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   Chapter 21 MUN BUN IN A HOLE

Six Little Bunkers at Aunt Jo's By Laura Lee Hope Characters: 7568

Updated: 2017-11-30 00:04


While Rose turned, Vi jumped, and the little girl was getting along nicely when she tripped, or the rope caught on her foot, and stopped.

"Now it's my turn!" exclaimed Rose. "You missed, and you have to turn for me."

"You made me trip!" exclaimed Vi. "You gave me the pepper before I was ready."

"You said to give you 'three slow-pepper,' and I did," declared Rose.

I suppose you girls who jump rope know what "three slow-pepper" means, but the boys probably will not, so I'll explain.

The person who is turning the rope for the other to jump, turns it very slowly for three times. Then she turns it fast. Jumping fast is called jumping "pepper," and sometimes jumping slow is called "salt." And I have heard some little girls, when they were jumping rope, call for "mustard and vinegar." But that is very fast indeed-too fast for little girls, I should think. Rose and Vi never jumped faster than pepper.

"Yes, I know I said 'three slow-pepper,'" admitted Vi. "But I didn't want you to give me such fast pepper."

"Oh, well, try it again," said Rose, good-naturedly. "I won't go so fast the next time."

So she began turning the rope again, and Vi started to jump. This time all went well, and Vi, when it came to the "pepper" part, did so well and kept it up so long that Rose at last cried, with a laugh:

"Oh, my arm is tired! Let me rest, Vi!"

"I will," said the little girl. "I'm tired, too. After I rest a minute I'll turn for you."

They sat on the grass under the trees for a while, and then began taking turns jumping again.

"Now let's try a new way," suggested Rose after a bit. "We'll see how high we can jump over the rope."

So they began this game, and pretty soon some little girls from the house across the street came out to play with Rose and Vi. They were from a family that Aunt Jo knew, and had played with the little Bunkers before.

The children had lots of fun, skipping rope, and seeing who could jump the highest. Rose was best at this, though Mabel Potter, one of the little girls from across the street, jumped nearly as high.

"Now let's go and play with our dolls again," suggested Vi. "Can you come over to our Aunt Jo's house, and sit on her porch?" she asked Mabel, Florence and Sallie, the other little girls.

They said they could, and they were just starting to get their dolls when along came a boy with a basket of groceries on his arm. He had got out of a delivery wagon down the street, and was bringing some things to Aunt Jo. The boy had often called with groceries before, and Rose and Vi knew him. His name was Henry Jones.

"Hello, little girls!" called Henry, for he was older than any of them. "What you doin'?"

"Seeing who can jump highest," answered Rose.

"I can jump higher'n any of you!" boasted Henry. "Want to see me?"

"Well, you ought to jump higher-you're bigger'n we are," said Mabel.

"Well, I'll jump and keep on holding my basket," offered the grocery boy. "That'll make it harder for me. Go on! Hold the rope up real high and I'll jump over it."

"Maybe you might spill the things in your basket," suggested Rose.

"No, I won't. I'm a good jumper," said Henry. "Hold the rope up real high."

Rose took hold of one end of the rope and Mabel the other. They held it across the sidewalk as high up as their own waists.

"Higher!" ordered Henry.

They raised it a little.

"There! That's high enough!" said the grocery boy. "Now you watch me sail over that. I'll show you some jumpin'!"

Henry, still holding his basket of groceries, stood on the sidewalk, a little way back from the rope. Then he took a run and started toward it. Up into the air he jumped, but something sad happened.

Whether Henry did not spring up high enough, or whether one of the gir

ls raised the end of the rope when she ought not to have done so, no one ever knew.

But what happened was that Henry's feet became entangled in the cord, and down he fell, luckily on the grass at one side of the pavement, and not on the sidewalk stones, or he might have been hurt.

He sat right down flat, and his basket bounced off his arm, and a lot of groceries spilled out of it.

"Oh, did you hurt yourself?" asked Rose.

Henry was too much surprised, for a moment, to speak. He looked as if he did not know what had happened. Then he slowly got up.

"No, I didn't hurt myself," he answered. "But I guess I can't jump as high as I thought I could. But I'm going to try it again."

"Oh, you'd better not," Mabel said. "You might break some more eggs."

"I didn't break any eggs!" declared Henry.

"Yes, you did! Look at that bag," said Rose, and she pointed to one that had bounced from the basket, together with other bags and bundles. From this bag something yellow was running on the grass.

"Oh, dear! I guess I did bust some eggs!" exclaimed the grocery boy. "Your aunt'll be awful mad!" he went on. "I wish I hadn't jumped the rope."

Henry picked up the bag of eggs and looked inside.

"Only one's busted," he said, "and that's just partly cracked. I'll hurry into the house with it and she can put it in a dish and save it. 'Tisn't cracked very much."

"That's good," said Rose. "Parker is going to bake a cake, I heard her say, so she'll need some eggs right away, and she can use the cracked one first."

"I'm glad of that," observed Henry.

Then he hurried into Aunt Jo's house with the eggs and other groceries, and when he came out-not having been scolded a bit-the girls had gone with their jumping-rope, so Henry didn't have another chance to take a tumble.

On the shady porch of Aunt Jo's house Rose, Vi and their three little girl friends played with their dolls. They were having lots of fun, undressing and dressing them, sending them on "visits," one to another, and having play-parties.

"Do you like it here?" asked Mabel of Rose.

"Oh, yes, lots," was the answer. "We've had just the loveliest summer. First, we were at Grandma Bell's, and now we're at Aunt Jo's, and maybe we'll go to Cousin Tom's at the seashore before we go back home."

"You've got lots of relations, haven't you?" asked Sallie.

"Oh, that's only part of 'em," Rose went on. "We've got more," and she mentioned them.

Vi was putting her doll to sleep on a bed of grass made in a corner of the porch, when a door slammed and the sound of running feet was heard.

"Hush! Don't make so much noise!" exclaimed Violet in a whisper. "My doll's asleep."

"It's Margy and Mun Bun," said Rose, as the two smallest Bunkers came racing around the corner of the porch. "They're my little sister and brother," Rose explained to the other girls. "They've just had a nap, so they feel like playing now."

"Can we have some fun?" asked Margy.

"We want lots of fun!" added Mun Bun.

"Oh, dear! They'll wake up my doll!" whispered Vi. "Can't you two go away and play somewhere else?"

"Here. I'll let 'em take these marbles," said Mabel. "They're my little brother's. He gave me his bag to hold when he went off to play tops with some of the boys. I'll let Margy and Mun Bun take the marbles to play with."

"That'll be nice," said Rose. "Run along, Mun Bun and Margy, and play marbles."

This just suited the younger children. Down off the porch they ran, and soon the others could hear them laughing and shouting. But pretty soon Margy came running back.

"Come an' get Mun Bun," she said to Rose. "He's got his head in, an' he can't get it out."

"Got his head in where?" asked Rose.

"In a hole," answered Margy quite calmly.

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