Outside that mesh
‘It’s a ripe age.’
Her eyes appealed to him. ‘If you’d been like John, a family man, it would have been different. You wouldn’t have thought you had to go.’
‘That’s not true. I said that on John’s behalf. It would have made no difference to me.’
‘Then you think John’s a coward?’
He felt tired; tired of all the pressures, the claims and the demands. They were equally irrelevant and equally wearying whether they came from the vast impersonal propaganda machine or from those one loved. Outside that mesh, everything was simple and untroubling.
‘I don’t think John’s a coward. And I don’t think I’m a hero.’
‘Then why?’ She looked up, her forehead wrinkled with the need to understand. ‘Why?’
He sighed. ‘I can’t explain why. Sweetheart, you will simply have to accept things.