He gathered it up into his arms, feather-tick and all, and pushed it through the window, then he wriggled out across the ledge, feet first, and lowering himself to the full length of his arms, dropped. He landed squarely on the rolled-up bed with a jar that shook him to his center.

"The w'ite man he wuks fur is got one an' Jeffy gits the borrowin' use of her it's a mare w'enever he want to, ez I knows frum whut he tells me an' frum whut I seen. Purfessor, that mare is jes' natchelly ordained an' cut out fur peradin' broad ez a feather-tick, gentle ez the onborn lamb, an' mouty nigh pyure white perzactly the right color fur a gran' marshal's hoss.

Her listener, having no idea of what brocade might be, and taking the feather-tick simile literally, must have imagined a very queer kind of chair. Hannah was a short, fair, rosy-cheeked child, who passed for good-looking enough; but Ann Mary was slender and dark and a real beauty, although Hillsboro people did not realize it.

"Ann! put your hands under those clothes. How often must I tell you that you'll get your death? If you like, Doctor, there's nothing to prevent your moving in to-morrow. I'll need a day to air the feather-tick and make some pie." The doctor was at last roused to action. "There are conditions," he said hastily. "If I come here, there is to be no feather-tick and no pie!"

So the eldest and the youngest brothers, their mother and the little girl, took their places in the low box and let the biggest brother cover them with a feather-tick, without any of the gay laughter and banter that marked the pleasure-rides of former years.