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It was burning brightly and showering a red-golden light over the small, immaculate room, with its old-time furniture and deep-set, wide-silled windows, to whose frosted, blue-white panes the snowflakes clung in little wreaths.

It lent depth and mystery to the mirror on the wall which reflected Emily as she sat coiled on the ottoman before the fire, writing, by the light of two tall, white candles--which were the only approved means of illumination at New Moon--in a brand-new, glossy, black "Jimmy-book" which Cousin Jimmy had given her that day.

* A Project Gutenberg of Australia e Book * e Book No.: 0300151Edition: 1 Language: English Character set encoding: html Date first posted: December 2002 Date most recently updated: December 2002 This e Book was produced by: Don Lainson [email protected] notes: Project Gutenberg of Australia e Books are created from printed editions which are in the public domain in Australia, unless a copyright notice is included.

You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg of Australia License which may be viewed online at Writing Herself Out Salad Days In the Watches of the Night "As Ithers See Us" Half a Loaf Shrewsbury Beginnings Pot-pourri Not Proven A Supreme Moment The Madness of an Hour Heights and Hollows At the Sign of the Haystack Haven The Woman Who Spanked the King "The Thing That Couldn't" Driftwood "If a Body Kiss a Body" Circumstantial Evidence "Airy Voices" In the Old John House Thicker than Water "Love Me, Love My Dog" An Open Door A Valley of Vision April Love Emily Byrd Starr was alone in her room, in the old New Moon farmhouse at Blair Water, one stormy night in a February of the olden years before the world turned upside down.

Aunt Laura was a jewel of a woman, but certain things were holden from her eyes.

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She was at that moment as perfectly happy as any human being is ever permitted to be.

Aunt Elizabeth, in consideration of the coldness of the night, had allowed her to have a fire in her little fireplace--a rare favour.

Emily had been very glad to get it, for she had filled the one he had given her the preceding autumn, and for over a week she had suffered acute pangs of suppression because she could not write in a nonexistent "diary." Her diary had become a dominant factor in her young, vivid life.

It had taken the place of certain "letters" she had written in her childhood to her dead father, in which she had been wont to "write out" her problems and worries--for even in the magic years when one is almost fourteen one has problems and worries, especially when one is under the strict and well-meant but not over-tender governance of an Aunt Elizabeth Murray.

Now blank books of any sort were not easy to come by at New Moon, and if it had not been for Cousin Jimmy, Emily might never have had one.

Certainly Aunt Elizabeth would not give her one--Aunt Elizabeth thought Emily wasted far too much time "over her scribbling nonsense" as it was--and Aunt Laura did not dare to go contrary to Aunt Elizabeth in this--more by token that Laura herself really thought Emily might be better employed.



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