Reveille was at four the next day, the first of July, the birth of a new month. Nixon was woken once again by Jackson. He groaned and instantly reached for his rifle, which he had placed on the ground next to the blanket that he was rapped up in, thinking that they were being attacked. The rifle stock and barrel was wet with due from the ground and he wiped it on his blanket after he was fully awake, he then stood and shouldered it.

He shivered as he reached for his boots, it was still dark and the cold of the night was still it the air, not that it was going to be cold this day Nixon thought gloomily, it would be as hot as the day before and if there was to be a battle the heat of the day and the continually biting into cartridges full of powered would make canteens of water worth their weight in gold.

Taking out a cigar that he had placed inside his boots the night before to protect it from the damp, and putting it between his teeth, he pulled on his boots and walked towards his fire from last night that Jackson had relit this morning and took from it a smoldering branch that he used to light his cigar. The harsh smoke made him cough and he spat into the fire, making it hiss.

His legs were aching and stiff from the marching that he had done the day before and he wanted nothing more than to put his rifle on the ground lay down on his blanket and go to sleep, but that was something that he couldn't do because he was a soldier and today he was going to earn his pay, even if it was next to useless.

Jackson was sat next to the fire eating an apple and was staring enviously at the cigar that Nixon was smoking. Nixon saw this look and having no other cigar to give him passed him his own. "You're a real gentlemen Colonel" said Jackson taking the proffered cigar and putting it to his lips.

"You got water?" said Nixon, pointing to a canteen that was on the ground next to where Jackson was sitting.

"I think its water" replied Jackson as he threw away the remains of his apple and unstopped his canteen and stiffing the contents, "Yep, its water, more the pity". He passed the canteen to Nixon who drank deeply, then replaced the stopper and passed it back to Jackson.

"Thank you Jackson, no keep it", the last words were said because Jackson had offered Nixon his cigar back as he stood up and started to walk away.

Jackson watched the back of his retreating Colonel and thought, not for the first time, what a fine soldier and leader he was. He wasn't like some officers who tried so hard to be liked by their men or treated the men that served under them as scum, but was a man who though of his men first. This didn't mean that he wasn't hard on them, if any man broke his rules then they were punished, but the main thing that made his men love him was the fact that he wouldn't expect them to do anything that he wouldn't do himself. Nixon they believe would be in the front rank of an attack on the gates of hell and they would be half a step behind him.

Nixon obvious, of the silent compliment that was being paid to him by Jackson, walked through his battalion camp striking towards Pettigrew's headquarters. Around him, the men of the first brigade groaned as they were forced to wake up, the smell of coffee brewing assaulted Nixon's nostrils and he stop at one camp fire that was surrounded by a group of his men to beg a cup.

"There going to be a battle today, Colonel" asked one of them a young newly arrived Lieutenant called John Hogan. Hogan though sixteen looked hardly a day over twelve; he had short sandy hair, blue eyes and shaved everyday so that he had an excuse for his lack of a beard.

"I don't know, there are Yankees in the town, though whether they will stay and fight we'll have to wait and see, thank you" said Nixon as a sergeant gave he a mug of coffee. It was the same stuff that Jackson had given him the day before, but anything that was warm was welcome at this precise moment. He sipped the coffee, grimmest at the taste then went on. "If we do meet them, then remember the best piece of advice that I can give you, aim low, remember that and we'll have the bastards running so fast they'll be in Washington within an hour!"

"We will! Sir" said Hogan eagerly. "We will!"