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Prince a little, in words at least, for he had hurt her feelings oftener
than he knew; so she gave him a thimble-pie on the top of his
head, and said, with an air of an infinitely superior being
"Don't be silly, but get up, and I'll tell you something much better
to do than sprawling on the floor and getting all over lint."
Charlie obediently sat himself upon a hassock at her feet; the other
sinners drew near to catch the words of wisdom about to fall from
her lips, and Rose, softened by this gratifying humility, addressed
them in her most maternal tone.
"Now, boys, if you really want to be good to Mac, you can do it in
this way. Don't keep talking about things he can't do, or go and tell
what fun you have had batting your ridiculous balls about. Get
some nice book and read quietly; cheer him up about school, and
offer to help him study by and by; you can do that better than I,
because I'm only a girl, and don't learn Greek and Latin and all
sorts of headachy stuff."
"Yes, but you can do heaps of things better than we can; you've
proved that," said Archie, with an approving look that delighted
Rose, though she could not resist giving Charlie one more rebuke,
by saying, with a little bridling of the head, and a curl of the lip
that wanted to smile instead
"I'm glad you think so, though I am a 'queer chicken."'
This scathing remark caused the Prince to hide his face for shame,
and Steve to erect his head in the proud consciousness that this
shot was not meant for him. Archie laughed, and Rose, seeing a
merry blue eye winking at her from behind two brown hands, gave
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