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One summer afternoon many years ago a child, called Peggy Roberts, arrived at the door of her aunt's house in an open carriage. Peggy was just eight years old. She had been in the train since early in the morning, and was very tired when the carriage stopped at the door of Seafield. Then she noticed that everything round her was new and different from things at home, and she forgot about feeling tired. The house was exactly like the tea-caddy that stood on the dining-room side-board at home, and had been brought from China by her uncle--that is to say, it was quite square, and you felt as if you could lift off the top like the lid of the tea-caddy.

Right up to the windows there grew such a lovely rose-tree, covered all over with branches of bright red roses.

"O Martin, let me get some of the roses!" Peggy cried, standing still on the steps of the house.

Martin was her aunt's maid, a stout, cross-looking woman, who always refused to allow Peggy to do anything she wanted.

"No, no, Miss Peggy, come in for your tea; the roses are far too high up," she said. Peggy looked up at the beautiful dangling branches, and her mouth went down at the corners; she thought nothing would make her happy unless she got one of them.

It must have been because she was so tired that she began to cry about nothing in this way. The coachman was more good-natured than Martin, however, for he stood up on the box of the carriage and gathered a bunch of the roses. "Here, missie," he said, leaning down from his high seat, and handing them to Peggy.

"Oh! oh! oh!" Peggy cried, burying her nose in the lovely red bunch.

But then something horrid happened: a whole family of great, fat, brown earwigs came hurrying and dropping out of the roses, in the greatest speed to get away. Down went the roses on to the steps, and Peggy cried in earnest now.

There was nothing she hated like earwigs, and to have a whole nest of them fall out on her frock was too much for her altogether. And then Martin was so pleased.

"See there, Miss Peggy; that's what you get for wanting to pick flowers!" she said. But she did brush away the earwigs, and stamped upon the biggest of them to Peggy's great disgust. Then they went into the house, and she had to speak to her aunt; and, of course, she had nothing to say to her.

Tea was on the table. A different kind of bread was there from the home-bread Peggy knew. She went and stood beside the table and looked at it, then put out her finger and touched it.

"Don't touch things on the table!" said Aunt Euphemia.

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