Then I sat down by Daddy’s bed, pondering.
“A penny for your thoughts, daughter,” he said.
“I was thinking that men are very interesting,” I told him. “Dr. Grant always looks like such a strong man.”
“And now you think you have discovered the feet of clay?”
“Well, it seemed quite strange, Daddy.”
“I’ll tell you one thing, girly,” he said. “Never make the fatal error of thinking any one is perfect. It is a mistake that young people are rather apt to indulge in. There are little weak points, and sometimes big ones, in all of us.”
“I suppose so,” I assented, “but these were such dreadful things he told us about. It seems so terrible that they should happen at all. It has made me feel unhappy. I thought that doctors got used to such things.”
“There are a lot of things a fellow never gets used to, my dear,” answered Daddy. “This one is young yet, but he will probably never get over the sense of rebellion which comes over a man, a real man, who finds himself butting his head against stupidity and ignorance. Don’t you make any mistake about that fellow Grant! The poorest kind of chap is the one who is always letting things slide. This is a tough, square-jawed, earnest chap, of the sort who put their hearts and souls into things, right or wrong. The man who has never felt or shown weakness is a contemptible egotist. The cocksure fools always have perfect faith in themselves. Those two men, the big and the little one, are both pretty fine specimens, and in their own ways they are equally strong. They’re made of the right stuff.”
I don’t exactly know why, but I felt greatly pleased. Daddy is a mighty keen man of the world, and his judgment of others has been one of his great assets.
“I wish we could help too, Daddy,” I told him.
“We may, if we find a way,” he answered. “I’m going to investigate the matter.”
When Daddy says he is to investigate, something is going to drop, with a dull thud. At least that’s the way Harry Lawrence puts it. By the way, Aunt Jennie, what has become of him, and why hasn’t he written to me?
From John Grant’s Diary
I slept rather late, this morning, and came out of the house feeling very fit. Had it not been for my blistered hands nothing would have remained to show what a hard pull we had yesterday, excepting the unpleasant feeling that I made rather a donkey of myself last evening. My only excuse, and a mighty poor one, is that I was rather played out and developed a silly grouch.
I had only gone a little way when I met Mrs. Barnett. She came towards me with her hand outstretched, smiling in her usual pleasant way.
“Right again and topside up,” she exclaimed, brightly. “Sammy was just telling me what a hard time you had to make the cove, yesterday. Those broad shoulders of yours give you an advantage over my husband. He would have had to go off towards North Cove. It is fine to be as strong and big as you.”