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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 302 pages of information about The Last of the Foresters.

“Make it, then!”

“By Jove!  I will, if Miss Redbud will supply—­”

“The materials?  Certainly, in one moment, Mr. Ralph,” said Redbud, smiling softly; “how nice it will be!”

“Twine, scissors, paper,” said Ralph; “we’ll have it done immediately.”

Redbud went, and soon returned with the materials; and the whole laughing party began to work upon the kite.

Such was their dispatch, that, in an hour it was ready, taken to the meadow, and there, with the united assistance of gentlemen and ladies, launched into the sky.

CHAPTER XLVI.

THE HAPPY AUTUMN FIELDS.

The rolling ground beyond the meadow, where the oaks rustled, was the point of departure of the kite—­the post from which it sailed forth on its aerial voyage.

The whole affair was a success, and never did merrier hearts watch a kite.

It was beautifully made—­of beautiful paper, all red, and blue and yellow—­and the young girls had completely surrounded it with figures of silver paper, and decorated it, from head to foot, with flowers.

Thus, when it ascended slowly into the cerulean heavens, as said the poetical Ralph, its long, flower-decorated streamers rippling in the wind, it was greeted with loud cries of joy and admiration—­thunders of applause and enthusiastic encouragement to “go on!” from Ralph, who had grown very young again—­from Fanny, even more exaggerated cries.

That young lady seemed to be on the point of flying after it—­the breeze seemed about to bear her away, and she clapped her hands and followed the high sailing paper-bird with such delight, that Ralph suggested she should be sent up as a messenger.

“No,” said Fanny, growing a little calmer, but laughing still, “I’m afraid I should grow dizzy.”

And looking at the kite, which soared far up, and seemed to be peeping from side to side, around the small white clouds, Fanny laughed more than ever.

But why should we waste our time in saying that the gay party were pleased with everything, and laughed out loudly for that reason?

Perhaps a merrier company never made the golden days of autumn ring with laughter, either at Apple Orchard, where hill and meadow echoed to the joyous carol, or in any other place.  Sitting beneath the oaks, and looking to the old house buried in its beautiful golden trees, the girls sang with their pure, melodious voices, songs which made the fresh, yet dreamy autumn dearer still, and wrapped the hearts of those who listened in a smiling, calm delight.  Give youth only skies and pure fresh breezes, and the ready laughter shows how happy these things, simple as they are, can make it.  It wants no present beyond this; for has it not what is greater still, the radiant and rosy future, with its splendid tints of joy and rapture?

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