Tomie keeps hearing the phrase, ?For the duration.? Gas is being rationed ?for the duration.? The Fourth of July fireworks will be the last show ?for the duration.? So many things will be different as long as the war goes on, but much of Tomie?s life goes on as usual. He?s excited about starring in a dance recital, taking the bus around town all by himself, and having his first Communion. But Tomie is also still getting over his cousin?s death in the war, and he has to say good-bye to his uncle as he ships off to basic training. And then he has a run-in with some bullies and his brother doesn?t even help him out. Luckily, Tomie knows there are a lot of people he can count on for the duration.