• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Title Page
 Copyright
 I
 II
 III
 IV
 V
 VI
 Back Cover
 Spine






Group Title: The Cinderella frock : and other tales.
Title: The Cinderella frock
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00002067/00001
 Material Information
Title: The Cinderella frock and other tales
Physical Description: 92 p. : ; 16 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Perry, Adaliza
Bugbee, David ( Publisher )
Wright and Hasty ( Printer )
Publisher: D. Bugbee
Place of Publication: Bangor
Manufacturer: Wright and Hasty
Publication Date: c1851
 Subjects
Subject: Girls -- Conduct of life -- Early works to 1900 -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
School stories -- 1851   ( local )
Pictorial cloth bindings (Binding) -- 1851   ( rbbin )
Bldn -- 1851
Genre: School stories   ( local )
Pictorial cloth bindings (Binding)   ( rbbin )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- Maine -- Bangor
United States -- Massachusetts -- Boston
 Notes
General Note: Author's name listed on last page.
Funding: Brittle Books Program
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00002067
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002235932
oclc - 20551488
notis - ALH6398
 Related Items
Other version: Alternate version (PALMM)
PALMM Version

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front page i
        Front page ii
        Front page iii
        Front page iv
        Front page v
        Front page vi
    Title Page
        Front page vii
    Copyright
        Front page viii
    I
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
    II
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
    III
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    IV
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
    V
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
    VI
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
    Back Cover
        Page 94
    Spine
        Page 95
Full Text








































































Jill



44






, ~... ~I, j4!
" Y~; .;~~.;r ;. .~6*1~~
.1.
r -- rc;






,
"i
~.3 ;

r










.r






,







r ,


2

-9

I :?





;4

-










4
r
-~






~
r



~I


v,
'L,
C







i ~f

11~BrldrinLibn~



Ipm~S Raridr

Icnr. ~ _. 1 +:
r
.i^ ~ ~ ; ~..~i~ r~CYP~J~I~L~r-~





















4.
; c


-Y AV.


4p'


- ,d










V. v t


*'~ .4


r :: jC1

I'~ ~









'' ;G~; .7~4i
'" ~
4r .

~.
car 'r:rs., -i;

c:~~'~ '4 :r.,
~'
'P" '~.5~.JI


.K.


44


C4 b'


a' .
^ ^^-' ^ ,'-^


. 6


\
;r.5
r- CSI1
;r



.'- .I C



I
r' .
r

I
r
,
..1 L
'' P
r.




































































































4


17
r ... -.fFrs~rD~dp '~L 5i
*I



b *


ii80ill a i;
1;4;
Ic

f ~ 'v


r-

r
f' ... "




r




-It

t


3
:ir
;

~ r~ii
3 :r
N
.~*




A. W *"


1 -






li
'^ .; C'




S;iL



|' :-
0. ",~



-L, .


6n


r
c~i~



























4







THE


CINDERELLA FROCK:


AND


OTHER TALES.




"Speak gently: 'tis a little thing
Dropped in the heart's deep well;
The good, the joy which it may bring,
Eternity shall tell."






BANGOR:
DAVID BUGBEE.
1851.






























Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, By DAVID BvUoEZ, in
the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Maine.










WRIGHT AND HASTY, PRINTERS, 3 WATER STREET, BOSTON


*^

*n,








THE


CINDERELLA FROCK.




CHAPTER I.

'~Wwbre the pools are bright and deep,
Where the gray trout lies aselep,
Up the river and over the lea,
That's the way for Billy and me."

THE old shady yard that surrounded a certain
little school-house far in the interior of Mas-
sachusetts, had been deserted for many a
long week. Nettles had sprung up in it, the
ground was absolutely tufted with green
grass, and far in one corner, close by a ven-
erable stone, worn smooth by frequent foot
steps long before, two little violits hji
peeped up to the sun, secure in the unbroken
.,; ,,&. -






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


quiet. But now, a bright spring morning,
the gate stood open, and all was alive once
more.
Hurrah, a new school!" shouted a broad-
faced little fellow from the top of the gate-
post, waving his straw hat, a new school;
and if Miss Wright thinks to impose on me-
there's for her (a great flourish of the hat,)
I'm for fun this summer Hurrah !"
"Hurrah for fun !" was reiterated y
every boy in the yard, and such a hallocs
raised as the echoes had not answered to
within any boy's remembrance.
News news for you, girls !" cried a little
new-comer, bursting in quite out of breath
with haste, "guess what I saw this morning."
"A snake! A wolf! A ghost! A man-
eater! A vampyre! An old straggler A
fright in the looking-glass! A-a-nothing
at all!" were the chiming exclamations rotnd






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


and round the ring, a circle of eager girls'
faces instantly appearing about the new
arrival.
No, never a one of them all," was the
grave reply, as the little girl with a wise
shake of her head, and her diminutive little
person elevated to its utmost, glanced majes-
tically around.
Your own shadow, then-hey !" scream-
ed the boy from the post-top with a crazy
la*, in which every boy joined, too. But
no matter-" Pugh!" was all the notice they
got from the wise one for their pains, anyhow.
However, she looked around upon the girls
and began her revelations very good na-
turedly. Well, I saw-there has certainly
somebody moved into the old Hilton house."
"Faugh, Louise Carl call that news!"
sneered a scowling little girl who had been,
however, foremost of all to receive it, turning


5






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


contemptuously away; "News! I've known
of it these three weeks."
"Can't help that, Miss Rovina," was the
undisturbed reply ; it's news to me."
"And to me! and me! and me! and me!"
echoed the little populace, while Miss Rovina
withdrew herself haughtily apart, and sat
down on the white stone close by the violets.
Had she seen them there all in their smiling
purity, I am sure she could not have looked
so unamiable, had she tried ever so muclo
Little Louise, as they always called her,
the news-bringer, was a very little being,
with a cunning old face, and so many droll
ways, and such a talent at finding out every
thing, and could make herself so universally
agreeable, and was so active, and so innocent
too, she was everybody's favorite. Besides,
had the most disagreeable scholar in the
school brought news of the old Hilton house,






THE OINDERELLA FROCK.


it would have been well received ; for it was
an old, old house, that had stood vacant many
months, and so close to the school-house, any
change in its prospects was hailed with ex-
ceeding interest.
"Well, I saw," began Louise, dropping
her eyelids and considering, In the first
place, you know the old yard is so shady, and
I'm so little, I might peep there a fortnight
and nobody find me out-I saw-but hist!
look there."
Attention was directed to a man approach-
ing, leading by the hand a delicate, bright-
eyed little girl, who was looking forward to
the group, with that expression, part eager-
ness, part shyness, that at once betokened
the new scholar. And she looked so beauti-
ful with her little pale face and yellow curls,
even the boy on the gate-post ceased his
shouting to observe, her reverently, and






8 THE CINDERELLA, FROCK.

Rovina came forward from the rock with an
expression almost of good-nature. It was
such a rare thing too, to see a great dignified
man, a stranger, standing there in their
midst, the rows of boys and girls were cowed
to good behavior by his presence in an in-
stant, and fell back leaving a wide space upon
either side of him.
Rovina, however, who had more assurance
than the rest, stepped forward after a mo-
ment's hesitation and said, with peculiar
courtesy-
Our teacher has not come yet, sir, she'll
be here presently, I'm sure, though ; shall I
take charge of the little girl?"
Little Louise was surprised to see how
Rovina's face softened as she stood there be-
side the stranger child. She looked absolute-
ly beautiful. The little girl, however, seemed
to shrink from her, though her face was full


'4
f -ri..






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


of sunshine, and she smiled gratefully, and
the man declined her proffer so stiffly she was
glad to move away. So the children clus-
tered about one side of the gate-way, while
the man stood holding the little one's hand at
the other, looking for all the world with his
solemn face, Louise said, like the grim drag-
on in the picture, keeping guard over the
"Palace of Beauty."
And now they began to notice for the first
time how fantastically the little creature was
attired. Unlike the showy prints and ging-
hams of the rest, she lad on a bright silken
tunic, spangled at the bottom, and loose
trowsers; and the little graceful hat she
wore was of bright orange, and as curious in
form as it was beautiful.
What a beauty she is !" whispered Louise
Carl in an ecstasy to the girl beside her.
" Just look at her, Lizzie."






