wi yal fy = s)
FANNY iG ODy,
ON, Ga se
Helen â€œMarion Burnaide,
Florence Scannell ;
Jane Willis Grey (ole Parsons:
John Lawson Edith Scannell,
Ellen Welby, Inez Warry,
Frances Bru ndage
RAPRAEL TUCK & SONS.
LONDON, PARIS & New YorÂ«
pani, SAL Renee
Jen peter aon
CHARLIE ap pie" THRIESâ€
pes did you say, motherâ€”whatâ€™s
twins ?â€™â€™ Mrs. Selby smiled at her
eldest boy who had asked the question and
answered him with some little hesitation,
â€œYou are scarcely old enough, Charlie, to
understand exactly, but you can remember
CHARLIE AND THE â€œTHRINS.â€ 5
this much, that two brothers or sisters born on the same day are
â€˜* Only two, mother ?â€
â€˜â€œâ€˜ Yes, Charlie, only two.â€
Charlie sat quietly thinking, but his mother was quite sure
more questions would follow, for he was always eager to know the
meaning of anything that puzzled him, and not at all afraid of
asking questions. Some of Mrs. Selbyâ€™s friends called him a very
inquisitive child, and thought he should be checked in his enquiries,
as sometimes he asked
for information they
could not give him;
but his mother very
wisely answered all
his questions so far
as she thought he
_ could comprehend
â€œâ€œ<~what she told him,
and promised him
when he should be old enough to understand it.
Charlie was only a little over five years of age, but as he had
passed very little time in the nursery, because Mrs. Selby liked to
have her children with her a great deal, he was not at all babyish,
and knew as much as many boys who were much older. Suddenly
he looked up with a satisfied air. â€˜I know,â€ he exclaimed;
â€œthen Archie and Dot and Roughie are thrins.â€
â€˜Thrins! my boy, why there is no such word,â€ said Mrs.
â€˜â€˜Oh yes, mother, there must be; twins is two, and thrins
â€˜â€œ No, Charlie, you are quite wrong; altogether wrong, my boy
â€”there is no such word as thrinsâ€”the rest of the mistake is
partly my fault, for I should have told you that the children who
are called twins are both the same age, not only having their
6 CHARLIE AND.THE â€œTHRINS.â€
birthdays on the same day. You know that your sister Dot is
a year older than Archie, although both have the return of the
day they were born on every nineteenth of September, so they are
not twins. And as for little Roughieâ€™s real birthday, I cannot say
when it is, though we call his birthday the same day as Archieâ€™s
because your uncle gave him to you when your brother was two years
oldâ€”just a year ago to-day.â€
â€˜Ah, well mother, I shall call them thrins, I
sâ€™pose I can make words if I like, â€™cos I heard
Uncle Tudor tell you that some man who
wrote a book made his own words, so I
shall call them three thrins.â€â€™
Mrs. Selby was too wise ever to argue
with a child, so she only laughed very
merrily, as she said, â€˜â€˜ You are a silly
little man, and very fond of talking non-
sense; run out and have a good game
with your thrins, but donâ€™t get into any
co * * *
Charlieâ€™s home was quite a country
mansion. The beautiful old house stood in
a lovely park, and the gardens were well kept,
and some of the shrubberies quite dense, all
affording play-grounds, of which the children
never wearied, and where they were allowed to
wander without a thought of danger.
Mr. Selby was often absent from the
hall as he was a Member of Parliament,
and now he was daily expected home from
a trip he had taken to Norway.
Charlie said, â€˜â€˜ Father would surely come
home in time for Dotâ€™s birthday, for Dot was
his only little girl.â€ In Charlieâ€™s opinion father
liked Dot better than his boys. Perhaps father was |j
CHARRETTE AND aT EEE. STE RINS." Zs
rather more gentle with his little girl, but not because he loved her
better, for he was very proud of his boys, and hoped they would be
brave and truthful men when they were grown up. The day was
brilliant and warm, more like July than September. When Charlie
()% left his mother he went to find Dot and Archie.
\-â€ Nurse said it was much too hot for the children to
wear jackets, especially as they intended playing
at horses. So dressed in their gala frocks and
ribbons, in honour of
the day, with their
hats on to
from the sun, the
children started off
x for their game, accom-
\ : panied by Roughie.
The scarlet \ reins were a double set, a birthday present
from nurse. \. Charlie said it would have â€˜looked more
propererâ€ if he \ had had a whip; but as he was quite sure
he should not use it, it didnâ€™t matter much now, but nurse could
give him one when his birthday came. Nurse said she would think
about it; but no doubt before the day came he would like something
Charlie, of course, was driver. He would occasionally allow his
pair of horses to rest for a minute or so; and when Archie gathered
some flowers Dot called it â€˜â€˜ taking home his feedâ€”thatâ€™s what the
Then when they had rested as long as Charlie thought
necessary, he would shake the reins, and shout, â€˜â€˜ Gee up, thrins,â€
and off they went again.
8 CHARLIE AND THE â€œTHRINS.â€â€™
Dot did not much like the new name, and asked Charlie,
â€œWhatâ€™s thrins ?â€
â€œOh,â€ said her brother, â€˜â€˜ thatâ€™s my new name for three twins
â€”I can make new words just as well as Uncle Tudorâ€™s manâ€”thrins
is just lovely.â€
â€˜â€˜ But whatâ€™s twins ?â€? again asked Dot.
â€˜*Qh, youâ€™d best ask mother that; I donâ€™t think youâ€™re quite
old enough to understand yet,â€ said the boy. He felt ever so
much older than his sister, but he did not feel quite able to explain
even the little his mother had told him.
â€˜* Does mother know whatâ€™s thrins ?â€â€ inquired Dot.
â€˜Yes, of course, I told her,â€ replied Charlie very positively,
and evidently quite proud of himself.
â€˜If you told mother, why canâ€™t you â€˜tell me?â€ again
Charlie thought an instant, and then got out of his difficulty
by saying, â€˜â€˜ You ask mother â€˜whatâ€™s twins,â€™ and then when sheâ€™s
told you I'll tell you whatâ€™s thrins. Gee up, gee up.â€
Off they went again at a good trot, with Roughie dancing
along and barking with joy at racing with the children.
They had gone through one of the shrubberies, and were
running gaily along in the long
grass that grew by the side of
the shrubs, when suddenly
Archie tripped and disappeared,
and Dot followed him, while
the weight with which they
fell pulled Charlie forward
with such force that he lay
on his face quite stunned.
His hands though still clung
with a firm hold to
the reins, which were
attached to the arms
of Dot and Archie.
GHAR TEs ALND IgE aS IRELTN Sa, 9
Roughie barked, and the two little ones screamed in terror ;
but Charlie lay motionless
and rigid across one corner
_ of the hole into which the
2 children had disappeared
sniffed round and round
the prostrate boy, then put his head over
the brink of the hole, and whined as though
asking whether he could help in any way, and
om then wildly rushed away as fast as his short legs and
tiny feet would carry him.
â€˜Roughieâ€™s gone, naughty Roughie,â€â€™ sobbed out Archie,
struggling, as he spoke, to release his arms from the scarlet reins
that still bound him firmly to his sister.
â€œTl take it off,â€ said Dot, trying to stand up, but pulled down
again by Archieâ€™s struggles to release himself. â€˜â€˜ Charlie, let go,â€
she cried ; but Charlie did not move, and the reins were still twisted
tightly round his hands.
After many attempts, and many stumbles in the long nettles
among which they had fallen, Dot and Archie managed to stand
upright. But, alas! their heads did not reach to the top of the
hole, nor could their little scratched, stung, and bruised arms and
hands touch the clenched hands above that held their bonds
The children had not fallen far. Their prison was only an
unused potato pit, filled with a wild growth of nettles and briars,
which had rendered it a veritable trap for unwary feet.
Charlie had been far more unfortunate, though he escaped the
pit, and the nettles, and the thorns. The weight of his sister and
brother, as they fell so suddenly, greatly added to the force of his
own headlong downfall. His head had struck against a jagged piece
of wood that was quite hidden in the long flowery grass, and Charlie
was insensible and helpless.
10 CHARLIE AND THE â€œTHRINS.â€
Archie began to cry most lustily. What with the stings and
scratches, and finding his arms still firmly held by the twisted reins,
he became not only frightened but angry, and Dot said afterwards
that â€˜â€˜ Archie howled.â€
Dot herself was much braver. She bore her pain without a
tear, and stood quite still instead of tearing at the ribbons, and so
bruising her poor bare arms. She called â€˜â€˜ Nurseâ€ at the top of her
voice till her throat felt sore, and her voice became shrill and faint ;
then at last she called, â€˜â€˜ Mother, mother, do come.â€ â€”
But Dotâ€™s voice had lost its strength, and mother would never
have heard her little girlâ€™s pitiful cry if it had not been for clever,
faithful little Roughie, who had almost pulled her to the spot where
she found her children.
Mother saw at once what was the matter. She did not mind
the nettles, but dropping gently into the pit, she loosened the reins
from the childrenâ€™s arms, and lifted them both on to the grass
above. Then climbing out herself she
sent them back to the house with
Roughie to guard them, telling
Dot to send nurse and the
footman as quickly as possible
to help her with Charlie.
Archie was very unwilling
to leave his mother; but
motherâ€™s word was law, and
he had to obey. As they
trotted off, Mrs. . Selby
stooped and raised Charlie
in her arms. He was not -
deadâ€”that she knew. How much ~
he was injured she still had to dis-
cover, and she could do nothing but
wait for help. What a sad day for the
childrenâ€™s birthday, and all had been
so bright only a few minutes before. Then a
CHARLIE AND THE â€œTHRINS.â€ TSE
swift and earnest prayer went up to Heaven for help and strength
to bear whatever trial might await them all.
As she brought her thoughts back to the dear child who was
nestled in her arms, Charlieâ€™s eyes opened slowly and his lips
moved; but his voice was only a whisper, â€˜â€˜ Mother, Iâ€™ve lost the
â€˜â€œÂ« Theyâ€™re quite safe, my boy; donâ€™t talk.â€
As she spoke nurse appeared, and someone with her, but not
the footman; he ie had been sent
Ostsiaeet Opty, et Cer. doctor.
(OG ode 1s good â€” He has
she put Charlie
armas On =bie
Mrs. Selby, as
into his fatherâ€™s
carried to the
Charlie was -
long time, and
ile for ea. Very,
father and nurse
Mother was not
well enough to help; but when
she was able to go into his room,
and found him lying on the sofa, she asked him to make room for
another little sister, whose birthday was also on September the
â€œâ€˜Oh, mother! thatâ€™s three, without Roughie.â€
Mrs. Selby said, â€˜â€˜ Yes, Charlie, three ; are you not pleased, you
look so solemn ?â€â€™
â€˜â€˜Gladder than I can tell,â€ and he tenderly smoothed the
babyâ€™s face. â€˜1 donâ€™t think Iâ€™ll make any more words, mother, for
I couldnâ€™t make one for four â€œ twins.â€
GSLs ated |
Our Lrast Holiday.
HE other day I heard Aunt
Penelope and mamma talk-
ing about diaries. Mamma
said she did not believe in people
writing down their feelings. She
thought we have a great many feel-
ings which we ought not to have,
which we really do not mean to
have, and which we can best lose if
we let ourselves forget them. On
the other hand, she said some people
fill their diaries with accounts of
feelings which they do not feel at
all, but which they think it would be
admirable to feel. She said she had heard papa say that he believed
people always wrote their diaries with the feeling that somebody was
looking over their shoulder, just as they look in their own bedroom
mirror to prepare themselves for other peopleâ€™s eyes.
I think what mamma says is right. What would be the use
of my writing down last week (when I did my sums so badly) that
I felt that I hated our governess. (Iâ€™ve learned how to work the
rule now, and I like her wellenough!) Then again, when we went to
the commemoration services, I daresay Iâ€™d have put in a diary how
grand the music was, and what fine impressive sermons the bishops
preached, while in reality the crowding was so unpleasant and the
OUR EAST â€œHOLIDAYS 13
cathedral got so close that I nearly went to sleep, and was very
glad when it was all over!
- But Aunt Penelope says that because there are wrong sorts of
diaries, that is no reason why there should not be a right one.
