She gave him a bright, glad look, that quite settled the matter so far as he was concerned; he would, if necessary, give even an exorbitant price for the place, to please her.
“Have you never seen Woodburn, captain?” asked Mrs. Dinsmore.
“I have some recollection of driving past it,” he replied meditatively; “but—is not the house nearly concealed from view from the road, by a thick growth of trees and shrubbery?”
“Yes: you will thin them out a little, I hope, for the mansion is well worth looking at; it is a very aristocratic-looking dwelling,—large, substantial, and handsome architecturally.”
“Papa, are you going to buy it?” asked Grace.
“It is too soon to answer that question, daughter,” he said pleasantly; and Max and Lulu again exchanged glances, which said this time, “Maybe he will, after all.”
Both ardently wished their father would propose taking them along; he did not: but when Dr. Conly said, with a kindly glance at Grace, “There will be room in my carriage for a little friend of mine, if papa is willing to let her go with us,” he at once said,—
“Certainly, Gracie may go, if she will be ready in season, and not keep the doctor waiting.”
“Indeed I will, papa,” she cried delightedly, and ran away to don hat and coat; for the meal was concluded, and everybody leaving the table.
Lulu followed her father, till, in the hall, she found an opportunity to speak to him without being overheard.
“Papa,” she asked, “what am I to do with myself to-day?”
“Stay in your room, and learn your lessons, beginning just where you left off the other day. You will recite to me after I come back; then we will consider what you shall do for the rest of the day.”
“Yes, sir: may I see Evelyn when she comes?”
“If she chooses to go to you in your room.”
“Must I stay in my room all the time?” she asked dejectedly.
“While I am away. I will take you out after I return.” Then, noticing her downcast look, “You shall have more liberty when we get into our own home,” he said kindly.
At that she looked up with a bright, glad smile. “Papa, it will be so nice!”
Max had drawn near.
“Papa,” he said, “won’t you let Lu take a walk with me? Mayn’t we run over to Fairview, and bring Evelyn back with us? I know she’d be glad to have company coming over to school.”
“Yes, you may go, both of you, if you like. But, Lulu, when you get home, go at once to your room: don’t stop in the grounds or on the veranda.”
“I won’t, papa,” she said: “I’ll go straight to my room, and, oh, thank you for letting me go!”
“Home, sweet home!”
“How large is the estate, doctor?” asked Capt. Raymond, as they were on their way to Woodburn.
“I cannot say exactly,” replied Arthur. “There is a bit of woodland comprising several acres; and lawn, gardens, and shrubbery cover several more. I believe that is all.”