Learning Lessons is the Second episode in Season 1 of Sodor's Tales and Continuation of the last episode A Snobbish Return!
This episode was co-written with George (SodorsNWRSteam)
After being punished for his snobbish behavior by the Fat Controller, D261 stares longingly outside into the yards, wishing he has something to do. His growling stops when the Fat Controller comes back and threatens to send him back to England if the diesel misbehaves again. After finishing, he walks away.
Edward arrives a few minutes later with some trucks and gives the diesel a few words about how lucky they are to be on the NWR and not the cutter's torch. D261 just sniffs and looks away, but the wise Larger Seagull tells him to heed his warning. With that, Edward leaves.
D261 is later visited by some workmen who declare he has enough fuel to take a goods train to Crovan's Gate. The diesel is hardly used to pulling goods, but the thought of being away from the sheds sticks in his mind and he oils away.
Later in the yards, D261 shunts his train behind him, but is a potent target of teasing by the others. Murdoch then passes by with a brake van, telling him to watch out for bowler hats and make sure his engine doesn't fail along the way. The Class 40 grits his teeth and leaves without a word.
As D261 hums along the mainline, he is glad to be out of the sheds and back at work. He stops at a signal to let another goods train pass through and stares at the new scenery around him. D261 is soon distracted when he hears an oily purring sound - only to see Diesel coming the other way. The two diesels exchange words until the little shunter gives the bigger diesel a piece of his mind, telling him that there is nothing they can do and he should think before he acts. D261 just responds with an angry "PAH!" and oils away.
After a short while, Crovan's Gate comes into view and D261 is soon shunted into a siding, disgruntled that he has to wait again. After a short while, he feels something liquid-like lapping against his wheels. Then he finds the problem: oil is dripping from his tank onto the track below him.
The shunter arrives and gives the Class 40 his instructions, but D261 is so eager to get the job done he neglects to say anything about his leak. He splutters into life and reverses down the track, but his bumping spills more oil onto the tracks. As he picks up speed, the diesel starts to slip on the oily rails and applying the brakes has no effect. Managing a cry of, "HELP! I can't stop!", D261 goes faster and faster until the train's brake van ploughs through the buffers into a pile of ballast behind.
The Fat Controller soon arrives and, unimpressed with the diesel's behavior, gives him a piece of his mind. He notes that the incident could have been prevented had D261 told the workmen about his leak and carries out his threat, telling him he shall not return until he can be trusted to behave. With that, he angrily walks away.
The next day, D261 is back in the yards and is coupled up to Edward. He apologizes for his silly behavior and exchanges words with the wise Larger Seagull, before noting that perhaps if he were a better engine, he could come back. Edward has been looking forward to that day and with that, the two engines depart for the Other Railway.
Upon hearing that the diesel has been sent packing again, spirits are a little lifted. D261 has disgraced himself, but perhaps he'll come back sooner or later when he is a better engine.
◾D261 ◾Diesel ◾Edward ◾The Fat Controller ◾Murdoch ◾Duck (cameo) ◾Douglas (cameo) ◾Toby (cameo) ◾Bear (cameo) ◾Toad (cameo) ◾S.C.Ruffey (cameo) ◾Lorry 2 (cameo) ◾Lorry 3 (cameo)
◾This is D261's last appearance. ◾This is Diesel's first speaking role to date. ◾Bear and Murdoch was meant to appear in two more shots with D261 passing them, but that was soon removed from the final film. The same occurs with shots of D261 and Edward leaving for the Other Railway. ◾This is the first time the narrator breaks the fourth wall, his final quote being, "But perhaps he'll become a better engine. I hope so. Don't you?"