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it is beginning to simmer already, and I've got a great curiosity to
know what it will turn out to be."
Mac's eyes shone as she said that, but before he could speak a little
voice said, "Aunty Wose!" and he turned to find Dulce sitting up in
her nest staring at the broad blue back before her with round eyes.
"Do you know your Don?" he asked, offering his hand with
respectful gentleness, for she seemed a little doubtful whether he
was a friend or stranger.
"It is 'Mat,'" said Rose, and that familiar word seemed to reassure
the child at once, for, leaning forward, she kissed him as if quite
used to doing it.
"I picked up some toys for her, by the way, and she shall have
them at once to pay for that. I didn't expect to be so graciously
received by this shy mouse," said Mac, much gratified, for Dulce
was very chary of her favors.
"She knew you, for I always carry my home album with me, and
when she comes to your picture she always kisses it, because I
never want her to forget her first friend," explained Rose, pleased
with her pupil.
"First, but not best," answered Mac, rummaging in his knapsack
for the promised toys, which he set forth upon the hay before
Neither picture books nor sweeties, but berries strung on long
stems of grass, acorns, and pretty cones, bits of rock shining with
mica, several bluebirds' feathers, and a nest of moss with white
pebbles for eggs.
"Dearest Nature, strong and kind" knows what children love, and
has plenty of such playthings ready for them all, if one only knows
how to find them. These were received with rapture. And leaving
the little creature to enjoy them in her own quiet way, Mac began
to tumble the things back into his knapsack again. Two or three
books lay near Rose, and she took up one which opened at a place
marked by a scribbled paper.
"Keats? I didn't know you condescended to read anything so
modern," she said, moving the paper to see the page beneath.
Mac looked up, snatched the book out of her hand, and shook
down several more scraps, then returned it with a curiously
shamefaced expression, saying, as he crammed the papers into his
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