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Книга Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Содержание - 25 The Great Glass Lift

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'Veruca!' shouted Mrs Salt. 'Are you down there!' There was no answer.

Mrs Salt bent further forward to get a closer look. She was now kneeling right on the edge of the hole with her head down and her enormous behind sticking up in the air like a giant mushroom. It was a dangerous position to be in. She needed only one tiny little push … one gentle nudge in the right place … and that is exactly what the squirrels gave her! Over she toppled, into the hole head first, screeching like a parrot.

'Good gracious me!' said Mr Salt, as he watched his fat wife go tumbling down the hole, 'what a lot of rubbish there's going to be today!' He saw her disappearing into the darkness. 'What's it like down there, Angina?' he called out. He leaned further forward.

The squirrels rushed up behind him … 'Help!' he shouted.

But he was already toppling forward, and down the chute he went, just as his wife had done before him – and his daughter.

'Oh dear!' cried Charlie, who was watching with the others through the door, 'what on earth's going to happen to them now?'

'I expect someone will catch them at the bottom of the chute,' said Mr Wonka. 'But what about the great fiery incinerator?' asked Charlie.

'They only light it every other day,' said Mr Wonka. 'Perhaps this is one of the days when they let it go out. You never know … they might be lucky …'

'Ssshh!' said Grandpa Joe. 'Listen! Here comes another song!'

From far away down the corridor came the beating of drums. Then the singing began.

'Veruca Salt!' sang the Oompa-Loompas.

'Veruca Salt, the little brute,
Has just gone down the rubbish chute
(And as we very rightly thought
That in a case like this we ought
To see the thing completely through,
We've polished off her parents, too).
Down goes Veruca! Down the drain!
And here, perhaps, we should explain
That she will meet, as she descends,
A rather different set of friends
To those that she has left behind —
These won't be nearly so refined.
A fish head, for example, cut
This morning from a halibut.
"Hello! Good morning! How d'you do?
How nice to meet you! How are you?"
And then a little further down
A mass of others gather round:
A bacon rind, some rancid lard,
A loaf of bread gone stale and hard,
A steak that nobody could chew,
An oyster from an oyster stew,
Some liverwurst so old and grey
One swelled it from a mile away,
A rotten nut, a reeky pear,
A thing the cat left on the stair,
And lots of other things as well,
Each with a rather horrid smell.
These are Veruca's new-found friends
That she will meet as she descends,
And this is the price she has to pay
For going so very far astray.
But now, my dears, we think you might
Be wondering – is it really right
That every single bit of blame
And all the scolding and the shame
Should fall upon Veruca Salt?
Is she the only one at fault?
For though she's spoiled, and dreadfully so,
A girl can't spoil herself, you know.
Who spoiled her, then? Ah, who indeed?
Who pandered to her every need?
Who turned her into such a brat?
Who are the culprits? Who did that?
Alas! You needn't look so far
To find out who these sinners are.
They are (and this is very sad)
Her loving parents, MUM and DAD.
And that is why we're glad they fell
Into the rubbish chute as well.'

25

The Great Glass Lift

'I've never seen anything like it!' cried Mr Wonka. 'The children are disappearing like

rabbits! But you mustn't worry about it! They'll all come out in the wash!'

Mr Wonka looked at the little group that stood beside him in the corridor. There were only two children left now – Mike Teavee and Charlie Bucket. And there were three grown-ups, Mr and Mrs Teavee and Grandpa Joe. 'Shall we move on?' Mr Wonka asked.

'Oh, yes!' cried Charlie and Grandpa Joe, both together.

'My feet are getting tired,' said Mike Teavee. 'I want to watch television.'

'If you're tired then we'd better take the lift,' said Mr Wonka. 'It's over here. Come on! In we go!' He skipped across the passage to a pair of double doors. The doors slid open. The two children and the grown-ups went in.

'Now then,' cried Mr Wonka, 'which button shall we press first? Take your pick!'

Charlie Bucket stared around him in astonishment. This was the craziest lift he had ever seen. There were buttons everywhere! The walls, and even the ceiling, were covered all over with rows and rows and rows of small, black push buttons! There must have been a thousand of them on each wall, and another thousand on the ceiling! And now Charlie noticed that every single button had a tiny printed label beside it telling you which room you would be taken to if you pressed it.

'This isn't just an ordinary up-and-down lift!' announced Mr Wonka proudly. 'This lift can go sideways and longways and slantways and any other way you can think of! It can visit any single room in the whole factory, no matter where it is! You simply press the button … and zing! … you're off!'

'Fantastic!' murmured Grandpa Joe. His eyes were shining with excitement as he stared at the rows of buttons.

'The whole lift is made of thick, clear glass!' Mr Wonka declared. 'Walls, doors, ceiling, floor, everything is made of glass so that you can see out!'

'But there's nothing to see,' said Mike Teavee.

'Choose a button!' said Mr Wonka. 'The two children may press one button each. So take your pick! Hurry up! In every room, something delicious and wonderful is being made.'

Quickly, Charlie started reading some of the labels alongside the buttons.

THE ROCK-CANDY MINE – 10,000 FEET DEEP, it said on one.

COKERNUT-ICE SKATING RINKS, it said on another.

Then … STRAWBERRY-JUICE WATER PISTOLS.

TOFFEE-APPLE TREES FOR PLANTING OUT IN YOUR GARDEN – ALL SIZES.

EXPLODING SWEETS FOR YOUR ENEMIES.

LUMINOUS LOLLIES FOR EATING IN BED AT NIGHT.

MINT JUJUBES FOR THE BOY NEXT DOOR – THEY'LL GIVE HIM GREEN TEETH FOR A MONTH.

CAVITY-FILLING CARAMELS – NO MORE DENTISTS. STICKJAW FOR TALKATIVE PARENTS.

WRIGGLE-SWEETS THAT WRIGGLE DELIGHTFULLY IN YOUR TUMMY AFTER SWALLOWING.

INVISIBLE CHOCOLATE BARS FOR EATING IN CLASS.

SUGAR-COATED PENCILS FOR SUCKING. FIZZY LEMONADE SWIMMING POOLS.

MAGIC HAND-FUDGE – WHEN YOU HOLD IT IN YOUR HAND, YOU TASTE IT IN YOUR MOUTH.

RAINBOW DROPS – SUCK THEM AND YOU CAN SPIT IN SIX DIFFERENT COLOURS.

'Come on, come on!' cried Mr Wonka. 'We can't wait all day!' 'Isn't there a Television Room in all this lot?' asked Mike Teavee.

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