288 THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN.
" You owdacious puppy !"
He looked kind of hurt, and says :
"I'm surprised at you, m'am."
" You're s'rp— Why, what do you reckon Iam? I've a good notion to take and—say, what do you mean by kissing me ? "
He looked kind of humble, and says :
"I didn't mean nothing, m'am. I didn't mean no harm. I—I—thought you'd like it."
" Why, you born fool!" She took up the spinning-stick, and it looked like it was all she could do to keep from giving him a crack with it. " What made you think I'd like it?"
" Well, I don't know. Only, they—they—told me you would."
"They told you I would. Whoever told you 's another lunatic. I never heard the beat of it. Who's they ? "
"Why—everybody. They all said so, m'am."
It was all she could do to hold in; and her eyes snapped, and her fingers worked like she wanted to scratch him; and she says :
" Who's ' everybody ?' Out with their names—or ther'll be an idiot short."
He got up and looked distressed, and fumbled his hat, and says :
" I'm sorry, and I warn't expecting it. They told me to. They all told me to. They all said kiss her ; and said she'll like it. They all said it—every one of them.. But I'm sorry, m'am, and I won't do it no more—I won't, honest."
" You won't, won't you ? Well, I sh'd reckon you won't !"
" No'm, I'm honest about it; I won't ever do it again. Till you ask me."
" Till I ask you ! Well, I never see the beat of it in my born days ! I lay you'll be the Methusalem-numskull of creation before ever I ask you—or the likes of you."
"Well," he says, "it does surprise me so. I can't make it out, somehow. They said you would, and I thought you would. But—" He stopped and looked around slow, like he wished he could run across a friendly eye, somewhere's; and fetched up on the old gentleman's, and says, " Didn't you think she'd like me to kiss her, sir ?"