THE CINDERELLA ROCK.


Yes." Lizzie was a broad-faced, fat lit-
tle girl, and the easy, good-natured way she
had, contrasted with Louise's enthusiasm
comically enough.
"And just look at her hair and her dress--
Lizzie Lizzie "
Yes."
"And only to think-they must be the
very folks from the old Hilton house! I
declare !"
Well, Louise."
"Well, from this time forward nothing
shall ever persuade me that that old Hilton
house isn't a fairy palace. Heigho! I won-
der what her name is."
"Fatima, 1 guess ; she looks-"
Pho! no such thing ; I've made up my
mind it must be Margaret. She looks exactly
like a Margaret, don't you see? or just as a
Margaret should, you know; sensible, and






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


not proud, or, it may be Isabella, or Agnes,
but Fatima but sch! sch there comes Miss
Wright! sch sch !"
And now, Ah, children, good morning!
Mary Alton; Lizzie; Louise; Julia,-and
Frank, and Charles-bless you, children, all
of you !" were the exclamations of a kind,
heartsome voice, as a sedate little woman
with gray hair and cap-borders showing un-
derneath her bonnet, appeared upon the
ground.
It was Miss Wright. The good, right-
thinking, upright, much-beloved and much-
loving Miss Wright, who had taught the
little school not one season alone, but many,
and who was looked up to by every person in
the district even as a dear wise counselor
and friend. That was all mere idle bravado
the boys had said about fun, they would not
one of them have countenanced an insurrec-


11






12 THE CINDERELLA FROCK.

tion upon any consideration. Why, scarce a
young man or woman was there for miles
around who could not remember some word
of good advice, some gentle admonition, or
timely warning from good Miss Wright long
ago, that had gone down into his heart and
made music there ever since. Well was it in
her sphere that she carried a will all proper-
ly directed, else, who knows what evils might
have gone out into the world of her unsus-
pected sowing, many as had been the little
spirits she had had to do with, and deep and
lasting as must be impressions caught in
childhood.







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER II.

Sing me now a little song, mother dear,
Neither sad or very long;
It is for a little maid,
Golden-tressed Adelade."

So THOUGHT little Louise Carl in the words
of the sweet song, as the man led forward the
little girl, and spoke a few words to the
teacher, of which all she could catch was, not
"Adelade," indeed, (Louise had got her eyes
just at this moment on the yellow curls and
the name had been decided in her own mind
accordingly,) but We call her Alice."
Then the teacher stooped to whisper what
Louise was sure must be some affectionate
and encouraging thing, it was so like her, and


13






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


then, the man she could see, lingering and
looking after her all the while she was led
indoors.
I am sure her papa loves her," thought
Louise to herself as she caught the look, and
really, she must like him too," she began
to think as she caught the little face smiling
back, and it sent such a radiance of love and
hope in its beams, she actually saw their
brightness, all reflected on the instant, in the
man's face, grave as it was. There, now,
if Rovina only knew what a light there always
is shining out of a good look ;" said Louise
to herself with a melancholy sigh. "Poor
Rovina! I wonder how she lives on in the
midst of her terrible tempests. I guess if she
could only see herself as other people do, she
would be afraid to live near such an object.
Heigho! poor Rovina!"
And thus came little Alice Lisle to the






THE CINDERELLA ROCK.


school. City children can realize nothing
about these things, but the advent of a new
scholar in an obscure country district marks
a very era in its times; and little Alice Lisle,
with her sweet face and fanciful garments,
would have attracted notice any where. Liz-
zie Hale watched her with her great good-
natured face, and pitied her loneliness till the
tears came into her eyes. Little Louise Carl
planted her two elbows on her desk and be-
gan shaping out her history. "Yes," said
Louise in her own mind, she must be some
fairy to begin with. I wonder what fairies
are! some outlandish folk, I suppose; some-
body said they lived under ground, and that
is what the spangles mean; all the story
fairies wear them-gold and silver come from
there. Perhaps she's a Turk though, they're
famous for loose trowsers. But then, I always
hated Turks. No, I'll make believe she's


15






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


some beautiful Circassian, and the man
bought her. Heigho!" Patrick Rogans, a
little ragged Irish boy, sat the whole morn-
ing gazing at her with a pleased, admiring
look that seemed to say, "Are you really a
human being, little girl, like the rest of us,
or some pretty scripture child such as we see
up in the churches?"
The little girl, on her part, who, it was af-
terwards told, had never been inside a school-
room until now, sat quiet at her desk, with
her mild blue eyes, observing every thing
with grave attention. The room was very
still at first, the children all sitting soberly in
their places, and the teacher looking down on
them from her little eminence, "just like a
queen Victoria over a Parliament," as Louise
used to say. She looked dreadfutJl 'estic
up there, Alice thought too, and shrlift"bled
when she met her eye, in spite of herself.


16






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


After a little pause she began reading their
names; a long roll, and when her own, the
last on the list, was called out, aloud in that
public place, she had not even presence of
mind to articulate the required Present."
Next each scholar read a verse of Scripture,
and then all rose up with closed eyes and
hands meekly clasped together, and chanted
in low reverential tones the beautiful Lord's
Prayer. It seemed so sweet to the little
stranger to hear all those little voices so
lifted up at once, and to feel what holy words
they were repeating, she could scarce keep
back her tears. When it was over, and
there had been another short silence, the
teacher talked to them very affectionately
of the long term before them, and all their
duties and responsibilities, and then suddenly
all broke into a noisy, joyous song, the bur-


17






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


den of which, and all that Alice could catch,
was, Let us love one another."
At length a small bell sounded, and the
business of the day commenced. Alice was
surprised now to note the order and quiet
regularity of every thing. Nobody was out
of place, nobody appeared ignorant of what
was required of him. The very children too,
who had been running shelter skelter up and
down, and shouting like so many savages,
one hour before, now moved to and fro, or
sat busy at their desks, transformed into so
many men and women.
There was a sedate little girl they called
Julia, a black-headed Hannah, a freckled
little Catherine, but she observed more than
all a little sour-visaged girl who held the
head of the first division, and seemed to feel
herself the head scholar in the school-our
Rovina. A sadly plain-faced little being-in


18






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


school phraseology, homely; sadly, unmistak-
ably homely, and a fretful, unamiable look she
wore about her, made her, at first sight, quite
unbearable. She was a "scholar" though;
her reading absolutely filled the room like a
burst of music. Indeed, with a voice singu-
larly melodious, she possessed a grace of ut-
terance not excelled even by the teacher.
There was one Elizabeth Hale (our Lizzie)
who interested her exceedingly, in the same
class. She was certainly below Rovina in
scholarship, but such a fresh, heartsome, joy-
ous face as hers there was not in the school.
Not a handsome face though; oh, no; there
was many a great black freckle on it, and the
nose was monstrously flat and wide, and the
mouth wider still in proportion-it was really
plainer than Rovina's. But there, nobody
could help being taken by it, at least Alice,


19






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


our Alice, found it out at once. So much for
beauty.
But better than all the rest was Louise
Carl. By the happiest chance in the world,
she was seated next her, and was ever such
a girl as she? So knowing, so funny, so
content with every thing; and she made such
a parade pointing out the lessons and initiat-
ing the novice into the ways of the school, it
really made her considerably taller.
Little occurred worth remembering that
forenoon, but Alice was observant of every
thing. There was the school-house, an old-
fashioned, ill-arranged affair, dismal enough
at first view, but, in reality, as Louise said,
as pleasant a nook as could, be found. And
the teacher there, in that prim gray gown,
with the buttons up and down in front, look-
ing so precise, and giving out tasks, and ask-
ing questions, and instructing and reprimand-


20






THE CINDERELLA FROCK. 21

ing in that despotic way, Louise declared
behind her spelling-book, was "a perfect
angel in reality."







