven so violently by Mr. Mad that he kept falling back again, saying, “Ach, I am zair sorry I…”

  And Miss Wilson was saying, “No, no it’s quite alright, I mean I…”

  Eventually when Mr. Attwood was forced to stop at the lights, Herr Kamyer got into his own seat and pretended to be inspecting his moth collection. Miss Wilson got out her knitting but kept looking over at him.

  I said to Rosie, “Just remember this—he was there when Nauseating P. Green did her famous falling into the shower tent fiasco and Miss Wilson was exposed to the world having a shower. He has seen Miss Wilson in the nuddy-pants.”

  I was just thinking about popping back to Snoozeland when Ellen dithered into life…

  “Er, Georgia…you know when Jas said…well, when she said that you had…like a million boyfriends or something, I mean have you or something?”

  Rosie said, “Ellen, gadzooks and lackaday, OF COURSE Georgia hasn’t got a million boyfriends, she would be covered in them if she had.”

  Ellen said, “Well, I know but, well, I mean, she’s only got Masimo, and that is like…well…”

  Mabs said, “Yeah, Masimo…and the rest.”

  I said to Mabs, “Who rattled your cage?”

  And Mabs said, “I’m just remarking on the Dave the Laugh factor.”

  Ellen sat up then. “What Dave the Laugh factor?”

  Oh Blimey O’Reilly’s nose massager! Here we go again, once more into the bakery of love. I am going to have to nip this Dave the Laugh thing in the bud.

  I said, “Ellen, did you snog Declan and, if so, what number did you get up to?”

  Ellen looked like she had swallowed a sock full of vole poo, which is not a good look. “Well, I…well, you know, I, well, do you think I did or something?”

  I said, “A yes or no anytime this side of the grave would be fab, Ellen.”