The carriage lay smashed a couple of hundred yards from the gates of the avenue.As Dorothy and her companions walked through the wide, cool entrance hall, and turned down the stone passage which led to the supper room, they were quite conscious of the fact that some of the naughtiest and most adventurous imps of the lower[Pg 11] school were hovering round, hanging over banisters or hiding behind doors. A suppressed giggle of laughter proceeded so plainly from the back of one of the doors, that Dorothy could not resist stretching back her hand as she passed, and giving a playful tap on the panels with her knuckles. The suppressed laughter became dangerously audible when she did this, so in mercy she was forced to take no further notice.There was a movement of chairs, and a general rising.It was in some such fashion that the world spoke to Bridget O'Hara on this special summer's morning.
Uncharitable talk about others ceased when Evelyn drew near. Selfishness slunk away ashamed.
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In consequence she was popular, with that mild sort of popularity which is bestowed upon the people who are all patience and have no faculty for inspiring fear.
"Oh, good gra——! I mean, mercy Moses!"
"Now, what shall I eat?" she said. "By the way, I hope there's a nice breakfast, I'm awfully hungry. Oh, eggs! I like eggs when they're very fresh. Mrs. Freeman, are these new laid? do you keep your own fowls? Father and I wouldn't touch eggs at the Castle unless we were quite sure that they were laid by Sally, Sukey, or dear old Heneypeney."
For the first time there was a faint hesitation in her manner.
CHAPTER V. BREAKING IN A WILD COLT.