Measles, Mischief, and Mishaps (The Story Girl Series #2)

Overview

Book two of stories featuring the adventures of Sara Stanley—for ages 10-12

The King cousins get into a pack of trouble. First they convince a neighbor girl to defy her mother and go to the Magic Lantern show with them. Then one of them is supposed to be minding a baby and it disappears. Later one of the boys decides to show off and eats poison berries. This second book in the series based on stories by L. M. Montgomery provides an enchanting ...

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Overview

Book two of stories featuring the adventures of Sara Stanley—for ages 10-12

The King cousins get into a pack of trouble. First they convince a neighbor girl to defy her mother and go to the Magic Lantern show with them. Then one of them is supposed to be minding a baby and it disappears. Later one of the boys decides to show off and eats poison berries. This second book in the series based on stories by L. M. Montgomery provides an enchanting look into life on Prince Edward Island at the turn of the 20th century.

Two boys visiting relatives on Prince Edward Island become entranced by Sara Stanley and her stories, and have adventures involving a girl who sneaks into a Magic Lantern show, a missing baby, and a boy who eats poison berries.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310705994
  • Publisher: Zonderkidz
  • Publication date: 2/6/2004
  • Series: Story Girl Series, #2
  • Pages: 112
  • Age range: 10 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 4.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Barbara Davoll lives in Schroon Lake, New York, with her husband, Roy. They minister to children through Word of Life International.

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Table of Contents

Chapter One A Long Ago Tragedy...7 Chapter Two Magic Seed...15 Chapter Three The Magic Lantern Show...25 Chapter Four The Story Girl Does Penance...37 Chapter Five Rachel Ward's Blue Chest...51 Chapter Six The Missing Baby...61 Chapter Seven Forbidden Fruit...71 Chapter Eight The Devil Made Him Do It...83

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First Chapter

Measles, Mischief, and Mishaps (Book 2)


By Lucy Maud Montgomery

Zondervan

Copyright © 2004 The Zondervan Corporation, DAvid Macdonald, trustee and Ruth Macdonald
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-310-70599-1


Chapter One

A Long Ago Tragedy

"There are things one just knows about," said the Story Girl with dignity. "One feels about them."

There is no way to explain the fun we had on Prince Edward Island that summer. My brother, Felix, and I had always been lonely living with just father in Toronto. We had never had the joy of having lots of friends, but all that summer there was a whole gang of cousins to argue and play with.

Of all of the King cousins, I guess our favorite was who we called the Story Girl, Sara Stanley. A bond formed between us. Maybe because she, like us, didn't have a mother who was living. We understood her so well, and she understood us. During the previous week, she had been away visiting Aunt Louisa in Charlottetown, and we had been missing her and her funny stories. But now she was back and life was good again.

The day she came back to us, she was wearing a wreath of flowers she called Canterbury Bells in her hair. Her eyes were unusually pretty, though she was not as pretty as Felicity or even as lovely as our cousin Cecily. It just seemed Sara had a fresh beauty that gave her a sparkle the other girls didn't have. And the Canterbury Bells in her hair almost made her seem like a princess.

She said, "Isn't Canterbury Bells a lovely name for a flower? It makes you think of cathedrals and chimes. Let's go over to Uncle Stephen's Walk in the orchard. I heard a story while I was gone-a true story-about an old lady I saw in town at Aunt Louisa's. She was such a dear old lady with lovely silvery curls." Once again, we were held captive by her voice and were soon carried away by the story she told.

"My story is about Mrs. Dunbar and the captain of the Fanny," she said, sitting down and leaning against a tree trunk. "It's sad and beautiful and true. I do love to tell stories that I know really happened. Mrs. Dunbar lives next door to Aunt Louisa in town. She is so sweet. You wouldn't think to look at her that she had ever had a tragedy in her life, but she has. Aunt Louisa told me that it happened long, long ago. Doesn't it seem that interesting things like this always took place long ago? They never seem to happen at the present. Well, anyway, it happened in 1849. Like folks from many places, a number of young men from our Island got the "gold fever" and took off for the gold fields of California, hoping to become rich.

"It's easy to go to California now, but it was a very different matter back then. There were no railroads, as there are now. If you wanted to go to California, you had to go in a sailing vessel all the way around Cape Horn. It was a long and dangerous journey. Sometimes it took more than six months. When you got there, you had no way of sending word back home except by the same way you had just come. It sometimes took more than a year before people at home heard a word about you. Can you imagine how difficult that would be?

"But these young men didn't think of things like that. All they could think about were riches and gold. They made their arrangements and chartered a sailing vessel, the Fanny, to take them to California.

