Hercules is an episode of TUGS: The New Series.
It was a gloomy day in Bigg City Port. (Though only in weather, as everybody was pleased that Trainferry88 and TenCents had finally knocked some sense into Dr. Raymond Stanz to stop ripping off the work of the Rev. W. Awdry) A big snowfall was expected that night , and the Star Tugs were helping prepare the dockside. Barges were covered up, Shovels and Snowplows were brought out, and fuel was delivered. Ten Cents and Sunshine were on their way home from delivering fuel to Lillie when they saw Hercules. The Big Ocean-Going Tug looked depressed. His stack was billowing out ash-black smoke, and his engine sounded terrible. Ten Cents decided to ask him what was wrong. "Oi Hercules! You look awfull! Is their somthing wrong?" "I'm fine." Hercules muttered under his breath. "You don't look fine to me." said Sunshine. "I'm Fine." said Hercules, a little louder this time. "Look, Hercules, somthing is definetely wrong with you. Now just tell us-" Ten Cents wasn't able to finish his sentece before Hercules screamed at the top of his nonexistent lungs,"I'M FINE!!! NOW LEAVE ME ALONE!!!" The two switchers jumped back. Sunshine was shocked! "Hercules, you never yell like that at us. I mean, you did it to Zorran that one time, but never at your friends! Now tell us what's wrong!" Hercules finally gave in. "If I tell you, will you promise not to tell anyone else?" he asked. "Our lips are sealed!" said Ten Cents. "Good. I've been having engine troubles lately. It only really kicks in when I pull more than 4 barges." "Why don't you tell Johnathan Star?" asked Ten Cents. "I know that He dosen't have enough money to keep me operational. If I tell him, he'll just send me to be scraped." "Johnathan would never do that!" said Ten Cents. "Aye, we'll help you with any dificult Jobs you have." said Sunshine. "Thanks. I know I could count on you." The Tugs left for the Star Dock.
Little did they know that their conversation had been oveheard by a Bruke and Blair, the scrap dealers. "Did Hercules say he has engine troubles, Mr. Bruke?" "I belive he did, Mr. Blair. If we were to buy him from that Johnathan Star, he would fetch a handsome price from one of the factories, wouldn't he, Mr. Blair?" "Yes, Mr. Bruke, but he's just as stuborn as his father, correct, Mr. Bruke?" "Quite true, Mr. Blair, and it'll be even more difficult with those two switchers helping him out. Am I right, Mr. Blair?" "Quite so, Mr. Bruke. So I belive we should be keeping a close eye on him. Should we, Mr. Bruke?" "Indeed Mr. Blair". And with that, the two of them followed the Star Tugs back to the pier, making sure to stay out of sight.
The two switchers and Hercules had just returned to the Star Dock when Johnathan spoke."There you are, Hercules. I want you to pick up some new barges from Ggbigs City to replace the ones Sakharine damaged." Hercules became nervous. "How many are there, sir?" he asked. "Ten. But you're a strong Tug, I'm sure you can manage." said Johnathan. "Couldn't Ten Cents or Sunshine come with me to help?" asked Hercules. "Nonsense, Hercules! You're surley strong enough to not need help. Besides, Ten Cents and Sunshine have their own work. Now, since Ggbibs City is a little ways up the coast, you should take on some more coal before you leave." said Johnathan. "Yes, Sir." said Hercules as he sailed away.
Hercules was at the Coal Yards when Ten Cents came up. "Hercules, before you go, I've got you some special high quaility coal." he said. "Thanks, Ten Cents." said Hercules. "Now, the special coal will only work for a little while, but it should be enough to get you there and back. I'll go fetch it. Once again, Bruke and Blair had heard the whole thing. "Drat! That special coal is spoiling our plans, Mr. Bruke!" "Indeed it is, Mr. Blair. But I have a plan." What is it, Mr. Bruke?" "Mr. Blair, you will distract Ten Cents, while I tamper with the special coal." Ten Cents was about to pick up the barge, when Blair came up. "Good afternoon, Ten Cents." he said. "Get lost, Blair. I'm busy." Blair predtend to be hurt."I only wished to have a casual conversat-WHAT THE SCRAP IS THAT?" he cried. "What?" said Ten Cents, looking over to see what Blair was talking about, and therefore not noticeing Bruke add some black-painted quarry rock to the coal barge. "Oh, it was just a seagull. Gee, look at the time, I must be going!" and Blair hurried of, followed steathfuly by Bruke. Ten Cents hitched up to the coal barge and left, unawere of the treachery that had just ocoured. He brought the coal barge up to Hercules, who was soon coaled up. "You'd better hurry. You don't want to be caught in tonight's snowstorm." said Ten Cents. "Don't worry, I'll be back before then. Now, some proper montage music , please!"
