The thirteenth of May is the unluckiest day of the year Things will be infinitely worse if it happens to fall on a Friday That year however it was a Monday and quite bad enough though Martin was scornful of superstition and would have engaged in any important enterprise on May or gone up in a plane without a qualm

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Niveau: Secondaire, Lycée
The thirteenth of May is the unluckiest day of the year. Things will be infinitely worse if it happens to fall on a Friday. That year, however, it was a Monday and quite bad enough, though Martin was scornful of superstition and would have engaged in any important enterprise on 13 May or gone up in a plane without a qualm. In the morning he found a gun in the case his son took to school. They called it a satchel in his day but it was a briefcase now. The gun was among a jumble of textbooks, dog-eared exercise books, crumpled paper and a pair of 5 football socks, and for a single frightening moment Martin thought it was real. For about fifteen seconds he thought Kevin was actually in possession of the largest revolver he had ever seen, though of a type quite beyond his ability to identify. Recognising it as a replica didn't stop him confiscating it. You can say goodbye to this weapon and that's a promise, he said to his son. 10 The discovery was made in Martin's car just before nine on the morning of Monday 13 May on the way to Kingsmarkham Comprehensive. Kevin's briefcase, insecurely fastened, had fallen off the back seat and some of its contents had come out on to the floor. Kevin watched ruefully and in silence as the replica gun found its way into the pocket of his father's raincoat.

  • moment martin

  • school

  • martin could

  • station ?

  • kingsmarkham comprehensive

  • school gates

  • beyond his

  • back along

  • british rail


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The thirteenth of May is the unluckiest day of the year. Things will be infinitely worse if it happens to fall on a Friday. That year, however, it was a Monday and quite bad enough, though Martin was scornful of superstition and would have engaged in any important enterprise on 13 May or gone up in a plane without a qualm. In the morning he found a gun in the case his son took to school. They called it a satchel in his day but it was a 5was among a jumble of textbooks, dogeared exercise books, crumpled paper and a pair ofbriefcase now. The gun football socks, and for a single frightening moment Martin thought it was real. For about fifteen seconds he thought Kevin was actually in possession of the largest revolver he had ever seen, though of a type quite beyond his ability to identify. Recognising it as a replica didn't stop him confiscating it. 10"You can say goodbye to this weapon and that's a promise", he said to his son. The discovery was made in Martin's car just before nine on the morning of Monday 13 May on the way to Kingsmarkham Comprehensive. Kevin's briefcase, insecurely fastened, had fallen off the back seat and some of its contents had come out on to the floor. Kevin watched ruefully and in silence as the replica gun found its way into the pocket of his father's raincoat. At the school gates he left the car with a muttered goodbye and did not look back. [...] 15Martin had come out early, not only to take his son to school but to have a new pair of windscreen wipers fitted to his car. [...] He got a promise of sorts that the job would be done by ten thirty. He walked back along Queen Street. Most of the shops were not yet open. The people he passed were commuters on their way to the British Rail station. Martin could feel the gun in his pocket, its weight and its shape, the heaviness of 20it weighing him down on the right side. It was a big heavy gun with a fourinch barrel. If the British police were eventually armed, this was how it would feel. Every day, all day. Martin thought this might have its drawbacks as well as its advantages, but anyway he couldn't imagine such a measure getting through Parliament. He wondered whether he should tell his wife about the gun, he seriously wondered if he should tell Chief Inspector Wexford. What does a boy of thirteen want with a replica of what was probably a Los Angeles policeman's weapon? 25He was too old for a toy gun, certainly, but what could be the purpose of a replica except to threaten, to make others believe it was real? And could this be for anything but criminal intent? There was nothing Martin could do about it at present. Tonight, of course, whatever else he decided on, he must have a serious talk with Kevin ... Ruth RENDELL, Adapted fromKissing the Gunner's Daughter, 1991. I/ COMPREHENSION 1. Name the two main characters and say how they are related to each other. ..................................................................................................2. When exactly does this scene take place?Day of the week: .................................................................. Date: .................................................................................Time of the day: . ................................................................. 3. In what country does the story take place? Justify by quoting from the text. (line ).....................………………………………………….............................................................................………4. Tick the right box and justify your choice with a brief quotation.  a.In the passage from line 1 to line 10, Martin is:  at Kingsmarkham Comprehensive Schoolin his car  at the station on a plane(line ).....................………………………………………….............................................................................……… b.In the passage from line 11 to the end Martin is:  at home in the streetat the police station  in his car(line ).....................………………………………………….............................................................................………5. Who or what do the following words refer to? a. Line 4:hefound a gun ...............................................b. Line 6:it............…................……......................was realc. Line 12:itsd. Line 14:contents ...................................................heleft the car ........................................................ 6. Underline, then correct the 6 errors in the following summary: One day, as he was driving his 10 year old son to school, Martin discovered a real gun in his son's pocket...................................................................................................He didn't confiscate it and decided he would have a good talk with his wife on the followingday. ..................................................................................................