" I think anxiety is very interesting," observed Amy^ eating sugar, pensively.
The girls couldn't help laughing, and felt better for it, though Meg shook her head at the young lady who could, find consolation in a sugar-bowl.
The sight of the turn-overs made Jo sober again ; and, when the two went out to their daily tasks, they looked sorrowfully back at the window where they were accustomed to see their mother's face. It was gone ; but Beth had remembered the little house- hold ceremony, and there she was, nodding away at them like a rosy-faced mandarin.
" That's so like my Beth ! " said Jo, waving her hat, with a grateful face. " Good-by, Meggy ; I hope the Kings won't train to-day. Don't fret about father, dear," she added, as they parted.
"And I hope Aunt March won't croak. Your hair is becoming, and it looks very boyish and nice," returned Meg, trying not to smile at the curly head, which looked comically small on her tall sister's shoulders.
" That's my only comfort ; " and, touching her hat à la Laurie, away went Jo, feeling like a shorn sheep on a wintry day.
News from their father comforted the girls very much ; for, though dangerously ill, the presence of the best and tenderest of nurses had already done him good. Mr. Brooke sent a bulletin every day, and, as the head of the family, Meg insisted on reading the despatches, which grew more and more cheering as the week passed. At first, every one was eager to write, and plump envelopes were carefully poked into