Dialstone Lane, Part 1. eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 49 pages of information about Dialstone Lane, Part 1..

Dialstone Lane, Part 1. eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 49 pages of information about Dialstone Lane, Part 1..

Except in the matter of window-blinds, Dialstone Lane had not changed for generations, and Mr. Tredgold noted with pleasure the interest of his companion as she gazed at the crumbling roofs, the red-brick doorsteps, and the tiny lattice windows of the cottages.  At the last house, a cottage larger than the rest, one side of which bordered the old churchyard, Mr. Tredgold paused and, inserting his key in the lock, turned it with thoughtless ease.

“The lock seems all right; I need not have bothered you,” said Miss Drewitt, regarding him gravely.

“Ah, it seems easy,” said Mr. Tredgold, shaking his head, “but it wants knack.”

The girl closed the door smartly, and, turning the key, opened it again without any difficulty.  To satisfy herself—­on more points than one—­she repeated the performance.

“You’ve got the knack,” said Mr. Tredgold, meeting her gaze with great calmness.  “It’s extraordinary what a lot of character there is in locks; they let some people open them without any trouble, while others may fumble at them till they’re tired.”

The girl pushed the door open and stood just inside the room.

“Thank you,” she said, and gave him a little bow of dismissal.

A vein of obstinacy in Mr. Tredgold’s disposition, which its owner mistook for firmness, asserted itself.  It was plain that the girl had estimated his services at their true value and was quite willing to apprise him of the fact.  He tried the lock again, and with more bitterness than the occasion seemed to warrant said that somebody had been oiling it.

“I promised Captain Bowers to come in this afternoon and see that a few odd things had been done,” he added.  “May I come in now?”

The girl withdrew into the room, and, seating herself in a large arm-chair by the fireplace, watched his inspection of door-knobs and window-fastenings with an air of grave amusement, which he found somewhat trying.

“Captain Bowers had the walls panelled and these lockers made to make the room look as much like a ship’s cabin as possible,” he said, pausing in his labours.  “He was quite pleased to find the staircase opening out of the room—­he calls it the companion-ladder.  And he calls the kitchen the pantry, which led to a lot of confusion with the workmen.  Did he tell you of the crow’s-nest in the garden?”

“No,” said the girl.

“It’s a fine piece of work,” said Mr. Tredgold.

He opened the door leading into the kitchen and stepped out into the garden.  Miss Drewitt, after a moment’s hesitation, followed, and after one delighted glance at the trim old garden gazed curiously at a mast with a barrel fixed near the top, which stood at the end.

“There’s a fine view from up there,” said Mr. Tredgold.  “With the captain’s glass one can see the sea distinctly.  I spent nearly all last Friday afternoon up there, keeping an eye on things.  Do you like the garden?  Do you think these old creepers ought to be torn down from the house?”

Project Gutenberg
Dialstone Lane, Part 1. from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.