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Golden Moments Bright Stories for Young Folks   By:

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[Illustration: AMONG THE DAISIES.]



Fully Illustrated

Boston De Wolfe, Fiske and Company 361 and 365 Washington Street


Fräulein Hoffman always gave the girls at her school a holiday on the tenth of June. It was her birthday; and though the old lady would not allow her pupils to make her any presents, saying, in her firm manner, "Such things speedily become a tax, my dears," yet she was always pleased that they should decorate the schoolrooms in her honor, and hang a handsome wreath round her father's picture.

So on the evening before the birthday the day girls would bring baskets of flowers, and the big schoolroom table was brought out into the garden, and there the wreaths and garlands were made amid much chattering and laughing by the happy children.

"There," said Marie Schmidt, with a satisfied smile, as she held up a large wreath for general admiration. "That's finished at last! and I flatter myself that the old gentleman never had so handsome a decoration in his lifetime as I have now made for his picture."

The girls laughed; but gentle Adela Righton, the only English girl at the school, said quietly, "Take care, Marie; Fräulein Hoffman might hear you, and it would hurt her feelings to think that we were laughing at her father."

"I don't want to laugh at any one, you sober old Adela," returned the reckless Marie. "I only think the old gentleman's hooked nose and beady black eyes will look very well under my wreath of lilies and roses."

Adela said no more, for she saw that her words only excited Marie; and fortunately at that moment a diversion was created by a girl coming into the garden with two immense baskets of cabbage roses and white moss buds.

"What! more flowers? Why could you not bring them sooner, you tiresome girl?" exclaimed Lotta, who, having finished her garland for the schoolroom window, was more inclined for a romp than for any other flower wreathing.

"Throw them away! bury them in a hole!" said impetuous Marie, getting up and shaking the petals off her dress. "We've done the wreaths now, Sophie, so your flowers have come too late. I'll tell you what, though: we might fasten a rose to the end of Fanny's pig tails, and then they would indeed be rose red."

"No, thank you, Marie: I prefer my pig tails unadorned," said Fanny good temperedly, for she was accustomed to jokes on her red hair.

"Throw the flowers on the grass, Sophie! we really can't begin again now!" declared Marie. "I'm going to teach the girls a new game. Now, children, stand in a row. Now hold out your frocks and sing with me." And Marie, leaning against a tree, proceeded to give her orders, and, being somewhat blunt, did not notice the grieved look on Sophie's face as she thought of her wasted flowers.

"Poor roses!" said Adela kindly, noticing Sophie's discomfiture. "They are too sweet to be wasted. May I use them as I like, Sophie?"

"Oh, yes, dear Adela!" said Sophie, brightening. She was a fair, pretty child, with a shady hat tied under her dimpled chin; and seeing Adela stooping to pick up the despised flowers, her spirits rose, and she joined the others in their game under the tree, and danced and sang with the rest.


When Fräulein Hoffman went early the next morning, as was her yearly custom, to deposit a wreath on her father's grave, she found, to her surprise and intense delight, that some one had been before her.

The grave was literally covered with sweet rose petals, and round the border, in white rose buds, were the words,

"Not lost, but gone before."

Her heart was full to overflowing at this kindly act, and at breakfast, in the gayly decorated room, she made the girls a little speech.

"Dear girls, you are all young, and have still your friends and relations with you... Continue reading book >>

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