Ultimo aggiornamento:  06.08.2020 15.25
     
 
August 6, 2020
 
 

STORY OF A RED CROSS DOG

from The Ontario Readers

 

It was evening. The sun had long ago hidden behind the hills in the west. And now the little stars were playing hide-and-seek among the heavy clouds which had gathered during the great battle which had been fought that day.

Oh, what a noisy day that had been, with the booming of cannon, the tramping of many feet, and the sharp cracking of rifles!

All was quiet now, except for the whispering of the trees and the bell-like tinkle of the brook, as it babbled sleepily and lazily over the pebbles.

Quiet, did I say? But Hark! What was that ? A low, faint cry for help! There it was again, almost too faint to be heard!

A wounded soldier, who had fallen in the battle, was lying in that little ravine by the brook, where he had crawled to get a drink to quench his thirst.

He could not get back to his comrades, for he was too weak.

After the battle, the field had been searched and searched for wounded soldiers; and he alone of all the wounded had been left, perhaps to die; for no one had noticed him or heard his call for help.

How sad he felt as the voices of the searchers and the sound of their footsteps died away! He had tried very hard to make himself heard, but he had not succeeded.

He closed his eyes, and a picture of his home came to him. He seemed to see the little white cottage, nestled among the daisy- covered hills, far across the sea.

"They are just beginning supper now," he whispered; and a great sob broke from him as he thought of his wife and little ones. "I shall never see them again. If I could only make some one hear," he said; and he tried again to call aloud, but no one came.

But wait! Help is at hand! What is that so warm and soft, kissing his cheek? Whose eyes, so large and tender, are looking into his?

It is a great, shaggy dog, wearing a large red cross. He seems to say to him: "Courage just a little longer, for I am going to save you!"

Rene, for that was the dog's name, was a collie who lived in France, but who had been born in the Highlands of Scotland.

Running from the wounded soldier to a little hill near by, the dog barked sharp and loud. "Hurry! Hurry!" said that bark, "or you will be too late!" And he waited for the men, who, he felt sure, would come.

And in a little while they came, hurrying as fast as they could; for they well knew what that loud barking meant.

Then the dog led the way to where the wounded soldier lay. The men had brought a litter with them, upon which they placed Mm; and they took him to the hospital, "where he was cared for until he was well and strong again.