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have already described it at greater length than I had
intended, so I will only remind myself of the tea 1
had at an inn on the way home. The inn was kept by
a friend of Dixon'san ex-butler who "had been with
Lord Dumborough for years". I well remember the
snug fire-lit parlour where I ate my two boiled eggs,
and how the innkeeper and his wife made a fuss over
me. Dixon, of course, transferred me to them in my
full status of "one of the quality", and then dis-
appeared to give the horses their gruel and get his
own tea in the kitchen. I set off on the ten dark miles
home in a glow of satisfied achievement, and we dis-
cussed every detail of the day except my disaster.
Dixon had made enquiries about "the other young
gentleman", and had learnt that his name was Mildcn
and that he was staying at Dumborough Park for
Christmas. He described him as a proper little sports-
man; but I was reticent on the subject. Nor did 1
refer to the question of our going out with the hounds
again. By the time we were home I was too tired to
care what anybody in the world thought about me.


IT WAS nearly seven o'clock when we got home;
as Aunt Evelyn, had begun to expect me quite early
in the afternoon, she was so intensely relieved to see
me safe and sound that she almost forgot to make a
fuss about my prolonged absence. Dixon, with his
persuasive manner next morning, soon hoodwinked
her into taking it all as a matter of course. He made
our day sound so safe and confidential. Not a word
was said about my having tumbled off (and he had
carefully brushed every speck of mud off my back
when we stopped at the inn for tea).