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER III.

"Don't view me with a critic's eye
But pass my imperfections by."

No such thing, Miss Alice, come among
school girls and they will just find out who
you are, and what you are; and if they don't
ferret out imperfections, they will just take
an inventory of your perfections, Miss, mark
my words.
Ah, these intermissions; the noontime, in
the old country school, where the children of
the scattered homes come bringing their little
dinner baskets for a long, long day. Did
ever any one hear say that this same interval
was tedious ? No, indeed; 'tis the very hey-






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


day of all times. "Jack on the green,"
" Mother Gray," Old woman from Sunder-
land,"-every thing that has fun in it, may
thank it for existence. Bless the noisy old
games, and then such friendships as get
formed then,-ah, city children may drive
their hoops over the brick pavements, and eat
their dinners at home, of what a real inter-
mission is they know nothing at all, thank
them.
Great was the rush to obtain exclusive
companionship with Alice Lisle, that day.
Alice, Alice, come with me, Alice
Lisle No, no, with me, Alice! No,
with me Let me have hold of your hand,
Alice," and Alice I've such a place to show
you," were the cries, as a host of noisy girls
contended about her desk.
Little Louise Carl said nothing, but by
some chicanery of her own, when Alice got


23







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


terrified at the tumults and began to shrink
back, she managed to draw her apart, and get
her, if one excepted just her little brother
Georgie and Hatty Came, and Jane Orph,
quite to herself.
It's so lucky," began Louise, hurrying
away with her to the white stone in the cor-
ner, you and I are made on purpose to be
friends, I'm sure; I liked you at the very
first, and I don't doubt you,-Faugh! talk-
ing about it won't make us any better friends,
I guess. How old are you, Alice ? "
Eight."
"Only eight! why don't you ask me;
well.I suppose you're afraid of quizzing me;
I'm not quizable though, thank you; I was
ten last August, the twenty-ninth day, and
my name is Adrianna Louise Carl, (with
folks I'm just only Louise, though,-a shame,
isn't it ?) at your service. There! I think


24






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


we've had an introduction in all form, as-good
and grand as anybody need get in Queen
Victoria's reception room, don't you ? "
Yes, indeed, and a thousand times bet-
ter;" and the little stranger laughed away
with Louise, Louise thought, quite charm-
ingly.
And how do you like our school?"
continued the unceremonious Louise, prose-
cuting the acquaintance with all zeal, and
our scholars, Alice, and our teacher, how are
they all, hey ? "
Alice expressed unbounded delight with
every thing.
Oh! ay! ah I knew you'd like, no-
body can help it, I like it; Jane likes it;
Hatty Came likes it,-yes, we all like it."
And little Louise took a twirl in the air as
she said this, that was certainly little short of
flying. Ellen Ford don't though," she


25






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


continued, coming down and pausing, "but
no wonder at that, I guess there's no love
lost. And away went Louise, executing an-
other flourish ten times more flighty than the
first. But I want to know," she continued,
coming to her senses again and touching the
spangled frock with a very dainty finger,
-" Pray is it the fashion where you came
from for people to-to wear these sort of
things you've on ? Because, why, you know
if the mood should travel up this way, I may
as well be experimenting a bit, as I'm a leader
of ton,-ton,-"
"For shame, Louise Carl," interrupted
the particular friends in a voice, don't
mind her, Alice, I'm sure it's none of her
business what you wear."
Alice had looked surprised but now she
laughed away merrily, and said, "Never mind,
dear Louise, it's only my Cinderella dress."


26






THIE CINDEIbELLA FROCK.


What can that mean, thought poor Louise.
" Cinderella dress! she asked no ques-
tions, however, but dropped the corners of
her mouth, and made believe to great contri-
tion, for her past imprudence.
"I'm so sorry," she said humbly, "but you
do look beautiful in that dress, Alice; heigho,
I, for one, vote you shall wear it always."
The little stranger looked perplexed, and
said thoughtfully, My father never said so,
Louise. I think he loves me the most when
I wear my old home frock. And beautiful
-Louise, he would never like to hear you
say that, I am sure, I am not good enough to
be beautiful."
Your father ? then that man really was
your father ? "
Yes."
And you live in the old Hilton house ? "
Yes."


27






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


0, and isn't it dreadful ? "
Alice did not comprehend.
Well, you have your mother with you, I
suppose, and brothers and sisters, Alice ? "
No, Louise, I have no brothers and sis-
ters, and my mother is dead,-or no, God
has taken her away to the spiritual world. I
have a mother Louise," and little Alice folded
her hands together, and looked smilingly into
her companion's face.
O, Alice, and who takes care of you ? "
Alice looked surprised.
Why, I mean, who gets the victuals, and
all that,-who's housekeeper, Alice ? "
O, my father and I together," and here
was a great laugh from all, I'm a famous
cook."
Louise lifted both hands in astonishment.
"A cook make fires and broil steak, do
you ? heigho (heigho, and queen Victoria


28






THE CINDERELLA ROCK.


were forever on Louise's tongue), I'd like to
see you at it. And what does your father do
besides his washing, and ironing, and knitting,
and sewing; take in spinning ? "
Alice laughed again; "My father paints
pictures, and draws; oh, beautiful, Louise."
Well, well," said Louise, dropping her
arms, now I'm certain that that old Hilton
house is actually an enchanted palace."
Here a noisy altercation from another quar-
ter of the yard drowned all farther speech.
Come, come, do let me have it, it's my
own book, Rbvina, do, do ? cried a plead-
ing voice, while the little ugly Rovina was
observed with an expression of hateful exul-
tation, holding a beautiful book high in air,
before a group of lesser girls.
Do give it back! do, do, Rovina! the
voice continued to entreat, joined now by all
the others.


29






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


"Mary Hardy, I declare," ejaculated
Louise, indignantly, oh, I wish,-I wish
that Rovina was skinned; I do! plaguing
every little girl she meets,-O "
"Get it, get it, get it if you can! they
could hear Rovina calling out, with her pro-
voking laughter, still flourishing the book
aloft.
O, I wish I was a giant, if I wouldn't
make her behave muttered Louise shak-
ing her little fist menacingly. Oh, how I'd
shake her "
But what if you and I should steal around
there, and persuade her to give it up ?" sug-
gested Alice, mildly.
Persuade! her ? you don't know her, I
guess. There again, poor Mary! she's ac-
tually crying. Why, I know all about that
book, Alice. It was her birthday present;
she just brought it to school to show it,-and


80






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


she thinks so much of it, and it's so hand-
some. 0, I'll not stand it another minute,
she'll have to give it up or-or-I wish I was
a giant."
The two little new friends, keeping Georgy
between them, and admonishing him con-
tinually to silence, which he heeded wonder-
fully too, began noiselessly moving towards
the scene of action. But it was of no use.
Before they were half the distance, as Rovina
was holding the book above her head, some
unknown hand, darted up from the crowd
behind her, seized it, and passed it to the
owner. It was so entirely unlocked for, and
so adroitly done, Mary had time to run with
it a long way, and get safe from pursuit, be-
fore Rovina recovered from her surprise.
Good good! cried all the girls, and
"hurrah for the right side! shouted all
the boys in full chorus, for the noise had


81







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


attracted the whole school to the spot.
" Hurrah hurrah! One Frank Evans
climbed the gate-post, swung his cap, and
eulogized the action in a mock panegyric,
extolling Mary's unknown champion to the
skies, which all endorsed at the end by a
series of noisy cheers, not the less noisy that
Rovina was discovered sulking away by her-
self, looking as chagrined as ever our Louise
could wish.
And so, really, this is school life,"
thought poor Alice, looking thoughtfully
around. She looked a bit disappointed, our
Alice, and no wonder.
For some reason every boy and girl in
school took delight in seeing poor Rovina
baffled. It was not kind of them, and I grieve
to record it; perhaps had it been otherwise
too, she herself would have been another
being, and then again, perhaps, if she had


32






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


shown herself amiable and obliging, nobody
would have thought of teazing her. I know
nothing about it, only I know that so it was,
the boys hallooed at her defeats, and the
girls took up sides against her, and civil war
prevailed wherever Rovina was, continually.
When little Alice came to her seat again
that afternoon, and saw her sitting there look-
ing so wicked, she scarce wondered at it.
But Alice reflected, and the day closed leav-
ing her certain that she liked Miss Wright,
and that she loved Louise, oh, exceedingly;
and Rovina she pitied, and meant to love bye
and by, and all the rest she would be on the
best possible terms with, and the summer
was to be one of unheard-of happiness through-
out.


