A month or so has passed since Francis returned to Frenchtown and he is growing increasingly comfortable. The townsfolk have also warmed to his presence and greet him with smiles and so forth. Francis, however, is constantly prepared still for Larry’s return, with his pistol always in his duffel bag that lugs around, ready to be used to kill him.
Francis uses the St. Jude bar to eavesdrop on news regarding Larry but he is not often successful in gathering information. Though he is often silent, Francis uses a lull in the bar’s conversation to ask about Larry and his return.
The people of the bar, instigated by Arthur’s reaction to Francis’ question, raises a toast to Larry, the ‘patron saint of the Wreck Centre’. The barman, The Strangler, then reveals an amassment of newspaper clippings he calls the ‘Frenchtown Warriors’ which shows all it can of the people who served in the war from Frenchtown.
They also talk about the Silver Star and how those who wear it are infinitely respected. They then speak of Larry and how he achieved the Silver Star for bravery in combat.
Whilst everyone is ignited into conversation, Arthur speaks to Francis quietly and says that he recognises his voice. Francis finally reveals himself to him and Arthur also recalls his history, his Silver Star, and his ping pong champion title. Arthur agrees to not share his identity with any of the others in the bar.
Heroes is a 1998 novel written by Robert Cormier. The novel is centred on the character Francis Cassavant, who has just returned to his childhood home of Frenchtown, Monument, from serving in the Second World War in France and has severe deformities as a result of an incident during the war. The structure of the novel involves the use of flashbacks to Francis’s childhood in Frenchtown and the events in Frenchtown following the war, when Francis returns.