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Karlsson on the Roof

Eric reassured him. He had saved two pennies.

Karlsson’s eyes shone, and he jumped around the room in delight.

“Oh, I’m the World’s Illest,” he said. “We’ve got to hurry to get me into bed.”

It was not until now that Eric began to wonder how he was going to get up on the roof, not being able to fly.

“Calm, be calm!” said Karlsson. “You ride on my back and hi-ho, off we fly up to my house! But, mind you, don’t get your fingers caught in the propeller!”

“But are you strong enough?” asked Eric.

“That’s just what we shall have to find out,” said Karlsson. “It’ll be quite interesting to see if I manage more than half the distance, ill and miserable as I am. But I can always drop you if I find I can’t go on any farther.”

Eric did not think it was a good solution to be dropped halfway up to the roof, and he looked a little doubtful.

“But I’m sure it’ll be all right,” said Karlsson. “So long as the engine doesn’t break down.”

“Supposing it does; then we’ll fall,” said Eric.

“Crash! we’ll go then,” said Karlsson gaily. “But it’s a small matter,” he said and spread his fingers.

Eric decided to regard it as a small matter. He wrote a little note to Mommy and Daddy and left it on the table.

It would be best if he could get back before they spotted the note. But if by any chance they missed him, they would have to know where he was, otherwise there might be the same fuss again that there was when they were staying with Grannie and Eric had decided to take a trip by train on his own. Mommy wept afterward and said, “But, Eric, when you wanted to go on the train, why didn’t you tell me?”

“Because I wanted to go on the train,” said Eric.

That was the sort of thing that happened. He wanted to go with Karlsson up on the roof, and that was why it was best not to tell anybody. If they did discover he was gone, he could always say that, after all, he had written them that note.

Karlsson was ready to start. He turned the button in his middle and the engine began to hum.

“Jump up!” he shouted.

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