Five Little Peppers Midway, Margaret Sidney
Five Little Peppers Midway
Margaret Sidney
8:50 h Children Lvl 3.86
The Five Little Peppers is a book series created by American author Margaret Sidney which was published from 1881 to 1916. It covers the lives of the five children in their native state and develops with their rescue by a wealthy gentleman who takes an interest in the family. Five Little Peppers Midway is a second book in the series, published in 1890. The story starts five years after the events in The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew, now the Peppers are living with Mr. King in his mansion, but their happiness is threatened by his spiteful cousin.

Five Little Peppers Midway

by
Margaret Sidney

To My Little Margaret
Who Is Phronsie Pepper
To All Who Know Her
This Book Is Lovingly Inscribed


Five Little Peppers Midway

I
Phronsie’s Pie

“Jefferson,” said Phronsie, with a grave uplifting of her eyebrows, “I think I will go down into the kitchen and bake a pie; a very little pie, Jefferson.”

“Bless you, Miss,” replied the cook, showing his white teeth in glee, “it is the making of the kitchen when you come it.”

“Yes, Jefferson,” said Phronsie slowly, “I think I will go down make one. It must be very, very full of plums, you know,” looking up at him anxiously, “for Polly dearly loves plums.”

“It shall be that plummy,” said Jefferson convincingly, “that you’d think you never saw such a one for richness. Oh, my! what a pie that shall be!” exclaimed the cook, shutting up one eye to look through the other in a spasm of delight at an imaginary pie; “so it’s for Miss Mary, is it?”

“Yes,” said Phronsie, “it is. Oh, Jefferson, I’m so glad you like to have me make one,” she clasped her hands in silent rapture, and sat down on the lowest stair to think it over a bit, Jefferson looking at her, forgetful that the under cook was fuming in the deserted domains over his delay to return. At last he said, bowing respectfully, “If you please, Miss, it’s about time to begin. Such a pie ain’t done without a deal of care, and we’d best have it a-baking as soon as may be.”

“Yes,” said Phronsie, getting off from her stair, and surrendering her hand to his big black palm, “we ought to go right this very minute. But I must get my apron on;” she stopped and looked down at her red dress.

“Oh! you can take one of my aprons,” said the cook, “they’re as fine, and big, and white, and I’ll just put you in one of ‘em and tie you up as snug; you’ll come out as clean and sweet when we’re through, as you are now, Miss.”

“Tie me up?” laughed Phronsie in glee. “Oh! how nice, Jefferson. Do you know I love you very much, Jefferson, you’re so very good to me?”

The big fellow drew a long breath. “No, Miss, I’m big and black, and just fit to stay downstairs,” he managed to say.

“But I love you better because you are black, Jefferson,” insisted Phronsie, “a great deal better. You are not like everybody else, but you are just yourself,” clinging to his hand.

“Well, Miss, I ain’t just fit for a lily to touch and that’s the truth,” looking down at his palm that the small white hand grasped closely. “It’s clean, Miss,” he added with pardonable pride, “but it’s awful black.”

“I like it better black, Jefferson,” said Phronsie again, “really and truly I do, because then it’s your very, very own,” in a tone that thrilled him much as if a queen had knighted him on the spot.

This important declaration over, the two set forth on their way toward the kitchen, Phronsie clinging to his hand, and chatting merrily over the particular pie in prospect, with varied remarks on pies in general, that by and by would be ventured upon if this present one were a success — and very soon tied up in one of the cook’s whitest aprons she was seated with due solemnity at the end of the baking table, the proper utensils and materials in delightful confusion before her, and the lower order of kitchen satellites revolving around her, and Jefferson the lesser sphere.

“Now all go back to your work,” said that functionary when he considered the staring and muttered admiration had been indulged in long enough, “and leave us.”

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