Little Lord Fauntleroy - illustrated online book

An American boy becomes A British Earl, By Frances Hodgson Burnett

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24
LITTLE LORD FAUNTLEROY.
He did not think it would be discreet to repeat the exact words the Earl had used, which were in fact neither polite nor amiable.
Mr. Havisham preferred to express his noble patron's offer in smoother and more courteous language.
He had another slight shock when Mrs. Errol asked Mary to find her little boy and bring him to her, and Mary told her when he was.
"Sure I '11 foind him aisy enough, ma'am," she said; "for it's wid Mr. Hobbs he is this minnit, settin' on his high shtool by the counther an' talkin' pollytics, most loikely, or enj'yin' hisself among the soap an' candles an' pertaties, as sinsible an' shwate as ye plase."
" Mr. Hobbs has known him all his life," Mrs. Errol said to the lawyer. " He is very kind to Ceddie, and there is a great friendship between them."
Remembering the glimpse he had caught of the store as he passed it, and having a recollection of the barrels of potatoes and apples and the various odds and ends, Mr. Havisham felt his doubts arise again. In England, gentlemen's sons did not make friends of grocerymen, and it seemed to him a rather singular proceeding. It would be very awkward if the child had bad manners and a disposi­tion to like low company. One of the bitterest humiliations of the old Earl's life had been that his two elder sons had been fond of low company. Could it be, he thought, that this boy shared their bad qualities instead of his father's good qualities ?
He was thinking uneasily about this as he talked to Mrs. Errol until the child came into the room. When the door opened, he actually hesitated a moment before looking at Cedric. It would, perhaps, have seemed very queer to a great many people who knew him, if they could have known the curious sensations that passed through Mr. Havisham when he looked down at the boy, who ran
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