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Frog had it from Dick Straw who had it from Old Bill Bone
Desire to follow the net2023-11-29 12:36:23【love】9People have been watching
This explanation was not then wholly clear to Louis, but he understood that there was a barrier between his father and Maude, and this of itself was sufficient to draw him more closely to the latter, who, after that day, cherished him, if possible, more tenderly than she had done before, keeping him out of his father's way, and cushioning his little crutches so they could not be heard, for she rightly guessed that the sound of them was hateful to the harsh man's ears.
Maude was far older than her years, and during the period of time over which we have passed so briefly she had matured both in mind and body, until now at the age of twelve she was a self-reliant little woman on whom her mother wholly depended for comfort and counsel. Very rapidly was Mrs. Kennedy passing from the world, and as she felt the approach of death she leaned more and more upon her daughter, talking to her often of the future and commending Louis to her care, when with her he would be motherless. Maude's position was now a trying one, for, when her mother became too ill to leave her room, and the doctor refused to hire extra help, saying, "two great girls were help enough," it was necessary for her to go into the kitchen, where she vainly tried to conciliate old Hannah, who "wouldn't mind a chit of a girl, and wouldn't fret herself either if things were not half done."
From the first Nellie resolutely refused to work--"it would black her hands," she said, and as her father never remonstrated she spent her time in reading, admiring her pretty face, and drumming upon the piano, which Maude, who was fonder even than Nellie of music, seldom found time to touch. One there was, however, who gave to Maude every possible assistance, and this was John. "Having tried his hand," as he said, "at everything in Marster Norton's school," he proved of invaluable service--sweeping, dusting, washing dishes, cleaning knives, and once ironing Dr. Kennedy's shirts, when old Hannah was in what he called her "tantrums." But alas for John! the entire print of the iron upon the bosom of one, to say nothing of the piles of starch upon another, and more than all, the tremendous scolding which he received from the owner of said shirt, warned him never to turn laundress again, and in disgust he gave up his new vocation, devoting his leisure moments to the cultivation of flowers, which he carried to his mistress, who smiled gratefully upon him, saying they were the sweetest she had ever smelled. And so each morning a fresh bouquet was laid upon her pillow, and as she inhaled their perfume she thought of her New England home, which she would never see again--thought, too, of Janet, whose cheering words and motherly acts would be so grateful to her now when she so much needed care.
"'Tis a long time since I've heard from her," she said one day to Maude. "Suppose you write tomorrow, and tell her I am sick--tell her, too, that the sight of her would almost make me well, and maybe she will come," and on the sick woman's face there was a joyous expression as she thought how pleasant it would be to see once more one who had breathed the air of her native hills--had looked upon her Harry's grave--nay, had known her Harry when in life, and wept over him in death.
Poor, lonesome, homesick woman! Janet shall surely come in answer to your call, and ere you deem it possible her shadow shall fall across your threshold--her step be heard upon the stairs--her hand be clasped in yours!
It was a chilly, rainy afternoon toward the latter part of August. John was gone, the doctor was cross, and Hannah was cross. Nellie, too, was unusually irritable, and venting her spite upon Hannah because there was nothing for dinner fit to eat, and upon Maude because the house was so desolate and dark, she crept away upstairs, and wrapping a shawl round her, sat down to a novel, pausing occasionally to frown at the rain which beat at the windows or the wind as it roared dismally through the trees. While thus employed she heard the sound of wheels, and looking up, saw standing before their gate a muddy wagon, from which a little, dumpy figure in black was alighting, carefully holding up her alpaca dress, and carrying in one hand a small box which seemed to be full of flowers.
"She must have come to stay a long time," thought Nellie, as she saw the piles of baggage which the driver was depositing upon the stoop. "Who can it be?" she continued, as she recalled all her aunts and cousins, and found that none of them answered the description of this woman, who knocked loudly at the door, and then walked in to shelter herself from the storm.
"Forlornity!" Nellie heard her exclaim, as she left the chamber in answer to the summons. "Forlornity! No table, no hat-stand, no nothin', and the dingiest old ile-cloth! What does it mean? Your servant, miss," she added, dropping a courtesy to Nellie, who now stood on the stairs, with her finger between the pages of her book, so as not to lose the place. "I guess I've made a mistake," said the woman; "is this Dr. Canady's?"
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