She thinks the right diary is
one which is meant for every-
body to read â€”in which we
should write down only things we would like to relate when we
are old. She says that most people, once or twice in their lives,
come across some marked event, and if they wrote down what
they saw and heard at the time, it would be most interesting
afterwards. She only wished she had done this in her younger
days. Things might be stuck in tooâ€”it would be nice to see
an old hand-made valentine or the first Christmas card !
I mean to start a diary of this sort, and as we are just going off
for a holiday, this will be a good time to begin. So when papa said
to me, â€˜â€˜ Now, Grace, of course a young lady of twelve years old is
above spades and pails, so what am I to bring you as an equipment
for your trip?â€ I said to him, â€˜â€˜ Please I should like a blank book.â€
Papa did not laugh, but he looked at me funnily, and was very
particular in asking me the right size, and kind of cover, and
soon. (Of course Peter and Clare are to have spades and pails,
and I'll get plenty of play with them.)
Iâ€™ve written all this on the first page of the blank book to
explain what will follow.
I4 OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
DEAL, KENT.â€”First Day or THE Hotipays.â€”It is no
use to write down what is already printed in guide-books and
geographies, so I wonâ€™t say anything about Julius Cesar or the
We have lodgings in a house close to the sea. It is next door
to what is called â€˜â€˜ Lloydâ€™s Office.â€ Iâ€™ve often heard papa talk
about Lloydâ€™s Shipping News, but now I understand a little better
what it is. There is a man, or perhaps two or three men, next door,
watching all the ships that pass in the Channel, and the ships send
messages to this man by means of different coloured flags, arranged
on plans agreed upon, and the man can send them messages back.
Mamma says that if papa had a ship called Grace, bringing in
wood from Canada to London, and papa found that wood was not
selling in London, but was wanted in Amsterdam, he could just
telegraph from the city office where he is sitting, to the man next
door, something like this: â€˜â€˜ When lumber ship Grace, Montreal
to London, passes Deal, order her on to Amsterdam.â€ And papa
would know almost exactly when his ship would pass Deal, because
he would know through the Lloydâ€™s man at i
Brighton or Hastings when the Grace had
passed those places. It is very
wonderful. Aunt Penelopesays | |
it shows what a great amount _-
of painstaking, care, and atten- â€”* ~
tion are required to keep things ~~
-going properly. She says that the â€”~ >.
more we know and can do, the â€˜
. better we understand how much nae
we depend upon other people. ss
Why, if those Lloydâ€™s men were ,
not always attending to theirâ€™ ~
business, perhaps papa would not be
able to afford to send us here fora _ Â©
holiday! And how can we do any- vo
thingy ain returnaetor sthese =peoplewm << nae
OUR LAST HOLIDAY. I5
whom we donâ€™t know? Aunt Penelope
says that is why the Prayer
Book helps us to remember
â€˜â€˜all sorts and conditions of
men.â€™ It does mean more
when you look at it in this
light; but Clare says while
she is at Deal she shall
_ pray for Lloydâ€™s man next
It is quite lively to sit
at the window and watch
the ships talking! We
make believe we know what
they are saying! Mamma has bought Peter a book of the flags
of all nations, so, at least, we can guess where they come from.
Tuirp Day or Horipays.â€”We have walked out to Sandown
Castleâ€”that is, to all thatâ€™s left of it, for there is very little to be
seen, except some of the underground, dungeon-like rooms, half
choked up with shingle. This is where Colonel Hutchinson was
cruelly imprisoned till he died, in the reign of Charles II. I have
read all about his wife Lucy, in the â€˜â€œ Lives of Good Women,â€
which grandmamma gave me. Of course I always understood it
was very terrible to have oneâ€™s husband in prison and ill; but when
I came here and found that the castle is not much more than a
mile out of the town, I could not understand why the book had laid
such stress on his wifeâ€™s â€˜exertions and devotion,â€ in walking out
every day from Deal to see him! Why, I walk nearly a mile to
school daily. I said so to auntie, when we started off this morning,
and she answered me, â€˜â€˜wait and see!â€™ I noticed she wouldnâ€™t
take Clare with us. Now, I understand all about it. The way to
the castle lies over rough, slippery shingle, and coming home the
wind rose a little, and blew in our faces, and we had a regular
battle to get along, and my feet ached so they were fit to drop off.
â€˜â€˜ Now, youâ€™ve done for once, for your own amusement, Grace, what
16 OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
Lucy Hutchinson did every day with a sore heart,â€™ said Aunt
Penelope. â€˜â€˜And we have wrestled with a mere summer breeze,
while she faced wintry blasts, with snow and sleet.â€ I suppose a
ereat many things which seem easy enough when we hear of them
are very hard todo. Perhaps thatâ€™s the reason why the people who
have done most themselves are the readiest to admire other people.
The boy or girl who
thing, fancies he or
thing if he or she
has not done any-
she could do every-
only cared to try!
â€” Our land
is such a fun-
He is an old
sat with us a
says our land-
widow as we
was. She has Â©
living, but he
and our old
ny old man.
came in and
lady is not a
ae ens baad
is in a lunatic
was a gunner,
sailor says he
went mad try-
ing to work for some ex-
amination he had to pass before he could rise. There
were no such things in his time, he says, and he thinks
they are very bad for brains of some sorts. He thinks they would
not have suited his brain. Then he told us all sorts of funny stories,
but some of them were sad. He says it will be never known how
much of the loss of life at sea is due to drinking. He used to drink,
too, when he was a young man, and he says he once went out among
the crew of a small ship, which was sent to stop a big vessel from
entering one of the great Indian rivers, where the passage was just
then dangerous. The small ship was to ride at anchor till the big
one came up; but he says every man on board, officers and all,
OUR LAST HOLIDAY. G7
drank so heavily, that they did not see the great ship pass. She
was never heard of more! He says that the thought of it haunts
him, and he even dreams of it sometimes. He thinks every man on
the little ship will have to answer for the death of every man on the
big ship, because if any one of them had kept sober and stuck to his
duty, all the lives might have been saved.
_ The servant says her old master is very funny. He thinks
things in a house should be made like those aboard ship. One day
last winter, her mistress and she went away for a holiday, leaving
the old man at home alone. He thought he would give them a
pleasant surprise when they came back; so he tarred every article
in the kitchen! He tarred the chairs, and he tarred the tea tray.
They stuck to the chairs when they sat down, and the cups stuck
to the tray! They had the â€˜worldâ€™s workâ€ (as she calls it) to get
things right again.
We spent all this morning on the shore behind the boats.
Peter says he does not want to leave the sea again; he would like to
be a sailor. Aunt Penelope says maybe, for a sailorâ€™s is a grand life ;
but Peter must not think he is fit for it because he likes digging in
the sands on a sunny morning! Aunt Penelope says most people
like the nice easy part of many ways of life; but the way of life we
are fit for, is that whose hard part we donâ€™t dislike! Clare
says sheâ€™d like to
be a cook when
she sees cook
making tarts, but
not when sheâ€™s
think Iâ€™d like to al
write books, but if nobody would read
them Iâ€™m afraid it would break my heart!
Aunt Penelope says if I am meant to write
books I shall do it, and take my chance
of the heart-break !
18 OURMEAST HOE TD AVS
Saturpay.â€”I have never written down
in my diary that from our windows we can
see the Goodwin Sandsâ€”the terrible shoals
where so many ships are wrecked, and under
which so many dead sailors must lie.
Our servant tells us that in the sum- pba S
mer time, at low water, visitors can go
out and picnic on them, and that some-
times they even play cricket matches!
I think it seems very like playing games | ;
in a churchyard! |
Of course there is a lifeboat in \ |:
Deal, and our servant has been telling .
us about it, and about the Deal boat-
men. Her father was a sailor,andso ~.\
was his father before him, and so are
her two brothers, and so was a third, Â©
who was drowned. She has had an uncle drowned, and two cousins
who took service on ships that were never heard of again. I asked
her if it did not make her hate the sea when so many she loved had
died in it. And she said, â€˜â€˜ Why, Miss dearie, you donâ€™t hate bed,
and yet most people die there.â€
She says our landladyâ€™s father has gone out in the lifeboat again
and again, and has saved many lives. I said to her that he had not
told us that, and she said no, of course not, because heâ€™d hold it no
more than his duty. She says heâ€™d go now, old as he is, if the boat
was short of a hand.
Monpay.â€”We went to church yesterday, and in the evening
we went to the Seamenâ€™s service. We knew two or three of
the men who were there, and they seemed pleased to see us,
and lent us a hymn book. I liked to hear them singing. There
is a weeknight service to-morrow evening, and I shall ask mamma
to let me goagain. To-day is not a nice day. It is very misty.
â€˜We cannot see the passing ships. We have been dull, and a
OUR LAST HOLIDAY. 1g
Turespay.â€”To-day is very stormy.
morning, and blew the mist away about noon; but it has been
too wild to go for a walk. We sat at the windows and looked
out, watching the boatmen. There seemed a great deal of run-
ning to and fro. Our servant says they think there has been a
wreck on the Goodwins, for through their glasses they think they
can see a man going wildly about on the sands, but they canâ€™t
launch the lifeboat because of the tide. They have been signal-
ling a passing tug boat to tug out the lifeboat. They dipped a
flag from the pier-head, and burned blue lights, but the tug-ship
did not seem to notice, and passed on. They say nothing can be
done but wait till the tide is right for the lifeboat. The waiting is
so awful. Our servant says they can only see one figure on the
sands, and they can make out a new wreck there since yesterday.
Ships donâ€™t sail with only one sailor. Where are the others?
And that poor man, how does he feel? What does he think ?
I do hope he thinks we see him, and that he believes we mean
to help! Our servant says if he has been this way before, he
ought to know what Deal boatmen are. But oh, to be all by
oneself under the blank grey sky, surrounded by the cruel, crawling
sea! Our servant says she hopes heâ€™s a good man, and then he
isnâ€™t without a Friend. â€˜â€˜ Death
is nothing,â€ she says, â€˜â€˜if youâ€™re
ready for it.â€ But I say maybe
he has a wife and little children
somewhere, and will be so sorry
to think how they will wait for
him in vain. â€˜ Aye, thatâ€™s hap-
pened to a many before,â€ she
says. â€˜' Sailors know such things
must be sometimes. When it
happens, itâ€™s in the will of God.â€
O, that poor man alone out
on those horrible sands; and
only this morning I. was fretful
20 OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
because the weather was too bad for us to walk to Munceam as we
had planned. Aunt Penelope says that there is some great agony of
this kind always going on in the world, and that we ought to
remember this, and be ashamed of ourselves when we are inclined
to be cross and impatient with little things.
It is so terrible to be so near, and yet not able to help. The
servant says, â€˜â€˜ Yes, itâ€™s the waiting is the hard bit; but itâ€™s all in
God's will, and what we canâ€™t do is what He does not mean
us to do.â€
EVENING OF THE SAME Day.â€”
In spite of the high wind, Aunt
Penelope and I managed to get to
the Seamenâ€™s evening service. I[
should think about sixty men came.
Perhaps the thought of the
poor fellow, who may be
drowning in the dark, in /
some of the horrid places
which they call â€˜â€˜ fox-falls,â€
made everybody feel that they sranited ; _
to speak to God, and to hear other â€”-*
people speaking to Him too. Our old
landlord was there. We met him just as we went in, and he told
us that nothing can be done till about half-past ten, when the
tide changes. He is to go in the lifeboat himself. He is not so
strong as some are, though â€˜â€˜heâ€™ll do yet,â€ he says; but he has
gone so often before that he knows the sands better than most.
I noticed all through the service that everybodyâ€™s eyes kept
going to the clock, and yet Iâ€™m sure it wasnâ€™t because anybody was
weary. O, how strong and earnest their voices were in the
responses! And when the clergyman read, â€˜â€˜In all time of our
tribulation; in all time of our wealth, in the hour of death, and in
the Day of Judgment,â€ they answered, â€˜â€˜ Good Lord, deliver us,â€ as
earnestly as that poor man may have been crying out in the dark!
And there was a look on many faces as if there were tears
OUR LAST HOLIDAY. 2
behind their eyes! And I
daresay most of the men
there had lost somebody
by the power of the sea.
