54 LITTLE LORD FAUNTLEROY.
It was eleven days after he had said good-bye to his friend Dick before he reached Liverpool; and it was on the night of the twelfth day that the carriage in which he and his mother and Mr. Havisham had driven from the station stopped before the gates of Court Lodge. They could not see much of the house in the darkness. Cedric onlv saw that there was a drive-way under great arching trees, and after the carriage had rolled down this drive-way a short distance, he saw an open door and a stream of bright light coming through it.
Mary had come with them to attend her mistress, and she had reached the house before them. When Cedric jumped out of the carriage he saw one or two servants standing in the wide, bright hall, and Mary stood in the door-way.
Lord Fauntleroy sprang at her with a gay little shout. " Did you get here, Mary?" he said. " Here 's Mary, Dearest," and he kissed the maid on her rough red cheek.
" I am glad you are here, Mary," Mrs. Errol said to her in a low voice. " It is such a comfort to me to see you. It takes the strangeness away." And she held out her little hand, which Mary squeezed encouragingly. She knew how this first " strangeness " must feel to this little mother who had left her own land and was about to give up her child.
The English servants looked with curiosity at both the boy and his mother. They had heard all sorts of rumors about them both; they knew how angry the old Earl had been, and why Mrs. Errol was to live at the lodge and her little boy at the castle; they knew all about the great fortune he was to inherit, and about the savage old grandfather and his gout and his tempers.
" He '11 have no easy time of it, poor little chap," they had said among themselves.
But they did not know what sort of a little lord had come among them ; they did not quite understand the character of the next Earl of Dorincourt.