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14. XIV. MR. ALADDIN (continued)
They gladly assented, and broke into a chorus of excited thanks during which tears of joy stood in Rebecca's eyes.
"Oh, don't mention it!" laughed Mr. Aladdin, lifting his hat. "I was a sort of commercial traveler myself once,--years ago,--and I like to see the thing well done. Good-by Miss Rebecca Rowena! Just let me know whenever you have anything to sell, for I'm certain beforehand I shall want it."
"Good-by, Mr. Aladdin! I surely will!" cried Rebecca, tossing back her dark braids delightedly and waving her hand.
"Oh, Rebecca!" said Emma Jane in an awe-struck whisper. "He raised his hat to us, and we not thirteen! It'll be five years before we're ladies."
"Never mind," answered Rebecca; "we are the BEGINNINGS of ladies, even now."
"He tucked the lap robe round us, too," continued Emma Jane, in an ecstasy of reminiscence. "Oh! isn't he perfectly elergant? And wasn't it lovely of him to buy us out? And just think of having both the lamp and the shade for one day's work! Aren't you glad you wore your pink gingham now, even if mother did make you put on flannel underneath? You do look so pretty in pink and red, Rebecca, and so homely in drab and brown!"
"I know it," sighed Rebecca "I wish I was like you--pretty in all colors!" And Rebecca looked longingly at Emma Jane's fat, rosy cheeks; at her blue eyes, which said nothing; at her neat nose, which had no character; at her red lips, from between which no word worth listening to had ever issued.
"Never mind!" said Emma Jane comfortingly. "Everybody says you're awful bright and smart, and mother thinks you'll be better looking all the time as you grow older. You wouldn't believe it, but I was a dreadful homely baby, and homely right along till just a year or two ago, when my red hair began to grow dark. What was the nice man's name?"
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