"Then may I offer myself to the prisoner to conduct his defense?" father demanded, and he looked over at Jed, who in turn looked at Mr. Goodloe before he nodded. "Then shoot ahead, stranger. Jim have told all they is about it, but you can have Hi and Bud Turner sworn in and git any more they have got to say. Them men speaks truth when they speaks."
"Let us hurry and get to the Big Tree," cried Thure impatiently. "I am sure that, if there is any entrance to any gulch there, some of us can find it. Come on," and the excited boy, with Bud by his side, started up the canyon. Rex and Dill and Mr. Dickson at once joined the two boys, and the five hurried eagerly forward, leaving the others to come on more slowly with Pedro and the horses.
But at the great door of the monastery there grew a stately palm, and near by an ancient acacia-tree; and beyond the stone chapel there was a garden of struggling shrubs and green things, with one rose-tree which scattered its pink leaves from year to year upon the loam, since no man gathered bud or blossom.
The letter was gone. Angela could never know. She might suspect, but this possible burst of jealousy had been nipped in the bud. He came over toward her to put his arm round her, but she slipped away from him, pretending to need the sugar. He let this effort at love making go the will for the deed, and sat down at the snow-white little table, set with tempting dishes and waited to be served.
"There are three animals that people persist in calling stupid, when they are only strong-minded and more intelligent than the other animals," said Kit Summers, quietly breaking into the conversation. "What aire they?" asked Bud. "The pig, the mule, and the goose," answered Kit.
He breathed quick and soft, bending lower, till Lucy's curls, as she nestled and bent with him, rolled on the crimson quilt of the cot. A smile went up the plump cheeks: forthwith the bud of a mouth was in rapid motion. The young mother whispered, blushing: "He's dreaming of me," and the simple words did more than Richard's eyes to make him see what was.
But if anything excited my suspicion, and, putting on my spectacles, I saw that I was fondling a snake, or smelling at a bud with a worm in it, I sprang up in horror and ran away; or, if it seemed to me through the glasses that a cherub smiled upon me, or a rose was blooming in my buttonhole, then I felt myself imperfect and impure, not fit to be leading and training what was so essentially superior in quality to myself, and I kissed the children and left them weeping and wondering.
"I had placed you on the throne of my heart, because the bud already promised Yet no! In those days I could not suspect that it would unfold into so marvellous a rose. You stand before me now more glorious than I beheld you in the most radiant of all my dreams, and therefore the longing to possess you, which I could never relinquish, will make me appear almost insolently bold.
The episode of Quinley's stumble, in the excitement of the trial, had passed from both of their minds, as, doubtless, it had from the minds of all the others; but, even if they had remembered it, they would not have thought of connecting it in any way with the finding of the button. Hence Bud, at the summons of the alcalde, had stepped forward promptly and confidently.
All this was explained to me by a priest of the Fire-worshippers. Here, you see, is a huge bunch of grapes which one of the happy ones is about to pluck; the hand is uninjured the arm unfortunately is cut through; but here is a splendid fragment of the wreath of fruit and flowers which framed the whole. That emerald forming a bud how much do you think it is worth?"