--TIP R O I N' E
The Baldwin Librarymt ofScri a'i
This page contains no text.
THE VISIT TO PUSS.P. 1.
JANET'S BOOTS.BY THEAUTHOR OF "FINETTE."" e sure your sin will find you out."-Num. xxxii. 23.LONDON:FREDERICK WARNE AND CO.,BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN.NEW YORK: SCRIBNER, WELFORD, AND CO.
CAMDEN PRESS LONDON, N.W.
JANET'S BOOTS.BY THE AUTHOR OF "FINETTE."T was about seven o'clock on a fineevening in May, and Janet Holdenwas just putting away her lessonbooks; the school-room at:S9nmore was verycheerful-looking, and particularly did it appearso on the evening of wlhich I am writing. Janetand her governess, Miss Simpson, had finishedtea, the lessons for the next day were learnt, andthe little girl was just preparing to go down toher papa and mamma."Oh, Miss Simpson," she exclaimed, beforeT-2
Janet's Boots.leaving the room, "you must come down withme to-night, please do, for mamma is going totry on my dress for Aunt Caroline's party, andyou must see it."Miss Simpson often stayed upstairs in theschool-room in the evening, instead of goingdown with Janet, as she liked to be quiet, andto write her letters or read; so she answered,"f' I certainly should like to set your new frock,dear; but don't you think you could come uphere wnen you have it on, and let me see it?"" Oh, yes, that will do nicely," answeredJanet: " I will come up here if mamma willallow me; and if not," she added, "you willcome down if I call you-now do say you will,dear Miss Simpson, pray do."Miss Simpson promised to come if necessary,and Janet went downstairs.
Janet's Boots.The frock was tried on that evening, and gavevery great satisfaction both to Janet and to hergoverness. It was settled that Janet and hermother should leave for Bexworth-for that wasthe name of th: place where Janet's aunt lived-the next day at twelve o'clock, and they wereto take Miss Simpson with them as far as thestation, as she was going home for a few days.Bexworth was sixteen miles from Stanmore,so Mrs. Holden and her little girl were to stayall night at Lady Caroline's, and return to Stan-more on the following day.The next morning, when Janet looked out ofher window, she was very much disappointed tofind that it was raining; however, it soon cleared,and by the time she was dressed the sun wasshining, so she was in high spirits, and ran intothe school-room exclaiming,
Janets Boots."Oh, I am so happy, Miss Simpson, it's goingto be such a fine day !""I am very glad indeed, Janet," answeredMiss Simpson; "you will, I hope, enjoy yourselfvery much, and you must tell me all about it.""I wish you wvere going too," said Janet;" only you would rather be going home, wouldyou not?"Miss Simpson said she would, and at thatmoment Mrs. Holden came into the school-roomholding a letter in her hand."This will be, I fear, a great disappointmentto you, my dear," she said. " I am very sorryto say your aunt is obliged to put off her partyuntil to-morrow, and I cannot, you know, takeyou then, as I am engaged; however," she added,seeing Janet's great distress, "your aunt says verykindly, that if I will send you to Bexworth this
Janet's Boots.evening, and let you sleep there to-night, shewill take care of you, as she knows that her partybeing on Wednesday instead of Tuesday, I shallnot be able to go, so she has been kind enoughto think of this plan.""Oh, mamma! you will let me go, won'tyou ? ""Well, Janet," answered her mother, " Ithink I can trust you; but will you really bevery good, and behave exactly as if I or MissSimpson were there ? "" Indeed I will, mamma," said Janet."Well, I think she may go. I think we cantrust her, Miss Simpson ?"" I am sure you can, Mrs. Holden," repliedMiss Simpson; " Janet will, I am sure, try toplease you by remembering to do all you tellher."
