“I’m going home,” said Wort.
“O, don’t!” pleaded Charlie.
“Let him go!” shouted Sid.
“And me, too,” squeaked Pip, and a second sullen knight passed out of the yard.
“It’s of no us staying here, and I guess I’ll go off and find Billy,” observed the governor, and he left to hunt up his absent cousin.
“My mother wants me, and I might as well go, for the club is broken up,” said Sid. He sauntered out of the yard with a reckless air, his hands in his pockets.
Charlie, Juggie, and Tony were now the only ones left, and they looked at one another sorrowfully.
It was Aunt Stanshy calling. Tony and Juggie now moved off, and Charlie went into the house with a heavy heart.
“What is the matter, Charles Pitt Macomber?”
“Club has broken up,” and Charlie’s lips quivered.
Charlie did not speak, but moved his head up and down like a saw.
“Who? Sid, Rick, Wort, Pip?”
Each time the saw went up and down.
“Are you mad?”
“I was, but I am not now.”
“I’m sorry. I guess it’s a pretty bad case, and the club has all gone to splinters.”
The club in splinters! All that day the chamber was deserted. It was forsaken the next bright summer day. A mouse came out of his hole, and, looking timidly about, gave a faint, surprised squeak. The flies buzzed in the sunshine, and had all the time they wished to hum through their tunes. The only other noise was the wind that murmured about the door and the window that Aunt Stanshy had closed up so resolutely.
Nobody came to climb the ladder, and it did have such a forsaken look. Nobody troubled the sheet, or the closet, or the various relics strewn about.
The club was in splinters!
THE CLUB MENDED.
“Then the club is all broken up?”
“Yes,” said Charlie, mournfully.
“How did it happen?”
“You see, Will”—every body called the apothecary’s clerk Will—“we had a school and Sid kept it, and he licked the fellers, and they couldn’t stand it.”
“But I think Sid wanted to make up.”
“And it was easier for him to make up than for the boys who had got the lickings, was it?”
“I guess it was,” said Charlie, laughing.
“Too bad to be broken up!”
“Yes,” and Charlie’s laugh was turning to a cry.
“You didn’t think of the notice stuck up on the post, ‘No cross words?’”
“Why, no! I know I forgot all about it.”
“I don’t believe your teacher, Miss Barry, will be pleased to know of the quarrel, as she is a kind, good-natured lady, and makes folks kind to one another.”
“I ’spose she wont like it.”