Mrs. Freeman went up to her, and took her hand. "My dear," she said, "I must make you feel my authority. I do this with great pain, for I know you have not had the advantage of the training which many of the girls who live here have received. I would treat you with kindness, Bridget, but you won't receive my kindness. Now I must be severe, but for your good. Until you promise to obey the rules of the school, you must not join your schoolfellows either at work or play. My sister Patience will allow you to sit with her in her sitting room, and your meals will be brought to you there. The length of your punishment rests with yourself, my dear."
She looked at her friend with a cool, critical eye.
"Oh, how very funny—how—how unpleasant. Did you tell papa about that when he arranged to send me here?"
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It really was too absurd. Janet could not help fidgeting almost audibly.
"But Mrs. Freeman wants you to go to bed early to-night."
[Pg 12]"Pardon me for disturbing you," she said; "I did not know anyone was in the schoolroom at present.""No, Bridget, you are to stay here; your dinner will be brought to you." Bridget flushed crimson.
"You can watch the sea from your bed, my dear," she said, "and I will send Dorothy to sit with you after[Pg 55] morning school. Now I want to ask you if you can give any idea of how the accident occurred?"
"What is that?"
Something, however, she could not tell what, restrained her from doing this. She sank back again in her chair; angry tears rose to her bright eyes, and burning spots appeared in her round cheeks.