Patty understood at once all his unspoken message, and smiled a full and free forgiveness.
“It’s all right, Little Billee,” she said, softly. “You were a brave, true friend, and I shall never forget your chivalry and true kindness.”
A moment more he held her hands, gazing deep into her eyes, and then turned abruptly to greet Daisy.
AT DAISY’S DICTATION
At Farnsworth’s directions, the “rescuing party” had brought with them a glazier and his kit of tools and materials. While he fitted a new pane of glass in place of the broken one, Mona expressed her opinion of the escapade of the night before.
“It was all your fault, Bill!” she exclaimed. “You ought not to have driven so fast and so far.”
“I know it, ma’am,” said Big Bill, looking like a culprit schoolboy. “I’m awful ’shamed of myself!”
“And well you may be!” chimed in Adele Kenerley. “Suppose this house hadn’t been here, what would you have done?”
“I should have built one,” declared Bill, promptly.
“So you would!” agreed Patty, heartily.
“You’re equal to any emergency, Little Billee; and it wasn’t all your fault, anyway. I egged you on, because I love to drive fast, especially at night.”
“Very reprehensible tastes, young woman,” said Jim Kenerley, trying to be severe, but not succeeding very well.
“Oh, you might have known this house was here,” said Mona. “It’s Mr. Kemper’s house. They’ve gone away for a month. They’re coming back next week.”
“Well, they’ll find everything in order,” said Patty. “We didn’t hurt a thing, except the window, and we’ve fixed that. We burned up a lot of their firewood, though.”
“They won’t mind that,” said Mona, laughing. “They’re awfully nice people. We’ll come over and tell them the whole story when they get home.”
“And now, can’t we go home?” said Patty. “I’m just about starved.”
“You poor dear child,” cried Mrs. Kenerley. “You haven’t had a bite of breakfast! Come on, Mona, let’s take Patty and Daisy home in one of the cars; the rest can follow in the other.”
Two cars of people had come over to escort the wanderers home, so this plan was agreed upon.
But somehow, Bill Farnsworth managed to hasten the glazier’s task, so that all were ready to depart at once.
“I’ll drive the big car,” cried Bill. “Come on, Patty,” and before any one realised it, he had swung the girl up into the front seat of the big touring car, and had himself climbed to the driver’s seat.
“I had to do this,” he said to Patty, as they started off. “I must speak to you alone a minute, and be sure that you forgive me for the trouble I made you.”
“Of course I forgive you,” said Patty, gaily. “I’d forgive you a lot more than that.”
“You would? Why?”