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beginning. Are you troubled in the peculiar way you mention?"
"Yes; it is very curious, but I never can make things come out
"Perhaps I can help you," began Uncle Alec, in the most respectful
"I think you had better, for if I have got to keep accounts I may as
well begin in the right way. But please don't laugh! I know I'm very
stupid, and my book is a disgrace, but I never could get it straight."
And with great trepidation, Rose gave up her funny little accounts.
It really was good in Dr. Alec not to laugh, and Rose felt deeply
grateful when he said in a mildly suggestive tone
"The dollars and cents seem to be rather mixed, perhaps if I just
straightened them out a bit we should find things all right."
"Please do, and then show me on a fresh leaf how to make mine
look nice and ship-shape as yours do."
As Rose stood by him watching the ease with which he quickly
brought order out of chaos, she privately resolved to hunt up her
old arithmetic and perfect herself in the four first rules, with a
good tug at fractions, before she read any more fairy tales.
"Am I a rich girl, uncle?" she asked suddenly, as he was copying a
column of figures.
"Rather a poor one, I should say, since you had to borrow a
"That was your fault, because you forgot my pocket-money. But,
really, shall I be rich by and by?"
"I am afraid you will."
"Why afraid, uncle?"
"Too much money is a bad thing."
"But I can give it away, you know; that is always the pleasantest
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