Rottenmeier, too, takes out her big handkerchief every now and then and buries her whole face in it as if she were very much affected by what we are reading; but I know perfectly well that she is only yawning terribly. Then I want to yawn so badly, but I have to swallow it down, for if I yawn only one single time Fraulein Rottenmeier brings the cod-liver oil and says I am getting faint. Cod-liver oil is the very worst thing to take, so I prefer to smother the yawns. But now it will be less wearisome, for I can listen while you learn to read."
Heidi shook her head quite thoughtfully when she heard about learning to read.
" But, Heidi, you must learn to read, of course ; every one has to, and the Herr Kandidat is very good — he is never cross, and he will explain everything to you. But you see, when he explains anything, if you don't understand at all about it you must just wait and say nothing, or else he will explain a great deal more and you will understand still less. But afterwards, when you have learned something and know it, then you will understand what he meant."
Just then Fraulein Rottenmeier came into the room ; she had not succeeded in calling Dete back and was evidently disturbed by it, for she had not been able to tell her exactly in what respect the child was not according to the agreement, and since she did not know what to do to retrace her steps she was all the more agitated, as she herself had proposed the whole thing.