I saw Aunt Penelopeâ€™s
tears dropping, and
everything seemed _ so
strange that I didnâ€™t
notice that the clergy-
man had stopped reading, till I heard his
voice suddenly say, â€˜â€˜ Has any man any
fresh suggestion to make? Can we tele-
graph anywhere else for other help ?â€
Two or three old boatmen turned
and whispered to each other; but they
all shook their heads, and one old man
spoke out for them all, that there was
nothing to be done just yet. So the
service went on. We sung the hymn,
â€˜Rescue the Perishing.â€ It all seemed so
real, because we knew of that man out on the Goodwins; and
it always is quite as real, for such things always are, whether we
know them or not.
As soon as the service was over, Aunt Penelope and I hurried
home as fast as we could; but our old landlord, stiff as he some-
times seems, had got there before us, and there was his daughter at
the door helping him into his oilskins. As it wasnâ€™t near half-past
ten yet we thought he was only going down to the beach. He
didnâ€™t take any notice of us, and I heard the last words he said to
his daughter, and they were these :
â€˜â€˜Is my short pipe in my pocket ?â€
â€˜Father says he thinks they may launch about nine oâ€™clock,â€
said our landlady, peering after him into the darkness.
We went upstairs, and found supper standing ready for us, and
the blinds drawn down, and everything made bright and cosy inside,
22 . OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
but we couldnâ€™t bear that! Mamma said it was horrid to be shut
away from what others were suffering and daring, even though we
couldnâ€™t help. So we drew up our blinds, and watched the lights
flashing about outside, and the dark figures running. Little Clare
had gone to bed, but mamma allowed Peter to sit up that he might
see what sort of a man he must become if he would be a sailor !
It was not much after half-past eight, when we heard a sound
of hoarse shouting and heavy thuds, like thumps on a closed door,
and presently a bell rang in a furious sort of way, like somebody
calling in a great hurry, and then there was a cheer, and a strange
erating, sliding noise.
Aunt Penelope cried â€˜I know that sound. It is the lifeboat
being rushed to the beach. They are off already!â€
â€˜â€˜Run downstairs, Grace,â€ said mamma, â€˜â€˜and ask our land-
lady if her father is really gone.â€
But I couldnâ€™t find anybody in the house, though I looked
everywhere ; in the kitchen, in the bedrooms, even in the coal-cellar.
Our landlady and the servant had both gone out.
By-and-bye, when the boat was off, we heard them return.
Mamma spoke over the stair-head :
â€œâ€œO, Mrs. Adams, why did you go out on such a night as this ?â€
â€˜â€˜T beg pardon, maâ€™am,â€ said the landlady, who always seems
afraid she isnâ€™t doing right. â€˜I didnâ€™t think youâ€™d want anything ;
I thought I had set out all.â€
â€œTâ€™m not thinking of ourselves,â€ mamma answered, almost
vexed. â€˜I am thinking of you! You, who tell me how you suffer
from neuralgia, to go outside and stand in the wind ona night like
this! Why, you might have seen and heard everything, and yet
kept the shelter of the
Our landlady laughed,
relieved. â€œI could not gr
keep the door open and
make the place miserable
for you, maâ€™am,â€ she said.
OUR LAST HOLIDAY. 23
â€œThis sort of thing makes one forget neuralgia. Thereâ€™s time
enough for that another day.â€
â€˜â€˜ Has not the boat started too soon ?â€â€™ asked Aunt Penelope.
â€˜â€˜ Well, itâ€™s nigh two hours before they say itâ€™s safe,â€ admitted
our landlady. â€˜â€˜ But men-folk donâ€™t like waiting; thatâ€™s the part of
the job they leave to us.â€
Next Morninc.â€”After what I wrote last, of course there
wasnâ€™t much more to do or to see; but nobody could tell when the
next thing would happen. And we didnâ€™t think weâ€™d sleep, so we
didnâ€™t want to go to bed. Our landlady got out blankets and flannel
things to be ready for the boatâ€™s return, and she made up a great fire
in the kitchen, and we all went and sat round it together, and the
landlady and the servant told us all sorts of sea stories. Peter fell
asleep, and we rolled him warmly on the sofa. In time I dozeda
little too, and when I woke up there was a soft light in the room,
and Aunt Penelope and I went upstairs to our parlour, and watched
the dawn brighten over the sea. Oh, how beautiful it was! Aunt
Penelope said to me â€˜â€˜ That it is strange to think how few of us care
to rise to see this wonderful scene which God prepares daily. The
eyes which see the dawn are seldom young eyes or glad eyes,â€ she
said softly. â€˜â€˜ They are rather the eyes of weary watching, hopeless
sorrow, or wakeful age.â€™â€™ Aunt Penelope stood gazing out across
the waters as she spoke, and I fancied her words meant more than
seemed. I wonder if Aunt Penelope has seen many dawns!
Aunt Penelope has gone downstairs to help to get us all
something to eat. And now I begin to remember something.
~ When I was quite a little girl, I was told Aunt Penelope was going
to be married to a certain sea captain when he came home from
his next voyage. But he never did come home, I never heard
anything more about it. 1 suppose I was too little to be told things.
I wonder if he was drowned, or died of fever; or, perhaps he was
wrecked on a desert island, and may have to wait for years and
years for a ship to take him off. Oh, and suppose that if he did get
the ship, it might be wrecked on the Goodwins on its return voyage.
Why, the man whom our lifeboat has gone out to save may be Aunt
24 OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
Penelopeâ€™s sea cap- Sine ei
tain! Oh, how nice i
it would be! Such
things do happen in
books, and surely
people would not write
them if they never
happen in real life.
When Aunt Penelope
came back from the kitchen, I could not
help going to her and hugging her. She wondered
what was the matter with me.
Two OR THREE DAYS AFTER.â€”Since the lifeboat came
back, Iâ€™ve never written in my diary till now. Thereâ€™s been so much
to do, and to hear, and to talk about.
When we saw the lifeboat come in, with the British flag hoisted
at the peak, our landlady said that some life had been saved,
anyhow. Perhaps they had found the rest of the crew of the
But no! they only brought back that one man whom they had
seen running, half-maddened, on the sands. He was nearly dead
when they found him, and they could scarcely get him away because
he wanted to search for the bodies of his drowned crew. He was
the captain of a little vessel, manned by six men, trading from
somewhere in the North to a port in Spain.
Weâ€™ve all been making clothes for him, for he had lost every-
thing. Our landlord brought him up to see us this evening. He
looks very pale and thin. Our landlord says very strong and brave
men donâ€™t always get over such a time as this captain must have had
on the sands. The captain himself says the worst part was thinking
of his wife and children, and especially of his mateâ€™s two little girls,
whose mother died during the mateâ€™s last voyage, and who have
now nobody to look after them.
Aunt Penelope has got their address from the captain. She
means to try to get them into some nice orphan home, and till she
succeeds, she is to have them stay in her own house, so that they
shall not get rough, nor fall into any bad ways, for the poor captain
tells us they have been very well brought up, so far.
Mamma says that when they are safe in the orphan school,
Clare and I may write to them, and send them presents on their
birthdays and at Christmas, and be their â€œ friends outsideâ€ like
aunts and cousins are.
But, of course, the captain wasnâ€™t Aunt Penelopeâ€™s captain ; and
I felt so disappointed that I could not help asking mamma â€˜ Why
donâ€™t things come right as they do in most story books ?â€â€ Mamma
smiled a little when I asked that. She actually said that things
come far better in reality, because Aunt Penelopeâ€™s captain is through
all his troubles and dangers, and is safe with God, waiting for us to
follow him, and Aunt Penelope, though she can do no more for
him, has learned for his sake to be ready to give everybody the
help she would have liked him to receive.
I do believe Peter will be a sailor after all! The going out of
the lifeboat made him more inclined to the sea than ever !
At first I wished he wouldnâ€™t, thinking how lonely I should be
while he was away on his voyages. But now I remember, that the
26 OUR LAST HOLIDAY.
Deal boatmen could not have launched the lifeboat if all the women
had hung on to their jackets and tugged back!
Our landlady handed her father his short pipe, and did not say
a word !
We are going home to-morrow, and this will be our last holiday
till we have the next one!
OW, Dolly, sit still
N if you please,
Youve done enough
harm for to-day,
And itâ€™s no use your
pouting, my dear,
And saying it all was
You upset the inkâ€”yesâ€”you did,
You tore your new frock, and you said
â€˜* Donâ€™t care,â€™â€™â€”when I said Iâ€™d a mind
To whip you and put you to bed.
You wore your best shoes in the mud,
And stole the jam tarts, I suppose,
That, thatâ€™s why your hand has come off,
And why you will turn in your toes.
Your hair is as rough as can be,
Your pinaforeâ€™s fastened with twine,
Iâ€™m sure there was never before
So naughty a Dolly as mine.
28 THE NAUGHTY DOLLY.
- If you really wonâ€™t do as I wish,
I fearâ€”yesâ€”lI very much fear
I must get a new doll from the shop,
And let The Boys have you, my dear.
No, noâ€”I donâ€™t mean itâ€”donâ€™t scream,
The Boys shall not have you, my pet;
Donâ€™t cry any more, thereâ€™s a dear,
I'll try to forgive and forget.
Pll wash you, and then you
A gown that will cover your
Let your hands hang behind
you, and then
You will look quite genteel
And I'll make you a beautiful #
With the help of the back
And I'll never let any one
How exceedingly naughty
A Storm in a Tea-cup.
(ow, who'll be the good one?
\| Who'll give up?â€
â€˜Oh, I hate that sort of
thing,â€ said Peasblossom,
walking away. â€˜â€˜Itâ€™s unfair,
itâ€™sâ€™ mean to put it on
She was a tall child of
about nine years old. She
rose now from the tea-table,
and went across the school-
room to a corner where stood a low wicker-work chair, on the seat
of which a book was lying, wide open, and face downwards.
Peasblossom picked up the book, flung herself into the chair,
and began to read.
The volume on which her eyes were fixed was a much used and
abused copy of â€˜Alice in Wonderland.â€ Its contents were
absorbing. ~The little reader pushed up her shoulders, crossed her
legs, and glued her eyes on the fascinating pages.
â€œâ€œT say, Blossom. Blossom, do you-hear? Miss Maitland is
speaking to you.â€
â€˜â€˜T wish you wouldnâ€™t be so rude, Teddy. There, what is it ?
Tiresome boy! Donâ€™t you see that Iâ€™m reading.â€
â€˜â€˜ Now, Blossom, that reading is all an excuse to get away..
Miss Maitland wants to know which of us will give up. You will,
wonâ€™t you, Peasblossom ? You are the eldest, you know.â€
30 A STORM IN A TEA-CUP.
Teddy had a round, comical face. He was seven years old,
and rather short and fat for his age. He wore shabby little
knickerbockers, and a very dirty, disreputable sailorâ€™s jacket. His
reddish hair stood up straight on his head. His bright blue eyes
were slightly puckered up. His mouth formed
itself into a questioning sort of an â€˜â€˜O!â€ as
he watched Peasblossom for her reply.
â€˜Itâ€™s very mean and shabby,â€ she answered,
â€˜â€˜and Iâ€™m not going to be coaxed. Do let me
go on with my book, Teddy. Itâ€™s so exciting,
itâ€™s the part where Alice has tea with the March
â€˜â€˜ But whoâ€™s to give up ?â€â€™ questioned Teddy. // ply,
â€˜â€˜Ts it me, or is it you? Thatâ€™s what Miss AR
Maitland wants to know.â€
â€˜â€˜Tt isnâ€™t me, so there, now you understand.
Now will you let me go on reading in peace?â€
Teddyâ€™s face became very overcast. He turned on his heel,
and walked slowly up the school-room.
â€˜â€˜T suppose I must do it,â€ he said, looking up at Miss Maitland
with his full blue eyes. â€˜â€˜ Blossom won't, so thereâ€™s nothing for it
but for me to be the good one. I hate being the good one!â€â€™
Miss Maitland, Peasblossomâ€™s and Teddyâ€™s governess, was a
sensible, pleasant-faced young woman of about five-and-twenty.
