Loyalty and devotion lead to bravery. Bravery leads to the spirit of self-sacrifice.
Name: Kevin Holmes
Kevin is considered the most ‘rural’ within the group. He’s Corrie’s boyfriend, the girl for whom he would have given his life.
Frightened by what happened to Chris (‘What, did you think I was going to stay here on my own? I’m not that stupid. You saw what happened to Chris.’ Burning For Revenge, Chapter 2) he’s scared at the possibilty to be left alone in Hell and keeps following the others mainly for this reason, even when he feels so tired that he can hardly move. The war destroys him in the way normally people get destroyed. But he survives the invasion only physically.
He has a hard time with the group, especially with Ellie. She has always admired him for being so loyal to Corrie and for taking her to the hospital, forgetting about the possible consequences, but he rarely receives credit from her or the rest of the group. Kevin can be scared and sometimes appears as a coward, but he’s loyal to his friends and would never leave them behind. In The Third Day, The Frost he was happy to rejoin the group and provided them some useful information about explosives, which were needed for the Cobbler’s Bay attack.
Burning For Revenge represents a turning point for Kevin: he has a sudden emotional reaction to the trauma of the war, an event that will change his relationship with the group permanently.
Although Kevin is not submissive, he feels a huge anger towards the soldiers and all people involved in the invasion. He has a sense of revenge and for this reason he spends several days without saying a single word to Ellie.
As the war ends, Kevin starts a new life in New Zealand and never comes back, leaving the past behind him.
“Kevin, now he was more your typical rural. He’s older than the rest of us but he was Corrie’s man, so he had to come or she would have lost interest straightaway.
He was known for having a big ego and he liked to take the credit for everything; he annoyed me quite often for that, but I still thought he was the best thing that ever happened in Corrie’s life because before she started going round with him she was too quiet and unnoticed. They used to talk a lot at school, and then she’d tell me what a sensitive caring guy he was. Although I couldn’t always see that myself, I could see the way she started getting so much more confident from going with him, and I liked that.” (Tomorrow, When The War Began, Chapter 1)
Kevin’s sense of revenge…
“‘I hate them,’ said Kevin. ‘I don’t know why you’re all being so understanding. I just hate them and I want to kill them all and if I had a nuclear bomb I’d drop it right down their throats.’” (Tomorrow, When The War Began, Chapter 13)
“Kevin was more of a puzzle, changing his attitude from one day to the next. There were times when he seemed bloodthirsty and times when he seemed chicken. I wondered if it depended on how long it had been since he’d been close to danger. Maybe when he’d had some action recently he went a bit quiet, dived for cover. But when things had been safe for a while he started getting his aggression back.” (Tomorrow, When The War Began, Chapter 18)
“I wondered again how Corrie was getting on, and Kevin. Poor Kevin. I could imagine him sitting inside the Showground, looking through the wire and picturing us in Hell, still with our freedom. He probably envied us, wished he was here. But we weren’t so well off. I’d always been taught that freedom was everything, but it wasn’t. Better to be in chains with the people you love than lonely and free.” (The Dead Of The Night, Chapter 12)
Ellie willing to forgive Kevin…
“We said goodbye to Kevin. This was one part of our plan that made me incredibly nervous. The others seemed too willing to forgive and forget. I was happy to forgive. But forgetting, that was the hard part. As long as our plans involved Kevin I was going to keep seeing in my mind’s eye the blubbering wreck at the airfield. When we needed five people that day, we only had four. No, worse, we only had three, or two, because Kevin wasn’t just a zero back then, he was a minus number.
Maybe that’s too harsh, but that’s the way I felt, and to me Kevin had to prove himself again. Just being more involved and friendly wasn’t any kind of proof that in an emergency he’d stand tall and straight and strong. I thought we were a bit mad to put our trust in him.” (The Other Side Of Dawn, Chapter 7)
Kevin can be brave…
“In my heart I knew Kevin would be secretly wishing he could go back, and that’s why he’d said it, but so what? There was a time when I’d thought Kevin was a bit weak, but now I’d shown everybody my own weakness, so I couldn’t criticise him. Anyway, surely the bigger the fear the greater the courage? What I mean is, if you’re never scared, doing brave things isn’t that impressive, but Kevin was scared a lot of the time and still did brave things, so doesn’t that make him an even bigger hero?” (Darkness Be My Friend, Chapter 8 )
“Every so often Kevin amazed me with these acts of courage. I had to keep reminding myself not to sell him short. Just when I thought he was a bit of a wanker he’d do something like this.” (Darkness Be My Friend, Chapter 13)