354 At the Back of the North Wind
I daresay he thought also, that it would be a nice place for North Wind to call at in passing; but he said nothing of that sort. Below him spread a lake of green leaves, with glimpses of grass here and there at the bottom of it. As he looked down, he saw a squirrel appear suddenly, and as suddenly vanish amongst the topmost branches.
" Aha! little squirrel," he cried, umy nest is built higher than yours."
" You can be up here with your books as much as you like," said his mistress. " I will have a little bell hung at the door, which I can ring when I want you. Half-way down the stair is the drawing-room."
So Diamond was installed as page, and his new room got ready for him.
It was very soon after this that I came to know Diamond. I was then a tutor in a family whose estate adjoined the little property belonging The Mound. I had made the acquaintance of Mr. Raymond in London some time before, and was walking up the drive towards the house to call upon him one fine warm evening, when I saw Diamond for the first time. He was sitting at the foot of a great beech-tree, a few yards from the road, with a book on his knees. He did not see me. I walked up behind the tree, and peeping over his shoulder, saw that he was reading a fairy-book.
" What are you reading?" I said, and spoke suddenly, with the hope of seeing a startled little face look round at me. Diamond turned his head as quietly as if he were only obeying his mother's voice, and the