â€˜Dear, dear,â€ she said, puckering her brows. â€˜â€˜ But after all
thereâ€™s not a great deal of use in your giving up, Teddy. You
are really too young to be trusted with the care of Cherry and
Merry. Peasblossom could have managed them nicely, but youâ€”
well, I suppose I must only stay at home myself.â€
â€œTâ€™ll do my best,â€ said Teddy, who began to be interested
in his sacrifice, now that he saw difficulties in the way. â€˜I
could play soldiers with Cherryâ€”Cherry loves me when I play
â€œYou are a kind little boy,â€ said Miss Maitland. She drew
Teddy towards her and kissed him on his chubby lips. Â« I'll
A STORM IN A TEA-CUP. 31
let you know if I really want you, dear. You may go back to
your play now.â€
Miss Maitland was the nursery governess. She had entire
care of Cherry, aged three; of Merry, who was only eighteen
months old; and also of Teddy and Peasblossom.
Peasblossom went to classes for music and French, but all
her other lessons were taught to her by patient, kind, long-
enduring Miss Maitland, who not only instructed the children, but
played with them and made their clothes, and was busy with
them from early morning to late night. Miss Maitland seldom
or never asked for a holiday. Her life seemed all work and no
play; but the children were accustomed to her being for ever at
their beck and call, and failed to notice when her eyes looked tired,
and her cheeks pale.
On the morning of this particular day, the post had brought a
letter to the governess, which excited her very much. A married
sister, the only one she had, was passing through London on her
way to the South of England. She begged of Miss Maitland to
agar 4 meet her at Waterloo, and spend
an hour with her while she was
waiting for her train. The gover-
ness had not seen her sister for
two or three years, and she was
highly delighted at the thought of
2 having a talk with her once more.
Peasblossom and Teddy were also much pleased when she told
them of the treat which she believed was in store for her. Like
~many other children, and grown people, too, they were only too glad
to see another person happy as long as the aaa did not
interfere with themselves. :
But alas! by eleven oâ€™clock on that sunshiny winterâ€™s morning
the whole aspect of things had changed.
A letter had come from the childrenâ€™s pen eahees alan the
two elder ones to dine with him, and go afterwards to. Maskelayne
and Cookeâ€™s Entertainment. Neither Peasblossom nor. Teddy had
32 A SFORM IN A TEA-CUP.
ever seen Maskelayne and Cooke, and their joy at the expected
treat knew no bounds. Miss Maitland and her sister were quite
forgotten. All was ecstasy in the
two little breasts at the thought of
their pleasure; their best dresses
to be worn; a delicious drive in &
grandfatherâ€™s carriage to be en- &
eaten ; and then, crowning bliss,
to sit one at each side of their
dear old relative, and see the
mysteries and the wonders of
those great magicians at the
Egyptian Hall. No wonder
Peasblossom clasped Teddyâ€™s hands, and danced up and down
the school-room with him; and no wonder Teddy shouted and
screamed with glee, and forgot all about Merryâ€™s sleep, and the
tooth which she was cutting, and the fretful fractious humour
which it put her in.
It was at this juncture, when their bliss was at its highest, that
Miss Maitland, who would have been very glad to give up to them,
but could not quite bear the thought of her sisterâ€™s hungry,
expectant, disappointed face, called them to her side, and told
them the state of affairs. The nursemaid was ouf for the day ;
their mother was particularly engaged; if one of them did not stay
at home to help to amuse the little ones, Miss Maitland must give
up all thought of trying to see her sister for another two or three
years. She could go if one of the elder. children would-stay at
home, for Alice, the housemaid, could bring her sewing into the
nursery, and see that no one came to any harm.
â€˜â€œAnd now, whoâ€™ll give up? Who'll be the good one?â€ she
had said in conclusion.
Of course she had hoped that Peasblossom would be touched
by this appeal; Peasblossom would be of the greatest possible use
A STORM IN A TEA-CUP. 33
to her. If she stayed to amuse the little ones, Miss Maitland could
go off to see her sister with a perfectly easy heart in her breast.
She looked anxiously at her favourite pupil as she spoke.
Would those bright eyes smile at her? Would that dear little face
respond with the quick flash of love and intelligence which often
filled it ?
Not a bit of it. The eyes looked down, the lips drooped, a
scowl came between the pretty brows, the little figure turned away.
Miss Maitland felt that it was useless to appeal to
Peasblossom any further. There was nothing for her, therefore,
but to give up her own pleasure, and send a telegram to her sister
to say that she could not meet her.
â€œTeddy,â€ she remarked, after an interval or two of silence, â€˜I
am very much obliged to you for offering to give up your own
amusement, but I have changed my mind about
going out this afternoon, so you and Blossom
can both go to spend the day with your grand-
father, as he so kindly invited you.â€ .
â€˜Oh, hurrah! hurrah!â€ cried Teddy.
threw a ball, which he happened to
have in his hand, high in the air. He
rushed at his governess, and nearly choked
her with the vigour of his embrace, arid
then he ran madly up and down the long
â€˜â€œDid you hear, Blossom? Did you
gp A i v hear ?â€â€™ he shouted to his sister. â€˜ After
We jt Es i a all Miss Maitland is going to be the good
iif â€œie Ma one. Sheâ€™s the good one, Sheâ€™s the one
to give up. Isnâ€™t it scrumptious? We can
both go to grandfatherâ€™s now.â€
eal Peasblossom flung down the book she
was reading, and looked hard at Teddy.
A great crimson flood of colour came up
and dyed her cheeks; her eyes shone very
34 , AWS DORM: EN Ay EAC OE.
bright ; she pressed her lips tightly together, then, without uttering
a word, she took up â€˜Alice in Wonderlandâ€ and went on reading
from the open page.
â€˜Blossom, come and get dressed! come and get dressed!â€
screamed Teddy, in half-an-hourâ€™s time.
â€˜â€˜Peasblossom, canâ€™t you hear? Miss Mait-
land says we'll be ae unless we come and
get dressed at once.â€™
Peasblossom got up slowly ; che walked
over to the bookcase and _ put
- â€œAliceâ€ back among her com-
panions. Then she went into her
own little room, which opened out
of the nursery. She looked: very
grave, her face was pale. On her
little bed lay her best frock of blue
velvet. A large Gainsborough hat
with a plume of dark blue feathers
lay beside the frock. There were neat gloves, a little muff, a clean
' white handkerchief, all ready beside the pretty frock and the
Peasblossom loved her best clothes. She was not exactly
vain, but she knew she looked very nice in them, and it gave her
pleasure to look nice.
Miss Maitland was standing by the dressing-table.
â€œCome, dear,â€ she said to the little girl. â€˜* Let me brush out
your hair. I hope you will have a pleasant time.â€
Miss Maitlandâ€™s voice was quite bright; her face did not
look sad at all. Peasblossom could not help staring at her in
â€˜â€œDidnâ€™t you want to go out this afternoon?â€ she asked,
turning very red.
â€˜â€œ* Well, yes, dear, of course I ee ated to go.â€
â€˜Then why arenâ€™t you miserable ?â€
Blossomâ€™s words were blurted out-with a kind of gasp. Miss
AD SRORMG IN An LE AC@UP: . 35
Maitland drew the little girl towards her, and began to brush out
her long hair. j
. â€˜Tt is one of the strange secrets, Blossom,â€ she said in a low
voice, â€˜â€˜which no one ever believes in until they learn it by
experience, that those who give up are the happy people.â€
- â€œOh, I donâ€™t believe you,â€ said Blossom, facing round and
staring at her governess.
â€œVery well, darling.. Let me dress you now, and get you
ready to go to grandfatherâ€™s.â€
â€œTm not going. I hate giving up, but Iâ€™m not going. Donâ€™t
touch me, donâ€™t look at me; take that hat away, take that frock
awayâ€”I hate, I hate giving up, but I canâ€™t go!â€
- Peasblossom rushed to her little bed, flung herself across it,
tumbling her best dress most shamefully as she did so, and buried
her head in the bed-clothes.
â€˜Poor little girl!â€™â€™ said the governess.
â€˜Donâ€™t touch me!â€ said Blossom, shaking her off. â€˜I hate
myself and every one else, but I wonâ€™t go, I wonâ€™t go!â€
Her tÃ©ars came faster and faster. She sobbed until she
could cry no longer. At last she raised her head to see Teddy
dressed in his very best, standing at her side.
â€˜So you are the good one after all, Blossom,â€ he said.
â€œNo, Iâ€™m not; Iâ€™m the very baddest of us all!â€
â€˜â€˜ Miss Maitland says youâ€™re very good. She says you are a
brave little girl. I wish sheâ€™d call me a brave little boy.â€
ae â€˜Â¢ She didnâ€™t say that, Teddy ?â€â€™ Blossom began
oy to push the hair from her hot cheeks. ~
: ae â€˜â€˜She didâ€”really and truly. Oh, -you never
| i saw any one so glad in your life as Miss Maitland
b sis toveorand see her-sister. She saidjtoume; Vil
never forget what Blossom has done, Teddy. -
Blossom is a brave girl, Teddy.â€™ â€â€™
It was very strange, but at that moment there
stirred in Peasblossomâ€™s heart a throb of exquisite
joy. She had never known happiness like this
36 A STORM IN .A,TEA-CUP.
seemed to be
of heaven it-
self.â€ â€œLhe moment
she felt it she ceased
to- envy Leddy. one
Smiles filled her eyes, and the sorrowful
curves left her lips. She rushed to the
glass, and began to brush out her hair. She bathed ~ b Wy
the marks of tears from her cheeks, and rushing up +
to Teddy kissed him several times.
No wonder after this that Peasblossom made a delightful nurse
for Cherry and Merry that afternoon, and that all was sunshine in
the nursery as well as in the little girlâ€™s heart.
You mustnâ€™t climb up there, Pussy,
Itâ€™s not the thing to do,
For clocks were made to tell the time,
And not as toys for you.
You mustn't pat the weights, Pussy,
And move them to and fro,
Or else the clock will be annoyed,
And then it will not go.
a . You mustnâ€™t touch the hands, Pussy,
With little furry feet,
Or there will be no dinner time,
And then what will you eat ?
And if you stop the clock, Pussy,
The world cannot go right ;
We should be sleeping all the day,
And romping all the night.
eee an lea eti Seen
lor clocks make time go right, Pussy,
And if no good clock goes,
â€™ Things will all happen upside down,â€”
As everybody knows!
All in Amaze.
URRAH,, for the light green fields and dark green woods!
H Hurrah, for the rivers and ponds, the cows and the pigs,
fresh butter and new milk! Hurrah, for the clear blue
sky and sweet fresh air; buttercups and
daisies, hazel-nuts and blackberries, donkey-
rides, and battles with the fallen
Dear little heart, would you not
shout. â€˜â€œâ€˜ Hurrah,â€ supposing that for
months and months (we will say all 4
the months of your very long life), you 2
had been pent up ina great big city, of
and had never heard the song of the #2;
lark, nor seen a wild, free rabbit, and_
had just had an invitation to stay for
a month in a farm-house.
Jack and Teenie, who were twins, had just received such an
invitation, by letter, and addressed to them, too, which of course
made it all the nicer, from dear old Uncle Tom.
â€œWill you two youngsters come and stay with us. while we
put some roses into your cheeks ?â€â€ asked Uncle Tom.
Would they not indeed! I can assure you it did not take
long to answer that letter; for Manor Farm was such a lovely
place; really and truly the finest farm that ever was. Such a dear
old red brick building, covered all over with ivy; and there were
such horses and cows, such ploughboys and dairymaids, such
barns and apple lofts; in fact, such an amount of everything that is
ALL IN AMAZE. og
perfectly delightful, that when one receives an invitation to stay at
such aâ€™place, it is absolutely impossible to sit down comfortably
â€˜for two minutes at a time until one gets there.
