Series One - Episode Three: Danger

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C.A.B Episodes

Series One
Mystery at Ma Mossop's

Ep1: Mystery At Ma Mossop's
Ep2: Break In
Ep3: Danger
Ep4: The Sinister Messenger
Ep5: Prisoner of the Earth
Ep6: The Stranger From The Past
Ep7: A Message From The Past
Ep8: A Message From Ma
Ep9: Nine Lives in Peril
Ep10: Friend or Foe
Ep11: Who's Who?
Ep12: The Missing Links
Ep13: A World in Tatters
Series Two
The Wooden Kamel Mystery

Ep1: The Wooden Kamel Mystery
Ep2: Eel Pie and Custard
Ep3: Message From R Leeder
Ep4: Next Stop Timbuktu
Ep5: It's a Snip
Ep6: Saved By The Bull
Ep7: Ear By Gum
Ep8: Finders Keepers
Ep9: Hellman's Trick
Ep10: Hellman's Reward
Series Links:
Series Index
Series Airdates
Series Three
The Mystery Of The Queen's Beast

Ep1: A Face at the Window
Ep2: The Riddle
Ep3: The Bottle of Hastings
Ep4: Robert the Brute
Ep5: The Chamber Pot Plant
Ep6: Getting Taped
Ep7: Trapped
Ep8: The Great Escape
Ep9: Friends or Foes
Ep10: Nicked in Time
Website Links:
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Episode Details

UK Air Date: Tuesday 7th October 1986, 16.20pm
Australia Air Date: Tuesday 18th September 1990, 5.00pm
Copyright Year: MCMLXXXVI (1986)
Consecutive Episode Number: 3
Fremantle Archive Ref: 33201
IMDB Link: Episode page

Cast & Crew

Colin Freshwater Felipe Izquierdo
Franny Barnes Louise Mason
Smith Graham Seed
Mr. Hellman Frank Gatliff
Written By Denise Coffey
Theme Music By Adrian Brett
Make Up Pauline Gyertson
Costume Designer Raymond Childe
Graphic Designer Peter Lock
Stage Manager Bobby Webber
Production Assistant Hilary Cornwall
Designer Gillian Miles
Executive Producer Marjorie Sigley
Producer Charles Warren
Directed By John Darnell


Episode Synopsis

Having reported into his tape machine the presence of a hostile observer, Colin decides to hide the secret box somewhere else in the dragon's head. On leaving the shop they set up a trap to catch any new intruder. Next day they discover the dragon's head smashed to pieces.

Secret Agent Notes

In this episode Hellman mentions the Cross of Lorraine that is seen on Ma Mossop's coat in her portrait. For more information check out Cross of Lorraine (wikipedia page).

Episode Guide

'This is secret agent C.A.B. C.A.B is the call sign for Colin Freshwater. Me and my pal Franny Barnes have been commissioned to guard Ma Mossop's shop, her cat called Tatters and a mysterious secret. Day two, there had been a break in but they didn't find the secret. Mr Hellman was here, the weird milkman called again and then an American taking photographs. They all seem interested in Ma Mossop's old shop, suddenly Franny saw someone watching us'.

Franny screams, she calls out for Colin, she hides behind the curtain and tells Colin 'there's somebody outside there, watching us'. There's an eye looking in through the glass in the door that's been almost covered in paper. Colin asks where and he looks but the person looking has gone. She explains through the blind in the door. Colin checks if Franny is sure she saw it and she says yes saying it was creepy. Colin records a message on his dictaphone 'Agent C.A.B. Assistant Franny Barnes thought she saw someone watching us', she tells him she did see someone, the phone rings, Franny answers it but the line goes dead. Colin explains that is what burglars do, to check if someone's there. Franny replies 'Oh stop it Colin Freshwater, you make everything into a spy story'. Colin thinks they should hide Ma Mossop's secret box somewhere else as it's not safe in the dragon's head.

In a room somewhere the man with all the disguises, circles the photograph of the dragon's head with the box inside, he uses the telephone number and we hear Franny answer but he hangs up.

