"And not one fell out or came to me with sore feet," said the Doctor stoutly. "Boys? Well, hang it all! they're not such boys as there were in the old 34th."
"What do you mean?" said the Major, shooting his eyeglass again.
"In the Peninsular War, sir," said the Doctor; "a regiment of boys, whose ages were from fourteen to sixteen, and they behaved splendidly."
"That's right," said the Colonel, nodding his head.
"Oh yes," cried the Major superciliously; "but they had only the French to fight against. Any English boy could thrash a Frenchman."
"Don't despise the French, Graham," said the Colonel quietly. "They are a very brave and gallant nation; and as to our lads, I certainly agree that they are very young; but when, as the Doctor says, they have been out here a bit, and put on more muscle--"
"But, hang it all, sir!" cried the Major, "they didn't come out here to put on muscle, but to fi