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Red Kelly is a fictional talkative youngster, and ally from author Charlie Higson's 2005 Young Bond novel SilverFin. He later returned in Double or Die.

Novel biography

Early Life

The Kelly family originated in Ireland, and built the railroad down into London, following the work, and not earning a healthy reputation with authority. Red Kelly was born in the poor parts of London, and never left his hometown, except for when his family went down to Kent to pick hops.

SilverFin

After the disappearance of his cousin, Alfie Kelly, and the lack of any kind of investigation into the occurrence, Red took it on himself to go to Scotland to investigate. Pretending to have lost his ticket, Red enlisted the help of James Bond to get aboard and stow away on the train. Bond allowed Kell to share his compartment, and while heading to the toilet, he saved Bond from a beating at the hands of George Hellebore. After breaking away from Bond, Kelly hitched a ride by skating behind a bus and met up with his aunt Annie Kelly. The two later went to a circus in Kiethley, where Red spotted James in the crowd, and went to say hello afterward. Annie and James's aunt Charmian gave the boys some money, which they spent to play carnival games and buy a bag of toffee, although when they were eating it two young men came up at attacked them on the grounds that they "didn't like the English". Red quickly sent one of the men to the ground with a bloody nose, and James delivered a good blow, which enticed them to back off. James said he had seen George Hellebore pay the lads beforehand, and the two made plans to investigate the Hellebore Estate for leads on Alfie the next day. In the morning, Red met James in town and they set off on a straight path that shortened the journey, but soaked Red's shoes clean through. While resting at an abandoned monastery, Red was ready to give up and let James continue, when they were approached by Wilder Lawless on her horse. She gave them a small lead on Alfie's whereabouts, and Red was immediately smitten with her. This improved his mood during the trek ahead. When they reached Hellebore's land, James spots a patch of fresh earth and guesses Alfie might have dug under and it had later been filled in. However they are quickly discovered by Meatpacker Moran, a detective from Pinkerton's, who was there to investigate. He and James observed the castle before the boys had to return home. After some investigation, they discovered that Meatpacker had been killed, and they decided to infiltrate the castle using Red's burglary skills. Before deciding to stow away in a lorry, Red hollowed out the sole of one of James' shoes, to form a secret compartment. After that, they crawled through a ditch and into the back of an awaiting lorry, from which they escaped and searched for a less conspicuous place to spend the night. They crossed the grounds to an abandoned shed, whose stone cellar they slept in until they were sure the rest of the compound had gone to sleep. Red then roused James, and they attempted to climb a sickly tree across the moat and into an open window. Unfortunately, Kelly's fear of heights and inexperience with trees lead him to fall to the ground and break his leg. Despite this, he pushed for James to continue on alone. Red used a broken broomstick to get back to the shack, and splinted his leg while formulating a plan for their escape. They decided to steal one of the lorries. Unfortunately, they were followed, and they had to abandon their transport at a farm where Red hid and stowed away in the back of one of Hellebore's lorries before sucking out and being discovered by Wilder Lawless. Red informed her of the danger and went to tell James' aunt. Together they drove to Hellebore's castle, which was on fire, and James was unconscious.

After James was healthy, the boys met again at James' uncle Max Bond's memorial service, and Red reflected on the odd nature of their friendship, and they acknowledged that they would likely never see one another again. Wilder then rode in to say goodbye, and left them both with a quick kiss, which finally put Red at a loss for words.

Double or Die

After hearing his little sister Kelly Kelly and her gang threatening someone in the alley, Red went out to see that the sleeping James Bond was the object of heir torment. After learning that James was searching for a ship in the harbor to find a missing person, he got Bond the proper information and sent him through the abandoned pneumatic rail system, which the local gangs had fixed and converted to electric power to use for smuggling. He was later contacted by Perry Mandeville, and the two gathered a small army of Hackney natives to come to Bond's aid. They fought off the Russian sailors that were on the dock, and he and three relatives joined James in going back on the ship to destroy a code breaking machine that was inside. At he machine, the mortally wounded John Charnage revealed to Red that the way to break the machine was to crash the ship's motors. He and Red then went to the motor room and were able to destroy them, and Red was able to leave the ship, before going after Bond who had gone back into the rail system to rescue Alexis Fairburn and Mandeville, who had been kidnapped by Colonel Irina Sedova.

References