This week's snippet is again from Sorrel Snowbound. Sorrel has reached the surface and confidently decided she can cope with whatever she meets. The first such encounter is chugging towards her...
The contraption that chugged up the hill towards me, struggling to achieve the speed a good runner could manage without breaking a sweat, was belching an unpleasant mixture of grey-green smoke and dirty steam. The three wheels were wide and heavily-treaded brass, each five feet across, with no visible suspension. The thing had to be hell to ride.
The central chassis was brass and iron, studded and unnecessarily heavy, with a large tank over the single rear wheel for its liquid coal, and two seats, one above and behind the other, between the front wheels. In the middle of the trike was a vertical boiler like a bottle topped with two black funnels, surrounded by the churning gear wheels of the engine. Strapped onto the side were more cylinders and leather pipes, their purpose not immediately apparent.
I could recognise a work of fine engineering when I saw one. This wasn't it.
As always, comments gratefully welcomed!