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Intermediate. Years 7/8/9

The Day My Brother Left

By Francesca Sarchet, year 9, Les Beaucamps School

I woke up that morning with complete sadness and dread because I knew that it was the day my brother Chris left for war. I went downstairs to have our last meal as a family. Mum had prepared a huge breakfast and we all tried to stay calm at least until he left. None of us really said anything. All I could think was why him? Why would they want him? He was just a young country boy with no experience of fighting. Although part of me was really proud of him, most of me just wanted to cry. I wanted to plead with him not to go but I knew I shouldn’t because Chris was so excited. He and his friends had all signed up together in Pals Battalions. Lord Kitchener had promised that it would be such a great experience and adventure that he would never forget. “It’s going to be great you’ll see, we will all come back changed men. In any case, it will be over by Christmas,” he said excitedly.
“But what if you don’t come back at all?” I knew I shouldn’t have said it but I had to. I didn’t want to scare him. But it’s what he needed to hear.
“Don’t be silly! Of course we’ll come back, I promise,” Chris said.

That night I lay in bed and thought of him and how and what he was doing. I worried about him so much and wondered when he would be home. I could only hope and pray that he would stay safe and return to us. There was nothing else I could do. As time went on we all hoped that war would only last for a few months but it then turned into a year and then two. He wrote to us regularly, telling us stories about life in the trenches. Six months ago his letters stopped. He had become a casualty of war, his name just a statistic on a piece of paper. War had taken his life and shattered our entire existence forever.

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