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Anne Of Avonlea Lucy Maud Montgomery

Around the Bend

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Anne made an impatient movement.

"I hate to say it. . .it seems so disloyal. . .but, well, I don't like Ruby Gillis now. I liked her when we went to school and Queen's together. . .though not so well as you and Jane of course. But this last year at Carmody she seems so different. . .so. . .so. . ."

"I know," nodded Diana. "It's the Gillis coming out in her. . . she can't help it. Mrs. Lynde says that if ever a Gillis girl thought about anything but the boys she never showed it in her walk and conversation. She talks about nothing but boys and what compliments they pay her, and how crazy they all are about her at Carmody. And the strange thing is, they are, too. . ." Diana admitted this somewhat resentfully. "Last night when I saw her in Mr. Blair's store she whispered to me that she'd just made a new `mash.' I wouldn't ask her who it was, because I knew she was dying to BE asked. Well, it's what Ruby always wanted, I suppose. You remember even when she was little she always said she meant to have dozens of beaus when she grew up and have the very gayest time she could before she settled down. She's so different from Jane, isn't she? Jane is such a nice, sensible, lady-like girl."

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"Dear old Jane is a jewel," agreed Anne, "but," she added, leaning forward to bestow a tender pat on the plump, dimpled little hand hanging over her pillow, "there's nobody like my own Diana after all. Do you remember that evening we first met, Diana, and `swore' eternal friendship in your garden? We've kept that `oath,' I think. . .we've never had a quarrel nor even a coolness. I shall never forget the thrill that went over me the day you told me you loved me. I had had such a lonely, starved heart all through my childhood. I'm just beginning to realize how starved and lonely it really was. Nobody cared anything for me or wanted to be bothered with me. I should have been miserable if it hadn't been for that strange little dream-life of mine, wherein I imagined all the friends and love I craved. But when I came to Green Gables everything was changed. And then I met you. You don't know what your friendship meant to me. I want to thank you here and now, dear, for the warm and true affection you've always given me."

"And always, always will," sobbed Diana. "I shall never love anybody . . .any girl. . .half as well as I love you. And if I ever do marry and have a little girl of my own I'm going to name her anne."

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Anne Of Avonlea
Lucy Maud Montgomery

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