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MASTER HOBBY'S SCHOOL A BREAD AND MILK
A February Tribute
By ROSE MILLS POWERS MASTER HOBBY was stern of rule;
'T WAS when youthful Lincoln went, Head was he of the parish school;
On his legal business bent, A very wise man, I'd have you know,
Ere they chose him President. In Fredericksburg, long years ago.
Tall and straight and strong he stood, Some of his pupils used to shake
And of sturdy hardihood, In their buckled shoes whene'er he spake.
Like a fir-tree in the wood. Oh, Master Hobby was very wise,
And within his deep-set glance With bushy eyebrows above his eyes.
Shone a steady radiance,
Lightening his countenance.
Once, when going on his way,
Came he at the end of day Siege and ambush in boyish sport,
To a widow's home to stay; Would lead to business of sterner sort.
But the good dame drooped and sighed; For William Bustle, George's chum,
Bread and milk was all, she cried, Was a likely lad with book and sum,
All her larder could provide. Quite as able to write and read,
Laughed the youthful Lincoln there: And always followed to George's lead.
"Bread and milk is proper fare,
Serve me up a bounteous share;
“Who would care for meat or fish? His switch on either, in righteous zeal,
Bread and milk?-As choice a dish Facts and figures to make more real.
As the President could wish!"
“HANG the winter term!” grumbled Tom Jackson; "never anything to do in it."
"We 've cups," suggested Williams, his equally idle room-mate; "borrow some chocolate."
“Who's got the most?”
“Young Bigelow. But he's bought a padlock. Try the Hippo and the Hummingbird.”
"I don't monkey with that combination." "But Hip 's still at the rink.”
“Then we eat.” Tom bolted across the hall to knock and open the opposite door at the same time.
On the window-seat, a wiry figure snapped upright. "Shut that door from the outside!" ordered the Humming-bird, in a cold tone; “this is no soup kitchen."
“Can't a fellow ask about his geometry without your thinking he wants to borrow something?" asked Tom, deeply injured.
"You can't," declared the Bird, grimly. “But I want"You 'll get it,” promised the Bird.
He was quick, but Tom the quicker. A minute's tussle, and, with feet tightly bound, he was tossed back to the window-seat. “I hated to do it to you,” panted Tom, “but I need that chocolate.'
Again the Bird stole a glance at the clock. Outside, he heard what he had been hoping for. “Look under the bed,” he advised.
“I 'll return it next month," promised his conquerer, and went down on his knees.
The Bird began to choke. It was too easy! The next second the door opened. “Jump him, Hip!" he yelled.
The big fellow on the threshold blinked, then dived headlong. He did not know on whom he landed; it was sufficient that his room-mate had ordered him to do something. There was a howl, the crash of beating feet, then Tom was rolled over on his back. “What 'll I do now?" queried the Hippo, mildly.
“I'll attend to his case. All he wanted was to steal our chocolate.”
The Hippo emitted an outraged roar. But even before Tom could beg for mercy, the Humming-bird came hopping across the room. “Hold him till I get the pitcher.”
“Don't drown me!" begged Tom; “this is my best suit."
“It won't be," prophesied the Bird, and the next moment was back, a can of chocolate in one hand, the water-pitcher in the other. “Hang on while I frost him," he ordered.
Jackson begged in vain. Half a pitcher
of water was sloshed over his head, then the football, then hockey, and, as soon as this powdered chocolate sprinkled into his wet Norton game's over, I 've got to go into the hair. The Bird's expert knuckles completed tank with the crew. All I do is work. Maythe disaster. “Throw him out!” he ordered. be I 'll quit the crew, too,” he added. "Oh, Williams! Come get your birthday cake. And say, Tom, pick on some easy combination next time. Shut the door, Hip.”
Again the Hippo obeyed. "He nearly got you that time,"
St Jo's he observed as he sat down.
"Sure did! Thought you were about due, though. Sometime that crowd will learn to leave us alone. Did Cam waste all his temper on me, or did the rest of you suffer after I was fired?"
The Hippo snorted. "Hefairly roasted me."
“Means well,” owned the Bird; “full of school spirit and all that sort of stuff you read about.”
“Gave you a deal.”
For an instant his room-mate's face clouded, then the old grin returned. “Used toit,” he said. "Never made a school team yet; should n't have got my hopes up now. It was you or me, anyway. So long as one of us gets the place, what's the dif?"
Edward (Caswel “You 've more speed," grumbled the Hippo. “I don't want to play, anyway. Say!” he exclaimed,
"'YOU 'VE GONE STALE, THAT 'S ALL'". suddenly experiencing an inspiration, “we 'll fool Cam. I'll quit The Bird looked at him and a queer smile playing, then he 'll have to put you in my twisted his lean face. “I'd look nice makplace."
ing a team that way, would n't I?” “What do you think I am?"
