“Huh! I’m not afraid of him. I can cut Van Reypen out any day in the week!”
“Not Saturdays. That’s his great day.” And Patty laughed tantalisingly.
“Just you wait and see! I’m not afraid! Bye-bye, Poppycheek.”
They had reached the station just as the train was drawing out. Kit sprang from the car, slammed the door after him, and striding across the platform, swung on to the moving steps. He waved his hand at Patty and was gone.
“Home, Jacques,” she said.
May-Day, contrary to its custom, was a perfectly beautiful, balmy, sunshiny day.
Adele drew a long sigh of relief when she opened her eyes to this fact, for as the hostess of a large and elaborate garden party she had no care so great as the question of weather. And as all outdoors was a mass of warm sunshine, she felt sure of the success of her fete.
After luncheon she ordained that Patty should go to her room for a nap, as she had worked hard all the morning, and must not look fagged at her coronation.
“Make Daisy go too, then,” said Patty, pouting, as she started upstairs.
“No, Daisy can do as she likes. She isn’t tired and you are.”
“But then Daisy will be here when the boys come, and I won’t.”
“You insatiable little coquette! You go right straight to your room and go to bed! You hear me?”
“Yes, ma’am, but I can’t sleep. I’m too ’cited!”
“Well, you can rest. Get yourself into a kimono,—and I’ll come up in a minute and tuck you up.”
Adele went up in a few moments and found Patty leaning far out of her window.
“What are you doing, child? Don’t lean out so far; you’ll fall!”
Patty proceeded to draw herself back into the room. “Of course I won’t fall, Adele! I was only trying to breathe all this whole May-day into my lungs at once. It’s so beautiful.”
“It is, I know; but, Patty, darling, you must behave yourself. Lie down and take a little sleepy-by till three o’clock. Then you can get dressed for the party.”
“‘I will be good, dear mother, I heard a sweet child say,’” trilled Patty, as she took down her hair and put on a kimono.
Then Adele tucked her up on the couch, in a nest of pillows and under a soft down quilt.
“Of course I trust you,” she said, as she patted her shoulder, “oh, of course I trust you! but all the same, my lady, I’m going to lock you in!”
“What!” cried Patty.
But even as she spoke, Adele had scurried across the room, drawn out the key, and was already locking the door from the other side.
“Well!” thought Patty, “that’s a high-handed performance! I don’t really care, though. Now that I’m here, so comfy, I realise that I am tired.” And in about two minutes Patty was sound asleep.