THE OUTLAWS DELIVER THE GOODS 163
millions because he's my dear little friend and comrade."
Bewildered they went out to the road.
There they opened the envelope she had given them.
In it was a ten-pound note.
It was the next morning. The school was assembled in the big hall. The headmaster began to read out the sums earned by the various groups for the new wing.
The youngest boy in the school—aged seven—had alone and unaided collected ten shillings. He had gone round to his friends and relations asking them in all good faith for money for new wings for the headmaster and so had met with a better response than he probably would have done had he had a clearer conception of the object of the fund.
The headmaster read the list slowly and impressively. He came to the group of names headed by '; Hubert Lane " and he read Five Pounds." There was a faint burst of applause. Then he came to the group of names headed by " William Brown."
The Hubert Laneites turned round to the Outlaws with jeering grins of anticipated triumph.
The headmaster read out " Ten Pounds." The applause was the more deafening because the Outlaws were popular and the Hubert Laneites were not. The mouths of the Hubert Laneites dropped open weakly. The Outlaws stared in front of them with looks of calm and superior aloofness.
But the best was yet to come. The Outlaws and the Hubert Laneites met face to face on the playground.
" We didn't half pull your leg," said William, ' pretendin' not to know who you were yesterday. We were laughin' fit to burst inside all the time."
And whatever inflation had been left in the Hubert Laneites departed.