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Well, tell us how they do balls.'

Bobby found the place, and read to himself for some time, until Patricia poked him with her foot, and then he said

'I don't see much sense in this book. I don't understand it. Let us do it by ourselves. Put “they."

Does it say “they” in “Of Balls ?”' asked Patricia.
It is a foolish book,' said Bobby, sternly.. 'Put "they."

But it never tells who "they" are,' objected Patricia. Bogy will know, because he asked us,' said Bobby ; 'and if you don't put "they," I shall not lend you my lead-pencil.' "Well, I have put it. It sounds very funny, Bobby.

“ Miss Scrope presents her compliments to Bogy, and they thank him, and they are very glad to tell you that we can come to your teaparty

* Put “for they are dreadfully fond of tea-parties," ' said Annis, and then perhaps he will ask us again.'

We are not sure whether we are fond of best-clothes parties or not,' said Bobby, for he was in a very arguing mood. ‘ 'Perhaps his aren't best-clothes parties. Do put it, Patricia.'

I shall not! It sounds so greedy.' • It will only show him that he can ask us again, if he likes,' said Annis, discontentedly.

"What shall I put next?'
· That will do,' said Bobby.

Oh, but I wanted to put much more,' said Patricia, nearly biting a piece out of the pencil with thinking. 'Nell, do think of something.'

So we went on composing it as long as we could. The end gave us a great deal of trouble. Patricia wanted only her own name--though, afterwards mother said that nobody ought to have put a name at all-and Bobby wanted all, and it took a quarter of an hour to settle it ; and then we were ready to write it out in ink. Patricia made a great many preparations, but she spoiled so many sheets of paper that we grew tired, and it was finished in a hurry. There was a mistake in spelling near the end; we found it out afterwards, when we asked mother, but we had sent it to Bogy then, and he knew that we could not spell quite perfectly, and besides, Patricia said that Bobby shook her.

This was the letter


'Miss SCROPE presents her compliments to Bogy, and they thank him, and they are very glad to tell you that we can come to your tea-party. We think it is very kind of you to have a tea-party. Mother says may we come home at 8 O clock when nurse comes for us.

With best love,
we remane your loving friends,

Patricia, Helen, Robin, Annis Scrope.'

We did not put Paul's name, because he could not write, and also we did not feel sure that Bogy had invited him. We all tried to persuade him that he was too little to go to parties, but he began to turn very obstinate.

The letter was finished at last ; Patricia had ruled lines, but they were a little crooked, and all the writing sloped down towards the right hand. The paper was also rather dirty, and there were two blots and a smear, but Patricia was so tired that she really could not write it again; so we folded it up, though we could not get it quite straight, and the longer Bobby tried, the dirtier the paper seemed to grow. So we gave up trying, and we fastened it up in an envelope, and sent it to Bogy.

I felt very satisfied about it, and considered that it was quite good for our first real letter; but I thought Patricia rather spoiled it afterwards, when she put her head through the hole in the hedge, and shouted

Did I write it pretty well?' Bogy had come out of his doors, and we were watching for him. * Very well,' he said. *A little crooked, wasn't it?' said Patricia. Oh, nothing to speak of,' said Bogy, politely.

Well, perhaps you didn't notice it. It might be mean not to tell you that I had lines to write on, but we rubbed them out. You might have seen the marks quite plainly. Bobby,' said Patricia, with great dignity, 'please give over dragging my pinafore.'

*Then come out of the hole,' said Bobby.

But Patricia wouldn't, so Bobby shouted through the hedge, We all made it up!'

* I admired it extremely,' said Bogy, very seriously ; 'I have it safe in the house.'

'We never wrote a letter before,' said Patricia,' but little ones, to father and mother, in pencil, you know. Now we have to go into dinner. Good-bye.'

'Good-bye,' said Bogy; and we were just beginning to crawl away, when we saw that Paul had put his head through the hole.

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* Bogy,' he said, entreatingly. 'Oh, Bogy! may I come?' 'Come where ?' ‘To your party,' said Paul. “You did mean me too, didn't



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'Paul! I am astonished at you !' cried Patricia, in a most tremendous voice, while Bobby dragged him back by the feet.

You did, didn't you?' shouted Paul, as his head was dragged into the garden again.

Of course I did !' Bogy called after him. I couldn't possibly have a party without Paul. Mind you all come.'

'I shall tell mother,' said Patricia, most severely, as we crawled away. “I never heard anything so rude and greedy in my life.'

Paul did not seem to mind. He stood up, and rubbed the soil off his hands on his blouse with great satisfaction.

“He did mean me,' he said. “I knewed he did.'

The worst of parties is the dressing. Nurse always will have our faces and hands very clean, but for parties she nearly washes our skins away. And Annis cries at least once, but oftener twice, over having her hair brushed. But still the washing and brushing only last a few minutes, whilst best frocks last all the time. Patricia is what nurse calls a very well-grown girl of her age, because she is going to be big like father, and she says that her new frocks always pinch her about the waist and shoulders. They never begin to be comfortable until she has burst a few of the buttons off, and obliged nurse to alter them.

