Janet was never known to lose her temper, but she had a sarcastic tongue, and people did not like to lay themselves open to the cutting remarks which often and unsparingly fell from her lips."Poor girl!" said Evelyn, a wistful expression coming into her eyes.
"What?" said Katie, her eyes growing big with fascination and alarm.
"Bridget, you are incorrigible. If kindness won't make you see that you are bound in honor to obey me, I must try punishment. Wretched child, I don't wish to be hard to you, but do what I say, you must!""Miss Collingwood," said Marshall, in a timid whisper, "might I say a word to you, miss?""No, I can't do that; we have to obey rules at school, and one of our strictest rules is that no girl is to leave her own bedroom without special permission."
"Oh, but I hate self-denial, and that dreadful motto—'No cross, no crown.' I'm like a butterfly—I can't live without sunshine. Papa agrees with me that sunshine is necessary for life."The Fair was the great event to which the girls looked forward, and in the first excitement of such an unusual proceeding each of them worked with a will.
"Of course it is, Violet," replied Miss Collingwood in her good-natured way. "But what a naughty imp you were to hide under the laurel arch. The wonder[Pg 8] is you did not get right in the way of the horses' hoofs.""Are you there, Janet?" said Mrs. Freeman. "Go into the house, and ask Miss Patience to follow me down the road. And see that someone goes for Dr. Hart. Alice, you can come back with me. The rest of the little girls are to go into the playroom, and to stay there until I come to them."
"Learnt something? I should rather think I have. You question me on dogs, their different breeds, and their complaints! Do you know, Mrs. Freeman, what's the best thing to do for a dog if he shows signs of distemper?"
"No, not very. The younger girls were fond of me, and Dorothy Collingwood was nice."
Miss Patience asked for a blessing on the meal just partaken of in a clear, emphatic voice, and the group of girls began to file out of the room.