"There was once upon a time," began Mr. Scantlebray, senior, "a man that lived in a round tower. Look at him, draw it, there you are. That is the tower. Go on. And in the tower was a round winder. Do you see the winder, Orphing? This man every morning put his hand out of the winder to ascertain which way the wind blew. He put it in thus, and drew it out thus. No! don't look at me, look at the slate and then you'll see it all. Now this man had a large pond, preserved full of fish." Scratch, scratch went the pencil on the slate. "Them's the fish," said Scantlebray, senior." Now below the situation of that pond, in two huts, lived a pair of thieves. You see them pokey things my brother has drawn? Them's the 'uts. When night set in, these wicked thieves came walking up to the pond, see my brother drawing their respective courses! And on reaching the pond, they opened the sluice, and whish! whish! out poured the water." Scratch, scratch, squeak, squeak, went the pencil on the slate. "There now! the naughty robbers went after fish, and got a goose! Look! a goo-oose."
"Where's the goose?" asked Jamie.
"Where? Before your eyes—under your nose. That brilliant brother of mine has drawn one. Hold the slate up, Scanty."
"That's not a goose," said Jamie.
"Not a goose! You don't know what geese are."
"Yes, I do," retorted the boy, resentfully, "I know the wild goose and the tame one—which do you call that?"
"Oh, wild goose, of course."
"It's not one. A goose hasn't a tail like that, nor such legs," said Jamie, contemptuously.
Mr. Scantlebray, senior, looked at Messrs. Vokins and Jukes and shook his head. "A bad case. Don't know a goose when he sees it—and he is eighteen."
Both Vokins and Jukes made an entry in their pocket-books.
"Now Jukes," said Vokins, "will you take a turn, or shall I?"
"Oh, you, Vokins," answered Jukes, "I haven't recovered propria quœ maribus, yet."
"Very well, my interesting young friend. Suppose now we change the subject and try arithmetic."
"I don't want any arithmetic," said Jamie, sulkily.