Page:An Old Fashioned Girl.djvu/63

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Polly's Troubles.

quiet "think" about the whole matter. Before she got half-way up stairs, she saw Tom coming after, and immediately sat down to guard her feet. He laughed, and said, as he perched himself on the post of the banisters, "I won't grab you, honor bright. I just wanted to say, if you'll come out to-morrow, some time, we'll have a good coast."

"No," said Polly, "I can't come."

"Why not? Are you mad? I didn't tell." And Tom looked amazed at the change which had come over her.

"No; you kept your word, and stood by me like a good boy. I'm not mad, either; but I don't mean to coast any more. Your mother don't like it."

"That isn't the reason, I know. You nodded to me after she'd freed her mind, and you meant to go then. Come, now, what is it?"

"I shan't tell you; but I'm not going," was Polly's determined answer.

"Well, I did think you had more sense than most girls; but you haven't, and I wouldn't give a sixpence for you."

"That's polite," said Polly, getting ruffled.

"Well, I hate cowards."

"I ain't a coward."

"Yes, you are. You're afraid of what folks will say; ain't you, now?"

Polly knew she was, and held her peace, though she longed to speak; but how could she?

"Ah, I knew you'd back out." And Tom walked away with an air of scorn that cut Polly to the heart.

"It's too bad! Just as he was growing kind to