It took nurse a long time to dress us to go to Bogy's party. Patricia looked very nice, when we were ready at last. I do not think that she is exactly pretty, but she looks very dignified, even to me (and generally one does get very used to one's own family). Only she seemed a little tight round the waist, and she said that she could not breathe quite well. Bobby observed, while he was having his collar put on, that he should ask the gentleman at that house if a velvet suit and silk stockings were actually necessary at his next party. Nurse said he must do no such thing, for young gentlemen were not wanted in people's houses unless they went nicely dressed. But, above all, nicely mannered, she said, and looked at us with such a look that even Bobby could think of nothing to answer.

However, if we had stayed to listen to everything she said about how we were to behave, we should never have gone at all ; so mother came in at last to see us, and we went by the road, and in at Bogy's drive gates, properly, because of course we


could not have thought of crawling through the hole into the Haw. We went up to Bogy's door, and Bobby knocked quite gravely.

But then Patricia whispered, “When they open the door, what ought I to say ? “Is Bogy at home?” as ladies do when they come to call on mother?'

That's stupid,' said Bobby. “If he weren't at home, how could he have a party?' "Well, must I say, “We have come?”' said Patricia, and then

? we all began to laugh, except Paul, who had been very solemn all day to prove how well he could behave. So when Grizzle opened the door, we were not ready to say anything, and only walked in, and after that it was quite easy.

Bogy's housekeeper took Patricia, and Annis, and me, upstairs to take our hats off, and when she brought us down to the room where Bogy was, Bobby and Paul were talking away to him quite happily, and everybody behaved very well ; except that Annis at once began to suck her thumb, and when Patricia frowned at her, she took it out to say, 'What is the matter, Patricia ?

Bogy's was only a small party of ourselves, but you really cannot think how we enjoyed it. We talked chiefly about the garden until the tea bell rang ; and then Bogy stood up, and walked across the room, and offered his one arm to Patricia. I am not quite sure that she was not very much frightened, but I am quite sure that she was very proud. But she only took Bogy's arm in a manner as like mother as she could make it, and they led the way out. Annis watched them for a whole minute with her mouth wide open, as if she were speechless with admiration, and then suddenly making up her mind, she crossed firmly over to Bobby, and took his arm.

'Get out !'said Bobby, very gruffly. But Annis held him fast, and they followed Bogy and Patricia, Annis clinging to his arm, and Bobby nudging her all the way. So Paul and I were left alone, and as there was nothing else we could do, we took each other's hands, and walked last, and when we came to the teatable we found Patricia seated—very red in the face, but very triumphant. She was also inclined to be very grand, until I heard a little crack at the waist of her frock ; and then she said, *There !' in a low voice, and breathed hard, and looked more comfortable.

Bogy's housekeeper made tea at the other end of the room, and Grizzle waited on us, and we had never had such a nice tea before in all our lives. Bogy quite 'encouraged us to have more jam, and never once drew the dish away as nurse does, and did not even raise his eyebrows, when we had more cake, like mother sometimes at dessert.

Paul behaved very well indeed. I was next to him, and I was a little anxious at first ; but I must say that he did not do a single queer thing—except that he suddenly stopped in the middle of tea, and slipped out of his chair ; then he went to Bogy, and put his hand on his arm, and said, “You are a nice man, and I love you!' Bogy shook hands with him, and Paul went back to his chair, and Grizzle lifted him into it, and he went on with his tea.

The Great Bear sat on the floor at Bogy's corner. He was so big that he could lay his head down on the table as he sat, and when nobody noticed him he laid it there, and moaned for grief until Bogy gave him a piece of cake, and then he thumped his tail loudly on the floor. In every other way he was very good, and behaved as properly as could be.

When tea was over, Bogy took us into his library. It was a beautiful place, with long windows that looked out on the lawn, and chairs with tall backs, and cabinets filled with most curious. foreign things, and books everywhere.

*Are all these books yours?' asked Patricia, looking round: and round the room.

Every one,' said Bogy, smiling,
* And do you love them?'
I do.'
• Do

read in them all ?' asked Annis. Bogy said that he could not read much now, he could not see ; he said it quite quietly, but we felt suddenly grave and sorry.

May we look a little ?' Patricia asked very politely. We are not allowed to play in the library at home, but if we may look a little, we won't touch.'

But Bogy said that we might look as much as we liked, andi touch too.

Oh, how we did enjoy it! We went round and round the room, reading the names of the books, and asking Bogy which were the interesting ones. I never saw so many books together in my life. Some of them had splendid backs of something white that Bogy said was vellum, and they had silver clasps, and coats of arms on the front most beautiful to see.

But Bogy's favourites were the books that looked a good deali

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