883







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER IV.


DOWN came the same bright sunshine on
the morrow, bringing too the same array of
sunny faces, through the old school-house
gate, and calling such echoes into the air, the
spot seemed haunted ground. And now day
flew after day, and in every one our Alice
grew less and less a stranger. The pretty
Cinderella dress got exchanged for every-day
apparel; still, though weeks and weeks had
gone by, little Alice was a marvel, still. She
was never wild, like the rest, never got angry,
never told tales, but mingled in their plays a
glad, gentle, low-voiced thing, a check on all
their boisterousness, and yet, enhancing a


34







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


their gayety. Her father, it was found out,
was a city artist, who had come out into the
sweet rural district to sketch some particular
country scenes, and had chosen the old Hilton
house, and was living in it in that solitary
way, from some unaccountable fancy. He
loved its beautiful grounds and antique look,
and perhaps, dreaded intrusion. Nobody
knew, only it was found Alice and her father
had some charm to make the dreary old place
gay.
Why Alice had never been at school be-
fore, it was learned too (for leave school-girls
alone to find out every thing), was because
she had been her father's only companion,
and he had taught her himself rather than
send her away ; but now, when he must
needs be among the hills, and by the brook-
sides so much, little Alice was sent to school
to find company.


35







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Affairs went on quite in the same train as
the first day. And what a thing it was to be
a school-girl forming such new associations
and getting on so famously! Louise proved
just what she had promised to be, the darling
of the whole school, great friends with Alice,
and a little, just a very bit mischievous when
she could get on with it, and nobody find her
out. And Rovina -, Alice had watched
her narrowly, and she was convinced in her
own mind there was something good and
beautiful about her yet. Her father quite
agreed with her, and had counseled her to
be friendly and gentle with her, and seek
every opportunity to make her happy. Alice
thought upon the subject a great deal. If
Rovina only could know what it was to be
loving and forgiving, how much happier she
and they all would be! If she could only
manage some way to bring that about!


386






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


It was a glorious Saturday afternoon, school
was out, and Alice was ferreting about by
herself among brakes and brambles by the
roadside for a grand bouquet that was to sur-
prise her father upon her going home, when,
who should she find sitting in the shadow of
a shelving rock poring over a ragged picture
book, but Miss Rovina Gove.
Why, Rovina! was Alice's joyful
exclamation, You here, and reading,-
reading Cinderella, I declare Is it not
beautiful ?"
Rovina looked up as though she could have
bitten the intruder.
No, Idon't call it beautiful," she snarled
out, I shouldn't have been here with the
thing, I promise you, if I'd not been ashamed
to be seen with it among people."
"Why, Rovina! what fault can you find
in it ? "


37







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Fault! why, 'tis a lie to begin with."
( O, well, we all know it's a fairy story,
Rovina; but then, the little girl is so good,
and so beautiful."
Beautiful! 0, yes, beautiful! that's the
grand thing, too, in all these story charac-
ters. Beautiful! you like them, to be sure,
and well you may, Miss Alice,-you yes,
you can be a very Cinderella yourself if you
like, with your handsome face. But I,-
they're pretty things for me to read. Imay
make believe ever so, and after all, I'm just
one of the hateful sisters-in-law, homely
creature, as I am. No wonder every body
hates me."
Alice did not laugh. Indeed, when she
looked into the little sour face, at that mo-
ment so particularly soured, her own grew
very grave, for she thought,-who knew but
all this bitterness had grown up from poor


88






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Rovina's plain face ? So, she said very good
humoredly :-
Come, come, Rovina, not another word;
Ilove you for one, and-and-" continued
Alice, with a funny look, I know a way
you could manage to make every body love
you, and to look beautiful to every body, too."
How, Alice, how ? "
Why, to love every body, to be sure."
no, Alice," murmured Rovina, shak-
ing her head sorrowfully, It's no use for me
to try that. Alice, I'll tell you all about it.
'Tisn't because I don't like people, Alice;
O, no; I do,-but, Alice,-oh, 'tis dreadful,
'tis all because I'm-I'm so homely, Alice,
they can't bear me."
Alice did laugh now, outright. For
shame on you, Rovina," she exclaimed in her
own cheerful voice, who cares, whether
your eyes are blue or green if they only look


39






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


kind ? Why, Rovina, when you look as you
do now, you are absolutely handsome, too.
Just try it for a while, and see if they don't
all tell you so."
0 Alice, you know nothing about it,
they might make believe so, but it wouldn't
be real." Back came the old scowl again.
0, Rovina, you're spoiling your face
already," broke out Alice in dismay.
The bad look vanished. But there,"
said Rovina, earnestly, I don't want to be
handsome for the sake of being handsome,
don't think so, Alice; but isn't it dreadful to
be among people and feel that one is so dis-
agreeable to every body ? I do believe 'tis
that makes me so wicked."
And Ibelieve, Miss Rovina Gove, your
one little friend Alice made a great mistake
when she called you a sensible girl," as my


40






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


father says. Just try being amiable once,
Rovina, and see how it will beautify you."
But I tell you, I do try, Alice, I'm
always trying."
A good-humored, incredulous look from
Alice, just now, made Rovina blush a
little, as though she had been fibbing; which
was quite true; she had.
The little girls had rambled farther and
farther, as they talked, and now suddenly, on
rounding a little hill, the mossy old Hilton
house, with its waving trees and quaint fences
was just before them.
Alice gave a little laugh at her friend's
exclamation now, but she looked reverently
up at the old house, and then took hold of
Rovina's hand, and said softly, as though
struck with a new idea, my father says, love
pictures for their beauty, and people for their
loveliness." Ah, there he is, watching for






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


me. Come, dear Rovina, you must go in too,
if only just to see the pictures."
Rovina drew back at first, but a second
invitation, accompanied by a cheerful smile
and nod, drove away all her sour misgivings,
like ice before the Spring. And when Alice
bounded on before her to present her flower
offering, and stood there with her blue eyes
upturned, looking so radiantly beautiful, even
she could not but feel it was the spirit under-
neath that gave the face its charm.
And then Rovina thought of her own going
home. Instead of carrying sunshine in, how
often and often had she felt that she must be
the great sorrow of the house. She had a
mother too, indeed, Rovina acknowledged to
herself, one of the best mothers in the world,
and a little baby brother, and an elder sister,
and a bright, cheerful new house had they to


42






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


live in,-what a shame it was to her to make
it all so dreary!
He was a thoughtful, dignified Idbking man,
was Alice's father, and at first Rovina was
exceedingly afraid of him; but when he
greeted her, as he did, very kindly, and took
hold of her hand, and called her his little
girl, she grew quite bold and confident.
Many a time had Alice with her brothers
clambered into that old Hilton house when it
stood empty ; many a time had she gone up
and down the stairs, and taken note of how
the mould accumulated upon the floors, and
counted the rat holes in the closets, and lis-
tened to the wind roaring in the chimneys,
and the creaking of loose boards, and clatter-
ing of shutters, and gone away wondering if
ever anybody was gay or laughed there.
But now, as though Alice's good spirit
made all bright about it, it was a very para-






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


dise. Scarcely was the gate ajar, before out
came Cato, the cunning white spaniel, she
had seen through the fence sometimes, break-
ing his neck almost, with joy to welcome
Alice. Two pretty rabbits, the handsomest
ever seen, went hop, hopping too and fro
before her, and never left off till Alice fon-
dled them; and next, there was heard a
great fluttering of wings, and a flock of doves
came sailing over the house-top, and alighted
at Alice's feet.
And the house,-Rovina remembered the
old straggling ends of woodbine that used to
be dangling about the sills, very well. Lo,
they were all lifted up and so grown they
crowned the whole broad front; eaves, win-
dows, doors, all were dressed in one gorgeous
mantle of beauty. And when Mr. Lisle led
the little guest through the long entry into the
great square room, (it was so large and dreary,


