Day 182: The Outlaws and the Fifth

The facts

“But, darling,” Mrs Lane said, “they’re such horrid things. You might get hurt.”
“Not me,” Hubert reassured her. “I’ll keep well out of the way, you bet. Old Bertie’s going to let all the things off. Yes,” he continued with a snigger, “He can set ’em up, too, an’ get everything ready. An’ I’ll jolly well make him buy some of them.”
“Well, darling,” cooed Mrs. Lane, “as long as you don’t get hurt – that’s all I care about.”

  • Number: 16.9
  • Published: 1934 (1933 in magazine form) – originally titled William’s Prize Guy
  • Book: William the Gangster
  • Synopsis: The Outlaws and the Hubert Laneites have a competition on November the 5th.


The last time the Outlaws faced the challenges of Guy Fawkes’ Night was back in 1929 (Fireworks Strictly Prohibited, 10.7). And it doesn’t seem to have got any easier.

Hubert Lane has a pound to spend on fireworks, which rather puts the Outlaws’ ten shillings into the shade. But they decide to best him anyway by having a spectacular guy, modelled on Major Blake, who was renting the Botts’ mansion and did not allow William to trespass on his grounds.

The two gangmasters happen upon a girl in the street who not only offers to judge between their two firework shows, but even offers a camera as a prize.

Unfortunately, it turns out that she is Major Blake’s daughter. But the Hubert Laneites’ own greed and avarice works against them…