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"I was naughty; I was real naughty; I was as naughty as King Herod and King Pharaoh. Nobody'll ever love me. I'm a poor orphanless child! I've got a father'n mother, but it's just the same as if I didn't, for they won't let me call 'em by it. O, they didn't die, but they won't be any father'n mother to ME! "'What strange little girl is this? that's what my papa said.

It was a baby peacock, only one day old. He got out of the nest in some way, and preferred to take care of himself. How independent, how captivating he was! As not one other egg had hatched, he was lamentably, desperately alone, with dangers on every side, "homeless and orphanless."

"Yas'm, dat's what I askin' fer. Yo' see, Miss Peggy, dat haid waiter man at de Central Hotel, he done fall in love wid ma nine haid o' po' orphanless chillern an' crave fer ter be a daddy to 'em. An' Miss Peggy, honey, Johanna she gwine be ma bride's maid, an' does yo' reckon yo's got any ole finery what yo' kin giv' her? She's jist 'bout yo' size, ma'am." Johanna was Minervy's eldest daughter.

"Well," said she, putting her apron to her eyes, "you have been away a good six years, and left me to get on how I could with these two poor orphanless children." "You know best why I went," replied my father, "and by whose means I was walked off in such a hurry." "Me?" replied my mother. "Yes, you," responded my father. "Well, what next?" cried she.