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324
LITTLE WOMEN.

"He's a born Weller," laughed Jo, as her parent gathered himself up, and her nephew tried to stand on his head, as the only mode of expressing his satisfaction that school was over.

"What have you been at to-day, bübchen?" asked Mr. Bhaer, picking up the gymnast.

"Me went to see little Mary."

"And what did you there?"

"I kissed her," began Demi, with artless frankness.

"Prut! thou beginnest early. What did the little Mary say to that?" asked Mr. Bhaer, continuing to confess the young sinner, who stood upon his knee, exploring the waistcoat pocket.

"Oh, she liked it, and she kissed me, and I liked it. Don't little boys like little girls?" added Demi, with his mouth full, and an air of bland satisfaction.

"You precocious chick,—who put that into your head?" said Jo, enjoying the innocent revelations as much as the Professor.

"Tisn't in mine head, it's in mine mouf," answered literal Demi, putting out his tongue with a chocolate-drop on it,—thinking she alluded to confectionery, not ideas.

"Thou shouldst save some for the little friend; sweets to the sweet, mannling," and Mr. Bhaer offered Jo some with a look that made her wonder if chocolate was not the nectar drunk by the gods. Demi also saw the smile, was impressed by it, and artlessly inquired,—

"Do great boys like great girls too, 'Fessor?"

Like young Washington, Mr. Bhaer "couldn't tell a lie"; so he gave the somewhat vague reply, that he believed they did, sometimes, in a tone that made Mr.