'm thinking she'll take it hard, for she's got rare notions, an' is a bit clever above the common. Duncan's over young yet to fret about; Robbie'll be provided for, no doubt, when the proper time comes."
"I wouldn't fret at all," the farmer replied, heartily; "you've done the best, and worked hard for the bairnies since your good man was taken. They'll find a good provision, I doubt not. There's a special protection for the fatherless and the widow, so the minister's always saying."
"It's just the one interest of my life to see the children started," Mrs. MacDougall replied, "although sometimes I get pretty nigh disheartened."
"You've had a sorrowful life," the farmer said. "Some dead, others false and mean, but you've much to be proud of. The bairnies are strong an' winsome, an' I'm sure the little one's just a real credit to you."
"Ah! the poor little lad. I think his father would be astonished to see him. Yes, I'm bound to say he's done well, all things considered."
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