If Winter Comes eBook

Arthur Stuart-Menteth Hutchinson
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 343 pages of information about If Winter Comes.

He found a great deal.

III

Mr. Fargus, who lived next door down the Green, and outside whose gate the bicycle had made its celebrated shortage record, was a grey little man with grey whiskers and always in a grey suit.  He had a large and very red wife and six thin and rather yellowish daughters.  Once a day, at four in summer and at two in winter, the complete regiment of Farguses moved out in an immense mass and proceeded in a dense crowd for a walk.  The female Farguses, having very long legs, walked very fast, and the solitary male Fargus, having very short legs, walked very slowly, and was usually, therefore, trotting to keep up with the pack.  He had, moreover, not only to keep pace but also to keep place.  He was forever getting squeezed out from between two tall Farguses and trotting agitatedly around the heels of the battalion to recover a position in it.  He always reminded Sabre of a grey old Scotch terrier toddling along behind and around the flanks of a company of gaunt, striding mastiffs.  He returned from those walks panting slightly and a little perspiring, and at the door gave the appearance of being dismissed, and trotted away rather like a little grey old Scotch terrier toddling off to the stables.  The lady Farguses called this daily walk “exercise”; and it certainly was exercise for Mr. Fargus.

The eldest Miss Fargus was a grim thirty-nine and the youngest Miss Fargus a determined twenty-eight.  They called their father “Papa” and used the name a good deal.  When Sabre occasionally had tea at the Farguses’ on a Sunday afternoon Mr. Fargus always appeared to be sitting at the end of an immense line of female Farguses.  Mrs. Fargus would pour out a cup and hand it to the Miss Fargus at her end of the line with the loud word “Papa!” and it would whiz down the chain from daughter to daughter to the clamorous direction, each to each, “Papa!—­Papa!—­Papa!—­Papa!” The cup would reach Mr. Fargus at the speed of a thunderbolt; and Mr. Fargus, waiting for it with agitated hands as a nervous fielder awaits a rushing cricket ball, would stop it convulsively and usually drop and catch at and miss the spoon, whereupon the entire chain of Farguses would give together a very loud “Tchk!” and immediately shoot at their parent a plate of buns with “Buns—­Buns—­Buns—­Buns” all down the line.  Similarly when Mr. Fargus’s grey little face would sometimes appear above the dividing wall to Sabre in the garden there would come a loud cry of “Papa, the plums!” and from several quarters of the garden this would he echoed “Papa, the plums!” “Papa, the plums!” and the grey little head, in the middle of a sentence, would disappear with great swiftness.

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If Winter Comes from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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