"She looks very nice and tidy," said Miss Benson, who had an idea that children should not talk or think about beauty.
"I think my ruff looks so nice," said Ruth, with gentle pleasure. And, indeed, it did look nice, and set off the pretty round throat most becomingly. Her hair, now grown long and thick, was smoothed as close to her head as its waving nature would allow, and plaited up in a great rich knot low down behind. The grey gown was as plain as plain could be.
"You should have light gloves, Ruth," said Miss Benson. She went upstairs, and brought down a delicate pair of Limerick ones, which had been long treasured up in a walnut-shell.
"They say them gloves is made of chickens'-skins," said Sally, examining them curiously. "I wonder how they set about skinning 'em."
"Here, Ruth," said Mr. Benson, coming in from the garden, "here's a rose or two for you. I am sorry there are no more; I hoped I should have had my yellow rose out by this time, but the damask and the white are in a warmer corner, and have got the start."
Miss Benson and Leonard stood at the door, and watched her down the little passage-street till she was out of sight.
She had hardly touched the bell at Mr. Bradshaw's door, when Mary and Elizabeth opened it with boisterous glee.
"We saw you coming--we've been watching for you--we want you to come round the garden before tea; papa is not come in yet. Do come!"
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