Page:Aunt Jo's Scrap-Bag, Volume 2.djvu/180

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"You will have to get used to rain if you stay here long, my child," returned the Raven.

And she was right. It poured steadily for two months, with occasional flurries of snow, also thunder, likewise hurricanes, the tramontana, the sirocco, and all the other charming features of an Italian winter. That nothing might be wanting, a nice little inundation was got up for their benefit, December 28th.

Sitting peacefully at breakfast on the morning of that day, in their cosey apartment, with a fire of cones and olive-wood cheerily burning on the hearth, Jokerella, the big cat, purring on the rug, the little coffee-pot proudly perched among bread and butter, eggs and fruit, while the ladies, in dressing-gowns and slippers, lounged luxuriously in arm-chairs, one red, one blue, one yellow; they (the ladies, not the chairs) were startled by Agrippina, the maid, who burst into the room like a bomb-shell, announcing, all in one breath, that the Tiber had risen, inundated the whole city, and instant death was to be the doom of all.

Rushing to the window to see if the flood had quite covered the steps, and cut off all retreat, the friends were comforted to observe no signs of water,