Back at the shop Franny is repeatedly saying 'hello' into the phone, she eventually hangs up stating 'it's happening again'. Colin wonders what is in Ma's secret box, it's got to be something small, he thinks it might be money but Franny tells him it doesn't sound like it as Colin rattles the box. Franny thinks it might be jewellery but Colin thinks it sounds like there is paper or cardboard in there, he asks 'shall I try to see what's in it?' Franny tells him it's none of their business, tells Colin to put it somewhere safe and that she needs to take the shopping home. Colin asks about Tatters, Franny starts to get some milk for Tatters saying Colin can take a pint home as they won't need all the milk. Colin says that Tatters can look after the box, he hides it under the cushion of the chair as Tatters starts to drink the milk left for her. As they are about to leave Colin states 'I wish we had a burglar alarm. Colin sees a hook about the front door and says he'll make a burglar alarm, Franny says they haven't time to play, he places a metallic coal bucket above a door, saying it'll make a loud noise which would frighten them off. They turn the lights off and Franny states 'I'll be glad to get out of this gloomy old shop'. They close the door gently and lock up and the shop is left eerily quiet.

It's dark outside as someone gets into the shop from the back door. Tatters let's out a 'meow' as someone is seen treading on and breaking the milk dish left on the floor. Torchlight illuminates Tatters, then Ma's portrait, into the front shop the torch is pointed at the dragon's head.

In daylight, Colin and Franny enter the shop, the metallic coal bucket falls and makes a noise. Colin records on his dictaphone 'Agent C.A.B. Trap left yesterday not disturbed, but it is now'. Franny picks up and comments that Fred has left two pints again but they only need one. Colin deduces the other milkman must be a fake and records another message 'Agent C.A.B. The laughing milkman is a prime suspect'. Franny wonders why anyone would pretend to be a milkman, she sees the smashed dragon's head on the floor in the back of the shop. Colin joins her and says 'who would want to do a thing like that'. Colin finds a piece of paper left by the dragon's head, he passes it to Franny and she reads it out loud 'next time, it's for real'. Franny says that Tatters is safe and Colin says the secret is too. Franny asks how he knows for sure, he states 'burglars don't leave threats if they got what they came for'. Franny goes to give Tatters some milk and notices the dish is broken. Franny picks up the pieces as Colin checks the box is still there. Colin wonders what they should do, Franny tells him they need to tells a grown up, Colin suggests her Mum but Franny responds 'she's got enough to worry about', Colin says his Mum and Dad would think he's making it up. Franny suggests contacting Ma at the hospital. Colin says the number is 9 2 8 2 2 9 4 that he remembered last night. She calls the number as Colin checks Tatters. Franny gets through and asks to speak to Mrs Mossop. When she hangs up she tells Colin it's a military hospital, asking if she wanted Major Mossop, asking if she had clearance and upon saying no they had hung up. Colin asks 'clearance, like a code', Franny doesn't know. The front door rings as someone enters, Franny is concerned that it's him. They both go closer to the curtains dividing the front and back shop. Someone pulls them open from the other side, it's Mr Hellman, he thinks they are playing hide and seek. Franny tells him they were wondering when he'd be back as he left his briefcase and camera behind, Colin adds 'when you went after that American'. Hellman replies 'oh yes'. Colin asks if he caught him but Hellman tells him he didn't but he only wanted to frighten him. Hellman asks if they've seen the milkman, they confirm they haven't. He then asks if they could help him today, they don't seem keen so he tells them he needs to get a new film and batteries for his camera and measure the interior of the window frame, he asks if there is anything wrong. Colin replies no but at the same time Franny says yes but changes her answer to a no to match Colin. Hellman is pleased there isn't anything wrong, Franny says they will help after feeding Tatters. Hellman walks through to the front shop. Franny whispers to Colin, 'why don't we tell him' and Colin replies 'I don't trust him'. Hellman asks, 'where has it gone' and 'what happened to it'. He explains he means the dragon's head hanging on the wall. Not receiving an answer he states the American tourist was very interested in it. Franny and Colin tell him it fell off and got broken. Hellman calls Colin and explains what film and batteries he needs him to get and tells him to get some sweets too. Franny covers up the broken dragon's head with her coat. Hellman tells Colin to be careful crossing the road as he leaves.

