Kate Douglas Wiggin: Rebecca Of Sunnybrook Farm

25. XXV. ROSES OF JOY (continued)

All day long the four words haunted and possessed Rebecca; she said them over to herself continually. Even the prosaic Emma Jane was affected by them, for in the evening she said, "I don't expect you to believe it, but I have another idea,-- that's two in one day; I had it while I was putting cologne on your head. The rose of joy might be helpfulness."

"If it is, then it is always blooming in your dear little heart, you darlingest, kind Emmie, taking such good care of your troublesome Becky!"

"Don't dare to call yourself troublesome! You're --you're--you're my rose of joy, that's what you are!" And the two girls hugged each other affectionately.

In the middle of the night Rebecca touched Emma Jane on the shoulder softly. "Are you very fast asleep, Emmie?" she whispered.

"Not so very," answered Emma Jane drowsily.

"I've thought of something new. If you sang or painted or wrote,--not a little, but beautifully, you know,--wouldn't the doing of it, just as much as you wanted, give you the rose of joy?"

"It might if it was a real talent," answered Emma Jane, "though I don't like it so well as love. If you have another thought, Becky, keep it till morning."

"I did have one more inspiration," said Rebecca when they were dressing next morning, "but I didn't wake you. I wondered if the rose of joy could be sacrifice? But I think sacrifice would be a lily, not a rose; don't you?"

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