Janet's Boots.So Mrs. Holden consented, and Janet was togo that day and return on Thursday."You must be sure and put on your thickboots, Janet, dear, if it rains: you will be a greatdeal on the grass, you know, playing at croquet.""I would much rather wear my new thinones, mamma."" If it is quite fine and dry you may; but re-member, Janet, if it rains at all to-morrow, youare to put on your thick ones."" But they are so ugly, mamma," said Janet." Not at all," replied her mother; "they arevery nice boots: I don't say they are so prettyas your new thin ones, but it is much better towear rather uglier ones, than to run the risk ofcatching cold; and remember how ill you wereonce before when you got cold by getting wet.You don't want to be ill again, do you? "
Janet's Boots."Oh, no, mamma !""Well, then," continued Mrs. Holden, "youmust do what I wish. Now will you promiseme this ?""Yes, dear mamma," Janet said, " I '11 besure and put on my thick boots; but I don'tthink it will rain to-morrow."" But I think it will," answered her mother;"and remember, you have my positive orders, ifthere is a drop of rain to-morrow, that you arenot to wear your thin boots."Janet faithfully promised to do as her motherwished; but she could not help hoping that afterall it might be fine, as she was very anxious towere these new thin boots, which were of a dif-ferent kind from any she had ever worn, andwere very neat and pretty, while her thick bootswere, she considered, extremely ugly,
Jamu:'s Boots.Janet was very busy all the morning gettingready to go, and at about four o'clock in theafternoon she started: her mamma's maid wentwith her in the carriage.They arrived at Bexworth just as her cousinswere going to sit down to tea. The maid un-packed Janet's clothes, and th2n returned in thecarriage to Stanmore. Before leaving she againreminded Janet that she was on no account towear her thin boots if it rained.There was quite a large party in the school-room that evening, as, besides Janet's two cou-sins, Beatrice and Mary, there were three youngfriends of theirs who were also come to stay atBexworth for the party." Why did Aunt Caroline put off the party fora day ?" asked Janet, as they sat down to tea." Oh," Beatrice answered, " because the fire-works from London are not come."
Janet's Boots." Fireworks! " exclaimed all."How delightful !" said Janet."Very jolly!" cried little Hester Herbert,who had six brothers, and who therefore some-times, indeed very often, adopted their language." For shame, Hester! " said her eldest sisterGertrude; "you know quite well that mammasays you are not to use that word.""No, I know she says it's a boy's word,"said Hester, " but it's a very jolly word for allthat, and, besides, what could I say that fire-works are, except jolly ?""Nice," suggested Hester's other sister Lucy." Pretty," said Beatrice." Beautiful," put in Janet." Oh, no!" answered Hester, " nice, andpretty, and beautiful are not half so jolly asjolly."
Janet's Boots." I think we had better ask mamma to let yousay jolly, just for fireworks, Hester," said Ger-trude, laughing."Yes, that will be a capital plan, and youshall ask her, Gerty," answered Hester." I have never seen any fireworks," Janet toldHester, upon which the latter gave her a longdescription of some that one of her brothers hadlet off the Christmas before."Oh, I wish it was all going to be to-night,"said Janet."But then we could not have had the fire-works if they are not come from London," saidBeatrice."Oh, no I forgot that," answered Janet.Gertrude, Lucy, and Hester Herbert weregreat friends of Janet's cousins, and often cameto stay at Bexworth. Gertrude was fourteen,
Janet's Boots.Lucy twelve, and Hester nine years old, just oneyear younger than Janet.'After tea the whole party went down to thedrawing-room, where Janet's aunt, Lady Caro-line Sterling, and a large party of friends, werebusy preparing a number of tickets for a raffle,which was to take place the following day.Janet and Hester, the two youngest of theparty, were allowed to cut some of the tickets,and the elder girls helped to write the numberson them. Altogether Janet had a very pleasantevening, and when she and Hester went to bed,they could scarcely go to sleep, they had so muchto talk about."Janet," said Hester, "do you know all that'sgoing to happen to-morrow ? because'if youdon't, I do, and I will tell you."" I know there is to be a bazaar, and a raffle,
' Janet's Boots.and the fireworks, and that we are to play atcroquet," answered Janet."Oh, that's not all," said Hester. "First ofall there is to be the bazaar, as you say, andcroquet; I don't like croquet nearly so well ascricket, do you?"Janet had never played cricket, and she saidso."Never played cricket!" cried Hester; "oh,you don't know what an awfully jolly game itis.""Is it really ?" said Janet." Of course it is," said Hester; " oh, we havesuch games when the boys are at home "She gave Janet a long description of differentgames which she had often played with herbrothers; but Janet wanted to hear more aboutthe party, so she said,
