98 ANNE OF GREEN GABLES
when I look at any ugly thing. I pity it because it isn't beautiful."
"Handsome is as handsome does," quoted Marilla.
"I've had that said to me before, but I have my doubts about it," remarked sceptical Anne, sniffing at her narcissi. "Oh, aren't these flowers sweet! It was lovely of Mrs. Lynde to give them to me. I have no hard feelings against Mrs. Lynde now. It gives you a lovely, comfortable feeling to apologize and be forgiven, doesn't it ? Aren't the stars bright to-night ? If you could live in a star, which one would you pick? I'd like that lovely clear big one away over there above that dark hill."
"Anne, do hold your tongue," said Marilla, thoroughly worn out trying to follow the gyrations of Anne's thoughts.
Anne said no more until they turned into their own lane. A little gypsy wind came down it to meet them, laden with the spicy perfume of young dew-wet ferns. Far up in the shadows a cheerful light gleamed out through the trees from the kitchen at Green Gables. Anne suddenly came close to Marilla and slipped her hand into the older woman's hard palm.
"It's lovely to be going home and know it's home," she said. "I love Green Gables already, and I never loved any place before. No place ever seemed like home. Oh, Marilla, I'm so happy. I could pray right now and not find it a bit hard."
Something warm and pleasant welled up in Manila's heart at touch of that thin little hand in her own—a throb of the maternity she had missed,