“So, Private Evans… Where are you from?” Major Fitzroy pulled off his glasses and fiddled with them.
“Um… Halton…” Evans gestured to the door, “I should get back to the 202nd. There might be a truck going in their direction.”
Major Fitzroy looked at his watch, “You can wait here, the 202nd is passing through here in two days. I remember because that Colonel with the funny name is in charge. Heh… Darling.” He then shrugged, “So what do you do in Halton?”
“It’s a small town. I’m a farmer.”
The Major’s eyes lit up and he leaned forward, “A Farmer! How Quaint. So you must now all about plants. Or I guess you call them nature growers.”
“No… That’s not a real thing sir.”
Major Anson yelled from upstairs, “Ben just thinks he’s all colloquial because his wife used to be poor!”
“Marjorie worked in the factory my father owned when we first met,” Major Fitzroy smiled, “It’s just like that operetta, The Gentleman and his Lady. Have you seen it Private?”
“I live on a farm Sir, we don’t have any theaters near by,” Evans shifted uncomfortably in his seat.
“Really? If you are ever in Newacre after the war, come find me, you can visit my box and we will take in a show!” Major Fitzroy was visibly excited. He noticed the ring on Evans’ finger and pointed, “And you can bring your Farm Wife! How wonderful.”
Major Anson came downstairs, “You don’t have to call it a Farm Wife Ben. It’s just Wife.”
“What do you know about wives?”
“I have 6 years experience as one, and my 4 children are a testament to my popularity in the position,” Major Anson walked to the jar, pulled out a cookie and offered it to Evans, “So do you want another cookie little guy? I can’t believe someone as young and small as you is married. And in the Army.”
“I’m 19 Ma’am, and I’m 25 centimeters taller than you,” he paused for a moment, “And yes I’ll have a cookie Ma’am”
“Aww,” Major Anson pinched his cheek and handed him a cookie, “You remind me of my oldest. He’s five.”
Major Fitzroy put on his glasses and started doing some paperwork, “Do you have any little farmlings with your Farm Wife?”
Evans smiled, “Not yet sir… I think… Anna is pregnant. If that’s what you mean by Farmling.” Evans reached into his breast pocket and pulled out the picture of Anna in the Mauve dress, “Here’s a picture of her. She’s wearing a dress in that fancy new color Mauve sir.”
Major Anson leaned over and looked at the picture, “Ooh, I have a Mauve dress. It is a lovely color.” She nodded, “I think I’ll wear it to dinner tonight… Little Evans, do you have a cleaner uniform? We are having guests over for dinner, and I will not have you wearing that ratty thing and embarrassing us.”
“Ma’am, I only have the things I’m wearing right now,” Evans looked down at his uniform. He hadn’t taken it off in over a week. It was covered in blood and sweat, and it reeked of death. It was ripped all over. Evans looked down at the hole in his pants where the bullet had passed through. At least most of the blood wasn’t his.
“Alright,” Major Fitzroy furled his brow, “I think we might have an enlisted uniform somewhere around here that is about your size. You will have to sew your stripes on, and, since you will be doing sewing anyways, and you do not have anything else to do today, Elise and I will give you some items to sew.”
Major Fitzroy led Evans upstairs to the radio room and showed him the sewing machine and the uniform. The room was mostly empty except for the radio set up, the sewing machine, a bed, and a trunk labeled “Major Anson”. All the windows were boarded up, and the only light came from some candles around the room. Evans started working on the uniform. When he was finished, he quickly changed into his new uniform. He then started to work on things that the Majors had brought him. Over they day, the two occasionally brought him food and water. Major Anson would use the radio on occasion to call the staff headquarters.
It was long, boring work. Mostly repairing the Majors’ uniforms, occasionally repairing a flag or pillowcases. While was eating lunch, he wrote another letter to Anna. He then got excited. After this long time in Urbs, he could finally send all his letters. Then he went back to work.
At about six forty in the evening, Evans was getting tired. He had been awake for almost an entire day by this point. Major Anson came up, “Our guests are coming over soon, and I need to change, so don’t look back at me. The only living man who has seen me with my clothes off is my husband. If you look at me, he will still be the only living man. What I’m meaning to say is that I will murder you little one. Besides that, thank you for the suggestion for mauve.”
Evans shrugged and continued to work. After a few minutes, the Major tapped him on the shoulder, “I am dressed now. I need your help.” Evans turned around. The Major gestured down to her boots, “It’s hard to get these things off on my own. I hate boots.”
Kneeling down and gripping the boots, Evans averted his eyes from her dress and yanked, “Why do you wear them Major? You don’t seem to wear the rest of your uniform.”
“I wore down the general so I could wear something pretty instead, but he was a stickler on the boots,” the first boot finally came off. Major Anson pulled her sock off, waggled her toes, and held out the other boot. She smiled, “I can’t wait until this war is over. I get to wear all my own clothes. I can eat real food. Play with my children. Make another one. It will be a good time.”
Evans pulled off the other boot, “So you aren’t going to work Ma’am?”
“Of course I am Private, peacetime army allows you to be pregnant. And it’s a fun thing to do for nine months,” When the next boot came off, she pulled off the corresponding sock, “I think I will try for a blonde one this time. Brown hair is boring.” She stood up and walked to pick up another pair of shoes, “I am done with you little one. Go downstairs and set the table for four, General Maxwell is apparently very excited to hear about your adventures.”
Evans saluted and then ran down the stairs. There was a Lance Corporal in the kitchen preparing food. Evans walked up to him, “Um… Hi, I’m Evans, I was ordered to set the dishes.”
“I’m Lance Corporal Sandes, dishes are in the cabinet above my right shoulder,” the Lance Corporal finished what he was doing and pointed it out, “So you’re the new runner for the Majors? Good luck with that, they’re crazy.”
“I’m not their runner. I’m in the infantry, I uh… got separated from my unit and ended up here. It’s a long story,” Evans pulled some dishes out of the cupboard and went to the next room.