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Loitering at a Loose End

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Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Fri Jul 04, 2008 9:12 am

Cotton had finally got the redcoat officer sorted out. His friend, the tall, scarred Rifleman, had said he didn't think Hakeswill would try anything so soon after Williams was acquitted, so he'd left the officer's billet to head back towards his own.

Well, heading towards his own billet didn't mean he'd get there. He found himself in the square outside the building currently designated Army Headquarters, with the courthouse and Officers' Mess nearby.

He found himself a corner where he could be out of the way, and watched the people (mostly officers) passing through the square. He liked categorising them; working out what animal they reminded him of. That Captain Padstowe, for instance, reminded him of a cat: friendly, but secretive and with claws if you rubbed him up the wrong way.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Obadiah Hakeswill on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:11 am

Hakeswill did not usually venture near Headquarters. Even though he intimidated most officers he was stil a ranker, and rankers were not comfortable around massed numbers of the upper classes - especially when they had it in their power to make life unpleasant for you. He was here on a particular mission, and he had made sure his uniform was spotless and gleaming afore he turned the street into the square. What he was about to do would need a lot of nerve, precise drill and absolute deference.

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Obadiah Hakeswill
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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:18 am

He wasn't sure why he was here. Yes, he was out of the way, but there were officers all over the place, and it wasn't exactly the sort of place where they wanted to meet a Rifleman. Nor was it the sort of place where he should be hanging around for too long. He glanced up at the sky before turning to head back to his billet. It was Tom Roper's turn to cook, and he'd promised to help out if needed. Which was only fair, if Captain Vickery was to get a share of it, after all.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Obadiah Hakeswill on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:36 am

The Sergeant paused as he entered the square, re-thinking what he was going to say and how he was goingto say it as he ajusted his acoutraments. Always look smart and speak up to the officers and you would have them eating out of your hands...

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:46 am

He'd been standing near a baker's barrow, keeping out of the way. What with all the officers around here, if he hadn't, his arm would have dropped off by now from saluting them all. He pulled his jacket straight and tugged his belt back into place, sliding his sword-bayonet frog round a little more to keep from tangling his legs. He slung his rifle over his shoulder, and froze.

Sergeant Hakeswill was entering the square from the road across from where he was. He stepped back slowly, putting the barrow between them and receiving a puzzled look from the woman in charge of it. It might not be much cover, but it was certainly better than being right out in the open.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Obadiah Hakeswill on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:53 am

But Hakeswill was too concerned with his own affairs to take notice of a half-hidden rifleman as he marched swiftly across the square, stopped at the sentries on the door and announced his intentions.

"I has urgent business with Captain Padstowe, lads, gen'leman of the 50th what wishes to see me - so step aside and let me through like the good sons of 'ores you are."

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Obadiah Hakeswill
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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:59 am

Well, that was strange. The Sergeant marched straight across to Headquarters and up the steps, pausing to speak to the sentries. What could he possibly want in there?

The sentries stood aside, allowing the Sergeant in, and showing Cotton again the truth of the fact that if you looked like you had business somewhere, even somewhere you ordinarily weren't permitted to be, you could get away with it. though quite what he was planning on getting away with , Cotton was unsure.

Though both Captain Padstowe and Mister Sharpe were in there. But surely he wouldn't try anything untoward right under Nosey's nose?

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And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Obadiah Hakeswill on Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:47 am

Once inside the sergeant went to ask where it was that Captain Padstowe could be found, and was directed to his office. However, he was about to mount the stairs when he saw the captain emerge from from a side room. Blast! He'd hoped he would find the captain out, but he might as well try grab the bull by the horns.

"Sir!" he cried, weaving through the assembled officers as politely as he could. "Sir! Captain Padstowe, sir!"

[OOC: Obadiah may hop over to the Headquarters thread.]

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Obadiah Hakeswill
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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:55 am

(OOC: OK. I'll maybe be outside for a bit...)

