Open main menu

Page:Sketches by Mark Twain.djvu/57

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
55
MEMBRANOUS CROUP.

to stow the nurse, and Mrs. McWilliams said the nurse's experience would be an inestimable help. So we returned, bag and baggage, to our own bed-room once more, and felt a great gladness, like storm-buffeted birds that have found their nests again.

Mrs. McWilliams sped to the nursery to see how things were going on there. She was back in a moment with a new dread. She said:

"What can make Baby sleep so?"

I said:

"Why, my darling, Baby always sleeps like a graven image."


"I know. I know; but there's something peculiar about his sleep, now. He seems to — to — he seems to breathe so regularly. O, this is dreadful."

"But my dear he always breathes regularly."

"Oh, I know it, but there's something frightful about it now. His nurse is too young and inexperienced. Maria shall stay there with her, and be on hand if any thing happens."

"That is a good idea, but who will help you?"

"You can help me all I want. I wouldn't allow any body to do anything but myself, any how, at such a time as this."

I said I would feel mean to lie abed and sleep, and leave her to watch and toil over our little patient all the weary night. — But she reconciled me to it. So old Maria departed and took up her ancient quarters in the nursery.

Penelope coughed twice in her sleep.