Amazon.com description: Product Description
: âI can hear the sullen, savage roar of the breakers, if I do not see them, and my pretty painted barkâexpectationâis bearing down helplessly upon them. Perhaps the unwelcome will not come to-day. What then? I presume I should not care; and yet, I am curious to see him,âanxious to know what sort of person will henceforth rule the house, and go in and out here as master. Of course the pleasant, peaceful days are at an end, for men always make din and strife in a household,âat least my father did, and he is the only one I know much about. But, after all, why borrow trouble?âthe interloper may never come.â The girl stood on tip-toe, shading her eyes with one hand, and peering eagerly down the winding road which stretched at right angles to the avenue, and over the hills, on towards the neighboring town. No moving speck was visible; and, with a sigh of relief, she sank back on the grassy mound and resumed the perusal of her book. Above and around her spread the wide branches of an aged apple-tree, feathered thickly with pearly petals, which the wind tossed hither and thither and drifted over the bermuda, as restless tides strew pink-chambered shells on sloping strands; and down through the flowery limbs streamed the waning March sun, throwing grotesque shadows on the sward and golden ripples over the face and figure of the young lounger. A few yards distant a row of whitewashed bee-hives extended along the western side of the garden-wall, where perched a peacock whose rainbow hues were burnished by the slanting rays that smote like flame the narrow pane of glass which constituted a window in each hive and permitted investigation of the tireless workers within. The afternoon was almost spent; the air, losing its balmy noon breath, grew chill with the approach of dew, and the figure under the apple-tree shivered slightly, and, closing her book, drew her scarlet shawl around her shoulders and leaned her dimpled chin on her knee. Sixteen years had ripened and rounded the girlish form, and given to her countenance that indefinable charm which marks the timid hovering between careless, frolicsome youth, and calmly conscious womanhood; while perfect health rouged the polished cheeks and vermillioned the thin lips, whose outlines sharply indexed more of decision than amiability of character.