The Disappearance A Second Time Round
It was the Colonel and Thorpe who were there to see their ex-colleague off on his flight of discovery that time during Many Happy Returns. I wonder how the Colonel felt when the news reached him of the disappearance of the Gloster Meteor jet aircraft? That his ex-colleague had died in an air accident at sea. Would that have sounded alarm bells I wonder. And how extensive would the search have been once the wreckage of the Meteor jet was discovered. If the aircraft was crashed deliberately, it may not have been of course, as it could have landed at the village's landing stage as previously mentioned in the episode of The Schizoid Man. But then their ex-colleague would still have disappeared, so surely his disappearance would still have seen a search initiated by the Colonel, with or without the recovery of wreckage of the aircraft.
This is of course speculation, as one cannot tell how the Colonel would have reacted to the news of the second disappearance of his ex-colleague. However one thing is for sure, Thorpe would be meeting with his ex-colleague again soon in the village during Hammer Into Anvil, fictionally speaking of course.
The Manipulation of Such A Community As This
No.6 has learned well by the time of Hammer Into Anvil, about the manipulation of such a community as this. He knows just what the weasle character is, now situated behind the counter of the General Store. No.6 knows that he is being watched by the Shopkeeper as he listens to the records of Bizet's L'arlesiene, and uses this to his advantage, along with the planted words Security which No.6 has circled on the front page of the Tally Ho. For No.6 knows that the Shopkeeper will instantly telephone No.2 the moment he leaves the General Store, and watches as the Shopkeeper goes running off towards the Green Dome with said LP records and copy of the Tally Ho under his arm.
No.2 is also manipulated by No.6, in the way he does not trust the people around him, and after reading a planted message written out by No.6 to XO4 and signed D6, arrives at the conclusion that No.6 is a plant! And so no harm must come to him, otherwise our masters will know!
No.6 also works on No.2's paranoia by placing a message in the personal column of the Tally Ho from Don Quixote "Hay mas mal en el aldea que se suene" which translates into "There is more harm in the village than is dreamt." No.14 can see No.6's game, and exactly what he's up to, to undermine No.2's authority. But No.2 fails to listen as no harm must come to No.6, believing him to be a plant.
The Supervisor-No.28 is not above No.6's manipulative powers, as he reads a birthday greeting to No.6 all over the village "May the sun shine on you today and everyday." If only he knew that it wasn't No.6's birthday. No.6 took a risk there, because if the Supervisor had known the game might have been up for No.6.
The only man in the village who might have stopped No.6, was No.14, but he was mistrusted by No.2, although that mistrust is misplaced. And physically No.14 wasn't up to the job, No.6 soon despatched him through the French door of his cottage!
The head of Psychiatrics was also called into the equation, as he was telephoned by No.6. No.6 isn't mad, but the psychiatrist isn't so sure about No.2 who becomes very irate when he thinks the psychiatrist is trying to tell No.2 his job "Do you want to sit in this chair?" And the right word in the leader of the Brass band's ear and he's soon called into No.2's office for interrogation. But the leader of the Brass Band doesn't know anything, he's simply a pawn in No.6's game. "Oh get out, get out!"
No.6's manipulation of certain members of the community was only made possible due to a weak link in the chain of command, and No.2's paranoia about a conspiracy within in the village. This was prevalent from the very beginning of Hammer Into Anvil, in No.2's call for an increase in vigilance, that being The Tally Ho headline, and warning the citizens of the community that "We must constantly be on guard against enemies in our midst." The Security of the Community is at risk!
Part of No.6's manipulation of No.2 was to be able to use No.2's 'witch hunt' against him, and thus bring him to his knees. And forcing No.2 to report his own breakdown, well it was a nice touch, but then No.6 could hardly report No.2 himself....... Could he now?