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By Robert Graves

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He stated that Dick used to be certainly not the blameless fellow I took him for, yet as undesirable as someone should be. I remembered that my cousin owed me a grudge, and determined that this has to be a really merciless act of spite. Dick’s letters have been my maximum stand-by a lot of these months at any time when I felt low; he wrote a week, often approximately poetry. They have been whatever sturdy and fresh to trigger opposed to the impermanence of trench existence and the sordidness of lifestyles in billets. i used to be now again in Béthune. officials of one other corporation had simply been telling me how that they had slept within the related room with a lady and her daughter. that they had tossed for the mum, as the daughter was once a ‘yellow-looking scaly little factor like a lizard’. The purple Lamp, the military brothel, used to be round the nook by and large highway. I had obvious a queue of 150 males ready open air the door, each one to have his brief flip with one of many 3 girls in the home. My servant, who had stood within the queue, instructed me that the cost was once ten francs a guy – approximately 8 shillings at the moment. each one lady served approximately a battalion of guys per week for so long as she lasted. in response to the assistant provost-marshal, 3 weeks was once the standard restrict: ‘after which she retired on her gains, faded yet proud. ’ i used to be constantly being teased simply because i wouldn't sleep regardless of the nicer ladies; and that i excused myself, now not on ethical grounds or on grounds of fastidiousness, yet within the purely means that they can comprehend: I acknowledged that I didn’t desire a dose. a great deal of speak in billets involved the odd bed-manners of Frenchwomen. ‘She was once really nice and entire of video games. but if I acknowledged to her: “S’il vous plaît, ôtes-toi l. a. chemise, ma chérie,” she wouldn’t. She stated: “Oh, no’-non, mon lieutenant. Ce n’est convenable. ”’ i used to be happy once we obtained again to the trenches. There I had a kind of reassuring letter from Dick. He informed me that my cousin did have a spite opposed to him and me, and admitted that he were ragging approximately in a foolish manner, yet that not anything undesirable had occurred. He stated he was once very sorry, and may cease it for the sake of our friendship. on the finish of July, Robertson, one of many different Royal Welch officials connected to the Welsh, and myself had orders to continue to the Laventie zone. We have been to report back to the second one Battalion of the Royal Welch Fusiliers. Frank Jones-Bateman and Hanmer Jones, extra folks, went to the 1st Battalion. the remainder of the six had already long past again: McLellan ailing, and Watkin with bomb wounds that experience stored him limping ever given that. We have been sorry to assert see you later to our males, who all crowded around to shake fingers and want us good fortune. Nor did we glance ahead to a clean commence, with a brand new corporation and new regimental customs. however it will be worthy it, simply to serve with our personal regiment. Robertson and that i agreed to take our trip as leisurely as attainable. Laventie lay basically seventeen miles off, yet our orders have been to ‘proceed via train’; so an organization mess-cart took us all the way down to Béthune. We requested the railway delivery officer what trains he had for Laventie.

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