The sun had dipped below the horizon and it was getting dark.

The Great Plan

'We've absolutely got to stop them!' Sophie cried. 'Put me back in your pocket quick and we'll chase after them and warn everyone in England they're coming.'

'Redunculus and um-possiple,' the BFG said. 'They is going two times as fast as me and they is finishing their guzzle before we is halfway.'

'But we can't just sit here doing nothing!' Sophie cried. 'How many girls and boys are they going to eat tonight?'

'Many,' the BFG said. 'The Fleshlumpeating Giant alone has a most squackling whoppsy appetite.'

'Will he snatch them out of their beds while they're sleeping?'

'Like peas out of a poddle,' the BFG said.

'I can't bear to think of it!' Sophie cried.

'Then don't,' the BFG said. 'For years and years I is sitting here on this very rock every night after night when they is galloping away, and I is feeling so sad for all the human beans they is going to gobble up. But I has had to get used to it. There is nothing I can do. If I wasn't a titchy little runty giant only twenty-four feet high then I would be stopping them. But that is absolutely out of the window.'

'Do you always know where they're going?' Sophie asked.

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'Always,' the BFG said. 'Every night they is yelling at me as they go bootling past. The other day they was yelling "We is off to Mrs Sippi and Miss Souri to guzzle them both!"'

'Disgusting,' Sophie said. 'I hate them.'

She and the Big Friendly Giant sat quietly side by side on the blue rock in the gathering dusk. Sophie had never felt so helpless in her life. After a while, she stood up and cried out, 'I can't stand it! Just think of those poor girls and boys who are going to be eaten alive in a few hours time! We can't just sit here and do nothing! We've got to go after those brutes!'

'No,' the BFG said.

'We must!' Sophie cried. 'Why won't you go?'

The BFG sighed and shook his head firmly. 'I has told you five or six times,' he said, 'and the third will be the last. I is never showing myself to human beans.'

'Why ever not?'

'If I do, they will be putting me in the zoo with all the jiggyraffes and cattypiddlers.'

'Nonsense,' Sophie said.

'And they will be sending you straight back to a norphanage,' the BFG went on. 'Grown-up human beans is not famous for their kindnesses. They is all squifflerotters and grinksludgers.'

'That simply isn't true!' Sophie cried angrily. 'Some of them are very kind indeed.'

'Who?' the BFG said. 'Name one.'

'The Queen of England,' Sophie said. 'You can't call her a squifflerotter or a grinksludger.'

'Well ...' the BFG said.

'You can't call her a squeakpip or a notmucher either,' Sophie said, getting angrier and angrier.

'The Fleshlumpeater is longing dearly to guzzle her up,' the BFG said, smiling a little now.

'Who, the Queen?' Sophie cried, aghast.

'Yes,' the BFG answered. 'Fleshlumpeater says he is never eating a queen and he thinks perhaps she has an especially scrumdiddlyumptious flavour.'

'How dare he!' Sophie cried.

'But Fleshlumpeater says there is too many soldiers around her palace and he dursent try it.'

'He'd better not!' Sophie said.

'He is also saying he would like very much to guzzle one of the soldiers in his pretty red suit but he is worried about those big black furry hats they is wearing. He thinks they might be sticking in his throat.'

'I hope he chokes,' Sophie said.

'Fleshlumpeater is a very careful giant,' the BFG said.

Sophie was silent for a few moments. Then suddenly, in a voice filled with excitement, she cried out, 'I've got it! By golly, I think I've got it!'

'Got what?' asked the BFG.

'The answer!' cried Sophie. 'We'll go to the Queen! It's a terrific idea! If I went and told the Queen about these disgusting man-eating giants, I'm sure she'd do something about it!'

The BFG looked down at her sadly and shook his head. 'She is never believing you,' he said. 'Never in a month of Mondays.'

'I think she would.'

'Never,' the BFG said. 'It is sounding such a wonky tall story, the Queen will be laughing and saying "What awful rubbsquash!'"

'She would not!'

'Of course she would,' the BFG said. 'I has told you before that human beans is simply not believing in giants.'

'Then it's up to us to find a way of making her believe in them,' Sophie said.

'And how is you getting in to see the Queen anyway?' the BFG asked.

'Now hold on a sec,' Sophie said. 'Just you hold on a sec because I've got another idea.'

'Your ideas is full of crodswoggle,' the BFG said.

'Not this one,' Sophie said. 'You say that if we tell the Queen, she would never believe us?'

'I is certain she wouldn't,' the BFG said.

'But we aren't going to tell her!' Sophie said excitedly. 'We don't have to tell her! We'll make her dream it!'

'That is an even more frothbungling suggestion,' the BFG said. 'Dreams is lots of fun but nobody is believing in dreams either. You is only believing in a dream while you is actually dreaming it. But as soon as you is waking up you is saying "Oh thank goodness it was only a dream".'

'Don't you worry about that part of it,' Sophie said. 'I can fix that.'

'Never can you fix it,' the BFG said.

'I can! I swear I can! But first of all, let me ask you a very important question. Here it is. Can you make a person dream absolutely anything in the world?'

'Anything you like,' the BFG said proudly.

'If I said I wanted to dream that I was in a flying bathtub with silver wings, could you make me dream it?'

'I could,' the BFG said.

'But how?' Sophie said. 'You obviously don't have exactly that dream in your collection.'

'I do not,' the BFG said. 'But I could soon be mixing it up.'

'How could you mix it up?'

'It is a little bit like mixing a cake,' the BFG said. 'If you is putting the right amounts of all the different things into it, you is making the cake come out any way you want, sugary, splongy, curranty, Christmassy or grobswitchy. It is the same with dreams.'

'Go on,' Sophie said.

'I has dillions of dreams on my shelfs, right or left?'

'Right,' Sophie said.

'I has dreams about bathtubs, lots of them. I has dreams about silver wings. I has dreams about flying. So all I has to do is mix those dreams together in the proper way and I is very quickly making a dream where you is flying in a bathtub with silver wings.'

'I see what you mean,' Sophie said. 'But I didn't know you could mix one dream with another.'

'Dreams like being mixed,' the BFG answered. 'They is getting very lonesome all by themselves in those glassy bottles.'

'Right,' Sophie said. 'Now then, do you have dreams about the Queen of England?'

'Lots of them,' the BFG said.

'And about giants?'