usy in the house. He had been rather glad to have the children out of the way for a little while, but now that it was six o'clock, and tea was laid in the dining-room, and a bright wood fire blazing in the great open fireplace, he began to wonder where his chickens were.
"Bless me!" he said. "Where is the rattle?" and opening a bag, he took out a huge watchman's rattle, and sprung it briskly, making the strange loud noise that Puff and Fluff had heard down by the spring. Presently he heard a voice, then another, and then another. "Here I am, Uncle!" "What is the matter, Uncle Jack?" "Hi! supper! come on, Brighteyes!" and up scampered from all directions, the four mice in about as pretty a plight as mice can well be in. Brighteyes was panting for breath and limping, one shoe gone, no hat, and any number of scratches. Puff and Fluff were wet, and muddy, and forlorn beyond description; while with Nibble the only question was, which was bigger, his knickerbockers or the hole in them.
Uncle Jack held
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