“Your father is a fool,” she said, “and you are three young varmints that ought to be whipped within an inch of your lives.”
“He isn’t,” cried Faith. “We’re not,” cried the boys. But Mrs. Davis was gone.
“Goodness, isn’t she mad!” said Jerry. “And what is a ‘varmint’ anyhow?”
John Meredith paced up and down the parlour for a few minutes; then he went back to his study and sat down. But he did not return to his German theology. He was too grievously disturbed for that. Mrs. Davis had wakened him up with a vengeance. WAS he such a remiss, careless father as she had accused him of being? HAD he so scandalously neglected the bodily and spiritual welfare of the four little motherless creatures dependent on him?