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177
LITTLE BUTTON-ROSE

and the old house her especial pride; so she dropped the awe-inspiring glasses, and said more kindly,—

"There is a nice little room ready for you upstairs, and a garden to play in. Cicely will hear you read every day, and I will teach you to sew, for of course that most useful part of your education has been neglected."

"No, ma'am, I sew my four patches every day, and make little wee stitches, and I can hem Papa's hank'-chifs, and I was learning to darn his socks with a big needle when—when they went away."

Rosy paused with a sudden choke; but too proud to break down, she only wiped two drops off her cheek with the long ends of her little gray silk glove, set her lips, and remained mistress of herself, privately planning to cry all she liked when she was safely in the "nice little room" promised her.

Cicely, though a lazy, selfish young lady, was touched by the child's pathetic face, and said in a friendly tone, as she patted the couch where she lay,—

"Come here, dear, and sit by me, and tell me what kind of a kitten you'd like best. I know of a sweet yellow one, and two grays. Our Tabby is too old to play with you; so you will want a kitty, I'm sure."

"Oh yes, if I may!" and Rosy skipped to the new seat with a smile which plainly proved that this sort of welcome was just what she liked.

"Now, Cicely, why will you put such an idea into Rosamond's head when you know we can't have kittens round the house for Sister to stumble over, not to mention the mischief the horrid things always do?