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presumably, pained by the War and its barbarities, I
glared morosely in the direction of Lambeth Palace
and muttered, "Silly old fossil!" Soon afterwards I
got off the 'bus at Piccadilly Circus and went into the
restaurant where I had arranged to meet Julian

With Durley I reverted automatically to my active
service self. The war which we discussed was re-
stricted to the doings of the Flintshire Fusiliers. Old
So-and-so had been wounded; poor old Somebody
had been killed in the Bullecourt show; old Somebody
Else was still commanding B Company. Old jokes
and grotesquely amusing trench incidents were re-
enacted. The Western Front was the same treacher-
ous blundering tragi-comedy which the mentality of
the Army had agreed to regard as something between
a crude bit of fun and an excuse for a good grumble.
I suppose that the truth of the matter was that we
were remaining loyal to the realities of our war ex-
perience, keeping our separate psychological secrets
to ourselves, and avoiding what Durley called "his
dangerous tendency to become serious". His face,
however, retained the haunted unhappy look which it
had acquired since the Delville Wood attack last
autumn, and his speaking voice was still a hoarse

When I was ordering a bottle of hock we laughed
because the waiter told us that the price had been re-
duced since 1914, as it was now an unpopular wine.
The hock had its happy effect, and soon we were
agreeing that the Front Line was the only place where
one could get away from the War. Durley had been
making a forlorn attempt to enter the Flying Corps,
and had succeeded in being re-examined medically.
The examination had started hopefully, as Durley had