One of them had the rigid precision of bearing which denotes military training: he was young and slight of build, with unruly dark hair fluttering round the temples from beneath his white sugar-loaf hat, and escaping the trammels of the neatly-tied black silk bow at the nape of the neck; he held himself very erect and rode his horse on the curb, the reins gathered tightly in one gloved hand, and that hand held closely and almost immovably against his chest.
She knew Uncle Steve loved to tease her, but she had certainly expected some out-of-door gift, and to receive a little trinket that could be carried in a pocket was a surprise indeed. In proof of his words Uncle Steve drew a neatly-tied parcel from a pocket of his morning coat and handed it to Marjorie.
"Ah, we dared and suffered nothing like you." "I hope you did not suffer much," said the major, looking at the calm face and neatly-tied white hair, which seemed to have suffered no disarrangement. "No," said Mr. Belamour, smiling, "my little friend Eugene, ay, and my nephew himself, are hoping to hear I was released from fetters and a heap of straw, but I took care to give them no opportunity.
He was evidently a woodcutter, for he had a large axe in his hand, and the three young Badgers who followed him were carrying neatly-tied bundles of sticks. Knut stretched out his paw beseechingly. "Please cut the string! Oh, please, Herr Badger, make haste, and let us get free. Herr Kreutzen will be back in a minute, and then there'll be no hope for us!"
"And there's something for you, too, Mr. Jasper," she added. "I kept it till the last," and a merry twinkle shone in her eyes as she handed him a neatly-tied package. "Why, who sent me this?" Jasper asked in surprise. "Miss Lois, of course. She knew that you would be here to-day, and she asked me to give it to you when you came. This tree is her idea, you see.