Jo finds this object in Madame Horcada's barn and it leads him to discover Leah, one of the Jewish children on the way to Spain.
The corporal gives this object to Hubert, a gift Hubert appreciates deeply. However, this object becomes a symbol of collaboration with the enemy to Jo's father.
Hubert spends a great deal of his time making these objects out of bread. Everyone in town has a great collection of these tiny items, a symbol of friendship with Hubert.
Grandpere hides this object in the family crypt in the funeral because he resents the Germans' request that everyone turn over his weapons. This object is used by Hubert at the end of the novel to take a shot at the retreating German soldiers, causing Hubert to be shot and killed by the lieutenant.
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