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234
Little Women.

withdrawn, feeling that their first sorrow was too sacred for even his friendly eyes to see.

" Send a telegram saying I will come at once. The next train goes early in the morning ; I'll take that."

" What else ? The horses are ready ; I can go any- where, — do anything," he said, looking ready to fly to the ends of the earth.

" Leave a note at Aunt March's. Jo, give me that pen and paper."

Tearing off" the blank side of one of her newly- copied pages, Jo drew the table before her mother, well knowing that money for the long, sad journey, must be borrowed, and feeling as if she could do any- thing to add a little to the sum for her father.

" Now go, dear ; but don't kill yourself driving at a desperate pace ; there is no need of that."

Mrs. March's warning was evidently thrown away ; for five minutes later Laurie tore by the window, on his own fleet horse, riding as if for his life.

"Jo, run to the rooms, and tell Mrs. King that I can't come. On the way get these things. I'll put them down ; they'll be needed, and I must go prepared for nursing. Hospital stores are not always good. Beth, go and ask Mr. Laurence for a couple of bottles of old wine ; I'm not too proud to beg for father ; he shall have the best of everything. Amy, tell Hannah to get down the black trunk ; and Meg, come and help me find my things, for I'm half bewildered."

Writing, thinking, and directing all at once, might well bewilder the poor lady, and Meg begged her to sit quietly in her room for a little while, and let them work. Every one scattered, like leaves before a