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"Ah, it's all very well to defy them, but you are getting so rampant,
I'm afraid you will defy me next, and then where are we?"
"No, I won't! I shouldn't dare; because you are my guardian, and
can put me in a strait-jacket if you like;" and Rose laughed in his
face, even while she nestled closer with a confiding gesture
pleasant to see.
"Upon my word, Rosy, I begin to feel like the man who bought an
elephant, and then didn't know what to do with him. I thought I
had got a pet and plaything for years to come; but here you are
growing up like a bean-stalk, and I shall find I've got a
strong-minded little woman on my hands before I can turn round.
There's predicament for a man and an uncle!"
Dr. Alec's comic distress was mercifully relieved for the time
being by a dance of goblins on the lawn, where the children, with
pumpkin lanterns on their heads, frisked about like
will-o'-the-wisps, as a parting surprise.
When Rose went to bed, she found that Uncle Alec had not
forgotten her; for on the table stood a delicate little easel, holding
two miniatures set in velvet. She knew them both, and stood
looking at them till her eyes brimmed over with tears that were
both sweet and sad; for they were the faces of her father and
mother, beautifully copied from portraits fast fading away.
Presently, she knelt down, and, putting her arms round the little
shrine, kissed one after the other, saying with an earnest voice, "I'll
truly try to make them glad to see me by and by."
And that was Rose's little prayer on the night of her fourteenth
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