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Alice grew uneasy. Wasn’t a penny the right thing, after all? Should she run home and get ten cents? “We might get a chair,” said Ruth, dreamily, putting her arm around Alice's waist and drawing her close, “ or we might get a table and put it away to keep, and then the next time we'd get a sofa, and then a chair, and then a little doll, and then we’d save up till we got ten cents and get a stove.” She drew a sigh of deep felicity. “I’ll go ask aunt—” The words were on Alice's lips when Ruth's eyes fell on a row of sparkling candy-dishes in another corner of the window. Perhaps it would be better to spend it now than to save it. It might get lost. In a minute they were out of the store again. Alice was afraid she wouldn’t choose right, so she had let Ruth choose. At the first taste of licorice balls (the kind you get three apiece for a penny)—at their first taste everything seems clear and bright and joyous. “Let’s skip,” said Ruth, taking Alice's hand. Suddenly she paused. Alice had not said a word. “Don’t you like them?” Ruth asked. “Yes,” said Alice, promptly. She knew just what she ought to say this time, and she hid with her foot the one she had just let slide into the dust. Ruth skipped a few steps, then stopped again.
Big Geographies are lovely places to hide them in.
“Didn't you ever spend a penny before?” She only dared whisper it. “You can whisper it to me,” she said, putting her arms around Alice. “I won’t tell if you haven't.” In vain Alice searched her memory for a like experience. “I don’t know,” she faltered. Ruth silently handed her both of the licorice balls she had left. Alice was not poor, she knew. The whispered word had gone from desk to desk that she was rich. If she had ever had a penny, she must have known it. With a flash Ruth remembered the lady dressed all in black who had come to school for Alice that first day. That was the “nurse.” Did the nurse keep all Alice's pennies? Ruth did not skip any more, but kept her arm around Alice. She resolved never to desert her. A few days later all the little girls began collecting. You do that in school. No one ever knows who starts it or what it will be. But it is always something lovely. This time it was
“They are old ribbons,” said Ruth, who was skipping rope. “Little old ribbons. Dear little ones.” “Have they got to be old?” “Of course,” said Ruth, carelessly. one would have new ones, would they?” The next morning Alice went to school early and hid behind a bush until she saw Ruth coming. She was afraid the other girls would ask her if she had any. “Nurse says I haven’t got any old ribbons,” she said to Ruth. “Not one?” cried Ruth. a single little one?” The silent tears came to Alice's eyes. “If your mother was here she'd kill that nurse!” cried Ruth. “You can have half of all mine.” Slowly Alice accumulated a treasure. They buried it in a strange, mysterious place near the apple-tree. (I would not like to tell where it was, even now.) Then with the suddenness which prevails in the child's world, Alice's mother appeared one afternoon from abroad, to take Alice away. “You can have all my treasure,” Ruth said to Alice, solemnly. Together they went and put it all in the mysterious place near the apple-tree. Alice was coming to get it before
“Not one? Not
But as it beatifically sat and thought no wrong
“Yes, dear, 'tis Il” exclaimed the Pie—it scorned to say
How Tom, an honorable
2 boy, was tempted sore and fell. As for what happened further—to Tom, not to the Pie—
---- You may conjecture if you like: I'ís never tess