Page:Stanwood Pier--The ancient grudge.djvu/141

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She darted upstairs, and when a moment later Floyd went to his room for a box of cigarettes, he found her there, whisking about, making his bed, beating up his pillow.

"Woman!" he cried sternly, "have I not declared a holiday?"

She turned a scared face. "’T won't take me a minute to read up your room," she pleaded. "Besides, if I don't do it now, I'll have to later."

He looked at her with silent scorn while he pocketed his cigarettes.

"I will return anon," he said, as he departed, "with two horses—two." And he heard her tittering with glee as he descended the stairs.

At the Library he found Letty and sent her, quivering with excitement, to ask for a morning off. The librarian of the Halket Library was not inclined to oppose any obstacles to the wishes of a Halket, and Letty came back to Floyd, pinning on her hat, and with her face radiant.

"Oh, and it's such a beautiful day!" she said as they descended the steps of the building. The sun shone, the sky was all blue, even the smoke from the mills seemed clear and bright, going up in smooth, harmonious curls. Letty ran home to get ready for the drive, and Floyd went down the hill to the livery-stable. Here he had to expostulate with the proprietor, who, on finding that his customer knew something about horses, showed a belated eagerness in supplying the best pair in his establishment and the smartest turn-out. When Floyd drove up the hill, Mrs. Bell and her daughter issued promptly from their door; evidently they had been alarmed lest they might keep him waiting. Mrs. Tustin was pottering round in her front yard; Mrs. Bell had found an opportunity before Letty's arrival to dart over and tell her what was about to happen. She came and leaned upon the fence and smiled at Floyd. She watched her neighbors as they were mounting to the back seat of the carriage.