Life of a Soldier

Noël Lucky Chevalier was a soldier serving in Napoleons arm in the 1800s. This is his journey through several campaigns he fought.
This is my entry for the Historical Fiction Contest


14. September 6th, 1812

So much has happened in such little time!! Well, let me start again where I left off last time so abruptly.

                We slowly made our way across Russia; we hoped this would be a quick, easy defeat. But, no matter how long we travelled, the Russians just didn’t want to fight! Instead, they decided to retreat, that was their only option open. The whole plan had backfired, and, to make it worse, the Cossacks were left in the Russian’s trail; they were fighting us so much. So, instead of us fighting them, they started to weaken us by their retreating, I don’t think that’s fair!

                As we continued on the journey, it started to warm up, a little too much. The heat killed people, they got heat exhaustion, and they just fell down and died. It was sad to see so many soldiers falling off their horses and dying. Lots of people also got sick and died from that. I got slightly sick, but I didn’t die, which I was ever so thankful for.

                I’m lucky I didn’t die though; estimates were that at least 5000 men died each day! That’s a lot!!

                Because of all this sickness and death, the foreign troops started to leave. They were only there because their king was allied with my leader, Napoleon.

                One day during lunch, I was sitting down, trying my best to relax when someone came up to me. I couldn’t tell who it was at first because of the bright sun, but then I realized that it was my good friend, Pierre.

                “Noël,” he said.

                “Hello. Take a seat.”

                “Everyone’s leaving.” He picked up a stick and started to aimlessly draw on the ground with it.

                “Who? Who’s leaving?” I asked.

                “The Polish are leaving today,” Pierre explained sadly. “We’re never going to win this…”

                The words of Pierre are stuck in my head now still, a few weeks later. I think he’s right though.

                Summer is ending now, and now we’ve stopped at Borodino, the city of Moscow is at stake. Rumor has it that we’re fighting soon, on the 8th I’m near certain.


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