Page:Aunt Jo's Scrap-Bag, Volume 2.djvu/137

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"He may understand English!"

"Then we are lost!" returned the tragic Raven.

"Wish he did. I really pine for a little attention. It gives such a relish to life," said Matilda, thinking regretfully of the devoted beings left behind.

The prudent Amanda and the stern Lavinia steeled their hearts, and iced their countenances to the comely gentleman. But the social Matilda could not refrain from responding to his polite advances, with a modest "Merci, Monsieur," as he drew the curtain for her, a smile when he picked up the unruly curling-stick, and her best bow as he offered his paper with a soft glance of the black eyes.

In vain Amanda tried to appall her with awful frowns; in vain Lavinia trod warningly upon her foot: she paid no heed, and left them no hope but the saving remembrance that she couldn't talk French.

"If the man don't get out soon, I'll tie her up in my shawl, and tell him she is mad," resolved Lavinia, whose spinster soul was always scandalized at the faintest approach to a flirtation.

"If the man does speak English, Mat will have it