The Two Guardians
"A place where others are at home,
But all are strange to me."
Marian began the next morning by wondering what a Sunday at Oakworthy would be
like, but she was glad the formidable first meeting was over, and greeted Gerald
cheerfully when he came into the room.
After a few minutes a bell rang, and Marian, thinking it must be for family prayers,
hastened into the passage, wondering at herself for not having asked last night where she
was to go. She was glad to meet Caroline coming out of her room, and after quickly
exchanging a "good morning," she said, "Was that the bell for prayers?"
"No, it was for the servants' breakfast," said Caroline "and for ours in the schoolroom
"But don't you have prayers in the morning?" said Gerald,
"No," answered Caroline gravely.
"Why not," the little boy was beginning but Marian pressed his hand to check him,
shocked herself, and sorry for Caroline's sake that the question had been asked.
Caroline spoke rather hurriedly, "I wish we could, but you see papa is out so often, and
there are so many people staying here sometimes: and in London, papa is so late at the
House--it is very unlucky, but it would not do, it is all so irregular."
"What?" said Clara, hopping down stairs behind them. "O, about prayers! We have not
had any in the school room since Miss Cameron's time."
"Miss Cameron used to read a chapter and pray with us afterwards," said Caroline; "but
when she was gone, mamma said she did not like the book she used."
"Besides, it was three quarters out of her own head, and that wasn't fair, for she used to
go on such a monstrous time," said Clara.
"Hush, Clara," said her sister, "and mamma has never found a book she does think quite
"There's the Prayer Book," said Gerald.