Bertie has bought himself a jaunty little Tyrolean hat, and Jeeves dislikes
it. Gussie still hasn't married Madeline, so Bertie is still in danger of
having to do it himself. The Rev. 'Stinker' Pinker begs Bertie to get
Madeline to invite him down to Totleigh as there is something his fianc?e
Stiffy Byng wants Bertie to do. (They're not married yet, either. Sir
Watkyn hasn't come across with that vicarage for Stinker which would enable
them to marry.) And Gussie, on his way to Totleigh, speaks to Bertie of
Madeline in a way no fianc? should. 'Madeline makes me sick!' he says and
So Bertie, silly ass, decides to go to Totieigh and try to heal the
Gussie/Madeline rift; plus Alpine hat, plus Jeeves. Madeline has put Gussie
on a meatless diet and he is being fed steak and kidney pie at midnight by
the sympathetic young cook - a temp: in fact Emerald, kid sister of that
Pauline Stoker, now Lady Chufnell, who had led Bertie such a dance in Thank
You, Jeeves. A guest at Totleigh is Roderick Spode, now Lord Sidcup, always
keen to break Gussie's neck if he thinks he's not treating his beloved
Madeline right. When Spode sees Gussie kissing the cook, he feels that the
neck-breaking cannot wait. First to Gussie's rescue is Stinker (who has
boxed heavyweight for Oxford. One day someone must count the number of
Wodehouse characters, mostly heroes, who have boxed for their universities.
I'm sure I could find twenty-five without a small-tooth comb.). He knocks
Spode out with a sweet corkscrew left. Then Emerald does it again, with a
kitchen basin. Gussie elopes with Emerald. Madeline says she is going to
marry Bertie. Spode says, 'Oh no you're not. You're going to marry me!'
There has been a sub-plot. What Stiffy had wanted Bertie to come to
Totleigh for was to steal a black amber statuette that Sir Watkyn had
acquired by apparently dirty-dog methods from Major Brabazon Plank, that
explosive explorer who had operated in Uncle Dynamite. Jeeves, pretending
to be Chief Inspector Witherspoon of the Yard, rescues Bertie from Plank's
threatened knob-kerrie. And he rescues Bertie from imprisonment, by Sir
Watkyn, JP, by agreeing to become Sir Watkyn's valet ('psst ... only
temporarily, sir'). But Bertie must forfeit that hat. Sir Watkyn's butler
is glad to have it to add dash to his courtship of a widow in the village.
It's marvellous the way Wodehouse can get the same actors into new
imbroglios using the same scenery; and the way innocent Bertie has only to
see a noose to stick his fat head into it. It is comforting to know that,
in the tea-tent at the school treat at Totleigh, Sir Watkyn received a
well-aimed hard-boiled egg on the cheek-bone from an anonymous donor.
Source: Richard Usborne. Plum Sauce. A P G Wodehouse Companion.