‘And, Mary, may we set the table?’ chimed in Kitty.

They were in the midst of setting the table when Mary’s brother George came in from work. He was a burly, good-natured, red-faced person, chiefly remarkable for pockets which bulged out with apples and sweets, and for certain time- honoured jokes which the children always greeted with the cordiality due to such old friends.

‘George always pretends he's going to put us in his pockets,’ Micky had remarked to Kitty on one occasion ; it's getting a bit stale.’

‘Yes, but we must laugh,’ said Kitty : ‘he'd be so disappointed if we didn't,’ and accordingly the twins always laughed uproariously as soon as George so much as mentioned his pockets.

They sat down to table after full justice had been done to these pleasantries, and the meal that followed might have been one grand joke from beginning to end to judge from the continual laughter that went on. Mary had remembered everybody’s favourite dishes ; there was liver and bacon to please the twins, pancakes for Emmeline, though Shrove Tuesday was about half a year distant, and baked potatoes for them all. When at last everybody had eaten as much of these good things as they could manage, and George had gone back to work, it was high time to start

for the Fair.