[Click the link for the montage music->]
"Good! Now off we go!" And with that, Hercules was off. He made the trip to Ggibs city in record time, and soon colected the new barges. "Now THAT is a lot of barges. They look diferent that the ones we have in Big City, too. Oh well." Hercules was soon on his way home. The barges were heavy, but he managed them spledidly. At least, until they were halfway home, at which point, splutering and groaning, Hercules stopped. "Oh great. We were going so nicely, too. The special coal Ten Cents gave me was working great!" "Well, it looks like that coal was the cause of your breakdown." said his Captian. "Some buffon mixed in some quary rock that was painted black! Now, who would go and do that?" "Well, this is just terrible." said Hercules. "We'll be stuck in the middle of a blizard all night, and I'll be late with my barges!" About an hour later, the blizard began. The wind howled as it blew, and Hercules was soon burried alive in snow. His crew took shelter inside, huddled around the gas stove. When the snow had finnaly stoped, the winds had knocked Herculeas on to his side, and he was only saved form fully capsizing by coliding with the coast. Several of his crew were injured or sick, and they were all traped inside of him. The barges were safe, but were covered in snow. For the first time in years, heard by nobody, Hercules cried.
Johnathan was puzzled. "Where is Hercules? He was supposed to be here two hours ago!" Ten Cents realized it was time to tell the truth. "Sir, me and Sunshine have somthing to tell you." he said. "What?" asked Johnathan Star. "Well, haven't you noticed that over the last few days, Hercules was late from all his jobs?" asked Sunshine. "Now that you mention it, yes. Do you know somthing about it?" asked Johnathan. "Well...he's been having problems with his engine lately. He was afraid that if he told you, you'd just have him scrapped." said Ten Cents. "WHAT? SCRAP ONE OF MY TUGS? I would never do that to any of you, especialy Hercules! We need to find him at once!" And with that, Johnathan Star boarded Ten Cents, and the two switchers set off to find Hercules.
They searched every inch of coast for Hercules, until they finally found somthing. "Sir! I see the new barges! Hercules must be in that huge snow mound!" cried Ten Cents. Johnathan grabbed his megaphone. "HERCULES! ARE YOU UNDER THERE? IT'S ME, JOHNATHAN STAR! IF YOU CAN HEAR ME, BLOW YOUR WHISTLE!" A faint whistle could be heard from beneath the snowmound. "Yep, he's under there. Now let's get him out! They soon fetched Scuttlebutt Pete and the dredging barge, and cleared the snow. After they moved the barges away, they brough Mighty Mo to lift Hercules back upright. The Medical Tug arived to take the Sick and Injured crewmen to the hospial, and Ten Cents and Sunshine Brought Hercules and the barges to Lucky's Yard. Hercules was glad to be saved from the snowdrift. "Thank you all. I don't know what I would do what I would do without you guys!" he said. "Now Hercules, if you ever have any more problems with anything, come talk to me. I'll understand. Now, i'm sending you to Lucky's Yard for repairs. The other Tugs will cover for you while you are gone." said Johnathan.
While Hercules was gone, Puffa told Mr. Jones that he had heard Bruke and Blair talking about their plan. Mr. Jones told Johnathan Star, Johnathan told the Coast Guard, who arested Bruke and Blair for attemped murder. When Hercules came home, his engine was working better than ever, and he could now pull more barges than he could pull before. His crew had all made full recoveries, and soon returned to work as well. The other Tugs were glad Hercules was home, and Hercules was glad he had such great friends.