The Daisy Chain or Aspirations HTML version

Chapter II.3
Any silk, any thread,
Any toys for your head,
Of the newest and finest wear-a?
Come to the pedlar,
Money's a medlar.
That doth utter all men's ware-a.
Winter's Tale.
"This one day and it will be over, and we shall be rational again," thought
Ethel, as she awoke.
Flora was sleeping at the Grange, to be ready for action in the morning, and
Ethel was to go early with Mary and Blanche, who were frantic to have a
share in the selling. Norman and the boys were to walk at their own time, and
the children to be brought later by Miss Bracy. The doctor would be bound by
no rules.
It was a pattern day, bright, clear, warm, and not oppressive, perfect for an
out-of-doors fete; and Ethel had made up her mind to fulfil her promise to
Margaret of enjoying herself. In the brilliant sunshine, and between two such
happy sisters, it would have been surly, indeed, not to enter into the spirit of
the day; and Ethel laughed gaily with them, and at their schemes and hopes;
Blanche's heart being especially set on knowing the fate of a watch-guard of
her own construction.
Hearing that the ladies were in the gardens, they repaired thither at once.
The broad, smooth bowling-green lay before them; a marquee, almost
converted into a bower, bounding it on either side, while in the midst arose,
gorgeous and delicious, a pyramid of flowers-- contributions from all the hot-
houses in the neighbourhood--to be sold for the benefit of the bazaar. Their
freshness and fragrance gave a brightness to the whole scene, while
shrinking from such light, as only the beauteous works of nature could bear,
was the array accomplished by female fingers.
Under the wreathed canopies were the stalls, piled up with bright colours,
most artistically arranged. Ethel, with her over-minute knowledge of every
article, could hardly believe that yonder glowing Eastern pattern of scarlet,
black, and blue, was, in fact, a judicious mosaic of penwipers that she
remembered, as shreds begged from the tailor, that the delicate lace-work
consisted of Miss Bracy's perpetual antimacassars, and that the potichomanie
could look so dignified and Etruscan.
"Here you are!" cried Meta Rivers, springing to meet them. "Good girls, to
come early. Where's my little Daisy?"