Spillsby, a brother subaltern and a famous bat, had twisted his ankle at the nets, and Rowsley in his last letter had been uncertain whether he would be well enough to play the Sappers at the annual fixture. Happily Rowsley was able to reassure his young sister: the ankle was much better and Spillsby was already allowed to walk on it.
Val sat down on a deck chair, one leg thrown over the other, Rowsley dropped at full length on the turf, and Isabel doubled herself up between them, her arms clasped round her knees. "How's the Old Man?" she asked in friendly reference to Rowsley's commanding officer. "Oh Rose, I knew there was something I wanted to ask you. Will Spillsby be able to play on the Fourth?"