Janet's Boots."But you have not told me all you knowabout to-morrow, have you, Hester ?""No, I have not," said she, " but I will.Well, you say you know about the bazaar, thecroquet, and the fireworks; but there is going tobe something else besides, something far moreamusing. Guess what ?"Perhaps a sack race, like we had at ourschool-feast," said Janet."Nonsense !" said Hester; "guess again.""Games of some sort ?" asked Janet."No, not games," answered Hester." Indeed I don't know, and can't guess.""Well, then, I'11 tell you. At four o'clock,that will be after the raffle, there is to be a playacted in the garden.""A play in the garden!" exclaimed Janet,"impossible I"
Janet's Boots."Yes, really, I know there is," said Hester." How do you know?" asked Janet."Because Gertrude is going to act, and soare Lucy and Beatrice, and some more people.Won't it be fun ?""Yes, I am sure it will," said Janet; " but,Hester, what will they do for a theatre?"" Oh, it's all beautifully arranged; it is to bein a sort of bower, and all dressed up withflowers and things, and they have got a curtainready to put up, and I 've seen it."" Have you really ?" said Janet."Yes, I have; and after the play, do youknow, we are all to have tea in a large tent, andthen, when it gets dark enough, there will bethe fireworks."Janet could hardly sleep, she was so excited,thinking of all she was to see and do the next
Janet's Boots.day. Wednesday morning came, and to thegreat distress of the two little girls, when theylooked out of their window at seven o'clock, itwas raining fast."What will they do ?" exclaimed Janet."How dreadful !" said Hester; and bothagreed that the best thing that they could dowas to go to bed again, and as they had sat upvery late the night before, they both fell asleep,and did not awake till the servant came in ateight o'clock to tell them it was time to get up;and then, to their great astonishment and de-light, the rain was over, and the sun was shiningquite brightly; in fact, there was every prospectof a fine day.After breakfast they were all very busy forsome time preparing everything for the bazaar,and then Beatrice took her cousin, with Hester
Janet's Boots.and Gertrude, to see all her pets; especially aFavourite old black cat, who had taken up herabode in the farm-yard. Beatrice had a greatdeal to tell them about pussy and her tiny blackkittens, one of which she promised to give toJanet, if her mamma would permit her to haveit; and her young friends could hardly believeit was one o'clock when they heard the bellring. However, they went in, and Lady Caro-line told them that they were to dress directly.after dinner was over, and then go out to heron the lawn, where the tents for the fancy fairhad been put up.When Janet went with Hester into theirroom to dress, she saw that the maid had puther pretty new thin boots ready for her towear."What a great pity," she thought, "that
Janet's Boots.mamma said I was to wear my thick boots-horrid things! I wish I could put on theothers. I 'm sure it can't be wet; and yet itdid rain this morning, and mamma said if therewas a drop of rain to-day I was not to put onmy thin ones."Hester was very busy getting ready, for shewas to go and finish dressing in her sister'sroom, so after a very short time Janet was leftalone. Again she began thinking about herboots, and looking at the two pairs. Nowthere was no harm in Janet's wishing that shecould wear her pretty boots, but she ought tohave thought to herself that of course hermamma knew best, and that as she had toldher what to do, she should certainly do it, andhave tried to think no more about it; butinstead of this, I am sorry to say, she began to
Janet's Boots.think to herself that it was a great pity hermamma had said anything about it, and thatshe was sure the thin boots would be quite thickenough.Janet knew quite well that it had rained thatmorning, and she remembered her promise toher mamma, but she thought she knew better,and said to herself, "Oh, I shall just put onmy thin boots, and if I get wet I can thenchange them. I am sure Beatrice and Marywon't have such clumsy boots on."She took one of the thin boots up, and beganlooking at it; then, one of her thick boots inthe other hand, and began comparing the two." How very bad these thick boots will look withmy muslin frock," she thought, " and how nicethese thin ones would be." Then she put oneof her thick boots on one foot, and one of the
Janet's Boots.thin ones on the other, and stood opposite along glass there was in the room, looking atthem. Of course, the more she compared thetwo, the more she felt inclined to disobey hermamma: she ought to have put her thin bootsaway, and tried to forget them; instead of this,I am sorry to say, she put them on.Just at that moment Gertrude came into theroom, and Janet jumped up from the floor onwhich she had been sitting whilst she fastenedher boots, and she felt exactly as if Gertrudemust know that she was doing something wrong.Janet coloured, and looked so confused thatGertrude said kindly, " Is anything the matter,dear ? I came to say that we are going down,and to see if you were ready."" Oh," stammered Janet, "oh no, there'snothing the matter ; I'm quite ready."