44







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


her brothers had nicknamed it the tribu-
nal," and played at "Judgment" in it,) she
actually clapped her hands with delight.
What a metamorphosis! It was now a
stately picture gallery, and grander than any
thing the little country-bred girl had ever
dreamed of. Here was a brave lady in a stiff
antique dress, and there a pretty little maiden,
and faces of old people were there, and
glimpses of far off scenes, side by side with
their own home-hills and valleys, all so real,
and so life-like, Rovina almost believed her-
self under some fabled spell.
But there was one bright, beautiful thing in
a gilt frame, so placed, that just now the
sunshine streamed full upon it, that drew
Rovina's attention, more than all the rest.
Cinderella! the very book she had been
reading. Yes, indeed, it was, Cinderella in
her mean garments, with the good fairy in the


45








THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


background; and there, Cinderella again, in
radiant attire; and Cinderella,-could she
believe her eyes-wearing the very face of
Alice in them both. Ah, the Cinderella
dress, must have something to do with that.
Presently this was all explained. The
picture, it appeared, was of itself a sort of
good angel in the house. Alice had learned
to look at it associated with the old tale as
Rovina never could have thought of doing.
She had a way of making the fairy of Cinder-
ella represent the good angels of her own
life. She knew that if she was good, if she
brought, as her father said, material of hu-
mility, and truth and love, God would array
her spirit in corresponding beautiful garments;
and if, at any time she forgot the good injunc-
tions, and disobeyed them, surely she would
be wretchedly clothed, again.
The picture beside it belonged to Alice


46







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


too, and was scarcely less interesting. Un-
derneath it was engraved in large gold letters
the words, Let us love one another," and
this was illustrated by a group of young chil-
dren. Children twining their round arms
together, with such bright, loving, beautiful
faces, the words involuntarily burst from Ro-
vina's lips, Of such is the kingdom of
heaven."
Every thing Alice and her father explained
to the little visitor, and when she turned to
go, they both pressed her hands, and said,
good-bye," as affectionately as though she
had been a perfect beauty. She scarce thought
of that though, but what if they could look
down into her heart, and take note of what
ugliness and deformity was there, could they
bear her ? Strange, new thoughts began to
flit through Rovina's mind. She forgot to be
ashamed of her uncomely face, she was so


47







48 THE CINDERELLA FROCK.

really ashamed of her bad heart. She forgot
to be ashamed before people, for she felt that
to the good Heavenly Father, and his holy
angels, who could see her spiritual face, she
must be even more unlovely than to them.
Ah, nobody knew what resolves she made
within herself that night, or what dreams she
had. Her school-fellows should have guessed
though, for never did a little girl strive harder
to be amiable, than did Rovina, for whole
days afterwards.







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER V.

Raining, dining all the day,
How I wish the sky would clear;
And the clouds would break away,
And the glorious sun appear."

ALAS, for good resolutions. Patter, patter,
came the rain-drops down on that day week,
-patter, patter. The old school-house roof
looked black and dismal, and the white stone
and the violets, and nettles in the corner,
nobody visited. Miss Wright came under an
immense umbrella, and so muffled up no
thread of the accustomed queenliness was dis-
coverable. The boys, however, came splashing
through the mud, with their bare feet, very
cleverly. They enjoyed it too, and only
4


49







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


wished the mud were ten times deeper, and
the rain drops, pailfuls. Huzza, they liked
it. Plash, plash; away they went, through
that puddle by the gate, backwards and for-
wards, one after another,-bravo if any one
would know what real fun is, let him chance
along by a school-house yard of a rainy morn-
ing. All were in their seats, however, on
the stroke of nine, and the scripture verses
were read, and the prayer said just as usual.
But after all settled into the old routine, it
began to be found that the clouds in the sky
affected all indoors. Alice never could have
believed that little girls who could laugh and
sing so sweetly, could make themselves so
disagreeable. But so it was. Lizzie Hale,
that good, whole-hearted Lizzie Hale, who
was so kind and good-humored, was seen
pouting her lips, and looking as though there


50







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


was ire enough behind them to poison hun-
dreds of usual Lizzie Hales.
It happened thus. Lizzie had brought a
nice tempting apple into school, to help eke
out her dinner. It was very mellow and very
ripe, and it lay there at the bottom of her
pocket, such a weight, Lizzie kept thinking
of it. From that her mouth would water, and
so, to allay that, for it grew worse and worse,
Lizzie felt herself justified in tasting it. Only
the merest mite; but there had been no de-
ception in the apple, it really was better than
it promised to be, and Lizzie's teeth once on
it, got unmanageable, and griped out as much
as her mouth would hold.
And now, behold, what evil thoughts pos-
sessed Rovina. From her distant seat she
had watched all, and lo, at this instant, Ro-
vina's clear rich voice rang out proclaiming
the sin. And there was Lizzie disgraced!


51







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Lizzie Hale, the largest and most womanly
girl in school, made to stand in the face of
the whole, and champ that apple to the core!
O, it was horrible, and poor Lizzie returned
to her seat, not only covered with mortifica-
tion, but in such a tempest of rage, she sat
pouting her great lips till intermission time.
If study hours had been dreadful, intermis-
sion was only worse. No one of the girls
could play out because of the rain, and none
of the boys could play in, for the self-same
reason. But the boys kept prancing in, and
the girls out, till the floor was one pool of
.mud. Nor was that all ; poor Alice sat away
alone in her desk trembling at the terrible
scenes she witnessed.
Elizabeth, who, it appeared, was still chaf-
ing with the remembrance of her morning's
disgrace, the moment Rovina was discovered


52






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


alone, flew to her, and, in a terrible voice,
shrieked out, Telltale telltale! "
Quicker than thought, Rovina's hand was
up, and she dealt her a blow that sent her
reeling.
Call me that! she screamed the mo-
ment she could speak; and the little hand
descended again and again, each time with
increased fury.
Shame shame! shame! cried a score
of voices, the whole school interfering.
I'm not ashamed! I'm not ashamed! "
stormed back Rovina, absolutely phrensied
with rage. "Am I to be insulted ? I? I?"
She stamped her feet, she dealt blows right
and left, she bit, she scratched, she raved
there among the children like a wild creature.
Indeed, it was only after a fierce struggle she
was at length overpowered, and dragged to
another side of the room, where she was left,






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


alone and terrible, whilst a consultation was
held, and messengers despatched for Miss
Wright.
And now, little Alice Lisle, who had been
looking on in speechless amazement, stole
softly out of her seat and going up to .where
Rovina stood, whispered something in her
ear.
Not a word, but up flew the same little
hand, smiting Alice in the face with such a
thrust, the blood gushed from her mouth and
nostrils.
Suddenly the whole school was hushed.
Rovina stood there with her hand in air, as
though paralized. Her head swam, she had
a consciousness of the children scrambling to
their seats, of a well-known, and now terrible
figure in a gray dress, crossing the floor, and
standing at the teacher's desk. Then the little


54






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


bell sounded, and she mechanically hurried
away to her own.
When all was in the usual order, Rovina
was summoned upon the floor. The little
girl walked slowly forward. There were no
tears upon her face; she looked angry,
wicked, almost defiant, her deep gray eyes
fixed steadily before her.
Rovina Gove, what does this mean ? "
No answer. The little lips were closely
shut, and the eyes never moved to the right
or left.
Answer me, Rovina."
I have done only what I was provoked to
do, Miss Wright," was the composed reply,
Miss Rovina looking if possible more stubborn
than ever, as she stood there her arms at her
sides, stiff and immovable, on the middle of
the floor.






