1. What do you think of Mr. Childs, the character, as a father?

         Mr. Childs doesn't do a lot of "fathering" in Chapter 3.  Trussell arrives at the Childs' house on Sunday morning and finds Mr. Childs drinking bourbon and watching TV with his boys.  When Trussell makes a comment about the bad recoil that shotguns produce, Mr. Childs rises to demonstrate the truth of the matter.  Here is the beginning of a pattern of behavior that unfolds throughout the story:  Mr. Childs tries to be helpful to Trussell and to his boys, but he often skirts the limits of reason, if not the law, to do so.  On one hand, Mr. Childs wants Trussell to learn about shotguns and acts immediately to "help" him learn.  On the other hand, Mr. Childs is firing a deadly weapon within the city limits, easily alarming neighbors who hear the cannon-like noise that shotguns make.  On one hand, Mr. Childs wants to protect his family from the devastation of nuclear war, a commonplace fear in the 1950s, but on the other he didn't discuss the matter first with his wife, who lost her garden to the "fallout shelter."

         In short, if Mr. Childs were my father, I wouldn't trust him very far.