For the first time there was a faint hesitation in her manner."Nothing," replied Janet. "I—I—shall I run out to the front, Mrs. Freeman, and listen if I can hear the carriage? You can hear it a very long way off from the brow of the hill."
She looked at the merry group on the lawn, and a desire to join them, even though of course she knew she was in no sense one of them, came over her.
"Bridget, do look," said Mrs. Freeman; "you have trodden on that lovely bud!"
"Well, I never!" exclaimed Dorothy, after a pause. "I don't suppose Mrs. Freeman will allow that style of wardrobe long. See, girls, do see, how her long blue ribbons stream in the breeze; and her hat! it is absolutely covered with roses—I'm convinced they are roses. Oh, what would I not give for an opera glass to enable me to take a nearer view. Whoever that young person is, she intends to take the shine out of us. Why, she is dressed as if she had just come from a garden party.""Well, let's settle to business now," said Ruth; "I'm sure I'm more than willing. Who has got a pencil and paper?"
"He'll be sorry he sent me; he'll be sorry he listened to Aunt Kathleen," she said to herself.
"Will you have some fruit?" she said coldly, laying[Pg 14] a restraining hand as she spoke on the girl's beflowered and embroidered dress."Hate her?" said Janet; "there must be a certain strength about a girl to make you hate her. I've a contempt for Bridget, but I don't rouse myself to the exertion of hating."
[Pg 12]"Yes, you will. You'll soon learn to control your tongue and to speak in a ladylike way.""My name is Ruth," replied the girl so addressed, "and I can't guess ages. Come, Olive, let us find our French lessons and go."
She ran lightly down the grassy slope, and touched Dorothy on her arm.
"Yes, darling, I did. Shall we go into the common room now? I'm dying to see it."
"My dear," she said, "I cannot grant your request. You have been sent to me by your father. He wishes you to stay here as long as you are well in body. You are quite well, Bridget; you must therefore make up your mind, whether you like school or whether you hate it, to remain here until the end of the term."