The children disappeared in as frantic haste to be off as they were a few minutes ago to arrive."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.""I hate school," she said. "I want to go back to the Castle. Can I go to-day?"
For the first time there was a faint hesitation in her manner.
"My name is Ruth," replied the girl so addressed, "and I can't guess ages. Come, Olive, let us find our French lessons and go.""Well, my dear, you must play it for me some evening, but we don't allow strumming at the Court."Bridget was sitting in the middle of the dusty road with a girl's head on her lap. The girl's figure was stretched out flat and motionless; her hat was off, and Bridget was pushing back some waves of fair hair from her temples.
"Oh, she's telling a story," whispered Olive under her breath. She settled herself contentedly to listen.
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.
"My conduct? What have I done?"
"Bridget, my dear, before you come into the schoolroom I must request that you go upstairs and change your dress."
"If she had any strength, she'd be ashamed of her ignorance," retorted Janet.