"The captain of the Fanny is the hero of my story. His name was Alan Dunbar, and he was young and handsome. Heroes always are, you know. Aunt Louisa said he was in love-wildly in love-with Margaret Grant. Margaret was as beautiful as a dream, with soft blue eyes and clouds of golden hair. And she loved Alan Dunbar just as much as he loved her. But her parents were bitterly opposed to him. They forbade Margaret to see or speak to him. They hadn't anything against him as a man; they just didn't want her to waste her life by marrying a sailor.

"Well, when Alan Dunbar learned that he would be going to California on the Fanny, he was in despair. He felt he could never go so far away for so long and leave his Margaret behind. And Margaret felt she could never let him go. I know exactly how she felt."

"How can you know?" interrupted Peter suddenly. "You ain't old enough to have a boyfriend. How can you know?"

The Story Girl looked at Peter with a frown. She didn't like to be interrupted when telling a story.

"There are things one just knows about," said the Story Girl with dignity. "One feels about them."

Peter was quiet but not convinced. The Story Girl continued.

"Finally, Margaret ran away with Alan, and they were married in Charlottetown. Alan intended to take her with him to California on the Fanny. If it was a hard journey for a man, it would be even more difficult for a woman. But Margaret would have dared anything for Alan's sake.

"They spent three days of happiness before receiving the bad news. The crew and passengers of the Fanny refused to let Captain Dunbar take his wife along. Margaret would have to stay behind. All of his pleading and prayers did no good. They say Alan stood on the deck of the Fanny and begged the men while the tears ran down his face; but they would not listen. He had to leave Margaret behind. Oh, what a sad parting it must have been!"

There was heartbreak in the Story Girl's voice and tears came into our eyes. There in the orchard, we cried over a story that had happened many years before.

"When it was all over, Margaret's mother and father forgave her for marrying Alan, and she went back home to wait. And wait. How awful the waiting must have been for her. Almost a year later, a letter finally arrived-but not from Alan. Alan was dead. Though the letter did not reveal how Alan died, it did say that he had been buried in California. While Margaret had been thinking of him, longing for him, and praying for him, he lay unknowing in his lonely, faraway grave."

Cecily jumped up, shaking with sobs. "Oh, don't ... don't go on," she begged. "I can't bear to hear any more."

"There is no more," said the Story Girl. "That was the end of it-the end of everything for Margaret. It didn't kill her, but her poor heart never recovered."

"I just wish I could get hold of those guys who wouldn't let the captain take his wife," said Peter angrily.

"Well, it was awfully sad," said Felicity, wiping her eyes. "But it was long ago, and we can't do any good by crying over it now. Let's go get something to eat. I made some nice little rhubarb tarts this morning."

We went. In spite of new disappointments and old heartbreaks, we still had appetites. And Felicity did make scrumptious rhubarb tarts!

Chapter Two

Magic Seed

"We should have known better than to trust Billy Robinson," said Felicity. "After all, what can you expect from a pig but a grunt?"

We all had been working hard collecting money for the library fund. When we counted our money, we found that Peter had the largest amount-three dollars. Felicity was second with two dollars and fifty cents. The eggs she had been collecting to raise money sold well.

"If you had to pay Father for all the extra wheat you fed to the hens so they would lay well, you wouldn't have made so much, Miss Felicity," said Dan. We could tell he was jealous.

"I didn't feed them extra," Felicity said defensively. "Aunt Olivia's hens have been laying well too, and she fed them herself."

"Never mind," said Cecily. "We all have something to give except poor Sara Ray. I still can't believe her mother wouldn't let her collect for the library. What would it have hurt? I just don't understand her mother."

"I bet Sara Ray's really whining around today, feeling bad with nothing to give," Felix commented.

"Well, so would you," said Cecily.

"Hey look, here she comes up the hill now," said Peter. "And she isn't whining and crying; she's smiling."

When Sara Ray smiled (and she didn't waste her smiles on just any old thing or person), she almost seemed pretty. She had a couple of cute dimples, and her teeth were small and white, like little pearls. All her teeth were showing as she burst through the door into our kitchen.

"Look at this!" she cried excitedly, dumping a large amount of money onto our table. "I had a letter today from my Uncle Arthur in Winnipeg, and he sent me three dollars! He said I was to use it anyway I liked. Now Ma can't refuse to let me give it to the library. She thinks it's an awful waste, but she always goes by what Uncle Arthur says. The best part is that I prayed and prayed that some money might come, and now it has! See what praying does!"

We all knew that Sara Ray had been praying for some money to give, but none of us thought it would happen. I'm afraid we didn't rejoice as much as we should have, either. We had all earned our contributions by working hard or "begging." Somehow it didn't seem right that hers had just fallen out of the sky-as much a miracle as anything we had ever seen.

"She did pray for it you know," said Felix, after Sara Ray left for home. "I guess that's hard work, too."

"That's too easy a way of earning money," grumbled Peter. He was upset that now he and Sara Ray would have to share first place in the collecting contest we had set up between ourselves. "If the rest of us had just sat down and prayed, how much do you s'pose we'd have? It don't seem fair to me."

