Last night I forsook the comfort of my downy couch and slept once more in a dug-out. This was not as you might imagine from any desire for the realities of trench warfare, but because it is now necessary for one member at least of the Bde Hqs to live at night in the advanced “battle” headquarters. Last night it was the Generals turn to go up there & I went in attendance. It was a little cold but I slept quite well, except of course for an occasional mouse or two. One little brute ran straight across my face; I very nearly screamed. My regiment had a stroke of very bad luck indeed yesterday; poor old Farmer who has never missed an hour since the day we came out was killed by a trench mortar. Death fortunately was instantaneous. He is an officer about whom you have probably not heard very much, and yet I think undoubtedly he was the best officer the regiment has ever had. He was absolutely fearless, & never lost his head in any circumstances. Loved by his men every one of whom he knew intimately, he was also one of the most cheerful members of the mess. I knew him very well & can never remember having seen him either angry or despondent. He can never be replaced. Going along one of the trenches today I suddenly came across a very familiar looking countenance, to which I immediately attached the name Walcott. It was in fact a son of L Walcott & he has just rejoined the Brigade – having been at home sick for some time. I am sorry you are so unfortunate with your pets, they all seem to come to an untimely end. We here have a cat, or rather five cats & certainly not less than 200 kittens – they are becoming rather a nuisance.