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

Aunt Jane's Nieces

The doctor was not long in arriving, for Kenneth forced him to leap

upon Nora's back and race away to Elmhurst, while the boy followed as

swiftly as he could on the doctor's sober cob.

Dr. Eliel was only a country practitioner, but his varied experiences

through many years had given him a practical knowledge of surgery,

and after a careful examination of Patricia's injuries he was able to

declare that she would make a fine recovery.

"Her leg is fractured, and she's badly bruised," he reported to Aunt

Jane, who sent for him as soon as he could leave the sick room. "But I

do not think she has suffered any internal injuries, and the wound on

her forehead is a mere nothing. So, with good care, I expect the young

lady to get along nicely."

"Do everything you can for her," said the woman, earnestly. "You shall

be well paid, Dr. Eliel."

Before Patricia recovered her senses the doctor had sewn up her

forehead and set the fractured limb, so that she suffered little pain

from the first.

Louise and Beth hovered over her constantly, ministering to every

possible want and filled with tenderest sympathy for their injured

cousin. The accident seemed to draw them out of their selfishness and

petty intrigues and discovered in them the true womanly qualities that

had lurked beneath the surface.

Patsy was not allowed to talk, but she smiled gratefully at her

cousins, and the three girls seemed suddenly drawn nearer together

than any of them would have thought possible a few hours before.

The boy paced constantly up and down outside Patricia's door, begging

everyone who left the room, for news of the girl's condition. All his

reserve and fear of women seemed to have melted away as if by magic.

Even Beth and Louise were questioned eagerly, and they, having learned

the story of Patricia's brave rescue of the boy, were very gentle with

him and took pains not to frighten or offend him.

Toward evening Louise asked Patricia if she would see Kenneth for a

moment, and the girl nodded a ready assent.

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