We've been pushing them back against the Docklands for the past few days, you know. Building to building and inch to inch, and before the big engagement this afternoon, we got a bit of breathing room, so Captain had me take a sniper up to one of the buildings to see what he could catch.
I suppose it must have been a book shop. Books all on the street level and pages papering the staircase up. The windows were all blown out on the second and third floors, and we settled on the fourth, which was a little neater, but still somewhat gutted out, and there were leaves from books all over the floor.
Do you know how the new mirrored sniping works? It takes two people. One is the sniper, who actually faces away from the window and has to find his targets via a mirror, and the other person maintains a pair of spinning charms just outside the window that flick the spell around and make it seem as though it's coming from another direction. It's tricky work, particularly underneath an invisibility cloak. You remember how unpleasant they are.
Anyway, though, on our way out, I found this on the floor:
How many years had I been wandering in strange lands that figure on no maps! And from that uncharted world which had no frontiers, people by phantoms of the mind, I had brought back experience that was not always welcome. The vineyards of that unseen land yield a black wine that goes to the head of youth.
The next few paragraphs are burnt away, but you can make out the last few lines on that page.
To love, to sleep-walk, to look for miracles, that was all I had lived for then. Now, surely, I had earned a holiday, the right of travelling for a chan
It's all I could find of the book, not that I particularly had a chance to look for it. The page is folded up in my pocket now, and I'm hoping that you're doing all right. Some of the groups down here lost a good third of our men in the action this afternoon, and we -- Captain Flint's crew -- lost six men. I had to stun him this afternoon to stop him from going after Cho with his teeth and wand. I suppose he recognized her from the Quidditch field, but the two of us weren't in a position to take on ten fresh Aurors.
I suppose you've got the names of the men who died already.
[[OOC note: The stuff that Attie quotes is from Round the World in 80 Days by Jean Cocteau as translated by Stuart Gilbert.]]