“Throughout his life the memory of that happy day stayed locked secretly in (his) heart.”
“It's a long hard road ahead for you, little warrior. Enjoy a happy day while you can.
“We could have chopped down the sycamore with this...”
“Don't think about what you could have done, concentrate on what you plan to do; it is more useful.”
“Rowanoak clapped her hefty paws together. ‘Righto, clear the food away. We’ve got a show to rehearse. Felldoh, you look strong enough to be a good catcher . . .’ Celandine fluttered her eyelashes. ‘Ooh, he could catch me anytime of the season!”
“All night the fighting had been furious, with no let-up. Fur and Freedom Fighters had battled against flaming shafts with their bare paws and sand. Four lay dead and three wounded. Smoke-grimed and bleary-eyed, they had plucked burning arrows from the wood, strung them on their bows and returned them to stick blazing in the gates of Marshank. The javelin supply was depleted, one shaft being retained for each creature in the event that paw-to-paw combat would be their final stand. There were still plenty of rocks to sling, Keyla and Tullgrew taking charge of the slingers whilst Ballaw managed a frugal breakfast. The hare sat wearily against one of the sandbanks that had been shorn up either side of the cart, Rowanoak slumped beside him. Both were singed and smoke-grimed. Rowanoak drank half her water, passing the rest on to Brome, who distributed it among the wounded. The badger wiped a sandy paw across her scorched muzzle. ‘Well, Ballaw De Quincewold, what’s to report?’ The irrepressible hare wiped dust from his half-scone ration and looked up at the sky. ‘Report? Er, nothin’ much really, except that it looks like being another nice sunny day, wot!’ A flaming arrow extinguished itself in the sand close by Rowanoak. She tossed it on to a pile of other shafts waiting to be shot. ‘A nice day indeed. D’you think we’ll be around to see the sunset?’ Without waiting for an answer, she continued, ‘I wonder if that owl – Boldred, wasn’t it – I wonder if she ever managed to get through to this Martin the Warrior creature.’ Ballaw picked dried blood from a wound on his narrow chest. ‘Doesn’t look like it, does it? No, old Rowan me badger oak, I think the stage is all ours and it’ll be our duty to give the best performance we can before the curtain falls for the last time.”
“Bring forth the deadly dagger of death!’ Gauchee and Kastern came forward, bearing between them a red silk cushion. On it lay a long dagger which glittered wickedly in the firelight. Rowanoak chanted in the background,”
“I find that the less emotion I put into life, the less the past seems to hurt.”
“Women had been herded like cattle into the backs of trucks. Father and I got out of the taxi to stretch our legs. In one of the trucks, a woman lifted the tarpaulin sheet covering the back and peered outside. There was nothing peculiar about her except the blankness in her eyes. They were like a void that sucked you in. Years later, I saw a picture of a Jewish prisoner in Auschwitz. When I saw his eyes, my mind was immediately transported to that day, and I was reminded of the look in that woman’s eyes.”
“She named her horse Basil? That’s the worst name for a horse I ever heard.”
“it’s not even people anymore, it’s one big thing you want to control and once you’ve had a taste of it, you’re hooked. It’s like if you don’t have it you will die, do you know what I mean? Somebody’s handed you the baton and you can lead this rich, powerful orchestra. Does that make sense to you? I mean after that, leading a five-piece band means nothing, not after you’ve led that orchestra, thousands of people all playing the song just like you want them to.”
“Jane, this young man is Jacob, my oldest son. It’s no secret that a
headmistress’s biggest challenge is her family. Jacob, say hello to Jane.”
“Hello to Jane,” he parroted, pulling out the pockets of his shorts in a silly
I couldn’t decide if it was the dumbest thing I’d ever seen, or the funniest,
so I stared back at him.”
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