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Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Frank Baum > Fairy tale "Aunt Jane's Nieces"

Aunt Jane's Nieces

Instantly the little man leaned

over and grasped the boy by the collar, and with a sudden jerk landed

him across his own fat knees. Then, while the prisoner screamed and

struggled, the man brought his hand down with a slap that echoed

throughout the room, and continued the operation until Master Kenneth

had received a sound spanking.

Then he let the boy slip to the floor, from whence he arose slowly and

backed toward the door, scowling and muttering angrily.

"You broke the bargain, and I kept my word," said Uncle John, calmly

taking his pipe from his pocket and filling it. "The compact was that

if you raised a rough-house, like you did yesterday, and got unruly,

that I'd give you a good thrashing. Now, wasn't it?"

"Yes," acknowledged the boy.

"Well, that blamed temper o' your'n got away with you again, and

you're well spanked for not heading it off. Pick up the board. Ken, my

lad, and let's try it again."

The boy hesitated. Then he looked around and saw Lawyer Watson, who

had stood motionless by the doorway, and with a cry that was half a

sob Kenneth threw himself into his old friend's arms and burst into a

flood of tears.

Uncle John struck a match, and lighted his pipe.

"A bargain's a bargain," he observed, composedly.

"He whipped me!" sobbed the boy. "He whipped me like a child."

"Your own fault," said Uncle John. "You wanted me to play a game with

you, and I agreed, providin' you behaved yourself. And you didn't.

Now, look here. Do you blame me any?"

"No," said the boy.

"No harm's done, is there?"

"No."

"Then stop blubberin', and introduce me to your friend," continued

Uncle John. "Name's Watson, ain't it."

"Silas Watson, sir, at your service," said the lawyer, smiling. "And

this must be John Merrick, who I understand has arrived at Elmhurst

during my absence."

"Exactly," said Uncle John, and the two men shook hands cordially.

"Glad to welcome you to Elmhurst, sir," continued the lawyer. "I've

known it ever since I was a boy, when it belonged to my dear friend

Thomas Bradley.

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