6 Flower and Weed.
' Dear father, I am so sorry you must go to London. I
hope you will be back before Sunday.'
' Be sure I sha'n't stop in town longer than I am obliged ;
but I must wait to see this measure through the House.'
' How I hate measures and the House, when they take
you away from me !' said Lucille.
Now came tender farewell caresses ; and then the girl raced
off to the distant rooms which belonged to her and her
governess. She had come to a delicious period of her life,
in which the bondage of the schoolroom was done with,
while the restraints of society had not yet begun. In her
own small world, so safely hedged round by reverence and
affection, she did very much as she liked, went where she
liked, spent as much money as she liked, cultivated the
people she liked. She was in some wise mistress of her
father's house. She ruled the trusty old governess who had
once ruled her: but though somewhat wilful as to those
things upon which her impetuous young heart set itself, she
was as docile and easily governed by a light hand as a
' Marjy, Marjy !' she cried, bursting into the old school¬
room, now morning-room and study, where Miss Marjorum
sat with dictionaries and grammars and Italian histories
laid out before her, ready for tackling Dante,—' such news !
Bruno is coming. Bruno will be here to-morrow, or, at
furthest, the day after to-morrow ! " And the bells shall be
rung, and mass shall be sung," ' sang Lucie at the top of her
clear young voice, ' for my Red-cross knight.'
' This is indeed a surprise,' said Miss Marjorum, with¬
out turning a hair. ' Mr. Challoner coming to us after nearly
two years' absence ! I have no doubt he will be grown.'
' Don't, J\Iarjy; you mustn't say such things. It's actu¬
ally insulting! Don't you know that Bruno is four-and-
twenty ? '
' Then he will have exj^anded,' said Miss Marjorum. ' It
seems only yesterday that he came of age; and I know that
up to that time he was continually growing in a perpendicular
direction. After that he began to widen and spread hori¬
zontally, and he has been expanding ever since.'
' Marjy, dearest, you talk as if he were Falstaff, or bluff
King Hal,' cried the girl.
' My dear, all I wish to express is that he is a well-grown
young man. And now, my love, let us attack our Dante. We
are approaching one of the finest passages in the Inferno.'
' Marjy, dear, it is such a delicious morning, and this news