"Hurrah! Hurrah! Supper!" she cried. "Your committee must keep, Janet. Now for the satisfaction of rampant, raging curiosity. Dolly, will you race me to the house?"
Bridget's movements were so fleet that the head mistress had no time to intercept her; there was a flash of a white dress disappearing through the open window, and that was all.
"Hurrah! Hurrah! Long may she stay there! Now, do let us drop this tiresome subject. We have only ten minutes to ourselves before the rest of the committee arrive, and that point with regard to Evelyn Percival must be arranged. Come, Dorothy, let us race each other to the Lookout!"She saw the wild landscape, the steep gravel path[Pg 26] which overhung the lake, the old squire with his white hair, and tall but slightly bent figure, pacing up and down, smoking his pipe and surrounded by his dogs. Dorothy fancied how, on most summer evenings, Bridget, impetuous, eager, and beautiful, walked by his side. She wondered how he had brought himself to part with her. She gave a little sigh as she shut the picture away from her mind, and as she laid her head on her pillow, she resolved to be very kind to the new girl.
rummy hack version
She gave Bridget a great deal of sympathy, adjured her to eat, shook her head over her, and having gained a promise that a pair of long suède gloves should be added to the ribbons and Venetian beads, went away,[Pg 69] having quite made up her mind to take Bridget's part through thick and thin.
"Did you want me, Mrs. Freeman?" she said, in her lazy, rich, somewhat impertinent voice."Only the head girl of the school," remarked Dolly in a soft tone. "But of course a person of not the smallest consequence. Well, Janet, what next?""I shall do nothing to-night," said Mrs. Freeman. "But to-morrow, after morning school, I must speak to Bridget. Her conduct during that interview will more or less decide what steps I must take."
In every sense of the word Bridget was unexpected. She had an extraordinary aptitude for arithmetic, and took a high place in the school on account of her mathematics. The word mathematics, however, she had never even heard before. She could gabble French as fluently as a native, but did not know a word of the grammar. She had a perfect ear for music, could sing like a bird, and play any air she once heard, but she could scarcely read music at all, and was refractory and troublesome when asked to learn notes.A loud booming sound filled the air.
"I think I understand you, Dorothy," said Mrs. Freeman. "Kiss me!"
"And you also dislike poor Bridget? I can't imagine why you take such strong prejudices."
Miss Collingwood was turning away, when her mistress stretched out her hand and drew her back.