Some young children, whose parents are working in India, are beingbrought up by an aunt in a small English village called Fieldside. Theaunt lets them have a lot of freedom, but there are some "Rules of theHouse" which must be obeyed. When the cat has some lovely kittens, oneblack, one white, and one grey, they are not allowed to keep them,because there would then be too many cats than the Rules allowed, butthey are given three weeks in which to find homes for them.
"Oh!" shuddered Maisie; "but," she added in a whisper, for she always fancied Jacko understood, "their eyes aren't open yet, and besides Madam would claw and scratch at him."
"He can claw and scratch too," said Dennis. "I expect he could kill Madam and her kittens easily. And then he'd bury them, just as he does his food, you know, and then."
Fortunately for Maisie, who was listening with horror to this picture of cruelty and crime, Dennis stopped at this point, for they were now close to Tom, who with his back towards them was making a dreadful noise with a creaking pump handle.
"I say, Tom," he called out. Tom slowly turned his freckled face over his shoulder, but did not leave off his work. "Madam's kittens are not to be drowned," shouted Dennis at the top of his voice.
"They're all to be saved," added Maisie in a shriller key.--"Oh Dennis, I don't believe he has taken it in. Do tell him to leave off pumping."
But just then, Tom's pails be