Marty ran past the bike sheds, round the corner and onto the school allotment. He could just hear the other boys running after him. Blinking back his tears, Marty dashed towards the rickety, allotment shed. He opened the door and stepped in. It seemed like a good place to hide.
At first, he saw the wooden bench with cobwebs dangling down and dust settling. But then…. as the door closed behind him, he found that he was standing in a brightly lit room. High above him yellow parrots flew round stone pillars and on the floor was a scarlet carpet. In front of him stood a boy of about his age, dressed in a long cloak. Wherever he was, Marty knew that was no longer in the allotment shed!
“Quick,” yelled the boy, grabbing Marty by the arm. The two of them ran down the great hall and dived under a wooden table. Something was moving towards them. Marty could hear its feet thudding like drumbeats. To his horror, an enormous, green dragon appeared. Its tongue flickered and smoke billowed from its slimy nostrils. “Stare it down,” hissed the other boy. “It’s a coward!”
A moment later, Marty found himself standing in front of the mighty beast, staring into its eyes. He glared deep into the dragon’s gaze with the fierceness and fury of fire but his legs were trembling. However, it only took a few seconds before the dragon blinked, turned and scuttled away. Marty and the boy chased after it, shouting with joy at their triumph.
As Marty dashed through the great hall doorway, he stumbled and found himself…. back on the allotment. The gang was standing right in front of him, still shouting. Marty halted. He stood upright and fixed them with a glare. It was a glare that had only recently halted a dragon. It took a few seconds before the other boys stepped back, turned and ran. Behind them, they could hear Marty laughing….
The Soldier by Rupert Brooke
If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is forever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by the suns of home.
And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.