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


What, provoked to strike, Rovina ?
Elizabeth, how did you provoke her ? "
Miss Wright was very precise and method-
ical in her way of dealing with offenders ; and
Lizzie, who felt she was not quite blameless
herself, had dreaded this question. She would
sift the affair to the bottom, she knew that,
and then who knew she would fare one bit
better than Rovina ? So, she pouted and
mumbled away, and after much time spent,
and a world of cross-questioning, bit by bit
the whole came out. Not a word of comment
made Miss Wright.
And now, Alice Lisle tell your story,"
was the next command, the teacher turning
with no gentle face towards Alice.
Poor Alice, regardless of her bloody face,
had sat there looking up at Rovina with eyes
expressive only of the most heartfelt commis-
eration. She did not speak immediately, but


56






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


seemed to pause to consider her answer in
her own mind for a moment. Finally, how-
ever, she moved quietly out of her place,
went up, and whispered something in the
teacher's ear.
Here Rovina, who from her nearness might
have caught the words, was observed suddenly
to change countenance, and then put her
hands to her face as though to hide an irre-
pressible burst of tears.
The teacher looked perplexed; but what-
ever Alice had to impart, she listened with
careful attention.
Alice continued. Now and then they could
catch a word or phrase like,-" My father
says-,' or, would you please to try her,
Miss Wright," or, the teacher--" I am afraid
not,"-" We might try perhaps "-and the
like, but nothing definite.
Something of intense interest Alice had to






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


tell; it must have been, for to the surprise of
all, when she returned to her seat, the teacher
looked down upon Rovina with an entirely
new expression.
During the scene thus far, the room had
been so still, breathing itself seemed sup-
pressed; for the offence was no common one
and the children had been looking for the sen-
tence with certainly no common interest. Now,
Miss Wright paused and seemed to think. One
might almost have heard her think. What a
moment! what expectations, what doubts, and
fears, and sympathies too, for there were
warm hearts in the school, and little of a
favorite as Rovina was, many an associate
felt for her. Poor Rovina! how keenly they
watched her; and how tightly the two little
hands kept fastened upon the face, so that
nobody could guess whether she was agitated
by rage, or penitence, or grief, or what it


58






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


might be, only they could see she trembled,
and now and then there was audible a low
smothered sob. The time seemed an age
before the teacher spoke. At length, how-
ever, she began.
Their dear little Rovina had been sadly to
blame, she said, and she hoped she was sadly,
sadly sorry. Then she looked around inquir-
ingly,-how many in the school agreed with
her, she wished to know, and would be
willing to overlook the whole in Rovina with-
out more being said ?
The children looked surprised; a few scat-
tering hands were raised, but generally the
proposal seemed coldly received.
Well," continued the teacher, smiling
slightly at the response, "how many would
gladly forget what is passed if they could but
make their little playmate better and happier
by it ?"







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Hands now were up in all directions and
great was the enthusiasm.
The teacher could not say it would be so,
however-and then she shook her head, and
all the peace advocates dropped their hands
in unison. Rovina had broken their rules,
she said, she was certainly no better than
an outlaw, for the present. It was usual,
too, among grown people, for outlaws to be
shut out from good society; surely, they
would dislike that plan with their outlaw, for
instead of her making them all evil with ming-
ling with them, might not they hope to make
her good ? At any rate how many would
agree to try ?
Affirmatives were now numberless and the
interest had arisen to such an excited pitch
it was difficult to maintain order.
Well, the law must have its course, but the


60






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


teacher had decided before sentence was
pronounced, if they all liked the plan, to
give their culprit a little season of probation;
one month, perhaps, and at the end of that
time, the whole school she had so insulted
should sit in judgment upon her ? How would
they like that ?
Huzza! up went the hands, school gravity
might go to the winds now, every body liked
that, and would express as much, and clap-
ping there was, and loud voices and confusion
unprecedented.
Then in one month, the teacher said, when
order was restored, the affair should be
decided,-on the twenty-ninth of the coming
September; but, in the meantime, the sub-
ject never was to be alluded to, but all were
to treat the little culprit lovingly, like a very
dear friend, never causing her to feel by word
or look that any thing was pending.


61







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


What an idea! they, just the school people,
having a commonwealth of their own, con-
ducting their own civil affairs, taking part in
the jurisprudence of the place They gave
the character a hundred big-sounding terms,
and ayed the motion with unprecedented
energy.
In short, it was decided that Rovina's case,
as they say, should be put over." At the
month's end, the children and teacher were to
assemble. Rovina was to be summoned to the
bar, and then her case was to be decided,
if she really were entitled to her place and
standing in the school..
Last of all,the teacher related how that their
little friend Alice had told her of some beau-
tiful traits in Rovina's character she thought
none of them had found out. What a delight


62






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


to draw them forth With that the affair
was for the present dismissed.
Only Alice blushed very deeply as the
rows of eyes were turned on her, and then
Frank Evans almost sent up a great hurra,
" right in school," and Patrick Rogans wagged
his great bushy head till the wind blew. Rovina
as she took her seat was heard to sob audibly,
but at this moment the sun broke through the
clouds, and such a flood of light came pouring
through the school-house windows, the burst
of grief did not seem half so much associated
with sorrow as with hope and gladness.
Lizzie's face, which would not keep clouded
for a long time any how, suddenly cleared up
now, and really, as she looked at Rovina,
began shining with all its wonted kindliness.
Alice had wiped away the blood stains, and
the swollen cheek, red and inflamed as it


63







64 THE CINDERELLA FROCK.

was, made her look almost the more beauti-
ful; and now, after all, the teacher re-assum-
ing the accustomed place and voice, and the
children catching their tone from her and
"getting themselves," all, save that Rovina
kept her face covered, fell into the old train.







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER VI.


BRIGHT enough was the sky upon the mor-
row, dressing up the earth as though every
thing had got a new lease of beauty for the
yesterday's gloom. And it had, too. Leaves
and grass blades were absolutely covered
with jewels, and the flowers in gardens and
fields, peeped up to the sunlight so pure and
beautiful, it seemed as though the water-
drops had washed away every taint of earth
from off them. A joyous day, and human
life seemed just exactly in unison with it, too.
The great school-house gate was opened, and
heads were popping in and voices were chim-
5


65







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


ing up there, a whole hour, at least, before
the school-time.
"Good morning! good morning !" were
the ringing exclamations, as bonnet after-
bonnet fluttered along outside the fence,
everybody greeting everybody else cordially
because of the yesterday's absences.
Good morning, Louise Carl ; good morn-
ing !" cried a great chorus of voices, when
the quaint little favorite, who had been
anxiously watched for, was spied in the
distance.
"0, aye, ah, good morning !" was the
flying response, good morning, everybody,
what's the news ? O, I know, -don't tell!
Hatty Came told, last night. I and the sun
staid away yesterday, and all went wrong, it
seems. I knew 't would--heigho! (one of
Louise's grand capers in the air). Here we


66







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


are, both back again, though, -our service
to you !"
Such a performance, such whirls and capers
as finished this expression, (the sort of punc-
tuation Louise used,) it would be impossible to
describe. Nobody but Louise was equal to
them, to say the least. Up she went, half-
way round, then a flying spring, &c., &c.
Heigho! all's right now, I guess," she
continued, coming to a stand at last, and if
the sunshine and I don't drive the evil out
of Rovina, nothing can, I'm sure. But where
is Alice ? not quite killed, I hope shame
on that Rovina!"
Hush, take care, Louise ; you are not to
say so, you know."
Not say so ? well-well-I'll warrant she
is really hurt, though. Poor, good, beauti-
ful, never complaining Alice Lisle."






