history teacher is telling the class all about William the Conqueror and the
time when he marched on an English city because they wouldn’t pay his taxes. Then
the teacher takes them to the park to act the battle.
“please can we act the battle?”
“Yes. Get your armour. Kneeshaw,
pick a side. And let me see, yes, Tyke, you pick a side…”
“That’s not fair…”
“Of course it is.”
We chose our sides, Kneeshaw and
“we’ll toss for who are to be
the English and who the Normans.”
I felt lucky. I was sure we’d
win the toss and we did. Kneebags pulled his ugly mug at me. I didn’t care. We climbed
the hill and looked down on the others, the enemy. Willian the Conqueror
Kneeshaq and his mob. Pitthead, beside me, made a rude gesture of defiance, as
Sir called it, and we rushed downshouting into battle. The sun was hot on the
red walls. A great deal of blood must have flowed there. I ran for Kneeshaw and
banged his shield with my sword.
“Fight for Kneeshaw!”
“No, fight for Tiler, and
England, I called.
I banged him on the helmet and
he fell backwards over a tree root, and sat down hurriedly. I fell on him and
our armour got tangled up. I pulled his hair. His helmet fell off. The armour
slid off us. Sir blew the whistle and the battle was over.
We lay stretched out under the
trees. Sir said something to Patsy Drew and another firl and they went off. When
they came back they’d got ice lollies for everyone. We lay and licked them
under the shade of the trees growing by the old,