... Just at that moment the gate of one of the cottages nearby opened and a boy came rushing out. He looked scared, and that was no wonder, because head over heels after him came five other boys. ... (emphasis mine)
I had never seen the phrase "head over heels" to mean, as it seems to from this context, "immediately after." I looked it up and found, in my Shorter Oxford, and on dictionary.com, only the meanings I already knew (topsy-turvy and intensely infatuated). On Wiktionary I did find this second definition, which does seem to fit the sentence:
At top speed; frantically
This question and this question both discuss "head over heels" but not with this meaning. Is it commonly recognized, today? And is it more British English? (I do not know, but assume that the translator of this edition was British, based on other expressions in the book).