Lucas, the cyclist of the battery, succeeded in finding two bottles of champagne, which he hid in a corner of the guard-house where Le Bidois, who was on sentry duty, kept an eye on them.
Lucas is a young draughtsman of talent. His character is faithfully reflected by his face fresh, mobile, perhaps a little feminine. You meet him in the morning and he seizes you by the arm :
“Oh, my dear chap . . . such a pretty little woman … a perfect dream! . . .”
And the same evening he will say: “Oh, my dear chap . . . such a fraud. . . . No, not a word. I . . . What a fraud!”
It appears that at Damvillers, a neighbouring village, he has made the conquest of a little woman who sells tobacco. And he still manages to get hold of cigarettes, writing-paper, liqueurs, and even champagne, whereas no one else has been able to lay hands on any of these luxuries for some time past.
When night fell he gave us a sign, and Deprez and I followed him to the door of the guard-house in which loomed the lanky figure of Le Bidois, who was leaning on his sword. The guard-house is an old tumble-down hut only kept erect by the ivy growing round it. The door only boasts one hinge, and the worm-eaten steps leading to the loft are crumbling into dust. But still we found it a snug enough place in which to drink our champagne.