turned slowly until they rested upon her, holding her in an intense stare. The child thrust her head a little forward and gave back a look as steady, her whole body tense. It was a duel of eyes: and again Hugh feit the cold creep along his 'spine—as though at any moment the crouching beast might spring forward and make matchwood of his bars.
But Nita won. Presently Nabob's eyelids blinked, and he gave a little angry twitch of his head. Then he looked past her again, settling down to apparent unconsciousness of her presence.
"Beat you! Beat you!" Nita snapped her fingers, prancing in front of the cage.
"Ugh! Come away. I don't like it," Hugh said— though even with the words he was aware of a queer excitement that was half fear, half delight. "Aren't you ever scared that he'11 get out and eat you? He looked as if he'd like to!"
"Cats don't get out of our cages," said Nita, scornfully. "My Daddy taught me to do that. He was the best tamer that was ever in the whole world! He said I'd got to be able to show a lion who was boss!" At which Hugh was incautious enough to laugh—when immediately the daughter of the Circus became a vision of fury, stamping her tiny foot and hurling a volley of angry words that left him breathless. He stared at her in such bewilderment that her wrath passed as swiftly as it had come, and she stood with downcast face, a finger in her mouth, an absurd baby.