So Jack and Teenie felt ; they were busy packing their boxes a
week before it was time to start. They went to bed earlier, so as to
make the days seem shorter, a custom that,
as a rule, they were not very fond of, and
they got up hours before anybody else in the
house so as to talk over together about this -
At last the end of the week came,
and with it the cab, and good-byes to
papa and mamma, and tears too,
although the children had looked for-
ward so to this happy day. It is always
a tearful time to say good-bye to papa
and mamma, no matter how happy you
may think the days to come are going to be.
tise Z Away went Jack and Teenie, wondering greatly
to see the trees and the telegraph poles flying past
the fast train. In fact, they wondered so much at everything they
saw, that their journey seemed quite a short one. ;
â€˜â€˜ Here are our blessed twins,â€ shouted jolly old Uncle Tom, as
the train drew up at the little country station. â€œ Here you are, my
dears, bundle out. Whereâ€™s your luggage? Ah! here itis. Jump
into the dog-cart. Are you hungry ? Youare. Thatâ€™s right, Aunt
Jane has dinner ready for us. Dear me, how pale you are! But
never mind, we'll put the roses in. We'll make you as plump as
It really seemed as if Uncle Tomâ€™s chief idea in life was to
make rosy cheeks, And to judge from his own, he had been very
successful. The red brick farm-house was put quite in the shade
when compared to his jolly red face.
â€˜â€˜Bless my heart, my dears,â€ said the dear old uncle as they
drove along, â€˜you are not the only twins in the world, you know.
â€œ40 | ALL IN AMAZE.
Iâ€™ve got two sets at home; you shall see them directly. Bob and
Flip, two fox-terrier puppies, are one set; and Tibby and Fluffy,
two black and white kittens, are the other set. The kittens, I must
say, are very well behaved twins, but those puppies are just out-
rageous in their manners. No manners at all but bad ones. Do
you know, I very nearly: drowned them the other day!â€
â€œOh, no!â€ cried Jack and Teenie together.
â€œItâ€™s all very well for you to say â€˜Oh, no,â€™ but listen to what
happened. We had just had luncheon, and had gone into the other
room, when we heard a terrible crash, and such a squeaking, and
barking, and growling; and when we rushed in there was Master
Bob lying on the floor with a mutton-chop bone in his mouth, and
surrounded by broken plates and glasses. These naughty little
thieves had been helping themselves. Well, I didnâ€™t drown them,
but I gave them a good whipping; and that, I think you will allow,
they richly deserved. But it didnâ€™t seem to do them much good, for
the very next day I found my slippers
. bitten to pieces; and the day after re :
that again they dug up the flower A
beds to bury some choice bones they ~~
had run off with from the â€” :
kitchen. Then, too, Miss
Flip nearly drowned her-
self by falling into a
three-gallon can of new
milk, and only saved
â€˜herself by upsetting the
can and_= spilling the
milk ; whereupon she and
Bob, Tibby and Fluffy-
set to work to drink it,
and they drank so much
that they could hardly
move afterwards. I hope |
all little twins are not so Â°
ALL IN AMAZE. Seas
mischievous as my four-legged ones,â€ added Uncle Tom with a
smile, looking down at his nephew and niece. 7
â€˜â€œOh,no, Uncle Tom,â€ replied Jack and Teenie, smiling back again.
A few minutes later the dog-cart arrived at Manor Farm, and
there was Aunt Jane on the steps ready to receive them with hugs
and kisses; and there also were the
twin puppies, barking a welcome with
most evident delight.
The first thing the children were
introduced to was their dinner, and
this introduction showed that they
were neither shy nor backward. And
after dinner Jack and Teenie revelled
in all the joys of the farmyard, a place
which, to little town-bred children,
must of course give an endless source
of amusement. To say that they
were happy is to express their feelings
very mildly. All the castles in the air that they had built together
about the farm were realised; in fact, they spent a very, very
joyous time. But â€”â€”â€” .
Now, you will very often find, not alone in stories, that a â€˜â€˜ butâ€
somehow manages to creep in, and makes matters very disagreeable.
Our â€œbutâ€ is about something very amazing that happened to
Jack and Teenie, and caused a great deal of excitement at the time.
Bordering on Manor Farm were the lovely grounds of a fine
country house, where the children were allowed to roam at their
own sweet will. One afternoon, about a week after their arrival at
the farm, they strayed rather further than usual, and to their |
astonishment suddenly came upon a high, thick hedge, growing in
a large circle. It was a maze, but Jack and Teenie did not know
this, as they had never seen a maze before.
â€˜â€˜Hulloa, Teenie,â€ cried Jack, â€˜â€œhereâ€™s a way in; and more
hedges inside. What a funny place. Letâ€™s see where it leads to;
42 ALES IN CAMA Ze:
__. In the two went, and walked down innumerable paths, on each
side of which were the tall thick hedges. First to the right they
turned, then to the left, then round again in a circle.â€™
â€œâ€˜Ttâ€™s a long way to the other side, isnâ€™t it ?â€™â€™ remarked Teenie
at last, after they had been walking for about half an hour.
â€˜Yes; but we are sure to come to it in time,â€™ replied
On they went to the right, and then to the left, and round ina
circle again; and although they did not arrive at the other side,
they suddenly found themselves in the centre of the maze, where
there stood an old sun-dial and two garden seats.
giOh, Jack, this is delightful,â€ criedâ€™ HeenieÂ® â€”hinis tsetse
strangest and comfortablest place I ever was in. Letâ€™s sit down
Down they sat, and rested and chatted away till the sun went
down, and then they thought it was time to be off home. Now, if
i@ as a, difficultâ€™ thine to get into a mmaze, it is, â€œvery often, Mian
more difficult to get out of it, and so, I am sorry to say, the
For half-an-hour; for an hour; for an hour-and-a-half; for two
hours, poor Jack and Teenie wandered hand-in-hand together through
that horrid maze, only to find themselves , back again in the
ALL IN AMAZE. 43
centre, in company with the sun-dial and the two garden seats. The
dusk had turned to darkness, and all was stillness in the quiet
country. â€˜Teenie couldnâ€™t help it, she began to cry, and Jack felt as
if he could have done the same, only being a boy, he bit his lip
instead, and just managed to keep the tears back.
In the meantime, there was a great commotion going on at
Manor Farm. â€˜ Bless my heart,â€ cried Uncle Tom at tea-time,
â€˜â€˜where are my two-legged â€˜twins. They must be hungry, and I
know I am.â€ -Poor Uncle Tom was
â€œ20, NOt destined to have his tea fora
long time to-come. â€œDear ame;)
he exclaimed, after the tea-hour
was long past, and after
having jumped up from his
chair for the hundredth time
to look out of the window.
â€˜Dear me, itâ€™s very late;
what can have happened ?
Pll go and find them.â€ |
~ Uncle Tom would have
been more correct if he had
said that he would go and
for his nephew and niece, for
although he searched for an hour,
notâ€™ a trace. of them couldeahe
Then there was an uproar in the farmyard. I donâ€™t know
what the cows, and the pigs, and horses, and cocks and hens
thought about it, but they must have been very much astonished
indeed. Dairymaids and ploughboys, ploughmen and cartmen
were rushing here and rushing there. Lights were bobbing about,
and everybody was shouting and tumbling over one another, as
they suddenly came round corners in their eager search for
Uncle Tom went off again by himself, and this time took the
44 ALL IN AMAZE.
right direction. He was close to the wonderful maze shouting his
hardest, when, to his joy, he heard a reply.
â€˜â€˜ Hulloa, is that you two? Where are you ? â€â€™ he cried.
â€˜In here, uncle,â€ shouted Jack.
â€˜â€˜ And weâ€”we canâ€™t get out,â€ sobbed Teenie.
â€˜â€˜ Dear hearts,â€ cried the childrenâ€™s uncle. â€˜ They are in the
maze. Donâ€™t cry, my chicks, I'll have you out in a moment.â€
And in rushed Uncle Tom, first to the
right, and then to the left, and then
round and round in a circle.
Dear, good, jolly, but very rash old
Uncle Tom, he no more knew the way
into the centre or out of that maze than
the children did. Round he went to the
right, then to the left, round and round
ina circle, bump up against one hedge,
flop against another, tripping over stones,
scratching his hands and tearing his
clothes, but getting no nearer to the
twins than when he started.
â€˜â€˜Hereâ€™s a pretty kettle of fish,â€ he said to himself, stopping
for want of breath. â€˜I canâ€™t get in, and I canâ€™t get out; whatâ€™s
to be done now?â€ .
â€˜â€œâ€˜ Are you coming, Uncle Tom ?â€â€™ cried two little voices.
â€˜Yes, yes, my dears, â€™m coming; donâ€™t be unhappy.â€ And
away he went again, but with no better success than before.
â€œYou're a long time getting here, Uncle Tom,â€ cried poor little
Teenie. : ;
â€˜* My child, I, Iâ€™m very much afraid I donâ€™t quite know how to
get to you; but donâ€™t be miserable. Let us shout, and somebody
who knows the way out will be sure to hear us, and comeâ€™ and
elpaussâ€â€™ . ,
â€œHil hi! bi! hi!â€ they all cried together.
â€œHi! hi! hi!â€ answered the echo down the valley, and that
was all the reply they heard.
ALE IN AMAZE. 45
â€˜This is getting too fearful. Iâ€™ancy remaining here all night,â€
said Uncle Tom under his breath. â€˜ The dew is falling thick, and
those poorâ€™ chicks will catch their death of cold.â€ Then he added
aloud, â€˜â€˜ Come along, my dears; shout again.â€
coeletip een slash las!
oie hulle came thevecho,
And, dear me, what was that ?
Why, â€˜ Bow, wow, wow; bow, wow, wow,â€ barked by two
â€˜Hurrah, there are Bob and Flip! Hurrah, there are the
four-legged twins!â€â€™ shouted Uncle Tom excitedly. â€˜ Come here,
my beauties. Here, Bob; here Flip.â€™â€
With yelps and barks, and a rush and a scramble, the two
puppies tore into the maze, and very soon reached their master.
â€œFind them, my beauties; find them. Find the children,â€
cried Uncle Tom. And off started Bob and Flip with their master
behind them, and in less than a minute they were all in the centre
of the maze, and little Teenie in her uncleâ€™s arms. A quarter of
an hour afterwards, to poor Aunt Janeâ€™s delight, they all arrived
â€˜â€œAs to those puppies,â€ said Uncle Tom, â€˜ I'll never abuse
them again. Iâ€™ll buy them each a red leather collar to-morrow, and
to-night they shall have a feast of bones.â€
Jack and Teenie had many happy days after this at Manor
Farm, and never since that evening have they had such an exciting
time as when they and their Uncle Tom were all in a maze and
couldnâ€™t get out until they were rescued by two fat little puppies.
Mune Taleo 2
| Grandfathetâ€™s Story.
O my darlings want the story
I have told so oft before,
Of the little drummer laddie
And his gallant deed of yore ?
But you love to hear about it?
Aye, my children, that is well,
â€™Twas a bright and brave example
Of the spirit that should dwell
In the hearts of British children,
Be they high, or be they low;
Just â€˜â€˜ Fear God, and do your duty,â€
It is all'in that you know.
Dear OLo Gran
GRANDFATHERâ€™S STORY. 47
Little Jackâ€”I think I see him
Stand as you are standing now,
With his cap set trim and jaunty
On the curls around his brow.
He was but a child, my darlings,
Not much older, Will, than you,
And his cheeks were just as rosy,
â€˜And his eyes were just as blue.
Not a man of us but blessed him
For the spirit kind and gay,
That we never knew to fail him
â€˜Irom the time we marched away.
From the time his mother kissâ€™d him,
As she held him to her heart,
48 GRANDFATHER'S STORY.
And he kept the childish tears back,
Though God knows â€™twas hard to part.
Then the great ship bore us over
The blue ocean, lone and wide,
To the distant land where many,
Many a British soldier died.
Many a mile our army plodded
"Neath the burning foreign sun;
Many a night we had no shelter
When the toilsome day was done.
Very often sick and hungry
We marched on in sorry plight ;
But in marching, or in halting
By the camp fireâ€™s blaze at night,
Little Jack, the drummer laddie,
â€˜Cheered us as we onward went,
Making light of every hardship,
Always blithesome and content.
Full of boyish pranks and laughter,
Full of kindly, winsome ways,
And his gallant spirit bore him
Through the hardest, longest days.
Not a man of us but loved him,
Though we were but rough and
~ Eâ€™en Sir John, our grim old colonel,
On the drummer laddie smiled.
But at last our march was
â€” sy And at last we knew the foe .
\S We had come to fight was
In the valley down below.
GRANDFATHER'S STORY. Â© 49
Well, the night before the battle
Our young captain spoke to me,
Short and sharp, as was his customâ€”
â€˜* Sergeant Moore, that gap you see,
Pick your men, and guard it strictly,
Post a sentinel outside,
And be smart, my man, about it â€™â€™â€”
And he turnâ€™d away to ride.
