Copyright: This work is in the public domain in the USA only.
Excerpt: ... pickles had been demolished, the girls separated presently. "You think that Margaret's story was quite true?" Beth asked as they slowly paced the corridor on the way back to their rooms. "I'm sure of it. Of course, her ancestors may have been privates in the wars of 1776 and 1812, but still they would have been soldiers all the same." "But about her father?" "I imagine that he won his West Point cadetship by a competitive examination. You know those appointments are given in that way. He may have been very poor, 142 indeed, but if he stood highest in the examination, he would certainly receive the appointment. When he left West Point he evidently had no friends to help him to a good position, and so he took the first honest work that he could find, at least, I imagine that such was the case." "You are about right, I'm sure. Poor Margaret. I don't know why I pity her, though. She seems quite capable of holding her own. She is worth a score of Abby Dunbars." "Miss Dunbar will either be a freshman next year, again, or else become a special student. I understand that the stupid ones who fail in their examinations, usually linger on for a year or two as 'specials,' so that they can say they have been at Westover." "And Miss Dunbar has failed?" "Flatly." "I'm glad that we got through, Beth, and Mary is all right, too. I was rather worried about Mary's mathematics, to tell the truth, but her aunt gave her some coaching at the last. She is so thankful that she will not have to take them next year." 143 "And I like mathematics better than anything else. I shall take an extra course in it." "You will be sure to win the senior prize for that branch, Beth. I am a little like Mary, however. I shall not take more mathematics than I absolutely must." "We'll not take...