My #teasertuesday this week is from my WWI Christmas Truce story, On Wings of Song.
“Is something the matter, Jack?” Aiden noticed Old Jack, as the theatre people referred to him, had been watching him more than usual. Jack tended to be fiercely protective of his “family,” more so since the war had ended.
“Nothing important,” Jack mumbled, turning back to his broom. He swept the same bit of clean floor several times, back and forth, each time with more force than the last.
“Look at me and tell me that.” Aiden placed a gentle hand on Jack’s shoulder. “You’re not ill, are you? Is there anything I can do to help?”
Jack had a tendency to play things close to his chest when something was wrong. He’d treated Aiden no differently since he’d returned from the front, something Aiden appreciated. Knowing he wasn’t the same man he’d been was difficult enough without reminders from others.
“No, I’m not ill.” Jack stopped sweeping, leaned on his broom, and shook his head in what appeared to be disgust. “Some bloke was asking after you yesterday.” He spat into his handkerchief. “A German.” Jack spoke the word as though he’d tasted something foul. “Don’t worry. I didn’t tell him anything.”
“A German?” Aiden’s heart started to race.
“He said he knew you.” Jack gave him a peculiar look. “Lying through his teeth, of course. You fought in the trenches. Only German you’re going to know is a dead one.” Jack raised an eyebrow. “Why do you want to know about him? No good will come of it. You know that as well as I do.”
“They weren’t all bad,” Aiden mumbled.
You can read more of this story here.