The path was steep, and they had to scramble up, doing so with the agility of young ponies. "It is the thought of Wheel-about that bothers me entirely," said Laurie, after a pause. "I don't want to have it lying on my soul upon my honor I don't that I turned the poor old chap's brain still crazier."

We'll have a bite, and then slink out. The dad can think we have gone to bed. Why, Pat, old boy, I met Wheel-about to-day, and he was like a mad man. He told me he had collected all that money for his funeral. What apes we were to touch the coat!" "Sure, it's unlike Kitty not to write," said Pat. "She is the last in the world to leave a fellow in the lurch." "Don't I know that?

"My dear Kitty," wrote the boy, "what has come to you? I am looking for a letter by every post, but none arrives. I shall not be able to give Wheel-about the money I promised him on Saturday, and I know he will not keep my secret any longer. When father hears it, all is up. If I don't receive that money by Saturday morning I shall run away to sea.

A sudden breeze got up and the boat upset; and the coat bad luck to it sank to the bottom like a stone. We have tried to get it up, but it is all no go; it has got right into the mud, and not all the boys in Ireland could move it. If the squire heard we had played a trick on Wheel-about he would just do what I don't want him to." "And what may that be, Master Laurie?"

Old Paddy Wheel-about was dead; the squire was so upset and so angry that he would not even allow Kitty herself to comfort him. Aunt Honora was grumbling and going from room to room in the old Castle. Aunt Bridget was talking about dress, and scolding Kitty with regard to the state of her wardrobe. Kitty's head ached, and she felt a sense of irritation. "And it's so pretty," said Aunt Honora.

And Paddy Wheel-about has lost the little grain of sense he ever possessed, and Laurie will be sent to one of those prisons." "To prison?" cried Fred; "but surely your father " "Oh, I mean a school it's all the same. Don't interrupt me, Fred. When my mind is full I must rattle off the speech somehow." "And he wants you to send him ten pounds?" "Yes." "And have you got ten pounds to send him?"

This was no other than Paddy Wheel-about himself. He was a tall man, with a long shaggy beard, penthouse eyebrows, and eyes which were lit now with a fitful and uncertain gleam. He was dressed in rags, his hat was pushed far back on his head, his hair streamed over his shoulders. The savage and yet pathetic-looking creature stopped now before the two boys.

Well, he spoke to us and pretty sharp too, and told us he knew we had taken the coat, and didn't he look thunders and daggers at us, and we funked it so awfully yes, I will confess it, Kits, your brave Laurie funked it like anything for Wheel-about did really look like a roadman; at last there was no help for it we had to out with the truth.

"Why, Jim, he would banish me to England. You think of that!" "Ah, to be sure, sir; and it would be a hard punishment entirely, and all for a boy's freak. But how can you circumvent him, sir? that's the puzzle, for old Wheel-about is as sly a fellow as walks. He knows his power with the squire there's a story about, but I have not got the rights of it.

What was Laurie doing now? Suppose Paddy Wheel-about really told her father about Laurie! Squire Malone was extremely kind to Kitty; there was no saying what he would not do for Kitty were she in trouble; but Laurie and Pat were different matters.