.Janet's Boots.So saying, she went down with Gertrude,and they found all the other children on thelawn with Lady Caroline, who was very busyputting a last touch to her stall."Now, Janet," she said, "come and help meto put these dolls in their places; you canarrange them on this side."Janet began doing as her aunt wished, andthought she had never seen so many prettythings before as there were on the stall."Have you not got on very thin boots, mydear?" Lady Caroline said to Janet."No, Aunt Caroline," answered Janet;"they are not very thin."" Are they not ?" said her aunt. "Well, Ithought they looked thin, but I suppose youknow what your mamma wishes you to wear.Will you run and fetch me some more pins ?"
Janet's Boots.she continued. "Beatrice-or you, Hester, mydear, you are not busy-just run in and askEstelle for some pins."Hester ran in, and Janet went on arrangingthe dolls: she did not feel happy, she knew thatshe was disobeying her mother, and she couldnot for an instant forget it. Even when theband arrived and began playing, and in themidst of the bazaar, she felt so uncomfortablethat she could not enjoy herself at all. How-ever, later on, when Hester and she went tohelp the others in the theatre, she did forget allabout her boots, for she was so much amusedand so busy that there was not a moment inwhich she could find time to think of anythingelse.Beatrice and Gertrude, the eldest of theyoung party, had contrived a beautiful little
Janet's Boots.theatre in the garden: it was in a sort of sum-mer-house, which opened on one side on to alawn.They had put up a curtain, and were nowbusily engaged in ornamenting the top of itwith a wreath of flowers. Janet and Hesterwere to appear on the stage as attendants uponMary, who was to play the part of a queen.They were charmed with the fun of dressing upfor it. They had bright coloured scarfs fastenedon one shoulder, and they wore these over theirwhite muslin dresses. Janet's scarf was pinkand Hester's blue.The play was called " Prince Sigismund'sCourtship," and, as it was all in verse, they" "Prince Sigismund's Courtship ; or, the FairyOrdeal." Published by Lovegrove, Motcombe Street,and Dean & Son.
Janet's Boots.had not found it at all difficult to learn byheart.There were several songs in the piece, and sothey had got the school-room piano put on oneside of the little theatre, and Miss Hesse,Beatrice and Mary's governess, had promisedto play for them.The performance went off very well, andwhen it was over Lady Caroline said to herdaughters,"The photographer is here, and if you like,my dears, you, who have been acting so nicely,can all be photographed in a group.'" Oh, yes," they exclaimed, "do let us all betaken; it will be such fun."" And may we be done as well, Aunt Caro-line?" asked Janet-" Hester and I, for wedid act a little; did we not, Hester?"
Janet's Boots."Yes," answered Hester; "and, oh! MissHesse should be photographed with us, becauseshe played the music."" Certainly," replied Lady Caroline, "all ofyou. I will go and send Mr. Nutt at once,whilst the sun is still bright."Accordingly Mr. Nutt and his photographicmachine soon arrived, and a group was formedof the actors, and very much delighted were allat the idea of seeing how their dresses wouldlook in a photograph.Hester and Janet, as the shortest of the party,were placed in front, and Miss Hesse sitting inthe middle, with Mary and Lucy on each sideof her, and the others grouped round.The picture was quito a success, and LadyCaroline was so much pleased with it that sheordered a number of copies to be done, and
Janet's Boots.promised to give one to each of her youngfriends.The rest of the afternoon was spent in cro-quet, and when the time came for them all togo into the tent to have tea, Janet and Hesterwere not at all sorry to sit down."I'm awfully glad we were acting," saidHester-" very glad, I mean: Gertrude does notlike me to say awfully. Are not you glad, Janet?for don't you see, if we had not been acting weshould not have been photographed !""Yes, I am," answered Janet. "I havenever been photographed before; have you ?""*"Oh, yes, lots of times," said Hester : "oncewith Tom and once with Harry, and once withTom and Harry; but mamma did not like theone with Harry, because he put on my hat andcloak, and I put on his hat and jacket, and they
Janet's Boots.say that I look exactly like one of the boys;but I don't mind that."" Oh, you would not like to be taken for aboy !" exclaimed Janet." Yes I should," answered Hester. " 1should like to be a boy. Oh!" she continued," I wish it would get dark, because of the fire-works. How soon will it be dark, Gertrude ? "Gertrude said she thought in about an hour,so Janet and Hester agreed that they would goand have one more game at croquet before itwas quite dark.Before long, however, there was not lightenough for them to play, and they were de-lighted to see that all the people were assemblingon the terrace in front of the house, ready tosee the fireworks; so they put away the malletsand balls, and joined the rest of the party.
