Independently Published, 2020年12月23日 - 132 頁
Miss Polly Harrington entered her kitchen a little hurriedly this June morning. Miss Pollydid not usually make hurried movements; she specially prided herself on her repose ofmanner. But to-day she was hurrying-actually hurrying.Nancy, washing dishes at the sink, looked up in surprise. Nancy had been working inMiss Polly's kitchen only two months, but already she knew that her mistress did notusually hurry."Nancy!""Yes, ma'am." Nancy answered cheerfully, but she still continued wiping the pitcher inher hand."Nancy,"-Miss Polly's voice was very stern now-"when I'm talking to you, I wish you tostop your work and listen to what I have to say."Nancy flushed miserably. She set the pitcher down at once, with the cloth still about it, thereby nearly tipping it over-which did not add to her composure."Yes, ma'am; I will, ma'am," she stammered, righting the pitcher, and turning hastily. "Iwas only keepin' on with my work 'cause you specially told me this mornin' ter hurry withmy dishes, ye know."Her mistress frowned."That will do, Nancy. I did not ask for explanations. I asked for your attention.""Yes, ma'am." Nancy stifled a sigh. She was wondering if ever in any way she could pleasethis woman. Nancy had never "worked out" before; but a sick mother suddenly widowedand left with three younger children besides Nancy herself, had forced the girl into doingsomething toward their support, and she had been so pleased when she found a place inthe kitchen of the great house on the hill-Nancy had come from "The Corners," six milesaway, and she knew Miss Polly Harrington only as the mistress of the old Harringtonhomestead, and one of the wealthiest residents of the town. That was two months before.She knew Miss Polly now as a stern, severe-faced woman who frowned if a knife clatteredto the floor, or if a door banged-but who never thought to smile even when knives anddoors were still."When you've finished your morning work, Nancy," Miss Polly was saying now, "you mayclear the little room at the head of the stairs in the attic, and make up the cot bed. Sweepthe room and clean it, of course, after you clear out the trunks and boxes.""Yes, ma'am. And where shall I put the things, please, that I take out?""In the front attic." Miss Polly hesitated, then went on: "I suppose I may as well tell younow, Nancy. My niece, Miss Pollyanna Whittier, is coming to live with me. She is elevenyears old, and will sleep in that room.""A little girl-coming here, Miss Harrington? Oh, won't that be nice!" cried Nancy, thinking of the sunshine her own little sisters made in the home at "The Corners

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