The narrator realises why Nicola and Jacopo work so hard. Yet he does not go in to meet their sister nor does he speak to them about what he learns from the nurse. Working in groups, discuss the follwoing aspects of the story and share your views with the class.
(a) The love and devotion, and the family values Nicola and Jacopo display.
Nicola is only 13 years old and Jacopo is 12. Yet, they have a man's heart each. They work hard day an night, never mind doing petty jobs like vending strawberries, hawking newspapers, polishing shoes. They show tourists round the town and run errands. They do all this to earn money which is used for the treatment of their sister who has been suffering from tuberculosis of spine. It vividly depicts their love, devotion and the family values.
(b) Their pride in themselves and their family
Nicola and Jacopo are not ashamed of doing petty jobs to earn money for the treatment of their sister, Lucia who is afflicted with tuberculosis. War has not broken thei spirits. They are proud of themselves and their family. Though children, they do not want any help or favour from anyone. It shows their pride in thmslves and their family.
(c) The trust they place in the narrator
Before leaving, the narrator asks if he would be of any help to them, Jacopo requests the narrator to send them to Poleta in their car which they might not have asked anybody. After initial disagreement between the brothers and reassurance from the narrator they agree to go with him. They are very comfortable and trust him completely.
(d) The reason the narrator does not disclose to them that he knows their secret.
Nicola initially is not comfortable with the narrator driving them to Poleta. After some thinking they agree.The moment they reach their destination they jump out of the car and do not ask the narrator to come with them. On the other hand, they suggest him to spend time at a café in the village. The narrator understands their reluctance to share their purpose of visit with him and, therefore, does not disclose to them that he knows their secret.