Janet's Boots.Janet thought she had never seen anythinghalf so beautiful in all her life. There were"ockets, and wheels, and Roman candles, andolue lights; but last of all, and much the mostbeautiful, was a Prince of Wales's feathers allin fire.By the time the fireworks were over theguests were all thinking of going home, and itwas not long before Janet and Hester went tobed, certainly rather tired, but having had amost pleasant day.At least, to Hester it had been a very delight-ful party, and would have been so also to Janet,only that she had felt uncomfortable nearly thewhole time, knowing that she had done wrongin wearing her thin boots; and when she tookthem off she said to herself, "Well, I wish Ihad put on my thick ones, for I don't believe
Janet's Boots.that any one looked at my beautiful new boots,and certainly it was very damp and cold on thegrass when we were playing that last game ofcroquet !"She went to bed, but not to sleep: she keptthinking what her mother would say if shefound out that she had disobeyed her, and shewondered if she would ask her whether shewore her thick boots or not.When at last she fell asleep, she dreamt thatshe was walking about in the garden, with onlyher stockings on, and that she saw her mammaand Miss Simpson coming to meet her. Shejumped up, calling out, " My boots! my boots !"so loud, that she awoke Hester, who asked herwhat she wanted her boots for.,Janet felt quite frightened, for she did notknow that she had called out aloud for her
Janet's Bools.boots, and she thought Hester must know whatshe had done; however, she soon recollectedthat she had been dreaming, and said," Oh, nothing; I was only talking in mysleep, I suppose.""Oh!" said Hester, in a very sleepy voice;"then I am sure I wish you would not; Ithought that some one was calling us to getup."The next morning Mrs. Holden sent forJanet. She was very sorry to go, and especiallyto wish little Hester good-bye; but, as theylived only two miles apart, they both hopedthey should meet again.Janet had so much to tell her mamma's maid,who came to fetch her, about the party, thatthe drive home seemed quite short: they arrivedat about one o'clock, just in time for Janet's
Janet's Boots.dinner. As Miss Simpson was not cominghome until the next day, she had no lessons todo that afternoon, so she sat with her mammafor some time, and then they went out walking.Janet was not happy: she felt that she wasdeceiving, and yet she could not make up hermind to tell her mamma that she had disobeyedher. Oh! if she had only done so at once, howmuch happier she would have felt!The next day Janet had a very bad sorethroat, and in the evening she was so unwellthat Mrs. Holden sent for the doctor. Janetwas in bed when he came, so Mrs. Holden tookhim upstairs to see her."Your little girl has a very severe cold,Mrs. Holden," he said. " What has she beendoing ?"" I suppose she must have caught it at the
Janet's Boots.party at Bexworth," answered Mrs. Holden;"though I don't see how she could, for it was avery fine warm day, and she had thick boots onas there had been a little rain; of course, mydear, you did put on your thick boots ?"Janet would have liked to avoid answering,but, as her mamma asked her, she said," Oh I was not at all wet, mamma.""No, she could not get wet in these; nowcould she, Doctor Markland ?" said Mrs. Hol-den, going to the place where Janet's bootswere kept, and holding one of them up in herhand." Certainly, those are very good, substantialsoles," he replied. "Arid so you wore those,my dear Miss Janet, did you?""Yes," she said. "Yes; I wore those."Janet said "yes" in such a very peculiar way,3
Janet's Boots.that it made Mrs. Holden turn round and say," You are quite sure, Janet, you did wear themall day, did you ?""Yes, mamma, indeed I did," answeredJanet.Poor Janet! she had felt miserable the day ofthe party, but now that she had done far worseand had added falsehood to disobedience, shefelt, oh! far more unhappy. How she wishedthat she had never worn those boots! she hatedthe sight of them; and now as she lay in bed,feeling very ill, with a dreadful sore throat andheadache, there they were, those very boots, thewearing of which had made her ill, just whereshe could see them, putting her in mind of herdreadful falsehood.It was several days before Janet got well;and, when she did, she could not bear to think
Janet's Boots.of what she had done. She had not the courageto confess all to her mamma, and yet she couldnot be happy until she had done so.Mrs. Holden and Miss Simpson both fanciedthere was something the matter with the littlegirl, but they thought that perhaps it was theconsequence of her bad cold.One day, when Janet came down to lunch,Mrs. Holden told her that there was a lettercome from her Aunt Caroline to say that thephotographs were finished, and that Janet'swould be sent the next day. Janet had toldher mamma all about the play and the photo-graph of the actors, and was very anxious toshow it to all at home, and could hardly waitfor it until the next day.In the morning, at about the time she knewthe letters generally came, she went at least