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Yes," said one of the particular friends,
"and she bearing it all so meekly."
"O, that Rovina ought to have sunk into
the floor that minute. I wish she had, I do;
and there would have been the last of her."
"Why, Louise!"
"Well, I didn't mean quite that. She
ought to be tied, though. I wish she was at
the top of Teneriffe !-I wish-0, I don't
know what-murderous bedlamite !"
Why, Louise, you are breaking the con-
tract already," interrupted a quiet little girl
who had been 'present' the day before,
joining the group with an admonishing face.
Well, well, I'll try not, but where can
Alice be this long while ? How I do long to
.see her! I am sure she must be hurt."
Whether Louise really thought so, I never
knew; at any rate she was relieved the next


68






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


moment by the cry-"Here she comes !"
and Louise of course was in ecstasy again.
Yes, yes, so she does and her father
with her, I declare!" were her exclama-
tions. What can he be coming to school for,
I wonder? And there, she's got on her
beautiful elf dress again. I do believe she
wears that on purpose to be a mock fairy.
No, I don't either, for she told me the whole
about it once. She always seems just right
to me when she has it on, though, for she is
such a singer, and looks so lovely, and is so
gentle and good, I, for one, can't help think-
ing she ought to wear something to distin-
guish her from the rest of us; such a rude,
noisy set as we are. But there comes Miss
Wright. Why-why !-and what can Alice
and her father be saying to her, I wonder?
Heigho, Miss Rovina, now for it !"


69






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


At this moment the little marked girl was
discovered slowly approaching.
Ah, Louise !" cried Alice, leaving her
father's hand and bounding forward to meet
her particular friend." She had not observed
Rovina.
"Ah, Alice !" was Louise's greeting, "then
you are alive; I was afraid that wretch of a
Rov "-(alas, like all favorites, Louise said
heartless things, alas, that I must say it,-
and she was getting spoiled).
"Hush, hush!" whispered Alice, laying
her hand on her mouth.
Poor Rovina had looked in, but now she
paused outside the gate as though wanting
courage to enter.
You may well stop there," called out a
little girl who had caught the tone of insult
from Louise, pointing her finger, while hisses


70






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


and cries of scat! scat !" from unnumbered
girlish lips poisoned the pleasant school-yard
air.
O, Louise; how unkind of you to begin
that," whispered Alice, letting go her com-
panion's hand and looking really hurt.
Louise was all contrition. She would not
have done it for the world, and away she
went accompanied by Alice to make peace
with Rovina, and assure her of her most
sincere good will. Ah, foolish little turncoat
Louise !
The little sour face scowled at first, but
when the two friends took hold of her
two hands, and welcomed her with the most
heartsome of all Good mornings," it began
to grow quite human. And when the teach-
er, who had delayed for some conversation
with Mr. Lisle, had reproved the ruder ones
for their unkindness, and restored good feel-


71






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


ing, she ventured in among them almost
confidently.
What could Mr. Lisle go in for ? There
he sat busy with his pencils the whole fore-
noon. Had he got it in his mind to take all
their portraits ?
But poor Rovina instead of taking her old
place in the class that day, she crept to the
very foot and read in such a spiritless, melan-
choly tone, it made one's heart ache. She
had no wish to breathe the fresh air at recess-
time-O, no; she kept there at her desk,
poring over her atlas the whole time. Her
eyes on it, but not studying. No, indeed.
Her heart was too nearly broken to allow of
that. She wished almost she could sink into
the ground, as Louise said, she had heard of
such things. And to see how briskly they
had all gone out; and now she could hear


72






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


their voices; how gay they were! making
game of her, no doubt! well! Poor Rovina
dropped her head and felt more desolate than
ever she had felt before.
O, if she could have known what they
really were saying! Apparently Alice had
been impressing upon them the necessity of
forbearance and kindliness, and unfolding some
little plan, something that required a general
contribution, for now there was a'great hum,
many voices speaking at once, and Lizzie
Hale's louder than the rest, sharp and de-
cided-
I won't."
Alice. Why, Lizzie, my father says-
Lizzie. Who cares for your father? I
don't.
Julia. For shame on you, Lizzie, to be so
cross to-day! To Alice Lisle, too. For
my part, I'll pay.


73






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Everybody. And I-and I-and I-and I.
Alice. (Very timidly). Why, it is only
the frame we are to give, you know, and my
father would give that with the picture, only
he thinks it will be so much the more
beautiful for us to contribute, and so surprise
her with a token of love from us all.
Louise. And so it will; she shall have all
my pennies, and welcome-they are not
many, though. Heigh'o! four long weeks, and
we to be amiable all through them. I can
get on with that well enough, though, only
the afectionate-that must be terrible To
Rovina Gove! I don't believe I can do it.
I'll try though, (and Louise finished with a
great whirl).
Alice. And now, Lizzie,-won't you,
Lizzie ?
Lizzie. (In a whisper). Yes, yes, I will,


74






THE CINDERELLA FROCK. 75

Alice; don't tell I said so; but O, 'tis capi-
tal! grand We'll call ourselves non-resist-
ants.







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


CHAPTER VII.


NoN-resistants! never was such a very
insanity carried into even any grown commu-
nity by a new party name. Yes, the children
were non-resistants. Every one, down to lit-
tle Harden Hanson, who sat all day, afternoon
and morning, on the dunce's block to keep
awake-he was non-resistant. Why, if Ro-
vina attacked him, he guessed-and then he
would drop his head and fold his chubby little
arms.
They all seemed to suppose Rovina would
declare war at the outset. What a mistake! it
was a whole week before she was even heard
to speak in her natural tones, and as time wore


76






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


off these symptoms, the old jealous, rancorous
temper seemed to disappear with then. At
any rate, being non-resistants, it was a sur-
prise to know how little there was worth
resisting. In other times Rovina had been
rather aloof from the best circles, self-ban-
ished, they had supposed by her quarrel-
some temper, but now when they coaxed and
persuaded her back, she was really an inval-
uable acquisition on the play-ground. She
knew so many, and so many games, and then
every thing spiced with her wit and life went
off so famously.
To be sure, poor Rovina had troubles, her-
self, among the non-resistants. Very light
ones, though, because people so principled
have never half as much to defend themselves
against as other people. But little scenes
like this would occur, now and then, to spoil
her peace for a day.


77







THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


Rovina. (Forgetting herself and giving a
small girl a great push). There keep out of
my way, little nuisance !
Little girl. (In a sweet voice). 0 forgive
me, I'm very sorry.
Rovina. Hem-em-I did n't mean to
push you, dear; there, forgive me.
Or like this.
Louise Carl. Dear Rovina! or Rovy-I
think I'll call you Rovy, 'tis-
Rovina. I think you won't. I'm no dog.
Louise. (Perking her head on one side with
a look of severe contrition). Pray forgive
me. There, I know you will. I only thought
I could get it off my tongue so much easier if
I only shortened it a bit. You know I have
to use it a great deal of late, and it does seem
such a waste of time. Heigho, Rovina.
Then Rovina would look foolish and all


78






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


would end in a good-humored burst of
laughter.
After the first morning nobody broke the
pledge, and it was wonderful as time wore
on, and the better impulses of her associates
alone had play, how much that was good and
amiable was found out to exist in Rovina.
She really did grow handsome, as she learned
to put away evil thoughts and feel herself
among friends.
Still, as the great day approached, poor Ro-
vina began to have new sources of uneasiness.
What if they should banish her from their
society now she was just beginning to find
out what it really was But then, Alice *
whispered her one day to be only good, and
the angels would. keep with her even then,
and indeed, she began to think so. Still, there
was some secret among the girls to which she
was not admitted. Could it have reference to


79






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


her sentence ? There was a great deal of
mysterious whispering; a great many con-
ferences they held, and one night, after
school, chancing to return for a book, she
found the whole school assembled, and, to
appearance, she had interrupted the rehearsal
of some scene. She scampered away in great
trepidation, and one of her old fits of jealousy
came very near her, upon the instant; but
she ran away from the ill-looking thing, and
took Alice's word,-why should she be un-
happy, or lonely even, if she could only keep
her thoughts bright and good ?
No, she got a habit for all that of singing
and dancing forever; and when she went
home, her mother would give her such a greet-
ing,-and the baby got to know her step, and
would call out to her before she reached the
door,-Rovy Rovy! some witchery it had,
in pitching upon Louise' diminutive, and it


80





THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


sounded like the sweetest of all names too,
for a wonder. And wasn't she as rich in hav-
ing such a darling treasure of a brother, and
a mother too, to love her, as even Alice could
be in dog, and rabbits, and doves,-aye, and
even the pictures she had envied her so much!
Certainly she was, and a million times richer,
if she only had Alice's good heart with the
rest. Living in such an atmosphere of love
had made her quite a new creature. When
the morning of the great day came, she rose
up almost cheerfully. What if sentence was
against her ? She would grieve over it to be
sure, but then, she knew now how to make
herself happy, even if all did not seem sun-
shine.
So she said her little prayer, and arrayed
herself in her church-going frock, as her
mother advised, and tripped away with her bas-
ket on her arm, as lightly as ever.