He hoped that whatever Hakeswill was up to, it wouldn't be something that couldn't be stopped, or sorted out, before it got as far as a court-martial and the possibility of a death sentence. Williams had got away by the skin of his teeth, and that for asking Hakeswill politely to leave his girl alone.

The Sergeant was mad, there was no doubt about that, but how did he keep it hidden from the officers?

"Should've bin sent to Bedlam years ago," he muttered to himself, receiving another curious look from the Portuguese baker, who crossed herself.

Well, if he was going to head back to his billet to help with dinner, he should take something for it. He dug in his pocket for his few coins.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:15 am

Hagman was wandering the streets for no particular reason. Though he was kind of hoping to find Sergeant Harper somewhere he knew his chances were near nill to just run into him. None the less he turned into the square where he knew the headquarters where. He didn't know what he expected from that but he had nowhere better to go anyway.

Passing a baker's barrow he recognised a familiar green jacket and he apporched the rifleman from behind with a sly grin on his face. Maybe he could spend some hours in good company before returning to where he and the other chosen men were stationed.

"Buenos dias, senorita" he nodded to the woman and turned to Cotton: "The bread any good, lad?"

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:28 am

Cotton jumped and spun round, to find Hagman standing beside him. "You fair frit me," he responded. "I just seen that there Sergeant Hakeswill goin' into Headquarters, an' I'm flummoxed what he's a-doin' in there." He turned back to complete his purchase. "It looks like it'll be better than the ration stuff," he said, taking a loaf. His haversack was just big enough to take it.

"Did you hear what that bastard of a sergeant tried to do to Williams?" he asked.

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And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:41 am

Seeing Cotton jump as if a ghost had just touched him Hagman felt a bit guilty at approaching him like that - but only for a moment as the look on Cotton's face was priceless.
"Sorry, Cotton. Didn't want to scare the hell out of you" he said with a fake innocent look on his face, not being able to conceal a triumphant grin completely.

But hearing the lad tell him that bastard of a Sergeant being around his countenance went immediately sober.
"No, I did not. What did that bloody bastard do?" he saked with genuine concern in his voice.

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:52 am

"I was only there right at the end, bein' with the guard, y'see," Cotton answered, stepping away from the stall to let someone else buy. "Your Mister Sharpe was headin' home from the Mess when he got jumped from behind. He thought he was followed, so he'd loaded his rifle with powder, so he fired it and his attacker went runnin' off. Williams had seen it, so he come down to see if Mister Sharpe was all right, and got nabbed by Hakewsill for assaultin' an officer when he weren't nowhere nearby to do it." He sighed and rubbed his hand off on his trousers.

"So we gets called out to come and put them under arrest, 'cause Mister Sharpe insisted it was Hakeswill who'd done the jumpin'. And it all comes to trial where this Captain Padstowe is defendin' officer and gets Williams off by makin' them all think it was maybe someone else who'd jumped Mister Sharpe."

All that, over a polite request to leave a girl alone. "Williams is off back with the Inniskillings now, keepin' out of the bastard's way, and I near pissed meself when I see him walkin' into the square."

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:37 am

He listed to Cotton's explanation with a look of genuine shock. He had of course heard about Sharpe's bad luck and the trial but didn't know till now who the unfortunate fellow had been that bastard of a Sergeant had got into trouble - to say the least. So it was Williams... lucky guy he had found an officer like Padstowe to defend his case.... it could have likely ended at the gallows with someone like Hakeswill for an enemy, of that he was sure.

"Damn bastard" he cursed in a low voice, following Cotton away from the few people that surrounded the baker's barrow.

"Again, I'm sorry Cotton to have scared ya" he said and this time he meant it onehundred percent. "That fella's a hell of a mad man and we should make sure ta stay away from him as far as possible"

"And what are you up to anyways so near headquaters? Did ya just come off duty?"

