THE MISTRESS OF THE SILVER MOON. 27
had done right some time and had forgotten how. When I killed your bird I did not know I was doing wrong, just because I was always doing wrong, and the wrong had soaked all through me."
" What wrong were you doing all day, Curdie ? It is better to come to the point, you know," said the old lady, and her voice was gentler even than before,
" I was doing the wrong of never wanting or trying to be better. And now I see that I have been letting things go as they would for a long time. Whatever came into my head I did, and whatever didn't come into my head I didn't do. I never sent anything away, and never looked out for anything to come. I haven't been attending to my mother—or my father either. And now I think of it, I know I have often seen them looking troubled, and I have never asked them what was the matter. And now I see too that I did not ask because I suspected it had something to do with me and my behaviour, and didn't want to hear the truth. And I know I have been grumbling at my work, and doing a hundred other things that are wrong."
"You have got it, Curdie," said the old lady, in a voice that sounded almost as if she had been crying. "When people don't care to be better they must be doing everything wrong, I am so glad you shot my bird!"