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The Red Badge of Courage
by Stephen Crane
Wilson ("The Loud Soldier") Timeline and Summary
Wilson says that Jim’s comment about them moving out is a lie – "a thunderin’ lie!" (Typical Wilson behavior.) Wilson fights with Jim over more trivial matters, like the quality of fight their regiment will put up in battle the next day. Wilson argues with Henry about "running." He swears that HE won’t. Wilson argues with Jim about why they are marching around and around. Arguing is pretty much all he does. As soon as the fighting begins, Wilson tells Henry that he knows he going to die. He asks Henry if he will give his parents some letters for him after this happens. Wilson sees that Henry has been injured, and he takes care of him in a very sincere way. Wilson even gives Henry his one blanket. Henry notes that Wilson has changed. He is now caring and thoughtful. He no longer boasts or argues. Wilson admits to Henry that he used to be a "big fool." Wilson, decidedly not dead, now asks Henry for his packet of letters back. He’s a bit embarrassed about the whole thing. Wilson is now referred to as "the friend" – as in Henry’s friend. Wilson and Henry go to get water and overhear a general refer to them and their regiment as "mule drivers." They are hurt and insulted by this comment. Wilson and Henry fight bravely side by side, and rescue the flag from the wounded flag bearer. Wilson is proud to now be commended by the same general who called them mule drivers. Wilson has a weak moment during the worst part of a new battle. He tells Henry goodbye and Henry, suddenly brave, tells him to shut up. Wilson and Henry rush a fence that is being used as a shield by the rebels. They send the Confederates running and capture the rebel flag. This is an amazing psychological victory for the both of them.