Mr. West Explains All

“Collaborator,” sneered Percy’s ghost. “What do you know of the tunnel and the light?”

“A band of armed men demanded shelter in my house,” said Mr. West. Or did he only think it? Breathing was a nuisance, and a relief to dispense with. “We were starving, and the Germans offered food. They said they would imprison you in a camp. Instead, they shot you.” He waved and the German gunmen disappeared. “But that was long ago, in lives long since finished.”

""My fellow officers and I were Britain’s best," Percy said bitterly. “Had we lived, the Salient might have held.”

“There are realms where it did hold, and the Allies won. But this led to an even worse war. Let it go, Percy. Your destiny is here,” Mr. West told him. Taking the Major’s arm, he indicated a low, dark crevice between the stones of the cellar wall.


As they approached it, the crevice between the stones swelled until it took up the whole cellar, arching gracefully far over their heads. Its inner walls were myriads of stars.

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