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- Rosy - 1/25 -


ROSY

BY

MRS. MOLESWORTH

AUTHOR OF 'CARROTS,' 'CUCKOO CLOCK,' 'TELL ME A STORY.'

ILLUSTRATED BY WALTER CRANE

[Illustration: MANCHON]

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER I. ROSY, COLIN, AND FELIX

CHAPTER II. BEATA

CHAPTER III. TEARS

CHAPTER IV. UPS AND DOWNS

CHAPTER V. ROSY THINKS THINGS OVER

CHAPTER VI. A STRIKE IN THE SCHOOLROOM

CHAPTER VII. MR. FURNITURE'S PRESENT

CHAPTER VIII. HARD TO BEAR

CHAPTER IX. THE HOLE IN THE FLOOR

CHAPTER X. STINGS FOR BEE

CHAPTER XI. A PARCEL AND A FRIGHT

CHAPTER XII. GOOD OUT OF EVIL

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

MANCHON

"BEATA, DEAR, THIS IS MY ROSY," SHE SAID

ROSY AND MANCHON

"WHAT IS ZE MATTER WIF YOU, BEE?" HE SAID

"DID YOU EVER SEE ANYTHING SO PRETTY, BEE?" ROSY REPEATED

"WHAT IS THERE DOWN THERE, DOES YOU FINK?" SAID FIXIE

BY STRETCHING A GOOD DEAL SHE THOUGHT SHE COULD REACH THEM

"IT'S A ROSE FROM ROSY"

CHAPTER I.

ROSY, COLIN, AND FELIX.

"The highest not more Than the height of a counsellor's bag." --WORDSWORTH.

Rosy stood at the window. She drummed on the panes with her little fat fingers in a fidgety cross way; she pouted out her nice little mouth till it looked quite unlike itself; she frowned down with her eyebrows over her two bright eyes, making them seem like two small windows in a house with very overhanging roofs; and last of all, she stamped on the floor with first her right foot and then with her left. But it was all to no purpose, and this made Rosy still more vexed.

"Mamma," she said at last, for really it was too bad--wasn't it?--when she had given herself such a lot of trouble to show how vexed she was, that no one should take any notice. "_Mamma_" she repeated.

But still no one answered, and obliged at last to turn round, for her patience was at an end, Rosy saw that there was no one in the room. Mamma had gone away! That was a great shame--really a _great_ shame. Rosy was offended, and she wanted mamma to see how offended she was, and mamma chose just that moment to leave the room. Rosy looked round--there was no good going on pouting and frowning and drumming and stamping to make mamma notice her if mamma wasn't there, and all that sort of going on caused Rosy a good deal of trouble. So she left off. But she wanted to quarrel with somebody. In fact, she felt that she _must_ quarrel with somebody. She looked round again. The only "somebody" to be seen was mamma's big, _big_ Persian cat, whose name was "Manchon" (_why_, Rosy did not know; she thought it a very stupid name), of whom, to tell the truth, Rosy was rather afraid. For Manchon could look very grand and terrible when he reared up his back, and swept about his magnificent tail; and though he had never been known to hurt anybody, and mamma said he was the gentlest of animals, Rosy felt sure that he could do all sorts of things to punish his enemies if he chose. And knowing in her heart that she did not like him, that she was indeed sometimes rather jealous of him, Rosy always had a feeling that she must not take liberties with him, as she could not help thinking he knew what she felt.

[Illustration: ROSY AND MANCHON]

No, Manchon would not do to quarrel with. She stood beside his cushion looking at him, but she did not venture to pull his tail or pinch his ears, as she would rather have liked to do. And Manchon looked up at her sleepily, blinking his eyes as much as to say, "What a silly little girl you are," in a way that made Rosy more angry still.

"I don't like you, you ugly old cat," she said, "and you know I don't. And I shan't like _her_. You needn't make faces at me," as Manchon, disturbed in his afternoon nap, blinked again and gave a sort of discontented mew. "I don't care for your faces, and I don't care what mamma says, and I don't care for all the peoples in the world, I _won't_ like her;" and then, without considering that there was no one near to see or to hear except Manchon, Rosy stamped her little feet hard, and repeated in a louder voice, "No, I won't, I _won't_ like her."

But some one had heard her after all. A little figure, smaller than Rosy even, was standing in the doorway, looking at her with a troubled face, but not seeming very surprised.

"Losy," it said, "tea's seady. Fix is comed for you."

"Then Fix may go away again. Rosy doesn't want any tea. Rosy's too bovvered and vexed. Go away, Fix."

But "Fix," as she called him, and as he called himself, didn't move. Only the trouble in his delicate little face grew greater.

"_Is_ you bovvered, Losy?" he said. "Fix is welly solly," and he came farther into the room. "Losy," he said again, still more gently than before, "_do_ come to tea. Fix doesn't like having his tea when Losy isn't there, and Fix is tired to-day."

Rosy looked at him a moment. Then a sudden change came over her. She stooped down and threw her arms round the little boy's neck and hugged him.

"Poor Fixie, dear Fixie," she said. "Rosy will come if _you_ want her. Fixie never bovvers Rosy. Fixie loves Rosy, doesn't he?"

"Ses," said the child, kissing her in return, "but please don't skeese Fix _kite_ so tight," and he wriggled a little to get out of her grasp. Instantly the frown came back to Rosy's changeable face.

"You cross little thing," she said, half flinging her little brother away from her, "you don't love Rosy. If you did, you wouldn't call her cuddling you _skeesing_."

Fix's face puckered up, and he looked as if he were going to cry. But just then steps were heard coming, and a boy's voice called out, "Fix, Fix, what a time you are! If Rosy isn't there, never mind her. Come along. There's something good for tea."

"There's Colin," said Fix, turning as if to run off to his brother. Again Rosy's mood changed.

"Don't run away from Rosy, Fix," she said. "Rosy's not cross, she's only troubled about somefing Fix is too little to understand. Take Rosy's hand, dear, and we'll go up to tea togever. Never mind Colin--he's such a big rough boy;" and when Colin, in his turn, appeared at the door, Rosy and Fix were already coming towards it, hand-in-hand, Rosy the picture of a model little elder sister.

Colin just glanced at them and ran off.

"Be quick," he said, "or I'll eat it all before you come. There's fluff for tea--strawberry fluff! At least I've been smelling it all the afternoon, and I saw a little pot going upstairs, and Martha said cook said it was for the children!"

Colin, however, was doomed to be disappointed.

There was no appearance of anything "better" than bread and butter on the nursery table, and in answer to the boy's questions, Martha said there was nothing else.

"But the little pot, Martha, the little pot," insisted Colin. "I heard you yourself say to cook, 'Then this is for the children?'"

"Well, yes, Master Colin, and so I did, and so it is for you. But I didn't say it was for to-day--it's for to-morrow, Sunday."

"Whoever heard of such a thing," said Colin. "Fluff won't keep. It


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