Page 4 - Billy the Cat and Katie
P. 4

helped stop the war, maybe even shorten it by several years. His father had returned from the
               war and was very determined to find a way to help British soldiers. He’d found that the army
               had to face terrible problems but the worst thing of all was being wet. Often soldiers had to
               cross rivers without bridges, sleep and fight in the rain and it was very hard to be a good soldier
               when you are constantly cold and wet. You could catch terrible diseases and die from the cold
               and so he was going to try and find a way to make the soldiers clothing waterproof while still
               being able to fight easily. One afternoon he was working in his large shed which he liked to call
               his inventing room. The table was covered in pieces of material cut up from the soldier’s
               uniform and William’s father was carefully painting each piece of cloth with different liquids
               from large glass bottles. Most of them labelled dangerous or poison. William watched through
               the window as his father carefully lifted each piece up and pegged them onto a length of string
               to dry. Just then his mother opened the shed door bringing a cup of tea and biscuits for them
               both. William's father dropped one of the cloth pieces onto a metal tray containing some liquid
               and there was suddenly a huge cloud of smoke in the shed. Both William's parents ran out and
               all three of them waited for the smoke to clear. It took quite a long time and as they waited
               they ate the biscuits and drank the tea. William’s father looked through the window into the
               shed and saw that the smoke had cleared and they went in to see if there was anything left of
               the cloth pieces.

               Strangely enough the shed didn't seem to be damaged at all and the piece of cloth that had
               fallen into the tray of liquid seemed to have soaked up every last drop of whatever was in the
               tray. Not only had the cloth piece sucked up every last drop, it had also changed colour and
               seemed as though it had become smooth and shiny as glass but now it was as black as coal, not
               khaki green as it was before. William's father pulled at the edges and the material stretched like
               rubber but the strangest thing of all was that it didn't take any effort at all. The cloth had
               changed into something else and when let go it returned to its original size and shape. He tried
               to cut it with a large pair of scissors but try as he might he couldn't make any kind of cut in it at
               all. He tried to push a very sharp penknife through it and the material seemed almost to push
               back against the sharp point of the blade. It was getting late and William had school the next
               day so they all went back to the house for dinner. William had a bath after dinner and then it
               was bedtime. He wondered what had happened to the cloth piece and drifted off to sleep. Over
               the next week William's father spent almost every minute of each day examining the cloth
               piece pulling, stretching, hitting, trying to cut and stab it. William was returning home from
               school on Friday afternoon after a particularly busy day of maths, PE, geography and history
               and was just walking towards the shed when suddenly he heard a loud bang. It sounded like a
               gun being fired but who was firing a gun in his father's shed? William rushed to look through
               the window as his father had always told him not to open the shed door without being told that
               it was safe. He could see his father had set up a rifle on the long bench at one end of the shed
               and at the cloth piece was clamped to a large wooden block at the other end of the shed.

               His father saw William peering through the window and smiled to him, waving for him to come
               in. He looked very excited and William was astounded when his father told him that despite
               firing a rifle bullet at the cloth piece it hadn't gone through, in fact it hadn't even marked the
               surface or damaged the wooden block behind. During the day his father had tried to cut, stab,
   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9