The Wind In The Willows - online version

Complete text of the classic childrens book By KENNETH GRAHAME

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cheerful blaze roaring up the chimney. He hailed the Mole to come and warm himself; but Mole promptly had another fit of the blues, dropping down on a couch in dark despair and burying his face in his duster. `Rat,' he moaned, `how about your supper, you poor, cold, hungry, weary animal? I've nothing to give you--nothing-- not a crumb!'
`What a fellow you are for giving in!' said the Rat reproachfully. `Why, only just now I saw a sardine-opener on the kitchen dresser, quite distinctly; and everybody knows that means there are sardines about somewhere in the neighbourhood. Rouse yourself! pull yourself together, and come with me and forage.'
They went and foraged accordingly, hunting through every cupboard and turning out every drawer. The result was not so very depressing after all, though of course it might have been better; a tin of sardines--a box of captain's biscuits, nearly full--and a German sausage encased in silver paper.
`There's a banquet for you!' observed the Rat, as he arranged the table. `I know some animals who would give their ears to be sitting down to supper with us to-night!'
`No bread!' groaned the Mole dolorously; `no butter, no----'
`No pate de foie gras, no champagne!' continued the Rat, grinning. `And that reminds me--what's that little door at the end of the passage? Your cellar, of course! Every luxury in this house! Just you wait a minute.'
He made for the cellar-door, and presently reappeared, somewhat dusty, with a bottle of beer in each paw and another under each arm, `Self-indulgent beggar you seem to be, Mole,' he observed. `Deny yourself nothing. This is really the jolliest little place I ever was in. Now, wherever did you pick up those prints? Make the place look so home-like, they do. No wonder you're so fond of it, Mole. Tell us all about it, and how you came to make it what it is.'
Then, while the Rat busied himself fetching plates, and knives and forks, and mustard which he mixed in an egg-cup, the Mole, his bosom still heaving with the stress of his recent emotion, related--somewhat shyly at first, but with more freedom as he warmed to his subject--how this was planned, and how that was thought out, and how this was got through a windfall from an aunt, and that was a wonderful find and a bargain, and this other thing was bought out of laborious savings and a certain amount of `going without.' His spirits finally quite restored, he must needs go and caress his possessions, and take a lamp and show off their points to his