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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

devoid of mystery when I arrived at Kinjack's head-
quarters. The circumstances now made it permissible
for me to feel tired and hungry, but for the moment I
rather expected congratulations. My expectation was
an error. Kinjack sat glowering in a surface dug-out
in a sand-pit at the edge of Bottom Wood. I went in
from the sunlight. The overworked Adjutant eyed me
sadly from a corner of an ammunition box table cov-
ered with a grey blanket, and the Colonel's face caused
me to feel like a newly captured prisoner. Angrily he
asked why I hadn't come back with my company
bombers in the early morning. I said I'd stayed up
there to see what was happening. Why hadn't I con-
solidated Wood Trench? Why the hell hadn't I sent
back a message to let him know that it had been occu-
pied? I made no attempt to answer these conundrums.
Obviously I'd made a mess of the whole affair. The
Corps Artillery bombardment had been held up for
three hours because Kinjack couldn't report that "my
patrol" had returned to Quadrangle Trench, and al-
together he couldn't be blamed for feeling annoyed
with me, especially as he'd been ticked off over the
telephone by the Brigadier (in Morse Code dots and
dashes, I suppose). I looked at him with a sulky grin,
and went along to Barton with a splitting headache
and a notion that I ought to be thankful that I was
back at all.

In the evening we were relieved. The incoming
battalion numbered more than double our own
strength (we were less than 400) and they were un-
seasoned New Army troops. Our little trench under
the trees was inundated by a jostling company of

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