“I half believe she will come,” said Adam. “She is watching us; I can see her pull back the blind of her room to peep.”
“Keep looking ahead. Don’t let her think you see her. Let’s go up the creek and investigate this ravine. Isn’t it a lovely place?”
“Yes. I’m glad you got it,” said Adam, “that is, if she come across. I will think of you as having it to look at in summer; and this winter — my, what rabbit hunting there will be, and how pretty it will look!”
So they went wandering up the ravine, sometimes on one bank, sometimes crossing stepping-stones or logs to the other, looking, talking, until a full hour had passed when they returned to the buggy. Adam began changing the halter for the bridle while Kate shook out the lap robe.
“Nickel, please,” whispered Kate.
Adam glanced across the street to see Mrs. Holt coming. She approached them and with no preliminaries said: “I have been telling my son about you an’ he hates so bad to go away and leave me alone for the winter, that he says to take you at the same as the last teacher, even if I do lose money on it.”
“Oh, you wouldn’t do that, Mrs. Holt,” said Kate, carelessly. “Of course it is for you to decide. I like the room, and if the board was right for the other teacher it will be for me. If you want me to stay, I’ll bring my things over and take the room at once. If not, I’ll look farther.”
“Come right over,” said Mrs. Holt, cordially. “I am anxious to git on the job of mothering such a sweet young lady. What will you have for your supper?”
“Whatever you are having,” said Kate. “I am not accustomed to ordering my meals. Adam, come and help me unpack.”
In half an hour Kate had her dresses on the hooks, her underclothing on the shelves, her books on the table, her pencils and pen in the robin cup, and was saying goodbye to Adam, and telling him what to tell his father, mother, and Nancy Ellen — if he could get a stolen interview with her on the way home. He also promised to write Kate what happened about the home school and everything in which she would be interested. Then she went back to her room, sat in the comfortable rocking chair, and with nothing in the world she was obliged to do immediately, she stared at the opposite wall and day by day reviewed the summer. She sat so long and stared at the wall so intently that gradually it dissolved and shaped into the deep green ravine across the way, which sank into soothing darkness and the slowly lightened until a peep of gold came over the tree tops; and then, a red sun crept up having a big wonderful widespread wing on each side of it. Kate’s head fell with a jerk which awakened her, so she arose, removed her dress, washed and brushed her hair, put on a fresh dress and taking a book, she crossed the street and sat on the bank of the stream again, which she watched instead of reading, as she had intended.