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Date: December 5th 1916
Coningsby Dawson

December 5th, 1916.

Dearest M.:

I've just come in from my last tour of inspection as orderly officer, and it's close on midnight. I'm getting this line off to you to let you know that I expect to get my nine days’ leave about the beginning of January. How I wish it were possible to have you in London when I arrive, or, failing that, to spend my leave in New York!

To-morrow I make an early start on horseback for a market of the old-fashioned sort which is held at a town near by. Can you dimly picture me with my groom, followed by a mess-cart, going from stall to stall and bartering with the peasants? It'll be rather good fun and something quite out of my experience.

Christmas will be over by the time you get this, and I do hope that you had a good one. I paused to talk to the other officers; they say that they are sure that you are very beautiful and have a warm heart, and would like to send them a five-storey layer cake, half a dozen bottles of port and one Paris chef. At present I am the Dives of the mess and dole out luxuries to these Lazaruses.

Good-bye for the present.

Yours ever lovingly,

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