"Oh well, it's different with Sara," said Dan. "We could earn money and she couldn't. But let's go down to the orchard. The Story Girl got a letter from her father today, and she's going to read it to us."

We headed to the orchard quickly. A letter from the Story Girl's father was an event. To hear her read it was almost as good as hearing her tell a story.

Uncle Blair, who had just been a name to us before we came to Carlisle, was now very real. Our grown-ups didn't seem to approve of him very much. He belonged to a different world than theirs. Since the Story Girl's mother died, he hadn't been content at home. He'd taken to traveling the world, spending the fortune he had made as an artist; and occasionally doing some outstanding piece of art, for a good price. He adored the Story Girl. But not enough, it seemed, to arrange for her to be with him. That always seemed to cause the Story Girl to be sad. She missed him greatly and just lived for his letters and the occasional gifts he sent from around the world.

The Story Girl was said to look a lot like her father. People said her creative way of telling stories was inherited from him, but it was clear from his letters that Uncle Blair was a good writer, too.

Felix and I had always been a little ashamed of our father's letters to us from South America. Father could talk well, but as Felix said, he couldn't "write worth a cent." The letters we received from him were just scrawls telling us to be good boys and not to be any trouble for Uncle Alec and Aunt Janet. He always said he missed us, though, and was lonely without us. We were glad to get his letters, but we never read them to everybody in the circle in the orchard, as we did with Sara's letters from her father.

In this most recent letter, Uncle Blair said that he was spending the summer in Switzerland. He described the mountain lakes, crystal air, and snow-covered Alps. His letter included a tale of "The Prisoner of Chillon," written by a famous poet, Lord Byron. It was all so romantic. It made us want to travel and see the world.

"It must be splendid to go to Europe," sighed Cecily longingly.

"I'm going someday," said the Story Girl.

We looked at her with awe. In those days, Europe seemed as far away as the moon. It was hard to believe that one of us would ever go there.

But Aunt Julia had gone-and she had been brought up in Carlisle on the same farm. So it was possible that the Story Girl might go, too.

"What will you do there?" asked Peter practically.

"I'll learn how to tell stories to all the world," said the Story Girl dreamily.

It was a lovely golden-brown evening. The orchard and farmlands around us were full of kissing shadows. Over in the east, above the Awkward Man's house, floated the wispy clouds we called the Wedding Veil of the Proud Princess. We sat there looking at them and remembering the sad tale the Story Girl had told of the princess who was so proud. While we talked, the first star of the evening appeared.

All of a sudden, I remembered that I needed to take my dose of magic seed to help me grow. I was beginning to lose faith in the seeds, as they hadn't helped a bit as far as I could see. I ran into the house, took the box of seeds out of my trunk, and swallowed the pinch I was supposed to take. Just then, I heard Dan's voice behind me.

"Beverley King, what have you got there?"

I dropped the box quickly back into the trunk. "None of your business," I said defiantly.

"Yes it is." Dan was too much of a good friend to resent what I had said. "Look here, Bev, is that magic seed? And did you get it from Billy Robinson?"

I looked at Dan, suspicion growing in my mind.

"What do you know about Billy Robinson and his magic seed?" I demanded.

"Just this. I bought a box from him for ... for something. He said he wasn't going to sell any of it to anybody else. Did he sell it to you?"

"Yes, he did," I said in disgust, beginning to understand that Billy's magic seed was a fraud.

"What for? Your mouth is a decent size," said Dan.

"Mouth? It had nothing to do with my mouth! He said it would make me grow tall. And it hasn't-not an inch! I don't see what you wanted it for! You are tall enough."

"I got it for my mouth," said Dan with a silly grin. "The girls in school laugh at my mouth. They say it looks like a big gash in a pie. Billy said that the magic seed would shrink it for sure."

Well! It seemed Billy had deceived us both-and not only us. We didn't find out the whole story until summer was over. Billy had deceived every student at Carlisle school in some way or another. We had all bought magic seed, promising to keep it a secret. Felix had believed it would make him thin. Cecily was told her hair would become curly overnight, and Sara Ray was assured that she would no longer be afraid of old Peg Bowen. Felicity was supposed to become as clever as the Story Girl, and the Story Girl was told she would become a good cook like Felicity. We didn't find out for a long time what good the seed was supposed to do for Peter. But finally, he confessed to me that he had taken it to make Felicity like him. Billy had played on all of our weaknesses. He was nothing but a big deceiver. It made us feel even worse when we discovered that we had paid good money for plain old caraway seed that grew in Billy's backyard.

We didn't tell anyone about being hoaxed.

Continues...


Excerpted from Measles, Mischief, and Mishaps (Book 2) by Lucy Maud Montgomery Copyright © 2004 by The Zondervan Corporation, DAvid Macdonald, trustee and Ruth Macdonald. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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