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:50 am

"No harm done," Cotton replied. His heart was still beating a little faster than usual, but he'd got over the shock. "You're quiet when you want to be, I'll give you that." He shot a grin at the other Rifleman. "After this morning, Captain Padstowe decided Williams needed a stiff drink, so four of us ended up in a taproom sharing a bottle of wine before Williams decided he ought to go and tell his mates what'd happened. So that left Mister Sharpe, Captain Padstowe and me sharin' a coupla bottles of wine. And of course the Captain gets lushed an' I have to help get him back to his billet."

Though quite why he'd ended up hanging around here was anybody's guess. "'M on me way back to me billet now, like," he said. "Just in case he decides to come along and give me summat else to worry about." He gestured back at the Headquarters building with his thumb, meaning Hakeswill. "So what are you doin' round here?" he asked, curious as to what had brought Hagman into the officers' part of Lisbon.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
avatar
Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:15 am

Now that Cotton mentioned that he'd been drinking with the Captain and Sharpe Hagman recognised a slight slur in the rifleman's tone - nothing one could easily identify though. He had to give it to the lad: he was a as good in taking a drink as he was in shooting.

He contemplated for a moment on answering the question about his being here and came to the conclusion that he didn't quite know himself.
"It's gettin' boring just waiting for orders, us not havin' much ta do lately. So I decided to go and look for Sergeant Harper and see if he has any news yet. But didn't know where ta find him so I just strolled 'round a bit and ended up here." He shrugged his shoulders. "But should probably best be going back or find some place where there's no mad Sergeant liekly to come seeking trouble."

"Where are ya stationed, Cotton?" He knew he had asked the lad that the other day but had already forgotton where it was. Maybe he could walk with him some of the way for the mere benefit to have some company.

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:51 am

"Just this ways a bit," he said, glad of the company. Even with Hakeswill now in Headquarters, he was a bit too close for Cotton's liking, and the very sight of him had unnerved the Rifleman a little. He just couldn't shake the doomed feeling he had. But company was good. Company was always good, and he wasn't billeted all that far from where he thought Hagman and the rest of Sharpe's men were.

"I know the 95th ain't in Lisbon, 'cause the regiment were in the retreat last winter," he said, thinking. "But how many of you are there here, and how come you'm here, not in England?" His head felt a bit muddled from the drink, so it was probably a stupid thing to ask, but suddenly he wanted to know.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:55 am

He was a bit surprised at Cotton's kind of questions but didn't mind them at all. He liked the lad and was grateful for the company.

"Aye, the 95th ain't here yet though we hope they'll arrive some day soon. On the retreat from Galicia me and some of the lads - thirty seven to be precise - under Lieutenant Sharpe's command got cut of. It was a damn close run I can tell ya. And when we arrived here the rest was already off and away, back to England as soon as they could." He paused for a moment contemplating on how it would be to be back home...
But it was no good thinking about that now so he looked at Cotton while walking beside him and continued "So we just stayed here and are awaiting orders since. But there has been some movement lately so I hope the bloody waiting'll be over soon and we'll have some proper action again."

"And what about you Cotton, how long have you and the 33rd been hangin' 'round in that stinkin' city?"

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:03 am

"The 33rd just got here, but the rest of the 60th - well, the fi'th battalion of it - have been here since November. Sir John Moore had some problems with men deserting to the French and decided it'd be easiest to send the whole battalion back here." He gave a lop-sided smile. "Though it weren't Major Davy's fault that someone had the bright idea of giving us some French prisoners-of-war, or some such thing. An' of course they was always goin' to run, first chance they got. But the rest of us're sound as a bell. So we ended up here instead of in a mad scramble across Galicia. So at least Nosey's got some Riflemen to take with him."

He frowned as a thought struck him. "Sergeant Harper? Big man, is he? 'Cause there was a sergeant of the 95th at the trial. Came with Mister Sharpe."

