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

Aunt Jane's Nieces

And I hope you'll love it as much as I do, when you

know it better."

"Bradley must have been a fool to give this place to Jane," said Uncle

John, reflectively.

"He was in love, sir," observed the other, and they both smiled. Then

the lawyer turned to Kenneth. "How are things going?" he asked. "Have

the girls bothered you much, as yet?"

"No," said the boy. "I keep out of their way."

"That's a good idea. By the bye, sir," turning to John Merrick. "I've

just brought you a new niece."


"She prefers to be called Patsy. A queer little thing; half Irish, you


"And half Merrick. That's an odd combination, but the Irish may be

able to stand it," said Uncle John. "These nieces are more than I

bargained for. I came to see one relative, and find three more--and

all women!"

"I think you'll like Patsy, anyhow. And so will you, Kenneth."

The boy gave an indignant roar.

"I hate all girls!" he said.

"You won't hate this one. She's as wild and impulsive as you are, but

better natured. She'll make a good comrade, although she may box your

ears once in a while."

The boy turned away sulkily, and began picking up the scattered

chess-men. The two men walked down the stair and strolled together

through the garden.

"A strange boy," said Uncle John, presently.

"I'm glad to see you've made friends with him," replied the lawyer,

earnestly. "Until now he has had no one to befriend him but me, and at

times he's so unmanageable that it worries me dreadfully."

"There's considerable character about the lad," said John Merrick;

"but he's been spoiled and allowed to grow up wild, like a weed. He's

got it in him to make a criminal or a gentleman, whichever way his

nature happens to develop."

"He ought to go to a military school," replied Lawyer Watson. "Proper

training would make a man of Kenneth; but I can't induce Jane to spend

the money on him. She gives him food and clothing and lodging--all

of the simplest description--but there her generosity ends. With

thousands of dollars lying idle, she won't assist the only nephew of

Tom Bradley to secure a proper education.

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