366 THE SECRET GARDEN
was a soothing thing. Why did it seem to give him a sense of home-coming which he had been sure he could never feel again — that sense of the beauty of land and sky and purple bloom of distance and a warming of the heart at drawing nearer to the great old house which had held those of his blood for six hundred years? How he had driven away from it the last time, shuddering to think of its closed rooms and the boy lying in the four-posted bed with the brocaded hangings. Was it possible that perhaps he might find him changed a little for the better and that he might overcome his shrinking from him? How real that dream had been — how wonderful and clear the voice which called back to him, " In the garden i— In the garden! "
" I will try to find the key," he said. " I will try to open the door. I must — though I don't know why."
When he arrived at the Manor the servants who received him with the usual ceremony noticed that he looked better and that he did not go to the remote rooms where he usually lived attended by Pitcher. He went into the library and sent for Mrs. Medlock. She came to him somewhat excited and curious and flustered.
"How is Master Colin, Medlock?" he inquired.