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Army Boys in the French Trenches by Homer Randall

And do you know what the enlistment board did to him


groggy," responded Tom. "But I'm not kicking. I'm lucky to be alive at all. That fellow made an awful swipe at me, and if it had hit me fair it would have been all over."

"A miss is as good as a mile," put in Bart. "I had a pretty close shave myself. Seemed as though twenty star shells were going off at once."

"Yesterday was your lucky day," remarked Billy. "You had two narrow escapes."

"Let's hope it won't be three times and out," responded Bart lightly." By the way, I wonder what they did with that corporal who tried to do me up?"

"Most likely he's shot by this time," observed Tom. "If he isn't, he ought to be."

"He isn't shot yet at any rate," remarked Fred Andon, who sat near by. "I guess the fighting was so hot all day yesterday that they didn't have time to attend to him. Likely enough he's down in the prisoners' pen waiting for the court-martial."

"Let's go down and see after we've finished our chow," suggested Billy. "That is if you fellows ever get through eating. Look at Tom stowing it away. He'd eat his way through the whole quartermaster's department if he was let."

"And he's the fellow that they wouldn't let enlist because of his teeth," gibed Bart. "They didn't know Tom."

"I'm not the only

one that got a raw deal," replied Tom, with whom it was always a sore point that he had been refused when he wanted to enlist, but had been accepted in the draft. "There's a drafted man here who was telling me the other day that he walked ninety miles to enlist. And do you know what the enlistment board did to him?"

"What?" was the query.

"Turned him down because he had flat feet," responded Tom. "Told him he wouldn't be able to stand a five-mile hike."

There was a roar of laughter.

"I heard another good one," chimed in Billy. "A fellow wanted to enlist, and the examining board wanted to reject him because he had a cast in his eye. 'Oh, that's all right,' he drawled, 'I allus shets that eye anyway when I shoot.' That made them laugh and he got by."

In high spirits they finished their meal, and as they were off duty for the next hour or two, made their way down to that quarter of the field where the prisoners' camp was placed.

Behind the barrier at the point nearest them they saw one bulky captive, who was munching contentedly the food that had been given him, and who had none of the woe-begone expression that a man in his position is commonly expected to show.

"See him shovel it in," laughed Billy.

"He doesn't seem to have a care in the world," remarked Bart.

"Probably glad to be behind our machine guns instead of in front of them," conjectured Tom.

"Hello, Heinie!" said Frank good-naturedly.

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