Johnny was about to rebuke him, but the word died on his lips. "Pshaw!" he whispered to himself, "there's trouble enough without starting a quarrel beside an open grave."
Jarvis, who was the oldest man of the group and had been brought up in the Church of England, read a Psalm and a prayer, then with husky voice repeated:
"Ashes to ashes and dust to dust."
The hollow thump of frozen earth on the rude box coffin told that the ceremony was over.
One by one the men moved away, leaving only two behind to fill the grave.
Johnny strode off up the hill alone. He felt a great need to think. There was to be no more work that day. He would not be missed.
As he made his way slowly up the hill, his dark form stood out against the white background. Short, but square-shouldered and muscular, he fairly radiated his years of clean, vigorous living.
And Johnny Thompson wa