T he children were playing out in the fields. They had a ball, a doll's pram, and Joey, a little clockwork clown who danced round and round and clashed a little pair of cymbals when he was wound up.
The clockwork clown belonged to Robin. He was very proud of his dancing clown, and wound him up a hundred times a day to show the others how he danced.
Every one was excited that morning. It was Saturday, and a circus had come to the field beyond Farmer Lane's farm. The children were going to it that afternoon, and how they longed for the time to come!
" There is a wonderful chimpanzee! " said Katie.
" And a great big elephant," said Lucy.
" And a man that can walk the tight-rope! " said Bobby.
" And four dancing bears! " said Harry.
" But I'm sure they won't dance as well as my clockwork clown! " said Robin, winding him up again, and making him dance in the grass.
"You and your clockwork clown! " said Katie. "I wonder you don't wear that key out, winding him up so much! "
Robin put the key into his pocket. He was sure it wouldn't wear out. Keys never'did. He watched his Httle clown dancing, and then he went to see an ant-hill that Harry had found. They watched the busy little ants for a long time, and then Bobby looked at his watch. He was very proud of it, for it always told the right time.
" Half-past two," he said. " It's time we all went home, and got