Up jumped Jack, the little drummer,
â€˜* Sergeant Moore, you'll let me goâ€ ;
And he looked with eyes beseeching,
â€˜â€œâ€˜Tve sharp ears, as well you know.â€
Aye, I knew it, not a hunter
Of a red deer on the track,
Was so keen and quick of hearing
As our blithesome drummer Jack.
So I took him, it was wrong dearsâ€”
He was such a child you see,
50 GRANDFATHER'S STORY.
eopsmemneeoe neat gy ERNIE MRA TNE AES
And â€™twas older hands we
And the captain trusted"
Antti nnttiteÃ©g ck
Down the dark defile we
And beyond the gap we
Where the foe was camped
"Twas not wider than a
That dark gap between two hillsides,
And I saw if we could keep Â©
â€™Gainst the enemy its entrance,
Safe that night our men might
Little Jack crept just outside itâ€”
: â€˜â€œâ€˜ | shall hear them if they stir,â€
_ In my ear he whispered softly,
As he leant against a fir.
â€˜* And you'll stay there !â€™â€™ I commanded,
As I held him by the armâ€”
â€˜* You'll not stir a step, my laddie,
Save to give us the alarm ? â€
And he answered â€˜â€œâ€˜ Trust me, sergeant,
Iâ€™ll not stir, or close an eye ;
"Twill be safe to-nightâ€”our army,
Or I'll know the reason why ! â€â€™
"Twas his safety that I thought of ;
Do you mark me, Bess and Will ?
I was fearful of his straying
Into danger down the hill :
GRA NDFA THERâ€™S STORY.
For I knew
And I meant
he . should
Where, at lightest hint of danger,
I could call him to my side.
But â€™twas long before the dawning
That a breathless comrade came,
Bidding us fall back, and quicklyâ€”
Speaking in the captainâ€™s name.
Theyâ€™d not try the pass he told us,
As along the path we filed,
GRANDFATHERâ€™S | STORY.
And we allâ€”may God forgive us !
In our haste, forgot the child.
But not far had we proceeded
Ere we heard the rolling boom,
Up the narrow path behind us,
Of our ladâ€™s familiar drum,
Followâ€™d by the crack and rattle
Of a rifle in our rear,
So we turned upon the instantâ€”
(In our hearts an awful fear
For the child we had deserted) â€”
Face to face we met the foe ;
There were but a score of them, Willâ€”
How we cut them down, you know.
On we wentâ€”some few were woundedâ€”
It wasâ€™ but the chance of warâ€”
Till we heard a feeble drum beat,
And a well-known blythe â€˜ hurrah ! â€
There was Jack beneath the fir tree
With a broken leg and arm,
GRANDFATHERâ€™S STORY. | 53
Whileâ€”with but one hand, brave laddie,
He was beating the alarm.
Dropping shots you see had struck him,
And he fainted, so he said ;.
And the enemy had left him
â€™Neath the dusky fir for dead. ,
But he soon came to, and fearing
Theyâ€™d surprise us in the pass, -
On his drum he beat a warning
As he lay upon the grassâ€”
â€˜* But what ailed you not to follow
When you heard us move away ? â€â€™
Thus I asked him, sitting sadly
By his little cot next day.
â€˜ Follow you ?â€ he criedâ€”â€˜â€˜ Why, sergeant,
You had told me not to stir
I*rom the spot where I was posted,
In the shelter of the fir !
Could I disobey my orders ?
I was sentinel you know,
And you were not out of hearing
When I caught.a sound below ;
And the enemy was on meâ€”
Iâ€™d have beat you a tattoo
If Iâ€™d had the time, but, sergeant,
I was hit before I knew.
Then I tried to warn you after,
Lest they took you by surpriseâ€”_
It was but my duty, sergeant,â€
Said the lad with shining eyes.
Thus he saved our campâ€”we knew it ;
And the bravest in the land,
When the boy got well, have said it,
As they shook him by the hand.
54 - GRANDFATHER'Sâ€™ STORY.
SE â€œ4 SoRurety
And the enemy had left him
Neath the dusky fir for dead.
GRAN DHA DEERE S. SPORY,, 55
â€˜* But we cannot all be heroes "â€”
Nay, my lad, youâ€™re right enough ;
But we can be brave and faithfulâ€”
And, believe me, that the stuff
Which makes best and bravest soldiersâ€”
Strong to bear, and swift to do
Are the boys who learn contentment,
And are patient, kind, and true.
Donâ€™t make much of little hardships,
Help a comrade when you can,
Yow ll have many a foe to fight, â€˜al
Ere you come to be a man.
So will you, my darling Bessie,
As to womanhood you grow ;
But â€˜ Fear God, and do your duty,â€
Thatâ€™s the safest rule I know!
The Babe in the Wood;
NV Che NED Ash 1 aeeyes Pre es
66 ele yeand Lili, what do you think? I have such a lovely
piece of news for you,â€ exclaimed Gabrielle. Brooke,
almost out of breath from flying upstairs to the school-
room of their high London house.
â€œWhat ? Oh do tell us, quick!â€™ answered both the little sisters,
looking up from the dollâ€™s tea-party they were arranging.
â€˜â€œWe are going to. Devonshire, to a sweet cottage, with Vera to
take care of us, while papa and mamma pay some visits in the
â€œWithout Miss Seymour or nurse?" enquired Kitty, almost
bewildered with this wonderful announcement.
â€˜â€œâ€œMiss Seymour is going home for her holiday, but, of course,
we shall have nurse.â€â€™
Gabrielle, generally called Gay, was a tall child about eleven or
twelve years old, with long silky fair hair and dark blue eyes.
(Wy. . Kathleen, or Kitty, was nearly nine, very like
Gay, only her hair;was darker and curly,
and her cyes brown Lili was â€˜quite a little
thing, between five and six, and a great pet
with them all. Vera was the eldest in the
family, seventeen, â€˜â€˜nearly grown upâ€â€™
the children said. ;They had one
brother Leginald, aged fourteen,
whom they were expecting home
fags Seana! ~ from school.
Mine be a cot beside the hill
A beehives hum shall soothe my car
ye Awillowy brook that turns a mill
Fie With many a fall, shall linger near :
â€ The swallow oft beneath my thatch
oe Mey hall twitter near her clay-built nest
2 2 _ Oft shall the pilgrim life the latch
eS And share my meal, a welcome guest
THE BABE IN THE WOOD. 57
â€œWe are only: going to
have two servantsâ€”Annie, the
kitchen-maid, for our cook,
and nurse, wonâ€™t it be fun?
We shall be able to do just
whatever we like all day, and
Vera will order the dinner,â€
Gay went on, dancing round
the room in delight. This
so excited the little Scotch
terrier, who had been curled
upon the rug, that he leaped
up and scampered round the
room, barking furiously, and
making frantic efforts to catch
the heels of Gayâ€™s shoes in his mouth.
â€˜â€œ Will Reggie come, too?â€ asked Lili, stopping to take breath,
for, of course, she and Kitty had joined in the dance.
â€˜Yes, dear old boy, we couldnâ€™t do without him,â€™ answered
Miss Seymour, the governess, came hastily in to know what all
the noise was about. She was quite pleased to hear of the
projected visit to the country, but begged them to wait till they were
there, before they made so much noise.
The next few days the children were very busy choosing out
the various treasures they should take with them, and packing up
the dolls and their belongings. Nurse refused to take Liliâ€™s table
and chair, and the dollâ€™s house, and did not agree to Kittyâ€™s
suggestion that she should put their dresses and things in it instead
At last the happy day came for them to say good-bye to the
schoolroom and lessons, and stiff walks in Hyde Park, and go off to
the country and freedom, and long happy days to spend in the
woods, or on the seashore.
The cottage that had been taken for them was a_ sweet
58 THE BABE IN THE WOOD.
old - fashioned one with
lattice - paned windows,
round which the roses
clustered, mingled with
jasmine, and honey-suckle
and holly - hocks, and
other simple English flowers
filled the quaint little garden
with colour and perfume.
Vera and Reggie were
quite proud of being in charge of
their three little sisters, and did all
they could to make the holidays pass
INittyâ€™s birthday was to be honoured by a picnic in the wood,
and the little girls watched the sunset from their pretty windows
the evening before,â€”with great anxiety.
â€˜Tf itâ€™s wet, which it wonâ€™t be,â€ said Reggie, â€˜I vote we carry
our dinner into the out-house at the bottom of the garden, and
pretend weâ€™re Australian settlers!â€
But the weather was all they could wish, and in high spirits
they all went off to the woods the next morning, laden with baskets
full of good things cook had prepared, and followed by Winkie,
the terrier, their constant companion. They had all helped Annie
to prepare the feast and make the cake. The sugar at the top
had been ornamented by Reggie in a highly original manner,
and was supposed to be a Swiss landscape of mountains
â€˜* Much prettier than smooth like the shop cakes,â€ they all said ;
and Annie had to guard the oven door like a dragon to prevent
them opening it every five minutesâ€”â€˜â€˜Just to see how it was
It was great fun choosing the place for their dinner, spreading
out the cloth, and arranging the plates and dishes, and it took Lili
all her time to keep Winkie from scampering across the table-cloth
DBA DOSEN PH WOOD: 59
with one corner in his mouth; running off with the forks and spoons
to play with, or poking his sharpâ€™ little nose into the dishes, to see
what they were going to have for dinner. Kitty was allowed to
carve the chicken, which was ready cut up in pieces, and the slices
of tongue, as it was her dinner-party, and Reggie carried the plates
round, and poured out the lemonade, acting a clumsy footman,
and making them all laugh heartily by gravely handing sugar with
the chicken, and salt and mustard with the jam tarts, and being
always very busy eating when his mistress wanted him to hand
anything to her guests.
After dinner the children wandered off to gather ferns and
flowers to take home to decorate their pretty rooms, and Reggie
found some valuable beetles to add to his Natural History collection,
which nurse had rather a horror
of. Vera had brought a book to
read, but soon put it aside and
went off to gather sticksâ€™ for a
fire, for she. had promised they
should boil the water and havea
real gipsy tea. Reggie arranged
three long sticks to hang the kettle
to, and after one or two failures
the tea was made, and had a
flavour more delicious than any
they had ever tasted before.
Just as they were making this
â€˜remark, and Kitty was going toâ€™
cut into the cake, a quick patter of
little steps made Vera look
round to see a small child, who
stood as if in doubt
. for one moment, then
rushed to her and flung
his chubby arms round her,,
cd thy yen sobbing outâ€”
60 THE BABE IN THE WOOD.
â€˜â€œâ€˜ Auntie Dolly, oh take me home, do take me home!â€
He was a sweet, fair-haired boy, of between two and three years
old, dressed in a very dirty, shabby, pink pinafore, too big for him,
a torn straw hat on.the tangled mass of golden curls, and his lovely
little face was dirty and tear-stained. He clung tightly to Vera,
who saidâ€”â€˜â€˜ Tell me your name, you dear little thing, and where
you live, and we will take you home.â€
â€˜Donnie, Iâ€™m Donnie, and I want to go home welly much,
auntie,â€â€™ said the child.
â€˜But Iam not your auntie,â€ said Vera. ;
â€œYou am, donâ€™t let him take me,â€ persisted Donnie, clutching
her dress in his grubby little fists, as a dark, black-eyed boy, in
ragged clothes, came through the bushes and stared at the party.
â€˜â€˜Heâ€™s mine, heâ€™s my brother, give him up,â€ he said, looking
rather frightened, as Winkie looked up, showing his teeth and
growling. But Donnie screamed and refused to go, and Vera,.
noticing the childâ€™s shoes and socks, though rather dirty, were not at
all in keeping with the rest of his clothes, said:
â€˜* What have you been doing with him?â€ While Reggie
whispered, â€˜â€˜ Gipsies, I believe they have stolen him.â€
THE BABE IN THE IVOOD. 61
+ -Beryou his aunt?â€
boy, looking alarmed when he heard Donnie
calling her auntie.
â€œYou had no business to take him
away; you will get yourself into trouble,â€
said Vera severely.
At this, the boy, who was only about
ten, ran off in a great hurry, pursued
by Winkie, biting at his feet and growl-
ing fiercely till Reggie called him off.
