At the Back of the North Wind Illustrated - online book

A Complete Illustrated children's fantasy book by George MacDonald.

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The Prospect Brightens            335
For at that moment Diamond was singing like a lark in the clouds. He had the new baby in his arms, while his mother was dressing herself. Joseph was sitting at his breakfast—a little weak tea, dry bread, and very dubious butter—which Nanny had set for him, and which he was enjoying because he was hungry. He had groomed both horses, and had got old Diamond ready to put to.
"Think of a fat angel, Dulcimer!" said Diamond.
The baby had not been christened yet, but Diamond, in reading his bible, had come upon the word dulcimer, and thought it so pretty that ever after he called his sister Dulcimer.
"Think of a red fat angel, Dulcimer!" he repeated; "for Ruby's an angel of a horse, Dulcimer. He sprained his ankle and got fat on purpose."
"What purpose, Diamond?" asked his father.
"Ah! that I can't tell. I suppose to look handsome when his master comes," answered Diamond.—"What do you think, Dulcimer? It must be for some good, for Ruby's an angel."
" I wish I were rid of him, anyhow," said his father; "for he weighs heavy on my mind."
"No wonder, father: he's so fat," said Diamond. " But you needn't be afraid, for everybody says he's in better condition than when you had him."
" Yes, but he may be as thin as a tin horse before his owner comes. It was too bad to leave him on my hands this way."
" Perhaps he couldn't help it," suggested Diamond. " I daresay he has some good reason for it."
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