“I think,” said the girl, “that Mr. Watson got Ken into politics, for he surely wouldn’t have undertaken such a thing himself. And, now he’s in, he finds he’s doomed to defeat; and it’s breaking his heart, Uncle John.”
The little man nodded silently. His chubby face was for once destitute of a smile. That meant a good deal with Uncle John, and Patsy knew she had interested him in Kenneth’s troubles.
“Once,” said the Major, from behind the morning paper, “I was in politics, meself. I ran for coroner an’ got two whole votes—me own an’ the undertaker’s. It’s because the public’s so indiscriminating that I’ve not run for anything since—except th’ street-car.”
“But it’s a big game,” said Uncle John, standing at the window with his hands deep in his pockets; “and an important game. Every good American should take an interest in politics; and Kenneth, especially, who has such large landed interests, ought to direct the political affairs of his district.”
“I’m much interested in politics, too, Uncle,” declared the girl. “If I were a man I’d—I’d—be President!”
“An’ I’d vote fer ye twenty times a day, mavourneen!” cried the Major. “But luckily ye’ll be no president—unless it’s of a woman’s club.”
“There’s the bell!” cried Patsy. “It must be the girls. No one else would call so early.”
“It’s Beth’s voice, talking to Nora,” added her father, listening; and then the door flew open and in came two girls whose bright and eager faces might well warrant the warm welcome they received.
“Oh, Louise,” cried Patsy, “however did you get up so early?”
“I’ve got a letter from Kenneth,” was the answer, “and I’m so excited I couldn’t wait a minute!”
“Imagine Louise being excited,” said Beth, calmly, as she kissed Uncle John and sat down by Patsy’s side. “She read her letter in bed and bounced out of bed like a cannon-ball. We dressed like the ’lightning change’ artist at the vaudeville, and I’m sure our hats are not on straight.”
“This bids fair to be a strenuous day,” observed the Major. “Patsy’s had a letter from the boy, herself.”
“Oh, did you?” inquired Louise; “and do you know all about it, dear?”
“She knows sixty pages about it,” replied Major Doyle.
“Well, then, what’s to be done?”
The question was addressed to Patsy, who was not prepared to reply. The three cousins first exchanged inquiring glances and then turned their eager eyes upon the broad chubby back of Uncle John, who maintained his position at the window as if determined to shut out the morning sunlight.