… continued from yesterday’s post:



“I can see some other lights now,” said Mr. Herbert. “I can see the lights from the windows in the town. We shall be home in a quarter of an hour now.” So Alfred began to clap his hands and say, “Ah, mamma! You don’t know how near we are to you.”

Just as he spoke they heard a low baa-baa — quite close to them; so close that it made Mr. Herbert stop the gig. They listened, and it came again, baa-baa, in a soft, pitiful tone. “It must be a lamb,” said Mr. Herbert, “but I can see no sheep nor any creature near us.” “Perhaps it is a poor little lamb that has lost its mother,” said Alfred.

Mr. Herbert got out and was going to look by the roadside, but Bobby, who was impatient to get to his stable, would not stand still, so that he was afraid to leave him. “Let me go, papa,” cried Alfred, jumping up out of his snug nest, and bustling down by the step. “I’ll go and look for the little lamb,” “Climb up the bank by the roadside,” said his papa, “and look down into the ditch.”

Alfred was soon at the top of the bank, but he could see nothing. Still the sound went on, fainter and more pitiful than ever. “Shall I get down into the ditch, papa?” said he. “Yes, if you think you can manage it,” answered his papa. So then Alfred began to get down, slipping and sliding, and jumping, and was soon out of sight.

“I’ve found the poor little lamb, papa,” he soon called out from the bottom of the ditch. Mr. Herbert had now led Bobby and the gig to the edge of the bank, and asked Alfred whether he thought he could lift up the lamb. “I’ll try,” answered he.

Some time passed, in which the lamb bleated more than ever, and the frosty sticks and snowy dry leaves in the ditch crackled and rustled, but nothing was heard of Alfred. “What are you doing, Alfred?” Mr. Herbert called. “I’m coming,” he was answered out of the ditch, in a panting voice, as if quite out of breath. “It’s very difficult to get up the side.”

Mr. Herbert took the reins over his arm, and leaned as far as possible over the bank; and then, with great efforts, Alfred contrived to raise the lamb up within his reach, and to give it up to him. Then he soon clambered up himself.

“Will the poor little baby lamb die?” said he, looking at it as it lay quite quiet over his papa’s arm.

“It is stiff with cold, and most likely nearly starved,” said Mr. Herbert. “It is very young, not more than a week old, I should think.”

“Let us make haste home,” cried Alfred. “Mamma will make it get well.”

Mr. Herbert lifted Alfred in, put the lamb on his knees, covered them both with the cloak, jumped in himself, and off went Bobby as fast as he could trot. They were at their own door in no time.

Out ran little Lucy, before they had even rung the bell. Out came James the groom to take the pony to the stable. Then, out came mamma to the door to welcome them, and help off the coats and hats, and it all looked bright and warm inside. Mr. Herbert lifted out Alfred, and he went tottering along with his poor little lamb in his arms, too full of anxiety about it to speak a word.

“What have you got, Alfred?” cried Lucy. But he was too eager to get the lamb into the warm room to answer her, and never stopped till he had placed it safe down on the rug.

“Where did you get this poor pretty little lamb?” asked Lucy; “and what is the matter with it?”

“We found it in a ditch,” answered he, “and it is cold and hungry. Come, mamma, and tell us what to do to make the lamb well!”

Their papa and mamma soon came in together, and found the two children sitting by the lamb, stroking and patting it. Their mamma sent directly for a blanket to lay it on, and moved it farther from the fire. Then she brought a saucer of warm milk and held it close to its mouth, but it would not drink; so she dipped her fingers in, and then put them into its mouth, and it began to suck them. Then in a minute, to the great joy of the two children, it began to lap up the milk, and never stopped till it had finished it all. “Now do not fear,” she said. “The lamb will get well, I think.”

Lucy patted and kissed it, and then Alfred pulled off his worsted glove, and stroked it; but when his cold little hand lay on the white, soft wool, they all laughed, for it was as red as his worsted comforter, which he still had on.

“My dear little fellow,” said his mamma, “now we must take care of you; why, how cold and wet you are!” So first she made the tea, and rang for the toast and fresh eggs, and then put on the milk to boil; and then she took Alfred on her lap, and took off his cap, and cape, and comforter, and kissed his bright, rosy cheeks; and then she pulled off his boots, and socks, all wet with clambering about in the ditch; and then Lucy ran for dry ones for him, and she put them on. So little Alfred was soon warm, and comfortable, and as happy as he could be.

And then the white milk frothed up, and she poured it out, and they all sat down to tea, and told all their adventures, and laughed and talked away. Every now and then Lucy and Alfred stole on tiptoe to look at the lamb, which had fallen fast asleep. Before they went to bed it had another saucer full of warm milk, and then they got a deep basket with some hay in the bottom, and placed the little creature in it, blanket and all, and there it was left for the night.

The very first thing in the morning, the two children went, hand in hand, to look at the lamb. It started up, and stood on its feet when they went near it, then bleated, and seemed frightened; but when it felt their soft hands patting and stroking its head and sides it seemed to get quiet, and when they brought some more warm milk, it drank out of their hand, and finished it all up. After breakfast, as it was a sunny morning, Mr. Herbert said it might go out into the garden; so Lucy tied a pretty blue ribbon round its throat for a collar, and it was tethered to a stake on the lawn by a rope, which was fastened at one end to the stake, and at the other to its blue collar. It jumped about and frisked now and then; sometimes it bleated and pulled at its cord, but then the children went and stroked it, and said, “Be happy, little lamb!” and gave it more milk.

Mr. Herbert found out the farmer to whom it belonged; but he said he should like the little boy to keep it, as he had saved its life, and to make it a pet lamb. So Alfred said it should be Lucy’s pet lamb too; and it grew prettier, and stronger, and more playful, and cropped the grass, and ran about the field; and they called it Daisy. It soon became so tame that it would come into the room, and follow them in their walks, and they were very fond of it, and always took care of it.