172 LITTLE LORD FAUNTLEROY.
was spoons on her. She was a daisy-lookin' gal, too, when she was dressed up 'n' not mad. She 'd big black eyes 'n' black hair down to her knees; she 'd make it into a rope as big as your arm, and twist it 'round 'n' 'round her head; 'n' 1 tell you her eyes 'd snap ! Folks used to say she was part Aali-un — said her mother or father 'd come from there, 'n' it made her queer. I tell ye, she was one of 'em — she was!"
He often told Mr. Hobbs stories of her and of his brother Ben, who, since his going out West, had written once or twice to Dick. Ben's luck had not been good, and he had wandered from place to place; but at last he had settled on a ranch in California, where he was at work at the time when Dick became acquainted with Mr. Hobbs.
11 That gal," said Dick one day, "she took all the grit out o' him. I could n't help feelin' sorry for him sometimes."
They were sitting in the store door-way together, and Mr. Hobbs was filling his pipe.
" He ought n't to 've married," he said solemnly, as he rose to get a match. "Women — I never could see any use in 'em, myself."
As he took the match from its box, he stopped and looked down on the counter.
"Why!" he said, "if here is n't a letter! I did n't see it before. The postman must have laid it down when I was n't noticin', or the newspaper slipped over it."
He picked it up and looked at it carefully.
"It 's from him!" he exclaimed. "That 's the very one it 's from !"
He forgot his pipe altogether. He went back to his chair quite excited and took his pocket-knife and opened the envelope.
" I wonder what news there is this time," he said.