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said to herself, with a sense of relief, "I guess I shall like him,
though he looks as if he made people mind," when he lifted his
eyes to examine the budding horse-chestnut overhead, and saw the
eager face peering down at him. He waved his hand to her,
nodded, and called out in a bluff, cheery voice
"You are on deck early, little niece."
"I got up to see if you had really come, uncle."
"Did you? Well, come down here and make sure of it."
"I'm not allowed to go out before breakfast, sir."
"Oh, indeed!" with a shrug. "Then I'll come aboard and salute," he
added; and, to Rose's great amazement, Uncle Alec went up one of
the pillars of the back piazza hand over hand, stepped across the
roof, and swung himself into her balcony, saying, as he landed on
the wide balustrade: "Have you any doubts about me now, ma'am?"
Rose was so taken aback, she could only answer with a smile as
she went to meet him.
"How does my girl do this morning?" he asked, taking the little
cold hand she gave him in both his big warm ones.
"Pretty well, thank you, sir."
"Ah, but it should be very well. Why isn't it?"
"I always wake up with a headache, and feel tired."
"Don't you sleep well?"
"I lie awake a long time, and then I dream, and my sleep does not
seem to rest me much."
"What do you do all day?"
"Oh, I read, and sew a little, and take naps, and sit with auntie."
"No running about out of doors, or house-work, or riding, hey?"
"Aunt Plenty says I'm not strong enough for much exercise. I drive
out with her sometimes, but I don't care for it."
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