WHEN THE SUN WENT DOWN 289
But I come," with grumpy obstinacy. " Over th' wall I come — until th' rheumatics stopped me — an' I did a bit o' work once a year. She'd gave her order first."
" It wouldn't have been as wick as it is if tha' hadn't done it," said Dickon. " I did wonder."
" I'm glad you did it, Weatherstaff," said Colin. " You'll know how to keep the secret."
" Aye, I'll know, sir," answered Ben. " An' it'll be easier for a man wi' rheumatics to come in at th' door."
On the grass near the tree Mary had dropped her trowel. Colin stretched out his hand and took it up. An odd expression came into his face and he began to scratch at the earth. His thin hand was weak enough but presently as they watched him — Mary with quite breathless interest — he drove the end of the trowel into the soil and turned some over.
" You can do it! You can do it! " said Mary to herself. " I tell you, you can! "
Dickon's round eyes were full of eager curious-ness but he said not a word. Ben Weatherstaff looked on with interested face.
Colin persevered. After he had turned a few trowelfuls of soil he spoke exultantly to Dickon in his best Yorkshire.
" Tha' said as tha'd have me walkin' about here