"What on earth are they?" cried Alice, yawning as she spoke.
"Oh, the very small planets."
"Then, my dear, I hope you will see them. But really, Bessie, I can't run round nature as you do--your intellect is quite overpowering; one moment you want to get up information with regard to magnetic iron ore, and the next you confound me with some awful observation about asteroids. Good-by, Bessie; good-by. I shall be late for dinner, and then no chance of going to the fair Gwin's this afternoon."
"Well, if you do go, call for me," shouted Bessie after her; "I'll wait for you until half-past four, then I'll start off by myself."
"Yes, yes, I'll come if I can, and bring Kitty also if I can."
"Be sure you don't fail. I'll look out for you."
Alice put wings to her feet and set off running down the dusty road, and Bessie more soberly returned home.