Franny gets some milk for Tatters, Hellman asks how the cat is, Franny begins to tidy up and Hellman helps by holding a pile of books, he asks Franny if she has any pets. He asks what she has as they walk into the front shop s Franny places the books onto a shelf. She tells him 'Oh I've got a three legged gerbil I received from infant class at school and a budgie and I used to have a goldfish'. Hellman tells Franny he misses his dog, a mongrel that he found whimpering in a car park on a snowy night, he took him home after he was abandoned, gave him some warm milk and he's been with him ever since, he tells Franny the dog's name is 'Rags'. Franny asks where he is and Hellman explains that he's at his home in Brussels as there is strict laws about bringing animals into the country. Franny asks if he has a photograph of the dog, he says he does but not with him and he reiterates that he misses him, saying he loves animals. He then sternly asks where the dragon's head is. Franny tells him it's in the back shop and Hellman goes to look at it and Franny follows. Franny stands in front of the dragon's head hidden under her coat, Hellman asks where it is but realises Franny is standing in front of it. Hellman picks it up and asks 'well what's happened to this?' Franny says they don't know as Hellman examines it. Franny tells Hellman that they should call the police, Hellman reacts 'the police, whatever for?' Franny tells him that someone broke in but Hellman reassures her 'rest assured if there was any danger my organisation would be the first to know'. He tells her that he'll call in at the police station on his way back to request they keep a special eye on the place. Franny seems reassured, Hellman then hopes that Mrs Mossop wasn't too fond of the dragon's head and states that she isn't very tidy, he questions if she sells much stuff and asks if she lives in this room, Franny says no so Hellman questions where she does live, if she lives upstairs. Franny tells him that upstairs is empty as the council say it isn't safe. Hellman passes one end of the measuring tape to her and he begins to walk away to measure the room, as he does so he asks where Mrs Mossop does live. 'Nobody knows' Franny answers. Hellman says that's hard to believe, Franny tells him that she catches a bus every night when she shuts the shop and she's here early in the morning. Hellman finished measuring as he passes the tape back to Franny to wind up. Hellman says 'A woman of mystery eh? Much mystery' as he focuses his attention on Ma's portrait. Franny asks Hellman about the badge, the cross thing, on her coat in the portrait. Hellman tells her it's 'the cross of Lorraine', Franny tells him that Ma still wears it as it is very special. 'Oh yes it is' Hellman replies as he pulls up a chair to stand on to have a closer look at the portrait with a magnifying glass, he looks at the cross of Lorraine and her earrings. He says 'At last, now we're getting somewhere'.

The milkman arrives in the shop, Franny thinks that it's 'him' and wishes to herself that Colin is there with her. Hellman says it's only the milkman and Franny goes into the front shop.

Franny asks the new milkman where the old milkman is, she then asks why 'he is always coming into the shop'. The milkman threatens Franny, he then pulls her hair and Hellman walks through, the milkman lets go as Hellman enters and says that he must be going. Colin arrives and the milkman rushes off. Colin gives chase but the milkman (Smith in disguise) stops behind a wall as colin goes by, Smith hides behind the milk float. As Colin and Franny search for him, Smith changes into another disguise, a professor, and he takes the bag with him (with his milkman uniform inside) and goes into a telephone box.

Back at the shop Hellman is searching through the white table and finds a book with a space cut out of the pages. Hellman starts to look around as the phone starts to ring. Hellman then tries to move Tatters but she scratches him.

Smith (as the Professor) enters the shop, Hellman catches him and asks him what he wants, Smith says he's looking for a book but he'll come back another day. Hellman says that he has seen him somewhere before and his voice sounds familiar. Smith tells him he lectures on the open university and that his name is Professor Melmoth, saying that Mrs Mossop was going to keep a a book for him about Egyptology. Hellman tricks Smith by asking if he is an admirer of Howard Carter and his new book. Smith says he'd have to leave as Mrs Mossop isn't there. Hellman asks how he knows that she isn't there, he replies that he just can't see her there, Hellman then reveals his bluff about Howard Carter having wrote his books in the 1930's.

Colin and Franny arrive back in the shop, Franny notices the Professor and Hellman says that if that man comes back they are to call the Police. Colin asks the Professor if he saw the milkman but he says that he is so absent minded he wouldn't have noticed. Hellman says that the Professor should go home, but as he is about to leave Franny asks what he wanted. He tells her he came by for a book but he'd come back another day, 'no problem' he says. Colin rewinds his dictaphone and plays the milkman and the American tourist saying the same thing. Hellman asks him to explain.