i3o THE SECRET GARDEN
Mary touched it herself in an eager, reverent way.
"That one?" she said. "Is that one quite alive — quite? "
Dickon curved his wide smiling mouth.
" It's as wick as you or me," he said; and Mary remembered that Martha had told her that 44 wick " meant " alive " or " lively."
"I'm glad it's wick!" she cried out in her whisper. " I want them all to be wick. Let us go round the garden and count how many wick ones there are."
She quite panted with eagerness, and Dickon was as eager as she was. They went from tree to tree and from bush to bush. Dickon carried his knife in his hand and showed her things which she thought wonderful.
" They've run wild," he said, " but th' strongest ones has fair thrived on it. The delicatest ones has died out, but th' others has growed an' growed, an' spread an' spread, till they's a wonder. See here! " and he pulled down a thick gray, dry-looking branch. " A body might think this was dead wood, but I don't believe it is — down to th' root. I'll cut it low down an' see."
He knelt and with his knife cut the lifeless-looking branch through, not far above the earth.
"There!" he said exultantly. "I told thee