Anne of Green Gables - by Lucy Maud Montgomery
"Well now, she's a real nice little thing, Marilla. It's kind of
a pity to send her back when she's so set on staying here."
"Matthew Cuthbert, you don't mean to say you think we ought
to keep her!"
Marilla's astonishment could not have been greater if Matthew had
expressed a predilection for standing on his head.
"Well, now, no, I suppose not--not exactly," stammered Matthew,
uncomfortably driven into a corner for his precise meaning.
"I suppose--we could hardly be expected to keep her."
"I should say not. What good would she be to us?"
"We might be some good to her," said Matthew suddenly and
"Matthew Cuthbert, I believe that child has bewitched you!
I can see as plain as plain that you want to keep her."
"Well now, she's a real interesting little thing," persisted
Matthew. "You should have heard her talk coming from the
"Oh, she can talk fast enough. I saw that at once. It's
nothing in her favour, either. I don't like children who
have so much to say. I don't want an orphan girl and if I
did she isn't the style I'd pick out. There's something I
don't understand about her. No, she's got to be despatched
straight-way back to where she came from."
"I could hire a French boy to help me," said Matthew, "and
she'd be company for you."
"I'm not suffering for company," said Marilla shortly. "And
I'm not going to keep her."
"Well now, it's just as you say, of course, Marilla," said
Matthew rising and putting his pipe away. "I'm going to bed."
To bed went Matthew. And to bed, when she had put her
dishes away, went Marilla, frowning most resolutely. And
up-stairs, in the east gable, a lonely, heart-hungry,
friendless child cried herself to sleep.