The Village by the River
The door of the eighth house set back a little from the road was partially open as the new arrival made his way up the box-bordered path, with beds on either side of it gay with flowers; and before he could knock a neatly dressed middle-aged woman threw it wide and surveyed him from head to foot.
"And what may you be wanting, sir?" she asked, quite civilly.
"A lodging for a night or two. And Mr. Allison at the forge seemed to think you might be inclined to take me in."
"I'm not sure as my John will wish it. But if you'll step inside I'll ask him," replied Mrs. Macdonald, motioning him to a chair.
"Unless they turn me out by force, I shall stay," he said, looking round him with a pleased smile.
It was not his fault, but "my John's" deafness, that caused him to hear himself described as a "very decent man, who spoke as civil as a gentleman; and it was awkward to find yourself in a strange place on a Saturday night with nobody ready to