Janet's Boots.half a dozen times to the garden gate, to. findout if the postman was in sight. Once shethought that she saw him; but, no, it was onlyone of the gardeners. At last the postmanappeared, and Janet ran to meet him." Have you got a parcel or a letter for me,Gregory?" she cried out to the old man, assoon as she saw him. "Do tell me quick. Isthere anything for me ? ""Yes, miss, there is," answered old Gregory,who had brought the letters to Stanmore longbefore Janet was born. " Yes, my dear littlemiss, here it is; and a queer-looking article itbe, to be sure."So saying, he pulled out of his bag a squareparcel, or rather a large letter, only it had a stiffpiece of brown pasteboard on each side of it,which made it look rather curious. Janet took
Janet's Boots.it from the old man, and ran with it in herhand into the dining-room: there was no onethere, so she took up a knife, and, cutting thestring which tied it, she opened the parcel.When she uncovered the photograph, shesaw an exact likeness of the party who hadacted at Bexworth. She could almost fancythat she was there,-they were all so clearlybefore her eyes: Miss Hesse, sitting down;Gertrude, standing, with a guitar in her hand;and, in front, Hester and herself.'-,.Janet was delighted with the picture. "Now,"she thought, " I can show mamma exactlywhere the theatre was, and she will see how myscarf was put on; and, oh! how nice my frocklooks! I can see all the tucks in my skirt, andeven the pattern on my stockings, and "At this moment, for the first time, she perceived
Janet's Boots.---- -- -^ -that in the photograph could plainly be seen herboots Yes, there they were those very boots,the wearing of which had not only made herill, but very miserable.Poor Janet she stood looking at the picture,which a moment before had given her suchgreat pleasure, with feelings of fear and horror.Every moment she expected to see her mo-ther come into the room; "and then," Janetthought, "then she will know how wicked Ihave been-that I disobeyed her, and that I havetold such a dreadful story !"And here it should be explained that theseboots, which had been the cause of so muchmisery to Janet, were of a pec-L.iar sort andshape, and therefore were very distinctly seen inthe photograph. They were made '-) come someway up above the ankle, and were neatly finished
Janets Boots.in front with tassels; altogether they were quitedifferent from common boots, and as Janet keptgazing at the photograph, it seemed to her as ifthey were by far the most striking objects in thepicture.Janet wished she could hide the photograph,but she knew that it would be no use, as hermother would be sure to ask her directly she sawher, whether it had come; still, anything to putoff the dreadful moment. She thought if shecould only get out of the room with it, any-where, it would at all events delay the time ofher fault being found out.She was just going out of the door when incame Miss Simpson." So you have got your photograph, Janet,dear, have you ?" she said; "'well, let me lookat it,"
Janet's Boots.So saying, she took it out of poor Janet'sunwilling hand : Janet trembled and felt so coldthat her teeth quite chattered; she expectedevery moment that Miss Simpson would noticethe boots."So that's Miss Hesse, is it? And which isyour friend, little Hester Herbert ? "Janet pointed her out."It is a very good photograph," Miss Simpsoncontinued, " and I will frame it for you to hangup in the school-room: you will like that, shallyou not, Janet ?"" Oh, yes, thank you, Miss Simpson," stam-mered Janet, "very much."At this moment Mr. Holden came in to break-fast. He admired the photograph very muchtoo, and when he heard of Miss Simpson's in-tention of framing it, he told his little daughter
fTanet's Boots.that if it was fine he would drive them both toLeckham, a small town about three miles off,that afternoon, to buy the glass for the frame;but no remark was made about the boots, eitherby her papa or Miss Simpson, and Janet beganto breathe more freely.In a short time Mrs. Holden came in, and themoment she saw Janet's face she noticed thatsomething was the matter.Mr. Holden showed her the photograph, andJanet felt convinced, the instant her mammalooked at it, that her secret was discovered;however, Mrs. Holden said nothing about it.but sat down and began making the tea.Janet was miserable and uncomfortable; butstill as her mother had not made a remark abouther boots, she began to hope that it was possiblethat she had not noticed them. After breakfast