Vera was rather uneasy about this
affair, and said to her brother, â€˜â€˜ What
shall we do if they come and surround
us, Reggie ?â€â€™
â€˜Â©Oh, we shall be all right,â€
said he, â€˜they couldnâ€™t do any-
thing to us, and weâ€™d form into a
square and put Donnie in the
middle. We could shout and get
help in a minute if we wanted to; ~~"
besides, I expect they will hurry
off for fear of getting into a row.â€
The three little: girls were
making a great fuss over Donnie, who had stopped crying, and was
quite happy drinking milk and eating cake.
â€˜â€œâ€œTet us take him home with us, and ask nurse what to do,â€â€™
said Gay. â€˜Iâ€™m sure heâ€™s not that boyâ€™s brother, his shoes are just
like what Aunt May buys for her little boy, and his socks
By questioning Donnie they found he had a â€œNannaâ€ at
home, and he had â€˜â€˜runned in the road,â€ and a naughty woman
had taken him to see a kitten, and â€˜â€˜dere wasnâ€™t a kitten, but a
dirty black man,â€ and he didnâ€™t like him at all, and they â€˜ tooked
his fock off,â€ and when he cried â€˜â€œâ€˜ they slapped him.â€
But where he lived or what his other name was they couldnâ€™t
62 THE BABE IN THE WOOD.
make out, only â€˜â€˜ home,â€
cL Cles SCrrraeunmanieys 4 aeraacal
and â€˜â€˜ Aunt Dolly,â€ as he
persisted in calling Vera.
â€˜The Brookes packed
up their baskets, and
hurried home with the
child, for Vera still felt
rather timid, in spite of
Reggieâ€™s courage; Donnie
seemed quite happy and
contented to go with
arene â€œ He thinks we mean
his home when we say home, poor little dear,â€ said Vera.
â€œTsnâ€™t he a. darling, I should like to keep him always,â€
â€˜â€˜T think heâ€™s another birthday present for me,â€ said Nitty,
â€˜What distress his poor mother and nurse must be in,â€ said
Vera. â€˜I must write to papa at once, and ask what we had
better do.â€ ;
Nurse and Annie were very much astonished to see what the
children had brought home from the wood. Nurse was rather
alarmed at the idea of gipsies being near.
â€˜But we are close to the village, and the gardener is quite
near, so 1 donâ€™t suppose we shall be troubled with them,â€ she said.
Still, all the doors and windows were carefully looked to that night,
and Reggie took his toy pistol to bed with him.
â€œIt makes a jolly noise,â€ he said, â€˜(and they wonâ€™t know it
only cost sixpence, and wouldnâ€™t kill a mouse.â€
Donnie was put into a warm bath, and all the children sat
round him in an admiring circle.
â€˜He is a beauty and no mistake,â€ said nurse, as she bathed him,
THE BABE â€œIN THE WOOD. 63
while he kicked his fat little legs about, and screamed with delight
when he splashed the children. Gay and Kitty had enough to do
to amuse him, when nurse took him on her lap to dry him, and
comb out his lovely tangled curls. They played with his pretty
pink toes, and Reggie made a bunny out of his pocket handkerchief,
and threw shadows on the wall of camels, donkeys, and rabbits.
They told the gardener about the finding of the baby boy, and he
â€˜went off to consult the policeman, who came up to inspect the
â€˜â€œâ€˜case,â€ as he called it, and make notes. He thought an adver-
tisement in the paper, and a bill posted up outside the police-station
would be the best thing to do, and graciously offered to take charge
of the child till he was claimed. This being declined, he remarked
doubtfully, â€˜â€˜ he supposed the boy would be well treated with them.â€
Nurse re-assured him on this point, so he went off.
Vera told Reggie the next morning that it was no use trying to
get any information from Donnie. The only thing he would say
when she asked him where his papa was, was â€˜â€˜goned away.â€ His
mamma was â€˜â€˜goned away,â€ and
Nanna was â€˜goned awayâ€; but Bory dw â€˜
where they had all gone he couldnâ€™t Oo SESS ea
say, and still persisted she was ae ok GE S
7s Ups 2s
â€˜Auntie Dolly,â€ and seemed quite
contented to settle down and
live with them.
â€œT wouldnâ€™t try to find
his people, Vera,â€ said Kitty.
â€˜â€˜T am sure he will be much
better taken care of with us,
~ and perhaps they wanted to
lose him, like Hop-oâ€™-my-
thumbâ€™s father and
SPO peel Chynn aaa Hut
think so, and you mustnâ€™t
make up your mind we
Edth Seana ell
Ge THE BABE IN THE WOOD.
can keep him, or I am afraid you
will be disappointed,â€ said Vera.
The finding of the baby boy
was soon heard of in the village,
and that same morning Mrs. King-
ford, the vicarâ€™s wife, came up to
see them, and ask all about it.
â€˜â€˜T think he must be Captain
Fitzgeraldâ€™s little boy, who was to
be left with his aunt, Mrs. Forbes,
when his: parents went back to
India. I met them at a garden-
party a short time ago, and Mrs.
Fitzgerald was telling me how sad
she was at leaving him. Mrs.
Forbes lives near Exeter, about two hours journey by train. If
you like I could go there with you this afternoon and ask her.â€
Vera agreed to this, and she and Gay went with Mrs. Kingford
to Mrs. Forbesâ€™ house. It turned out just as Mrs. Kkingford had
supposedâ€”Mrs. Forbes was â€˜â€˜ Auntie Dolly.â€ She was quite young
and had fair hair and blue eyes, and Gay thought was very like
Vera, only â€˜â€˜ not so prettyâ€™ she told her sisters afterwards. She was
in great distress about the child, and had only just returned from
Southampton, where she had been with her sister, who was going â€˜to
join her husband in India. She found the whole household in
confusion, hunting high and low for the baby, and the nurse in
dreadful trouble. She had just sent to the police station to make
enquiries, as they had just heard of a gipsy encampment having
been heard of in the neighbourhood. Gay ran up to tell the
nurse, who was a French woman. The poor woman sank into
a chair, and burst into tears when she was told the child had
â€˜â€œT have not slept one hour, Mademoiselle, since he was gone.
I was so wicked not to guard my baby better; but while I ranged
Madameâ€™s effects she left behindâ€”the little rogue I think safe in the
DE AND SEEK
THE BABE IN THE WOOD. 65
gardenâ€”he must have run out of the gate without no one see him.
I never leave him alone again for one moment.â€
â€˜â€œT will come and fetch him back at once; I am so grateful to
you for taking care of him,â€â€™ said Mrs. Forbes to Vera; and seeing
Gayâ€™s look of disappointment, she added:
â€˜â€˜T hope you will come very often and see him while you are
so near. You have been so kind to my little pickle of a nephew.â€
Vera said she would like to come very much, and they all
started together for home. Kitty and Lili were very nearly in tears
at parting with their new plaything, and hardly consoled when
Mrs. Forbes made Vera promise to bring them very soon to spend
the day with â€˜â€˜ Donnieâ€ or â€˜â€˜ Johnnie,â€ as they discovered his name
â€˜So stupid of me not to think of bringing some of his clothes,â€
said Mrs. Forbes, laughing, as she said good-bye to them all.
â€˜â€˜T shouldnâ€™t be at all surprised,â€ said Kitty, gazing sadly out
of the window after them, â€˜â€˜if that careless woman lost the little
darling again. His papa and mamma had much better leave him
with us. I wish they hadnâ€™t found him!â€
â€˜â€œâ€˜ Poor Kitty,â€ said Vera, kissing her little sister, â€˜â€˜ never mind,
dear, we shall see him again very soon, and Mrs. Forbes says she is
coming up to town next winter to live rather near us, and we shall
be sure to know them.â€
But Kitty would not be consoled, and
was even rather cross to poor Lili, who
wanted her to come and play in the garden.
Nurse looked rather grave. â€˜â€˜Miss Kitty,
dear, do you remember when Miss Gay went
to stay with your aunt in the country, and left
her little canary in your charge, and you
left the cage door open and it flew
â€˜â€˜Yes, nurse, why do you remind me
of that? You know you said you
wouldnâ€™t,â€ said Kitty rather pettishly.
66 THE BABE IN THE WOOD.
â€˜*â€˜ Because you were
so very unhappy about
â€˜â€œâ€œWell, of course I
was; poor Gay! It
makes me quite miser-
able to think about it
now: And we never
heard of it again.â€
â€œWould you like
anyone else to be made
unhappy in the same
â€˜â€˜No, of course not, nurse,â€™ said
Kitty, hanging her curly head, for she began to
see what nurse meant.
â€œâ€˜ No, my darling, I know you would not be so selfish,â€ said
nurse, â€˜â€˜and you will be quite pleased soon, when you think how
glad Mrs. Forbes and the poor nurse must be to get that little fellow â€”
back again safe; just fancy what they would have felt if they had
had to write and tell his father and mother that he was lost. Think
what we should feel if we didnâ€™t know our dear little Lili was safe in
her bed at night! Never forget the golden rule, dearie, â€˜Do unto
others as you would that they should do to you,â€™ and you will always
know what is right.â€ .
â€œYes, nurse dear,â€ said Kitty, kissing her. â€˜I was horrid
to say that I wished they hadnâ€™t found Donnie, I am quite
Kitty ran off and was as kind as she could be to her little sister
to make up for having been cross to her
before. Vera was quite pleased when she
came back to find Kitty as sweet and bright
Donnie was delighted to see them when
they went to spend the day shortly after-
THE BABE IN THE WOOD. 67
wards with Mrs. Forbes, and Vera had the pleasure of telling that
she had had a letter from her mother that morning saying that
Captain Fitzgerald was a distant cousin of hers, and so Johnnie
was a relation after all; and Mrs. Forbes was delighted to allow
Johnnie and his nurse to spend a week with his cousins in the
cottage while she went up to town to see about her house,
â€˜Only, donâ€™t spoil him too much,â€ she begged; â€˜â€˜he is such
a little pickle already.â€
And indeed he was, and as they could refuse him nothing
when he patted their cheeks with his little fat hands, and coaxed
so prettily, most of the dolls presented a very forlorn appearance
after he leftâ€”armless, legless, and even headless !
He was devoted to Reggie, who gave him rides on his back and
was a willing slave, and the children were charmed by his attempts
to talk Reggieâ€™s schoolboy slang in his baby way.
The two months in the pretty cottage passed much too: quickly
for the happy childrenâ€”if it had not been for being separated from
their father and mother, which was rather unusual, for Colonel and
Mrs. Brooke did not often part ;
with their daughters for more ig
than a week at a time. j at
â€˜Â« What do you think,
children ?â€â€™ said Vera, the
day before they
were to leave for
London. â€˜â€˜ Mam-
ma has such a
68 THE BABE IN THE* WOOD:
nice present for us all, but I am
not to tell you what it is till we
The children guessed all
sorts of things, but Vera was
firm and would not let out the
And when they reached
home, their father met them
at the station, but he only
laughed when they questioned
him and said they must wait
till they saw it, for mamma
had forbidden him to tell.
And what do you think it
was? To their great delight
it was a new little baby brother! Very wee, and with no mass
of golden curls like Donnie, but a soft downy head and tiny fists,
which he tried to cram into his mouth both at once, and, as Kitty
observed, â€˜â€˜the darlingest little toes in the world!â€
â€˜â€˜ He came on your birthday, Kitty,â€™â€™ said her mother, â€˜â€˜ so
I really think he was meant for a present for you in particular.â€
Kitty was charmed with this idea, but graciously consented
to share him with her sisters, and to allow them a voice in
choosing a name for the newcomer.
Reggie hoped he would see baby a good bit bigger when he
came back from school, for he was almost afraid to touch him
now, for fear he should come to pieces.
â€˜â€œâ€˜Perhaps then he will be as big as Donnie,â€ remarked Lili,
â€˜Â«for itâ€™s a very long time before Christmas, Reggie.â€ -
â€˜â€œNot long enough for that, my little maid,â€ said her father,
â€˜â€˜and Iam very glad you donâ€™t all grow at that pace, for we should
soon have no little girls left for me to play with, and I shouldn't like
that at all ; and Iâ€™m jealous of that baby, for you have given him all
THE BABE IN .THE -WOOD.: 69
â€˜* No, indeed we havenâ€™t!â€™â€â€™ and Colonel Brooke was surrounded
by his little daughters, and hugged and kissed till he had to entreat
not to be quite smothered.
