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Reading The Circus of Adventure again. (Page four to Page seven) 2014.01.03  

2014-01-03 10:50:25|  分类: The Circus of Ad |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Page four
‘There’s the next-door cat,’ said Dinah. ‘Come to see what all the fuss is about, I expect! Hang on to Kiki, Jack.’

It was a pleasant sunny afternoon, and the four really enjoyed themselves ‘mooching about’ as Jack called it. They all longed for Bill to arrive. Then the family would be complete—except, of course, that it would have one too many, if he really brought the unexpected boy with him!

‘We all will,’ said Philip. ‘Good old Bill! What luck for us that he’s not on one of his hush-hush jobs just now, and can come away with us!’

They went to hang over the front gate together. Kiki kept putting her crest up and down excitedly. She knew quite well that Bill was coming.

‘Bill! Pay the bill!’ she kept saying. ‘Where’s Bill? Pop goes Bill!
‘You’re a silly-billy,’ said Lucy-Ann, stroking the parrot’s soft neck. ‘That’s what you are!’
‘That’s an idiotic thing to call her,’ said Dinah. ‘Just as we’re expecting Bill! She’ll screech out “Silly-Billy” to him now, I bet you she will!’

Page five
She was right. It was Bill’s car. It drew up at the front gate, and Bill’s jolly face grinned at them as he looked out of the window. Somebody sat beside him. Was it the boy?

‘Come on out,’ said Bill, and in the midst of a dead silence the owner of the loud cough slid out of the car in as dignified a manner as he could.

His eyes were as black as his hair, and he had thicker lashes than either of the girls. And he certainly had magnificent manners

He went to Mrs. Cunningham, and took the hand she held out to him. But instead of shaking it he bowed over it and touched it with his lips

‘Don’t!’ she said. Lucy-Ann put her hands firmly behind her back. She didn’t want them kissed either. What an extraordinary boy!

Kiki held out her left foot as usual, to shake hands. Gus looked extremely surprised, but his manners remained perfect. He held out his hand to Kiki’s foot. Unfortunately Kiki dug her talons into his ringers, and he gave a loud yell.

Page six
‘It spiks!’ he announced in awe. ‘It spiks. It spiks words. It sees my blidding finger, and spiks to fetch the doctor. I never haf seen a Kiki-bird before.’

‘Oh, Bill. Sorry, we weren’t thinking,’ said Jack, and ran back at once. ‘Gus rather took our breath away. What nationality is he?’

‘Oh, he’s a bit of a mixture, I think,’ said Bill. ‘Don’t bother him about his family or his home,or he’ll probably burst into tears. Sorry to inflict him on you like this. He’ll be better when he’s shaken down a bit. I believe he got on quite all right at the English school he was at. Anyway—I’ll take him off your hands as much as I can, I promise you, as it’s my friend who asked me to keep an eye on him!’

‘Well, I should hardly think they’d know anything about it,’ said Bill. ‘You take that bag, Jack—and you that box, Philip. Well—it’s nice to see you all home again! And Kiki, too, you old rascal. How dare you call me Silly-Billy?’

‘You did,’ said Aunt Allie. ‘And I have unpacked it. For the third time, Jack, you are NOT going to take a score of books about birds. Two is more than enough, so make your choice.’

Page seven 
‘You can carry those round your neck,’ said Mrs. Cunningham. ‘Do try and remember that there will be seven of us in the car and all the luggage, too. We really must take the least luggage possible. Kiki, bring that string back. KIKI! Jack, if you don’t stop Kiki running off with absolutely everything I put down for a moment, I shall go mad.’

‘She’s a her, not a him,’ said Jack, ‘and stop talking about cages. No ordering about, please!’

Gustavus apparently did not follow this, but he resented Jack’s firm voice. He sat up stiffly.

This bird iss—iss—wicket!’ he said. ‘Not good. Wicket. I will not haf him wizzout a cage.’

‘Now, Jack, now!’ said Mrs. Cunningham warningly, as she saw Jack’s furious face. ‘He’s not used to Kiki yet. Or to our ways. Give him a chance to settle down. Don’t take any notice of him. Gustavus, the bird is not wicked. She is good. Sit still and be quiet.

‘I have a beeg, BEEG cage,’ he said, most dramatically. ‘But I keep it for small, silly boys. I will bring it for you, Gus. If you want a beeg, BEEG cage you shall have it for yourself. You shall sit in it and be safe from that wicket, wicket bird.’

To Jack’s enormous surprise Gustavus burst into tears! All four children looked at him aghast. How could a boy of eleven be so incredibly silly? Even Lucy-Ann was disgusted. Mrs.Cunningham hurried over to him.

‘He’s tired out,’ she said to the others. ‘It’s all strange to him here, and he’s never seen a parrot like Kiki before. Nor have any of us, come to that! Cheer up, Gustavus. Jack didn’t mean what he said, of course.’
I jolly well did,’ began Jack. ‘Kiki’s old cage is enormous and . . .’

‘Well! To think we’ve got to put up with that these hols!’ began Jack. ‘All I can say is that I’m going to take him firmly in hand—and he won’t enjoy it one bit!’ 

‘I’ll take him in hand, too,’ said Dinah, quite fiercely. Who does he think he is—laying down the law about Kiki and a cage! Oh, Jack—I do wish you’d got that old cage and brought it in. I’d have loved to see Gustavus’s face.’

‘Dry your eye, you mean,’ said Philip. ‘I hope Gussy’s not going to burst into tears too often. 

All right, Mother,’ said Philip. ‘All the same—it isn’t like Bill to thrust someone like Gussy on us at a moment’s notice, just at the beginning of the hols.’
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