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So let us cheer up, and have a run to the other end of the orchard; I believe the wind has blown down some apples, and we might just as well eat them as the slugs."

Merrylegs could not be resisted, so we broke off our long conversation, and got up our spirits by munching some very sweet apples which lay scattered on the grass.


11 Plain Speaking

The longer I lived at Birtwick the more proud and happy I felt at having such a place. Our master and mistress were respected and beloved
by all who knew them; they were good and kind to everybody and everything; not only men and women, but horses and donkeys, dogs and cats,
cattle and birds; there was no oppressed or ill-used creature that had not a friend in them, and their servants took the same tone.

If any of the village children were known to treat any creature cruelly they soon heard about it from the Hall.

The squire and Farmer Grey had worked together, as they said, for more than twenty years to get check-reins on the cart-horses done away with, and in our parts you seldom saw them; and sometimes, if mistress met a heavily laden horse with his head strained up she would stop the carriage and get out, and reason with the driver in her sweet serious voice, and try to show him how foolish and cruel it was.

I don't think any man could withstand our mistress. I wish all ladies were like her. Our master, too, used to come down very heavy sometimes.

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