Janet's Boots.Mrs. Holden desired Janet to come with her intoher room, and then she felt quite certain thather mamma had indeed found out her fault, andshe followed her with a beating heart.When they were in Mrs. Holden's own room,she shut the door and sat down." Janet," she said, "you have something to tell"me. Now do not try to deceive me any longer;you must know that I have found out what youhave done-do not attempt to deny it."Janet burst into tears." Oh, mamma!" she sobbed, "what must Ido? What will papa say? What do you thinkof me? Oh, you will never, never trust meagain!"" I do not say that, my dear child," answeredher mother, kindly: "you have certainly donevery wrong, and I am distressed and surprised to
Janet's Boots.find that you have been deceiving us all thistime."" Oh! I did not mean to do it," cried Janet."Very likely not," answered Mrs. Holden;"but, you see, instead of telling me at once thatyou had disobeyed me and worn your thin boots,you tried to hide your fault by telling me a false-hood, and by that means you made your conductten times worse. Your papa and Miss Simpsonhave not, I suppose, noticed in the photographthat you had on those boots, which you toldus all you did not wear, but you must go andtell them.""Oh, no, no!" exclaimed Janet, "anythingbut that! I cannot tell them, oh! I cannot,indeed, mamma, I cannot!"" My dear Janet," said Mrs. Holden very ear-nestly, "you have already done a very wicked
""Janet's Boots.thing; first, you broke your promise to me, andsecondly, which was far worse, you told a false-hood about it. Do you not wish to do every-thing that is in your power to atone for yourfault ?"" Yes-yes," said poor Janet."Well, then, my dear, believe me, you willnot feel happy until you have been and told yourfather and Miss Simpson the whole truth; youhave deceived them as well as me. You do not,I am sure, wish to continue in your deceit; anddon't you think that your papa would muchrather that you should tell him the truth your-self, even now, than find it out, as he would besure to do some day or other, even if I did nottell him ? And Miss Simpson, do you not thinkthat she would discover your boots in the pic-ture ? why, here you are," she added, pointing
Janet's Boots.to the photograph which she held in her hand,"as distinct as possible.""But, oh, mamma!" cried Janet, "not to-day let me wait till to-morrow.""And what good would that do?" answeredher mother; " only add one more miserable dayof deceit to those which are already past. No,believe me, my dear Janet, the only right thingfor you to do is to go at once and confess all." -It was a long time before Janet could be per-suaded to do so: her mother, however, talkedto her for a long time, and so kindly, and at thesame time so earnestly, that at last Janet wasquite convinced, and said she would.She already felt happier after having talkedwith her mother. Janet told her all about herputting on the boots, and how she had tried tothink she knew best which she ought to wear.
Janet's Boots."You see, Janet, how very much you weremistaken,".remarked Mrs. Holden, "for nodoubt you caught that bad cold entirely by get-ting your feet wet on that day.""Oh, I hope I shall never wear those bootsagain! " exclaimed Janet."On the contrary," said Mrs. Holden, "I hopeevery time you put them on you will try to re-member all the good resolutions which I feelsure you will make to-day, and that you will sayto yourself, 'If ever I am tempted to do any-thing wrong, I will not make it worse by tellinga falsehood about it.' "Mr. Holden was greatly shocked when Janettold him what she had done, but he saw howtruly sorry she now was for her fault, and saidhe hoped it would be a lesson to her for the.future.
Janets Boots."For," he added, " I am sure you have sufferedenough in consequence of your fault to makeyou remember it.'." Oh, papa! you will never believe a word Isay again I" said Janet." It is the first time that you ever deceivedme," answered Mr. IHolden, "and if I see youtrying to regain my confidence by your conductin future, I shall trust you, and I am sure youintend to try.""Indeed, I do," said Janet; and I am gladto say that from that thGy she never was knownagain to speak anything but the exact truth.The photograph was framed and hung in theschool-room; at first Janet could hardly bear tolook at it, but in time she got quite fond of it.She remembered that it had helped her to bearin mind the resolution she had made of being
Janets Boots.very particular in always speaking the truth, forshe never could look at it without saying to her-self, "I never will tell another falsehood, for Iremember how miserable I was when I wore mythin boots, and then told mamma a story aboutit!"Camden Pres:,, London.
This page contains no text.