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   Chapter 4 BERT IN DANGER

The Bobbsey Twins at Cedar Camp By Laura Lee Hope Characters: 7233

Updated: 2017-12-04 00:03

Flossie and Freddie were so surprised at the strange action on the part of the ragged boy that they hardly knew what to do. Flossie looked at Freddie and Freddie looked at his sister, and then they looked at the strange boy and girl.

"You let her alone, an' you let me alone!" ordered the ragged boy. "I ain't done nothin', an' she ain't done nothin'!"

"You shouldn't say 'ain't,' 'cause it ain't-I mean it isn't a good word. Our teacher says so," Flossie quickly admonished the strange boy.

"Well, I don't care what I say, you oughtn't to drive us away from lookin' in this winder," objected the boy. "Nice smells comes out; and when you ain't-I mean when you isn't got any money to buy candy, you can smell it!"

Flossie and Freddie looked at each other in surprise. To be so poor that one had to "smell" candy instead of eating it, was to be poor indeed! Flossie opened her fat chubby hand and looked at the two moist pennies clutched there. Freddie did the same. Then the small Bobbsey twins, with one accord, held out the money to the boy and girl.

"Here," said Freddie. "Take it!"

"Mine too!" added Flossie. "You can buy candy with it!"

For a moment the ragged boy and girl did not know what to say. Then a smile came over the boy's face. His fist unclenched, and his sister smiled too.

"You mean this-for us?" he asked.

"Sure!" answered Freddie. "We don't need candy, and we'll feel good for Thanksgivin'!"

"Oh, I'm going to buy two lollypops!" cried the ragged girl.

"I want gum!" said the boy, and into the store they disappeared.

Freddie drew a long breath.

"I-I feel happy, don't you?" he asked Flossie.

"Yes," she answered. "I-I guess I do! Anyhow, we can ask mother for more pennies when we go home."

"Let's take them home for Thanksgiving," suggested Freddie.

"You mean that ragged boy and girl?" asked Flossie.

"Yes. Miss Pompret is going to feed some poor, and we can feed some at our house. Let's take 'em home," went on Freddie.

"Oh, that will be fine!" Flossie agreed. "Let's!"

When they came out of the candy store the ragged boy and his sister, who at first thought Flossie and Freddie had wanted to drive them away from the window, were smiling.

"You're coming home with us!" announced Freddie, taking the boy's hand.

"For Thanksgiving," added Flossie. "Course it isn't Thanksgiving yet, but we want to feel good when it does come, so we're going to feed you now."

"Well, I'm hungry all right," sighed the ragged boy.

"So'm I," said his sister.

And so, hardly knowing what was going to happen, the ragged boy, who said his name was Dick, and his sister, who was Mary Thompson, went with the little Bobbsey twins.

Mrs. Bobbsey was very much surprised when her little son and daughter came up the steps, leading a strange ragged boy and girl.

"We brought them home for Thanksgiving, like Miss Pompret's going to do," said Freddie.

"So's to make us be more happier," added Flossie. "And we gave them our two cents, so please can we have more? And they're hungry, Mother!"

Mrs. Bobbsey understood that it was the kind hearts of Flossie and Freddie that had brought all this about. So she welcomed the two strange children, and took them out to Dinah, who, you may be sure, fed them enough, and almost too much.

After that meal, which Dick said was the "best feed" he ever had eaten, and after Flossie and Freddie had finished watching their strange, ragged guests eat, Mrs. Bobbsey asked Dick and his sister some questions.

She found out that they lived on the other side of town, that their father was dead,

and that their mother did what she could for her children.

"Do you go to our school?" asked Freddie, during a pause in his mother's questions. "We've a nice school, and our teacher's name is Miss Snell, and--"

"And Freddie locked a boy up in the tool shed 'cause he pulled my hair-I mean the bad boy pulled my hair," broke in Flossie.

"We don't go to school-our clothes is too ragged," said Mary, in a low voice.

"Never mind, my dear. Perhaps I can find some clothes for you that aren't quite so full of holes," offered Mrs. Bobbsey kindly. "Clothes with holes in are fine for summer," she said, with a laugh, "but not so good for winter. I'll see what I can find."

She found some good, half-worn garments belonging to the twins, and Dick and Mary took the clothes home. The result was that they appeared at school the following Monday. But neither Flossie nor Freddie spoke of their mother having given the two fatherless children clothes to wear.

"Now we'll be happy for Thanksgiving; won't we, Freddie?" asked Flossie, when it was settled that Dick and Mary were to be taken care of.

"Yes," Freddie agreed. "And I hope we have a big turkey!"

"An' cranberry sauce!" added his sister.

There was a fine Thanksgiving dinner at the Bobbsey home, but the mother of the four twins did not forget the poor. She helped Miss Pompret with that lady's Thanksgiving feast for those who were not fortunate enough to have one of their own, and Mr. Bobbsey and some other good-hearted men of Lakeport provided money so that the Salvation Army could feed a number of hungry men who were out of work.

Still there was one reason why at least Flossie and Freddie, of the Bobbsey family, were not quite happy that Thanksgiving day. And the reason was because there was no snow. The children had polished their sleds, had wiped the rust off the runners, and were all ready for a coast. But without snow there can be no sleigh riding, and though the weather was cold, the sun shone from a cloudless sky, and Flossie and Freddie were much disappointed.

"Do you think it will ever snow, Mother?" asked Flossie for about the twentieth time.

"And will there be ice so I can skate?" Freddie wanted to know.

"Well, my dears, there will be snow and ice, surely, in a little while," answered Mrs. Bobbsey. "But when I can not say. You must be patient. Think of your blessings, as Uncle William would say."

"I want to have some fun," complained Freddie. "Oh, look!" he suddenly cried, coming back to the window away from which he had started to go.

"What is it?" asked Flossie.

"It's our cat-Snoop! A big dog just came along and Snoop ran up the tree. Now he can't get down!"

"Oh, of course Snoop can get down out of a tree," said Nan. "He's often climbed up and down before."

But this time Snoop did not come down. Whether he had been too much frightened by the dog, or whether he was afraid of falling if he started to come down backward out of the tree, I don't know. But Snoop stayed up on a limb, where he cried pitifully.

"I'll get him down," offered Bert. "I can climb out on that limb from our front porch roof. I've done it before."

Bert went upstairs, climbed out on the porch roof, and a little later was over in the tree where Snoop was perched.

"Mew! Mew!" dismally cried the cat.

"I'm coming to get you," said Bert, kindly. "Wait a minute, Snoop!"

From the ground Flossie, Freddie and Nan watched Bert make his way out on a limb toward Snoop. And then, all of a sudden, there was a cracking, breaking sound and Bert cried:

"Oh, I'm falling! I'm going to fall!"

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