Page:A Garland for Girls (1893).djvu/211

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active legs ached for exercise, and the close, shady room oppressed her.

"Yes, dear; but don't get into mischief, or worry Tabby, or pick the flowers. Of course you wouldn't touch green fruit, or climb trees, or soil your little frock. Ill' ring the bell for you to come in and be dressed for tea when it is time."

With these directions and a kiss, Miss Penny, as Cicely did not stir, let the child out at the back door of the long hall, and watched her walk demurely down the main path of the prim old garden, where no child had played for years, and even the toads and fat robins behaved in the most decorous manner.

"It's pretty dull, but it's better than the parlor with all the staring pictures," said Rosy to herself, after a voyage of discovery had shown her the few charms of the place. The sight of a large yellow cat reposing in the sun cheered her eyes at that moment, and she hastened to scrape acquaintance with the stately animal; for the snails were not social, and the toads stared even more fixedly at her than the painted eyes of her respected ancestors.

But Tabby disliked children as much as her mistress, and after submitting ungraciously to a few caresses from the eager little hands, she rose and retired majestically to a safer perch on the top of the high wall which enclosed the garden. Being too lazy to jump, she walked up the shelves of an old flower-stand moulding in a corner, and by so doing, gave Rosy a brilliant idea, which she at once put into action by following Tabby's example. Up this new sort of