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
avatar
Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:16 am

He grinned at Cotton's description of the Irish Sergeant, brief as it may be. "Aye, that be Patrick Harper. He never ain't far ayway from where Lieutenant Sharpe is. Everybody needs someone to watch his back, even someone as damn lucky as Sharpe. Especially when there's someone like Hakeswill 'round."

[OOC: sorry for confusing Cotton's regiment Embarassed and thanks for correcting me in your answer quite smartly.]

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:25 am

"He sounds like a good Sergeant to have," Cotton replied. "He wus standin' next to me at the court martial, an' 'e made me feel like a boy stood next to a grown man." Cotton was five foot six, which was on the taller side of those in his company, but Harper had towered head and shoulders above him ."Must've been the biggest man in the room. Good man to have watchin' your back, an' all. Fr'm what I saw, anyways."

[OOC: that's OK; we all make mistakes and there's no harm done!]

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
avatar
Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/rifleman-gabr

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:43 am

A gentle smile replaced the grin on Hagman's lips at Cotton's words. He had never appeared more like a lad than in that moment, when he spoke about Patrick Harper with genuine awe. The army could make a man out of a boy but it couldn't take the boy out of a man completely, he thought.

"Ya should see how the Frogs run when they see Sergeant Harper on the field of battle. He can be a sight ta frighten the hell out'a even the bravest o' man, with his nock-gun and that stubborn Paddy's resolution shown in every fibre of his frame." He turned and looked at Cotton. "But to have him as a friend you can count yaself to be tha luckiest man on earth."

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:58 am

"It's allus good to have mates you can trust to be there when you need them," he said slowly. "That's the thing with us Riflemen; we know we can trust each other. We have to."

He felt the chill of dread that had had hold of him since that last encounter with Hakeswill start to loosen. If he had Sergeant Harper looking out for him, as well as his own mates and Dan Hagman, maybe he would get through without coming to any harm. He hoped Hakeswill didn't have it in for Dan like he did Williams and himself; but why should he? Dan had just sat there and not done anything. He hadn't needed to, of course, but he would've if he'd had to.

"I hardly know the man, though, Dan. We were just standin' next to each other, watchin' a man on trial for his life for summat he never done."

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Character by Sharpiefan | Timeline | Wiki page


And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
avatar
Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
Member since : 2008-05-14

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Guest on Mon Jul 07, 2008 10:23 am

"Aye, we always look out for eachother, us rifleman." He didn't hesitate to reassure the lad of the camaraderie the rifleman were known to have.
Hagman could sympathise with the feeling Hakeswille seemed to produce in Cotton. He had felt the same in that tavern, like getting some kind of presentiment of what that man was capable of.

"And Patrick Harper knows a friend by his actions... standing against the enemy, be that enemy from a different country or the own ranks." He squeezed Cotton's shoulder at this words, thinking the lad needed some reassurance. "I'm sure you were great support to poor Williams, like a true rifleman... like a friend."

Hagman thought that their mood was getting too depressed again so he decided for a change of topic. "But what are ya plans for the evening, lad? Are you on duty t'night or will you be 'round for some fun?" He smiled at Cotton, trying to cheer him up and get his thoughts distracted from that damn Sergeant for a while.

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Re: Loitering at a Loose End

Post  Gabriel Cotton on Mon Jul 07, 2008 10:40 am

Cotton was grateful for the reassurance, though a little annoyed with himself that he needed it.

"Aye, I'm up for a bit o' fun, like. I came off guard duty yesterday." He liked Hagman; he found the older Rifleman very easy to talk to. Of course, the fact they both wore green jackets and were proud of it helped.

"That's when you find out who your friends really are," he said. "When they stick by you when you're in trouble. I couldn't let him go through that without being there."

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And he sang as he marched through the crowded streets of Rochester,
"Who'll be a soldier for Wellington and me?" ~ The Rochester Recruit, trad.
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Gabriel Cotton
Captain

Species : 5/60th Rifles; Captain's servant
Number of posts : 4145
Location : Over the hills, and far away
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