Page:Aunt Jo's Scrap-Bag, Volume 5.djvu/72

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let them out, and returned home, much relieved in mind. Judge of his amazement when the first thing he saw was Mrs. Bunch and her children, sitting on the steps resting after their run home.

We all laughed at the old gentleman so that he left them in peace, and even when the mamma alone remained, feeble and useless, her bereavement made her sacred.

When we shut up the house, and went to the city for the winter, we gave Mother Bunch to the care of a kind neighbor, who promised to guard her faithfully. Returning in the spring, one of my first questions was,—

"How is old Pussy?"

Great was my anguish when my neighbor told me that she was no more. It seems the dear thing pined for her old home, and kept returning to it in spite of age or bad weather.

Several times she was taken back when she ran away, but at last they were tired of fussing over her, and let her go. A storm came on, and when they went to see what had become of her, they found her frozen, in the old sideboard, where I first discovered her with her kits about her.