81





THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


The little girls of her own division were all
assembled, and all awaiting her outside, each
one arrayed in white. That was strange.
Every one; the second division too; but
before she had time to think of it, she was
escorted in, in great state, and placed in a
chair in the middle of the room. What did it
all mean ? no one spoke, and poor Rovina
grew pale as she tried to think. Perhaps
their white garments were meant to contrast
her dress, just as their innocence contrasted
with her guilt.
The morning exercises were scarcely over
when visitors began pouring in. Lizzie Hale's
father and mother, Alice Lisle's father, Louise
Carl's parents, some members of the school
committee; and-and-did her eyes deceive
her, her own father and mother. Rovina's
firmness could endure no longer. She cov-


82






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


ered her face with her hands, and wept bit-
terly.
So many people acquainted with the dis-
graceful story Presently, at a touch of the
bell, all the white robed ones rose up, and,
the others singing the favorite little school
piece, Let us love one another," the whilst,
marched away to the music, two and two, in
graceful, orderly file into the little class room.
There were some significant glances among
the spectators, Rovina detected now, and
some smiles, but when the door opened again,
she was relieved of them, for every eye turned
ergerly in that direction.
There was no bustle, no hurry, but a little
phalanx of girls, all who constituted the first
division, save Lizzie Hale, walked quietly in
and arranged themselves in a pretty group on
Rovina's right hand. Another followed, the
second, save Alice Lisle, and Louise, and


83






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


gathered in like order on the left. Then
Louise Carl in a flowing robe, her hair
frizzed up into something like an uncouth
wig, placed herself in front; and behind her,
Alice Lisle, and Lizzie Hale, bearing between
them what might be a very large square
board, a mirror, a small door, any thing
almost,-for it was enveloped in wrappings.
Scarcely were all in their places when,-
Noble counselors are we,
Shrewd, and eagle-sighted;
And by these our school-room laws,
Weighed in ev'ry school-room cause,
Every wrong is righted."

chanted those on the right in easy concert.

Honest jurymen are we,
To the truth restricted,
Proof we've sounded, weighed the sin,
Here we bring our verdict in,-
The culprit is convicted 1"

echoed the left hand people continuing the


84






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


line from the others, as though themselves
commenced it, while the moment they ceased,
little Louise, with her small face screwed into
an expression of great gravity, took up the
words,--
Lo, a lordly judge am I,-
Lo, a lordly judge am I.

Something was wrong; poor Louise could
nowise go on; either her memory was a
fault, or the old spirit of fun got into her,
or her dignity broke down, I know not,
but the words would not come, and the
grand ceremony was well-nigh spoiled ; only
all of a sudden, before the visitors had time
to wonder, the whole school broke out,
led by Alice, with the beautiful Golden
Rule," and the mortified little judge
managed to get out of her place, and out


85






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


of sight among the jury. Then followed
again, let us love one another," the chil-
dren repeating the words a second and a
third time.
Before Rovina had time to realize its mean-
ing, Alice and Lizzie moved forward, and
presented her in the name of the whole
school, a beautiful framed painting. She
verily believed she was dreaming; but no,
there they were all, her own father and moth-
er, with their eyes fixed on her so affec-
tionately, and all the dear familiar faces of
the others. She glanced at the picture again;
she was struck with new surprise, it appeared
the very painting she had seen in the grand
picture gallery. Love one another." The
very same, and not the same. These were
familiar faces; the same grouping, the same
angelic expression, but instead of the angel
children in the other, scarce less beautiful,


86






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


these were the faces of her own, own school-
fellows, all lighted with the same radiance of
holy love.
Tears came into Rovina's eyes, and coursed
down her cheeks, before she could remove
them from the picture. Lizzie, Julia, Lucy,
Louise, and there was her own face, and
again, not her own face; her own features,
her own look, only the expression was just as
though an angel looked through it. She was
beautiful. The new habit of love and gentle-
ness had been like the fairy in the Cinderella,
indeed arraying its charge in beauty. Alice
was there in her Cinderella dress too, and all,
the whole, looking just as they did at that
moment, in reality ; for when she did remove
her eyes, behold, the groups of girls had been
silently changing places, and now all stood
clustered about her in the same group as in
the wondrous painting. Ah, there they


87






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


were, and not mere mute faces, there was the
reality, not a mere picture, but lovelier and
better far; and Alice now felt that she too
was one of the children of the blessed group.
It was a never-to-be-forgotten day. And
when the company dispersed and the inter-
mission came, how much they had to tell one
another !
The painting was an actual gift from Alice
Lisle's father. He had not come into the
neighborhood merely to be selfish, but had
been aiming to shed happiness about him;
and if the gift could do good, he would
feel himself a thousand times recompensed.
The splendid gilt frame was a contribution
from the children. Everybody had had a
share in that. That had been planned in
that recess time when Rovina studied her
atlas, four weeks ago, and Mr. Lisle was in
the school-room sketching; he had come in


88






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


to get the outlines of all their faces, indeed,
as some one said. And now Rovina laid aside
all suspicion, and related her many trials.
How they all laughed when she talked about
her ugly face Then her temptations during
that terrible month, her great struggles, her
choking back wrathful words, and her many
little triumphs.
Lizzie had a confession to make. She
had been envious of Rovina's high stand-
ing in the class, indeed it was in her con-
science, that she had helped to keep Rovina
looked upon as an intruder in all peaceable
sports ; many a time had she aided in really
abusing her, and she asked her forgiveness.
Louise Carl to the astonishment of everybody
confessed to more. She had absolutely been
a hypocrite, wrong stories had she told ; and
on that morning, when they all stood in the
yard together four weeks ago, and she had


89






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


said such heartless things and Alice had
reproved her, began her month of probation;
Heigho, she was sorry for the past, and had
been sorry for the last month. As for her
judge's speech, such a comic fit had come over
her just as she had announced herself a
judge, the whole flitted away out of her mind-
would they forgive her ? And so, all joined
hands, formed a ring, and went through a
series of Louise's gyrations now, to testify
the general good understanding, just as the
Indians smoke the calumet. And such socia-
bility, such overflowing happiness as echoed
in the yard that day, never could have been
outdone.
The painting, it was decided, should deco-
rate the school-room walls until the term
closed. Then Rovina took it home, and it
used always to hang in her mother's sitting-
room, and for every evil thought it was a


90






THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


certain cure. After a time nobody could
recognize the Rovina of old times, new and
better affections had so beautified her. Louise
and Lizzie were always rare friends with her,
and after Alice Lisle went back to the city,
she never forgot the sweet old place, but
came every year to spend weeks and weeks
there among them.
The old Hilton house is again empty ; but
no more gloomy or uninviting. No, the Lisles
have left a charm on it, and it is so beautiful
to go there and wander through the still
rooms, no one will hear of its being torn
down. Indeed the young people have a habit
of holding a little flte there now and then;
and the woodbines are trained, and the walks
round about so kept in order for the sake of
"Auld Lang Syne," it still looks cheerful.
Miss Wright, and the gray dress, have
retired from school long ago. She lives, now


91







92


THE CINDERELLA FROCK.


here, now there, and welcome everywhere.
There is a pretty bedroom in Louise Carl's
home she calls hers, though, and when she
wants peace and home, she abides there.
The old school-house has been replaced
by a new and much grander one; and it is
filled up with new faces. But the white stone
is still there, and every year since then, there
grew more violets about it than one can
count. ADALIZA PERRY.










University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs