day's trouble was swept from his mind from the moment that the gray caravans came rocking through the trees. How could a boy remember such a thing as money—on a day filled to overflowing with wonder and movement and gay human companionship? It was his day: perhaps given him in compensation, and to strengthen him for what lay ahead.
He liked Nita from the moment that she came dancing over the grass beside her tall father. There was something of quicksilver in Nita's elf-like body. She scarcely ever walked like ordinary children; always she seemed to move on springs, as if some hidden source of vitality carried her along. Her curls were always dancing, her eyes bright and bird-like, her speech quick and eager. Hugh feit slow and heavy beside her, but she was like a magnet to him, giving him something of her own gay energy. She laughed a great deal, which was probably the secret of her charm for a boy who had known little laughter. And yet, baby as she was, there was in her a vein of shrewd common-sense. The daughter of a Circus, caravan-reared, soon acquires that.
"Hullo, Hugh! You're coming to breakfast with us," was her greeting.
Hugh, dusty and covered with loose straws, looked at her blankly: a vivid little figure about his own size, in scarlet jersey and brief blue skirt.
"Yes—in our wagon. Your Daddy says so."