Based on a true story
Marcoing - France. 28 September 1918.
A British assault battalion of the Duke of Wellington's Regiment makes an attack to some German positions. The artillery hits all the ground. The battalion is forced to interrupt the assault. The soldiers search a shelter in the craters. One of the soldiers, Henry Tandey, falls into a hole pushed by the blast of an explosion. The English suddenly turns. A German soldier on the opposite side of the hole is pointing the rifle at him. But the gun misfires. The German reloads his rifle while the English looks around searching desperately his gun. He doesn't find it. He pulls out the fighting knife and rushes against the enemy who doesn't find the time to shoot. The English soldier hits the hip of the German than he leaves. The wounded continues to moan. The English soldier tries to recover his rifle fallen down on the hole's edge. The machine-guns crackle incessantly. Prudently the soldier crawls to the hole's edge and then catches the rifle while all around the bullets hit. The English falls down in the hole again with a terrible nervous tension. He would go away but the artillery and machine gun fire is so thick that he couldn't take even a step. Every try to go out is failed. The machine guns hits all around. He is forced to stay there, near the just knifed enemy. The English soldier closes his ears, he couldn't sustain the continuous moan of the wounded enemy. The English exasperated aims the rifle at the German. The English eyes stare at the German's terrorrized face with them shaking hands stretched out. The fingers start to press the trigger... he changes idea. He doesn't shoot. The English soldier moves toward the enemy. The German looks at him with fear. "No, no"... the english murmurs unwinding his personal medication package. The English moves to the German soldier saying: "Don't worry...it's all right...". The German says: "Danke, danke" to the man that first was an enemy and now is his rescuer. The English unbottons the German's jacket to bendage him. That is all he can do. The artillery fire is decreasing. Prudently the English soldier crawl to the hole's edge. He looks at the battlefield. Then turns to the wounded enemy who holds him saying: "Camerade, camerade... deine Name... your name" in a broken English. "Private Henry Tandey", answers the English. The German whispers: "Danke Henry Tandey...danke". The English is going to go out, then hesi-tates. He too wants to know the name of the man who has just saved. "And your name, camerade?" the English asks. The German says his name...
Many years after that English soldier, remainding that day, will tell in a Sunday Graphic interview:" (...)...God only knows how sorry I am for having spared him!".