Little Lord Fauntleroy - illustrated online book

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

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LITTLE LORD FAUNTLEROY.                              137
Little Lord Fauntleroy sat very still in his saddle for a few moments. He looked over the broad moors, the green farms, the beautiful copses, the cottages in the lanes, the pretty village, and over the trees to where the turrets of the great castle rose, gray and stately. Then he gave a queer little sigh.
" What are you thinking of? " asked the Earl.
"I am thinking," replied Fauntleroy, "what a little boy I am! and of what Dearest said to me."
" What was it? " inquired the Earl.
" She said that perhaps it was not so easy to be very rich; that if any one had so many things always, one might sometimes forget that every one else was not so fortunate, and that one who is rich should always be careful and try to remember. I was talking to her about how good you were, and she said that was such a good thing, because an earl had so much power, and if he cared only about his own pleasure and never thought about the people who lived on his lands, they might have trouble that he could help—and there were so many people, and it would be such a hard thing. And I was just looking at all those houses, and thinking how I should have to find out about the people, when I was an earl. How did you find out about them ? "
As his lordship's knowledge of his tenantry consisted in finding out which of them paid their rent promptly, and in turning out those who did not, this was rather a hard question. " Newick finds out for me," he said, and he pulled his great gray mustache, and looked at his small questioner rather uneasily. "We will go home now," he added; "and when you are an earl, see to it that you are a better earl than I have been !"
He was very silent as they rode home. He felt it to be almost incredible that he, who had never really loved any one in his life, should find himself growing so fond of this little fellow,—as without
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