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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

pretensions were unmasked. (He had been an ob-
scure bank clerk in Liverpool.) His hyphenated name
became an object of ridicule. His whole spurious
edifice fell to bits. He got into trouble with the
Adjutant for cutting parades and failing to pass in
musketry. In fact, he was found to be altogether
unreliable and a complete cad. For two and a half
years he remained ignominiously at the Camp.
Fresh officers arrived, were fully trained, and passed
away to the trenches. In the meantime guards had
to be provided for the docks along the Mersey, and
"Pardon-me" was usually in command of one of
these perfunctory little expeditions. He must have
spent some dreary days at the docks, but it was
rumoured that he consoled himself with amorous
adventures. Then, when he least expected it, he was
actually sent to the Front. Luck was against him;
he was introduced to the Ypres salient at its worst.
His end was described to me as follows: "Poor old
Tardon-me'! He was in charge of some Lewis
gunners in an advance post. He crawled back to
Company headquarters to get his breakfast. You
remember what a greedy devil he was! Well, about
an hour after he'd gone back to his shell-hole, he
decided to chance his arm for another lot of eggs and
bacon. A sniper got him while he was on his way,
and so he never got his second breakfast!"

It was a sad story, but I make no apology for
dragging it from its decent oblivion. All squalid,
abject, and inglorious elements in war should
be remembered. The intimate mental history of
any man who went to the War would make
unheroic reading. I have half a mind to write my
own.

In the meantime there is nothing more to be said
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