At his heels I toiled along with the sheep babies hugged close to my breast until at last we deposited all three on a bed of fragrant hay in a corner of the barn.
“What’ll I feed ’em?” I questioned anxiously. “There isn’t a bit of any kind of food on this place but the ribs of a hog and a muffin and a cup of coffee.”
“We’ll give her a quart of hot water with a few drops of this heart stimulant I have in my pocket, and she’ll do the rest for the family as soon as she warms up. She’s got plenty of milk and needs to have it drawn badly. There you are—go to it, youngsters. She is revived by just being out of the wind and in the warmth, and I don’t believe she needs any medicine. She wouldn’t let them to her udder if she wasn’t all right. Now we can leave them alone for a time, and I’ll give her a warm mash in a little while.” As he spoke Adam calmly walked away from the interesting small family, which was just beginning a repast with great vigor, and paused at the feed-room door. With more pride than I had ever felt when entering a ball-room with a Voudaine gown upon me and a bunch of orchids, I followed and stood at his side.
“Well, how do you do, sweeties, and where did you get this model hen-house? Trap nests! I wouldn’t have believed it of you!” said Adam to the Leghorn family and me inclusive.
“I didn’t do it all,” I faltered as I experienced a terrific temptation to lie silently and claim all of the affectionate praise that was beaming from Pan’s eyes upon all of us, but I fought and conquered it with nobility. “Matthew Berry came out and did about—no, a little more than half of it. But I did all I could,” I added, with a pathetic appeal for his approbation.
“Well, half of the job is more than the world could expect of the beautiful Ann Craddock, who sits in the front of Gale Beacon’s box at the Metropolitan,” answered Pan, with a little flute of laughter in his voice that matched the crimson crests which stood more rampant than ever across the tips of his ears.
“Why, where—who are you and—” I asked in astonishment as I followed him into the last of the sunset glow coming across the front of the barn.
“I’m just Adam and I go many places,” he answered with more of the intoxicating crooning laughter.
“Rufus says that red-headed Peckerwoods go to the devil on Fridays,” I retorted to the raillery of the Pan laugh.
“It was Friday and she didn’t sing Delilah to my notion. Did she to yours?” he asked, this time with a smile that was even more interesting than the laugh. “Come over and sit with me by the spring-house and let’s discuss grand opera while I eat my supper and wait until I think it is safe to give the ewe some mash.
“I will if you’ll invite me to the supper; I can’t face another swine and muffin meal,” I answered as I followed him down a path that led west from the barn-door.