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Action Front Boyd Cable

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The signaler being a very unimaginative man, possibly it might never have occurred to him to lie, to have told anything but the blunt truth that they did not take the trench; that the regiment had been cut to pieces in the attempt to take it; that the further attempt of another regiment on the same trench had been beaten back with horrible loss; that the lines on both sides, when he was sent to the rear late at night, were held exactly as they had been held before the attack; that the whole result of the action was nil--except for the casualty list. But he caught just in time the softly sighing whispered "Yes" from the unmoving lips of the Sister, and he lied promptly and swiftly, efficiently and at full length.

"Yes," he said. "We took it. I thought you knew that, and that you was wounded the other side of it; we took it all right. Got a hammering of course, but what was left of us cleared it with the bayonet. You should 'ave 'eard 'em squeal when the bayonet took 'em. There was one big brute----"

He was proceeding with a cheerful imagination, colored by past experiences, when the Sister stopped him. Wally's eyes were closed.

"I think," she said quietly, "that's all that Wally wants to know. Isn't it, Wally?"

The lids lifted slowly and the Sister could have cried at the glory and satisfaction that shone in them. They closed once softly, lifted slowly, and closed again tiredly and gently. That is all. Wally died an hour afterwards.

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Action Front
Boyd Cable

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