Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo

Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo

Author:Michael Morpurgo [Morpurgo, Michael]
Language: eng
Format: epub
ISBN: 9780007477838
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Published: 2012-02-18T11:00:00+00:00

Two days later, two days of parrying Mother’s many attempts to keep me from going, we all went off together to Eggesford Junction Station where Charlie and I were to catch the train to Exeter. Big Joe had not been told anything about us going off to war. We were going away for a while, and we’d be back soon. We didn’t tell him the truth, but we told him no lies either. Mother and Molly tried not to cry because of him. So did we.

“Look after Charlie for me, Tommo,” Molly said. “And look after yourself too.” I could feel the swell of her belly against me as we hugged.

Mother told me to promise to keep clean, to be good, to write home and to come home. Then Charlie and I were on the train — the first train we’d ever been on in our lives, and we were leaning out of the window and waving, only pulling back spluttering and coughing when we were engulfed suddenly in a cloud of sooty smoke. When it cleared and we looked out again, the station was already out of sight. We sat down opposite each other.

“Thanks, Tommo,” said Charlie.

“For what?” I said.

“You know,” he replied, and we both looked out of the window. There was no more to say about it. A heron lifted off the river and accompanied us for a while before veering away from us and landing high in the trees. A startled herd of Ruby Red cows scattered as we passed by, tails high as they ran. Then we were in a tunnel, a long dark tunnel filled with din and smoke and blackness. It seems like I’ve been in that tunnel every day since. So Charlie and I went rattling off to war. It all seems a very long time ago now, a lifetime.


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