'Of course I won't, Mother, and the instant the door was closed she fell into another snatch of song, the words of which flowed unconsciously into her mind, it seemed 'For I'm a tremendously busy Sweep, Dusting the room while you're all asleep, And shoving you all in the rubbish heap, Over the edge of the tiles' a little wumbled, it is true, but its source unmistakable.

Like bubbles in water they rose, discharged their puff of fragrant air, and disappeared again. Jane Anne, in particular, was simply radiant all day long, and more than usually clear-headed. Once or twice she wumbled, but there was big sense in her even then. It was only the expression that evaded her. Her little brain was a poor transmitter somehow.

The Pension sitting-room emptied. Unless there was something special on hand a dance, a romp, a game, or some neighbours who dropped in for talk and music it was rarely occupied after nine o'clock. Daddy had already slipped home he had this mysterious way of disappearing when no one saw him go. At this moment, doubtless, a wumbled book absorbed him over at the carpenter's.

There was a curious animation in their eyes though this may have been borrowed from the embers of the peat. Or, it may have been the stars, for they were close to the open window. Both seemed soft-shiny somehow. They, certainly, were not wumbled.

He was so deep within himself that, as the children and the Story phrased it, he was 'out. The air grew light and radiant. 'Hooray! I'm out! and he instantly thought of his cousin. 'So am I! That wumbled author shot immediately into connection with him. 'And so is Mother for the first time. Come on: we'll all go together.

Everybody's wumbled somewhere. And she advised her ah, Mother was profoundly wise instinctively not to think so much, but just go ahead as usual and do her work. For Mother herself felt a little queer that day, as though something very big and splendid lay hiding just beyond her reach. It surged up, vanished, then surged up again, and it came closest when she was not thinking of it.

'You're wumbled, said Rogers, helping himself and the others at the same time. 'You want some starlight to put you in touch again. Come on; let's go in. We shall find all the others inside, I suspect, hard at it. 'At what? asked two breathless voices. 'Collecting, of course for others. Did you think they ate the stuff, just to amuse themselves?

Daddy could have helped her, only he would say 'What? in a loud voice, and she would have to repeat her question for all to hear. Later, she ate the cake in very small morsels, a little uncomfortably. It was a jolly, merry, cosy tea, as teas in the Den always were. Daddy wumbled a number of things in his beard to which no one need reply unless they felt like it.

'That's why your books are wumbled, is it? she inquired, proud of an explanation that excused him, yet left his glory somehow unimpaired. Her face was a map of puzzled wrinkles. 'Precisely, Jinny. You see, the starlight never gets through properly into my mind. It lies there in a knot. My plot is wumbled. I can't disentangle it quite, though the beauty lies there right enough

'While your husband is the dramatist that writes it down in acts and scenes. You see, his idea is, perhaps, that life as we know it is never a genuine story, complete and leading to a climax. It's all in disconnected fragments apparently. It goes backwards and forwards, up and down, in and out in a wumbled muddle, just anyhow, as it were.