"You feel better now, dearest, do you not?" he asked presently, as she raised her head to wipe away her tears.
"Now tell me what it was all about."
"Miss Stevens does say such hateful things, papa!"
He laid his finger upon her lips. "Don't use that word again. It does not sound at all like my usually gentle sweet-tempered little girl."
"I won't, papa," she murmured, blushing and hanging her head. Then hiding her face on his breast, she lay there for several minutes perfectly silent and still.
"What is my little girl thinking of?" he asked at length.
"How everybody talks about you, papa; last evening I was out on the veranda, and I heard John and Miss Stevens' maid, Phillis, talking together. It was moonlight, you know, papa," she went on, turning her face toward him again: "and they were out under the trees and John had his arm round her, and he was kissing her, and telling