“We shall be a good deal farther before we get any nearer,” said Ham.
“But I wonder what they are doing there, this morning,—mother, and the girls, and dear little Dabney.”
“Little Dabney!” exclaimed Ham, with a queer sort of laugh on his face. “Why, Miranda, do you think Dab is a baby yet?”
“No, not a baby, but”—
“Well, he’s a boy, that’s a fact; but he’ll be as tall as I am in three years.”
“Will he? Do you think so? But will he ever get fat?”
“Not till after he gets his full length,” said Ham. “We must have him at our house a good deal, after we get home, and feed him up. I’ve taken a liking to Dab.”
“Feed him up!” said Miranda. “Do you think we starve him?”
“No, I suppose not; but how many meals a day does he get?”
“Three, of course, like the rest of us; and he never misses one of them.”
“Exactly,” said Ham: “I shouldn’t suppose he would. I never miss a meal, myself, if I can help it. But don’t you think three meals a day is rather short allowance for a boy like Dab?”
Miranda thought a moment, but then she answered positively,—
“No, I don’t. Not if he does as well at each one of them as Dabney is sure to.”
“Well,” said Ham, “that was in his old clothes, that were too tight for him. Now he’s got a good loose fit, with plenty of room, you don’t know how much more he may need. No, Miranda, I’m going to have an eye on Dab.”
“You’re a dear good fellow, anyway,” said Miranda, with one of her very best smiles, “and I hope mother’ll have the house all ready for us when we get back.”
“She will,” replied Ham, after a moment spent in somewhat thoughtful silence. “Do you know, Miranda, I shall hardly be easy about that till I see what she’s done with it? It was in a dreadfully baggy condition.”
TWO BOYS, ONE PIG, AND AN UNFORTUNATE RAILWAY-TRAIN.
Dab was standing by his ponies, in front of a store in the village. His mother was making some purchases in the store, and Dab was thinking how the Morris house would look when it was finished; and it was at him the old farmer was pointing in answer to a question which had just been asked him.
The questioner was the sharp-eyed boy who had bothered poor Dick Lee that morning, and he was now evidently making a sort of “study” of Dab Kinzer.
At that moment, however, a young lady—quite young—came tripping along the sidewalk, and was stopped by Dabney, with,—
“There, Jenny Walters! If I didn’t forget my label!”
“Why, Dabney! Is that you? How you startled me! Forgot your label?”
“Yes,” said Dab; “I’m in another new suit today; and I meant to have a label on the collar, with my name on it. You’d have known me then.”
“But I know you now,” exclaimed Jenny. “Why, I saw you yesterday.”