"Yankees are a deal the most tricky, everybody knows. There you go," returned Fred, croqueting her ball far away.
Jo opened her lips to say something rude; but checked herself in time, colored up to her forehead, and stood a minute, hammering down a wicket with all her might, while Fred hit the stake, and declared himself out, with much exultation. She went off to get her ball, and was a long time finding it, among the bushes; but she came back, looking cool and quiet, and waited her turn patiently. It took several strokes to regain the place she had lost; and, when she got there, the other side had nearly won, for Kate's ball was the last but one, and lay near the stake.
"By George, it's all up with us! Good-by, Kate; Miss Jo owes me one, so you are finished," cried Fred, excitedly, as they all drew near to see the finish.
"Yankees have a trick of being generous to their enemies," said Jo, with a look that made the lad redden, "especially when they beat them," she added, as, leaving Kate's ball untouched, she won the game by a clever stroke.
Laurie threw up his hat; then remembered that it wouldn't do to exult over the defeat of his guests, and stopped in the middle of a cheer to whisper to his friend,—
"Good for you, Jo! he did cheat, I saw him; we can't tell him so, but he won't do it again, take my word for it."
Meg drew her aside, under pretence of pinning up a loose braid, and said, approvingly, —