â€œâ€œWasnâ€™t it kind of mother to get us a baby brother ?â€ said
Kitty as she was being put to bed that night. â€˜I believe she did it
just because we shouldnâ€™t be disappointed about Donnie.â€
ere sfands a yy PUNg ma
Whe Wants a sw
The Turke and the ens.
ot REALLY donâ€™t care to talk to you,â€
Said the bold red turkey one dayâ€”
â€œIâ€™m a splendid fellowâ€”you dull brown hensâ€”
Run away, little people, and play!â€
â€˜â€˜ We're all grown up,â€â€™â€”said the hens to him,
â€˜Â¢ And mothers of chickens tooâ€”
We would not for the world be so clumsyâ€˜and big
And red and conceited as you.â€
â€˜â€˜Iâ€™m not conceited,â€ the turkey said,
â€˜But my merits I can but seeâ€”
Who takes any notice of you poor ey
But see how they talk of me!â€
The hens laughed
loud, â€œ Yes, they
talk of you,
You silly conceited
Because you'll be
killed for the
But we shall lay
eggs in the
Seeking his Fortune.
IM was what his father
called â€˜â€˜ A handful,â€
from the time he was
able to drop a china mug
over the edge of his cradle,
or pull the catâ€™s tail as it
passed ; but after he was
able to run alone there
was, as his mother said,
â€˜â€˜No bounds to him.â€
The first day he did
really walk alone, quite
steadily, looking like a
little angel, his parents
thought, he tookhis fatherâ€™s
stick, and walked straight
up to the window, bright
with the afternoon sun-
shine.â€ | es
â€œPitty, pitty,â€ he said, ages
and banged the stick straight through it. And added, as his parents
stood horrified, â€˜and pitty noise, too. Again!â€
And he raised the stick. They were just in time to stop him,
and to explain that pretty noises must not be made in that way.
It was Jim who put his fatherâ€™s watch into the soup, because he
heard someone call it a turnip. It was Jim who whitened the front
door with hearthstone, and black-leaded the clean pillow cases that
were airing in front of the fire, the day granny came to stay.
SEEKING HIS FORTUNE. 73
It was Jim who made a bonfire of a dozen boxes of matches,
burnt himself badly, and did the same thing next day. Nothing
discouraged or disheartened him. He was always trying something
new, though none of the other things he had tried turned out well.
He filled his fatherâ€™s pockets with clay ;
he dressed his rabbit in dollâ€™s clothes,
and put it in the cradle with the baby ;
he had five minutes with Uncle Joeâ€™s
violin, and it never made tunes any
Jimâ€™s mother used to be quite
sad sometimes. She even cried the
day he tried to bury the cat alive
to see if it would grow like the
But father took it all much more
quietly. â€˜â€˜ Boys will be boys,â€ he
said. â€˜â€˜We must be glad heâ€™s got a
â€˜spirit of his own. Heâ€™ll rub out as
It was when Jim was six years
old that he decided to run away
and seek his fortune.
Father had lost his place as under
gardener at the Hall, and there had been
very little money, and when Jim asked for
a halfpenny to buy some brandy balls, mother said, â€˜â€˜We canâ€™t
afford it, dearie.â€â€™
â€œWhy not, mammy ?â€
â€˜â€˜ Because father doesnâ€™t bring home any money now.â€
â€œTâ€™ll bring you some money,â€ said Jim, cheerfully.
â€œYes, lovey, when youâ€™re a man you shall work and bring
home money for daddy and me.â€
â€˜â€œT wonâ€™t wait till then,â€ said Jim; but he said it softly, and
mother didnâ€™t hear him because she had began to talk to daddy, and
me Vv OAK nr
74 SEEKING HIS FORTUNE. '
wonder for the hundredth time what could have made the head
gardener dismiss him.
â€˜â€œâ€˜ He wouldnâ€™t give any reason; said those were his orders, and
he sends me off, and keeps Abel, the most good-for-nothing
Jim heard no more. He crept up the narrow, well scrubbed
stairs, and took his best clothes out of the drawer, where they were
kept with sprigs of lavender and motherâ€™s Sunday bonnet. He
dressed himself in them as well as he could. I am afraid each
button did not find quite its proper button-hole ; and then he crept
quietly out at the back door, and out through the hole in the hedge
by the potato-patch; and so into the world to seek his fortune, and
bring home money for daddy and mammy.
He did not at all know where he was going, and he didnâ€™t much
care. He was quite sure he could get money if he wanted it, so he
took the first field-path that he came to, and went gaily on.
Presently he came to a bit of common land, where some ragged
looking horses were browsing; there were some dirty looking tents,
and some very untidy people sitting round a fire made of sticks,
with three poles leaning together over it, and a big pot hanging
Jim knew they were gipsies, and he had often been told never to
speak to gipsies, and as he didnâ€™t particularly want to speak to
them, he did as he was told for once, and went straight on; but
one of the women came running after him, and said:
â€˜Where are you off to in such a hurry? Going to the
â€˜â€œNo,â€ said Jim, â€˜â€˜ Iâ€™ve no money to go to the shop.â€
â€˜â€˜ Where are you going then with your pretty face and your nice
new clothes,â€ the woman asked coaxingly.
â€˜â€œTâ€™m going to seek my fortune, and to get some money to take
home to daddy and mammy.â€
â€˜â€˜Thatâ€™s a man,â€ the woman said, laughing. â€˜You come and
wait a bit with us, ducky, and weâ€™ll show you where to find it.â€
Jim was never afraid of anything or anyone. So he put his
SEEKING HIS FORTUNE. 75
hand in the gipsy womanâ€™s, and she led him up to the fire. A girl
was sitting beside it, with an old red handkerchief round her head,
and a tambourine beside her.
â€œWhat a jolly fire!â€ said Jim, sitting down beside her.
Crack! Jim was always unlucky. He had put his foot through the
The girl sat up and boxed his ears, and Jim very nearly cried,
but the woman whispered in her ear, and then she said ungraciously:
â€˜â€˜Shut up. It donâ€™t matter, I didnâ€™t mean to hurt you.â€
â€˜Â¢ Never mind,â€ said Jim handsomely, and at once went on to
tell the gipsies all about himself.
I donâ€™t fancy they listened very carefully. While he was
talking he was idly poking with a stick at the end of one of the
poles that supported the kettle. Then finding he had loosened it,
he pushed it with his footâ€”the pole gave wayâ€”and the kettle
tumbled over! The water fell hissing on the fire, and put it out;
the meal that was in the pot (it looked
like rabbits, Jim thought) fell into the
ashes and was spoiled.
The gipsy men said some
very disagreeable things, but the
woman got up and said:
â€˜â€œâ€œCome, itâ€™s getting dusk,
we'll go and seek our fortune.
I think this young gentleman â€™II
be better on the move.â€
The gipsies stood whisper-
ing together. Jim stood waiting.
Presently he got tired of waiting,
and looked about for something
to do. There was a sack lying
< near him, its mouth tied up with
string. Jim touched it with his foot. Delightful! There was
something in it alive. His fingers trembled with joyous excitement
as he untied the string. When it was loosened he shook the other
76 SEEKING HIS FORTUNE.
end of the bag, and out fluttered four
or five fowls. The gipsies ran forward
â€”but too lateâ€”the fowls had fluttered
and scampered off across the common. RA
AE, 4 &
The gipsy girl ran after them, and one of 7
the men came up to Jim, and said:
â€˜â€œLook here, young man, we've had about enough of you.
Here, 'take them smart things off, and put on these, and come
along with us. You must get some more chicks to make up
â€œIT canâ€™t,â€ said Jim, turning very white.
â€˜Oh, we'll show you where to take some from.â€
â€œBut I canâ€™t go taking chickens. â€˜Itâ€™s stealing. I know,
because father told me so when I caught the lame duck.â€
â€˜But the chickens are ours,â€ said the woman, with a wink
to her friends, which Jim couldnâ€™t see; â€œ only weâ€™ve lost the hen-
house key. So you'll go in quickly, lovey, wonâ€™t you, and hand us the
chicks through the little door. You're little, you can creep through.â€
â€œAnd then will you give me my clothes again, and show me
how to make my fortune ?â€
â€˜â€œâ€œOh yes,â€ the woman laughed. And somehow Jim didnâ€™t
believe in her so much as he had.
Those gipsies must have been very silly to think they could
get Jim even to go into a hen-roost like any one else,
SHEKING! VHIS- 0h ORTLUNE: 77
The woman wrapped him in her shawl, which hid the old rags
they had given him, instead of his pretty clothes, and carried him a
long way. He almost went to sleep in her arms.
It was quite dark when she put him down in front of a hen-
â€˜* Now go in,â€ she whispered ; â€˜â€˜ donâ€™t make a noise, feel for the
perches, and take hold of the chicks, one by one very gently, for it
makes chickens tough if they cluck when they are being caught.â€
Jim obediently crept through the little door, by which the hens
ran in and out, and the gipsy woman waited.
â€˜â€œCome,â€ she whispered hoarsely, â€˜â€˜make haste.â€ But Jim
had forgotten all about catching the chicks and bringing them out.
He had founda perch and was trying to balance himself on it, and
pretend to be a fowl, and just as the woman said, â€˜â€˜Come along,â€ for
the fourth time, he did balance himself, then he flapped his arms up
and down and cried as loud as he could, â€˜â€˜ Cock-a-doodle,
All the chickens fluttered and clucked with astonishment, and
Aine the gipsy woman ran oft
as hard as possible, for
she knew the people of
the house would be there
in no time.
Now as it hap-
pened, this hen-roost
was the hen-roost of
the squire, whose
under gardener Jimâ€™s
father had\been, and
the squire, who was
coming home from
eee heard all this fearful
commotion in his hen-roost,
and when the people came
78 SEEKING HIS FOREUNE:
running with the key, the squire was there waiting
to see what was the matter.
When they brought Jim out, he ex-
plained that this was the gipsyâ€™s hen-house,
and why he had forgotten to pass out Bie
Solmamesorrys: hey saidyto
â€˜thes squire. but el
was playing at being
fowls and I quite for-
got about it.â€
ing, â€˜â€˜ because it hap- .
pens to be my hen-
roost, and not the (
gipsyâ€™s. Why, look * aa
around you, havenâ€™t you ever been here before?â€
By the light of the lanterns Jim knew the back of the stable
buildings where heâ€™d often been with his father.
â€˜â€˜ Then youâ€™re the squire ?â€â€™ he said.
â€˜Yes, and who may you be?â€
â€œIâ€™m your under gardenerâ€™s little boy, at least, not now, because
you turned him off.â€
â€˜*Oh! youâ€™re Abel Craddockâ€™s son ?â€
â€˜â€œNo,â€ said Jim, â€˜â€œâ€˜dad says heâ€™s the most good-for-nothing
lazy chap; I wouldnâ€™t have him for my father. My dad is John
â€˜â€œThen youâ€™ve dismissed the wrong man by mistake,â€™â€™ said the
squire to his head gardener; and they began to explainâ€˜howit happened,
but Jim never understood. He understood that father was to have his
place again and bring home money every week, and that nothing was
to be said about his losing his new clothes, and that somehow there
were more pennies, and the squire said heâ€™d do something for Jim
when he grew up. And mother said heâ€™d made their fortune after all.
HERE are you going, my little one?
Iâ€™m going to the bakerâ€™s to buy a bun,
For Aunty Kitty gave me a penny,
And Vâ€™ll get a bun if the baker has any.
Where are you looking, my little dear ?
Donâ€™t you see this poor child standing here ?
Her face is thin and her hands are thinner,
And Iâ€™m much afraid she has had no dinner.
Why are you crying, my little maid?
For the poor little child with her
gown all frayed,
And her ragged coat with no fur
And her poor little hands and her
poor little bonnet.
What are you saying, my little pet ?
â€˜â€œâ€œT havenâ€™t spent my penny yet,
And the poor dear child with no
dinner and fur,
And, please, Iâ€™ll give my penny to
RAPHAEL TUCK & SONS,
Lonpon, Paris, AND NEW York.