But Mirak’s face was solemn. “If Grand-dad doesn’t know it’s for him he won’t come in, and he won’t eat the sweets either. It’s greedy to eat sweets as doesn’t belong to you, and he wasn’t greedy. Old Faithful says he wasn’t. He was a real King.”
“Don’t you think he might be greedy just to help you?” suggested Bija mournfully; but after thinking a little she clapped her hands. “I have it, Mirak! If his name was on it that would do! I think I could write ‘Ba-ba.’ It’s only the two first letters, you see, and I know them; and you could prick yourself for some blood to write with, and I could use my little finger as a pen. It’s very, very tiddly wee.”
It was, indeed! and Mirak sat large-eyed in admiration of his sister’s ingenuity, while she, mistress of the situation, did this and that until even she was satisfied. And really the little arched and domed cupola set in Eastern fashion on the roof, looked quite pretty with the little glittering lights in a square on the white marble floor, and the platter of sweets placed in the middle of the square, whereon in smeared red letters showed this:
[Illustration: BA BA]
“And now, Mirak!” chattered Bija, “we’ll go down and go to bed like good boys and girls, and then when the others are saying their prayers and going to sleep we can come up again and sleep here.”
“Won’t it be very cold, Bija?” asked Mirak, whose little nose was half frost-bitten already, for a cold wind was blowing off the snow hills.
“We will bring quilts,” said the little lady with a superior air.
So, about an hour afterwards, after the children had been put to bed and their elders had begun the serious work of watching and waiting and dozing through the night, two little figures, well wrapped up in quilted cotton gowns and dragging quilted cotton blankets behind them, stole up the stairs to the roof of the house.
“I’m going to ask God to let him come,” said Baby Akbar solemnly. So they both touched the cold marble floor with their warm little foreheads and said:
“Please Great God! Let our grand-dad Babar come and take care of us, and be kind to us, and not let the Angel write nasty things on our foreheads for this next year!”
Then they cuddled themselves closely together in the blankets and were soon fast asleep.
So fast asleep that even when, after the short hullaballoo which followed on the discovery that they were not in their beds, they were traced to the roof, they did not thoroughly wake up, but were carried down again without knowing much about it.
“Shall I blow out the lights?” asked Roy, as Head-nurse prepared to descend also.
[Illustration: So they both touched the cold marble floor with their warm little foreheads.]
Head-nurse looked round to Foster-father for his opinion.
“No!” he said shortly, “leave them! The children have asked some one to eat those sweets. Let be! They may want all the help they can get.”