"I — I followed the dog," said Mrs. Franklin, scarcely knowing
how to explain. "Is it your dog, dear?"
"No," said Nellie, "not exactly, but she's mostly here because the Potters downstairs beat her. though she belongs to them.^ "She has come once or twice to our house to be fed,' explained Mrs. Franklin, "and my little children havegrown fond of her, and if she had no master, we thought we might
keep her, but —" _
Mrs. Franklin paused, for Nellie's face feil so piteously at
the idea of losing Lulu, that she had not the heart to go on. But the child struggled with her tears. "It would be awfully nice for Lulu," she gasped after a moment.
"But you would miss her, — she is your pet," said Mr>. Franklin. "Teil me, dear, have you been ill long?" Then all the story came out. How Father died and Mother had to work so hard, and how Nellie had been Peep-Bo at the pantomime, and how her back got bad and she couldn't dance any longer, and so they had come awav to Filsham to do her good. But how the friends that mother knew as a girl were all dead or gone away, and how difficult she found it to get them food, and how she had had to sell their furnitureto
pay the rent even of that one room.
And when Mrs. Holmes came toiling in from the shop with a fresh bundie of work, to her infinite surprise she found Nellie lying on her mattress, with a lady sitting on a stool beside her, holding her hand and Lulu, with her nose m Nellie's lap, giving every now and then funny little sniffs
to stow her sympathy.
"Oh! Mother, Mother!" cried Nellie, as Mrs. Holmesstopped, quite astonished, "the lady is going to help me to get well and it's all Lulu's doing, for she went and fetched her. Oh! Lulu, Lulu! you darling Lulu, it's all you, every bit!