He took no interest in anything that I said. His house of two storeys was down, his son was dead, the little village of Croisilles had gone away; he had only one hope from the future. When I had finished speaking of the future, he raised a knobbed stick that he carried, up to the level of his throat, surely his son's old trench stick, and there he let it dangle from a piece of string in the handle, which he held against his neck. He watched me shrewdly and attentively meanwhile, for I was a stranger and was to be taught something I might not know--a thing that it was necessary for all men to learn. "Le Kaiser," he said. "Yes;" I said, "the Kaiser." But I pronounced the word Kaiser differently from him, and he repeated again "Le Kaiser," and watched me closely to be sure that I understood. And then he said "Pendu," and made the stick quiver a little as it dangled from its string. "Oui," I said, "Pendu."
Did I understand? He was not yet quite sure. It was important that this thing should be quite