And then the call came. The Seaforth Highlanders were the first to climb the makeshift ladders and charge across the land that had become hell. There was an eerie silence from the German side until the machine guns opened up, mowing down the Scots as they ran into range. They fell, and the men following them fell – but still, the men behind them charged. They stampeded toward the German line, their numbers compensating for the carnage, and when the first of them reached the German trenches, the tanks crossed. They rolled over piles of fallen Scots, men from other regiments, and rolled inexorably toward the German trenches, immune to the machine guns. They plowed right into the Germans, and between the tanks and the foot soldiers, the German line was taken. What was left of the enemy fell back.
Frank watched in horror as the bodies were deposited on his training field. The mangled were doctored as best as possible and loaded into transports then taken to the field hospital several miles behind the encampment. The next morning, as the remaining men were mustered into formation, he was aghast at how few of the Seaforth Highlanders were left – hardly a one. His regiment had been annihilated.
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