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hands all the time," said his mother wearily. "Two people's work, that's what he is. Had me awake nearly all last night, he's that restless with a new tooth comin'."

"Don't they like new teeth?" asked Hugh, politely. Mrs. Crowe explained something of the mysteries of teething, and the baby crawled all over Hugh with every sign of enjoyment. Hugh poked him gently, uncertain as to the possibility of damaging him. The baby chuckled.

"He likes you," said the mother. "Well, tenting's a dull life for a baby. He doesn't get much fun: an' I'm sure I don't. My idea of fun's a real good sleep. Goodness kncws, I could do with one now!"

Hugh looked at her tired face. It was still a mystery to him that she could change into the gay, laughing girl who pirouetted every night in the ring in rose-pink tights.

"I say, I could look after him for you," he offered. "Is it hard? I never knew a baby."

"Oh, it isn't fair to let you—you're kept pretty well on the jump," she said.

"I haven't got anything to do now. I like him, too." The baby had got unsteadily on his feet by means of Hugh's shoulder, and was again clawing at his hair.

She hesitated.

"I'm that tired out it 'ud be a mercy to get a sleep," she said. "If you're certain you don't mind, sonny?"

"I'd like to—truly. Does he have to get fed or something?"

"No—he won't need his tea until I come out. Only