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The Fairfields were holding a family conclave. As the Fairfield family consisted of only three members, the meeting was not large but it was highly enthusiastic. The discussion was about Patty; and as a consequence, Patty herself was taking a lively part in it. "But you promised me, last year, papa," she said, "that if I graduated from the Oliphant School with honours, I needn't go to school this year." "But I meant in the city," explained her father; "it's absurd, Patty, for you to consider your education finished, and you not yet eighteen." "But I'll soon be eighteen, papa, and so suppose we postpone this conversation until then." "Don't be frivolous, my child. This is a serious matter, and requires careful consideration and wise judgement." "That's so," said Nan, "and as I have already considered it carefully, I will give you the benefit of my wise judgment."