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The day book. [volume] (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, January 15, 1916, LAST EDITION, Image 18

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1916-01-15/ed-2/seq-18/

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THE GOD OF BATTLES
By Frank Filson
Edwardes, listening, could plainly
hear the 'sound of the German saps
being driven toward the Canadian
trenches. It was eerie, listening
there by the light of the electric
torch, burrowing like a mole beneath
the slushy Flanders soil and crouch
ing knee-deep in water, to prevent
striking his head against the tim
bered roof.
He wondered often whether the
Germans had heard him. Each side
was projecting a sap against the
trenches of the enemy. When the
saphead was ready hundreds of
pounds of gunpowder would be ig
nited; there would be a devastating
explosion, and the trenches, dam
aged beyond repair, would be occu
pied by the troops behind.
It was thus a race between the Ca
nadians and the Germans. The sap,
extended outward from the Canadian
lines, was now parallel with that of
the enemy, and the extremity of each
was barely a dozen yards from that
of the other.
The sappers were resting in the
traverse behind. Edwardes sat alone
in the water, figuring out the plan.
So many yards, so many cubic feet
of timber Milly, in Toronto; his
thoughts always recurred to her.
They were to have ben married a
month ago. But he had been fight
ing with his contingent for seven
weeks, and the marriage was post
poned indefinitely forever, probab
ly. Not many men would come back
to Canada; those who did would be
crippled beyond repair.
As he crouched there to his aston
ishment he found that he could hear
the voices of the Germans. There
was a flaw in the ground, a section
of the crumbling rock, soft as chalk,
had slipped, probably as a result of
the subterranean operations, leaving
a crack in the earth, imperceptible,
butconveying sounds clearly.
Two men were talking. Edwardes
smiled rather painfully at that He,
as the engineer, had nobody to talk
to during those rare minutes when
work was suspended. His task was
to qrouch in the water at the end of
the sap, waiting until the time came
for a resumption of the work. The
German was situated more fortun
nately. He could not hear the voices of his
own men. They had retired to the
traverse, their headquarters, waiting
for the relieving party. It waff time
Edwardes Did Not Throw the Bomb.
for the resumption. He left the sap
head and, bending double, trudged
back toward them through the
water.
Suddenly the earth rocked about
him. He was flung to the bottom of
the sap by a terrific explosion. The
plank roof collapsed over his head.
Stunned, dazed, bewildered, he man
aged by a supreme effort to keep his
face above the water.
In a few moments he understood
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