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Unformatted text preview: majority of boys wanted to burn it.
Fritz Hammer and Andy Schmeikl wanted to keep it, but Arthur Berg, showing his incongruous moral aptitude,
had a better idea.
“You two,” he said to Rudy and Liesel. “Maybe you should take it back to that Sturm character. I’d say that
poor bastard probably deserves that much.”
“Oh, come on, Arthur.”
“I don’t want to hear it, Andy.”
“Jesus Christ.” “He doesn’t want to hear it, either.”
The group laughed and Rudy Steiner picked up the basket. “I’ll take it back and hang it on their mailbox.”
He had walked only twenty meters or so when the girl caught up. She would be home far too late for comfort,
but she was well aware that she had to accompany Rudy Steiner through town, to the Sturm farm on the other
For a long time, they walked in silence.
“Do you feel bad?” Liesel finally asked. They were already on the way home.
“Of course I do, but I’m not hungry anymore, and I bet he’s not hungry, either. Don’t think for a second that the
priests would get food if there wasn’t enough to go around at home.”
“He just hit the ground so hard.”
“Don’t remind me.” But Rudy Steiner couldn’t resist smiling. In years to come, he would be a giver of bread,
not a stealer—proof again of the contradictory human being. So much good, so much evil. Just add water.
Five days after their bittersweet little victory, Arthur Berg emerged again and invited them on his next stealing
project. They ran into him on Munich Street, on the way home from school on a Wednesday. He was already in
his Hitler Youth uniform. “We’re going again tomorrow afternoon. You interested?”
They couldn’t help themselves. “Where?”
“The potato place.”
Twenty-four hours later, Liesel and Rudy braved the wire fence again and filled their sack.
The problem showed up as they made their getaway.
“Christ!” shouted Arthur. “The farmer!” It was his next word, however, that frightened. He called it out as if
he’d already been attacked with it. His mouth ripped open. The wor...
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This note was uploaded on 01/17/2014 for the course ENG 99 taught by Professor Michal during the Winter '13 term at CSU Sacramento.
- Winter '13