But the Hippo, having had an idea, was "But I'm sick of the whole thing, Birdie. not one to surrender a novelty. “You're too I've trained and trained and trained ever fussy!” he exclaimed. since I 've been here at St. Jo's. First it 's "It 's like you to think of such a thing,
Hip, but you know it's impossible. You 've "I don't doubt that. You always have always been the athlete of the combination.' supplied the initiative. But even had he no "You play good hockey. Cam 's never
loyalty to his school, I did give him credit given you a show. He never gives any one a for having sense enough not to be tricked show. All he has time to do is to pick on into such a trap." Again the Hippo's wrongs came up
The Bird felt suddenly cold all over. permost. “I'm sick of the whole thing." "What do you mean?" he asked quietly. "You 've gone stale, that 's all."
“That with Payton off the seven, you 're Here was a new idea. The Hippo stared perfectly aware I 'll have to use you in his at his room-mate. “I have,” he solemnly place.” He whirled on his heel and slammed agreed; “I can feel it in the pit of my stomach. the door. I need food, not the coarse stuff at the train- For a moment the room-mates were dumb. ing-table. Did you waste all the chocolate Then the Bird walked to his friend. “Do you on Tom?”
believe that?” he asked. “There's another can, but you don't get "Naturally not." it.”
“Then what are we going to do?'' The Hippo rose in all his might. “Don't “That's up to you." Whatever the Bird I?"
did would be right. “But you can't break training.”
“I'm going to square you first." “Watch me.”
“You can't. He caught me with the "I won't stand for it. It might spoil the goods. He had to fire me.” Hip could be
. school's chance for the Norton game. Put just, as well as loyal. down that chocolate!"
“That's true.” “Make me,” dared the Hippo.
"What really matters is what he said about The Bird, frightened, did not hesitate to
you.” try. But the Hippo promptly sat on him. “I would n't play now," declared the Bird, “For that,” he ruled, "you 'll be the cook and "if he made me captain." the waiter."
“Just because I 've been a chump 's no “I won't."
reason for you to be one. You 've always For three minutes the Bird struggled, wanted to make a school team; now 's your then was forced to give in. “The banquet chance. Grab it." will be served at my desk," ordered Hip. "Not in a thousand years!" "Get busy!"
Nor, try as he would, could Hip budge "Hope you choke. You ought to, for him. The idea of winning his coveted school doing such a thing."
letters at such a price was not to be con“It 's up to me, is n't it? Then why sidered, even between themselves. worry?"
Inside of an hour the story had spread The Bird, still protesting, got to work. throughout the school. Had the Hippo been What he ultimately placed before the rebel less popular, he would have been sent to would have made any one less hungry throw Coventry at once. But it was when Mr. the cup at him. But Hip sipped joyously. .
Campbell's charge of treachery against the “This is great!” he declared. “Oh, come in." Humming-bird was whispered that indigna
He expected Williams. Instead, Mr. tion really blazed. They had had too many Campbell was staring at him in frank dis- practical expositions of the loyalty which gust. “Why are you breaking training?”' existed between the room-mates to believe snapped the coach.
anything in the world could make one false The Humming-bird catapulted into the to the other. foreground. “'Cause he needed it,” he an- "Look what I got this afternoon," raged nounced; "he 's gone stale."
Tom Jackson. “The Bird would never go "Ah! has he?" Mr. Campbell looked from back on Hip. Cam ought to be made to one to the other slowly. “I've made a good apologize." athlete of you, Payton, the best we've had “Cam 's never gone back on anything, in five years. Now I 'm going to make a either,” Williams reminded him. better example. You're off the hockey “He 's wrecked the seven,” mourned team for breaking training."
Blaine. “We 've lost that Norton game "That 's not fair," protested the Hum- already." ming-bird wildly. "It's all my fault; I made “The Bird 's not so bad at wing,” sugthe chocolate."
gested Williams, hopefully.
“He won't play,” declared Tom. “He 's The result was that a disorganized seven said that and he means it."
went into the Norton game on Saturday “We 've got to do something," argued afternoon. The visitors were quick to sense Miller. “We can't take a licking from Norton. the situation. Their own play speeded up, What 's left of the seven 's gone ballooning; their attack became sparkling in its teamwe've got to get them back to earth.”
work, and the left side of the rink was cheer“How?"
ing madly within three minutes, for the score But Miller could not answer. An informal was already 1 to 0. meeting of the sixth form only resulted in a St. Jo's took the blow dumbly. They had Phillipic from the furious Humming-bird. not counted on being overwhelmed. And Therefore Nailor was put in Hip's position that was what they saw ahead. Again that the next afternoon, and there was about as machine-like attack began. Again and again much fighting spirit shown in the practice as only whirlwind skating by Dickson and at a pink tea.
Sackett prevented another score. When St. Dickson, the captain, broken-hearted, Jo's recovered the puck, it was only to shoot took his troubles to Mr. Campbell and came wildly. Her individual runs started well, away without comfort. He tried to argue but broke down time after time, because there with the Humming-bird and came away with was no well-formed line to drive home the sincere regrets. Thereupon he took his life in attack. his hands and cornered the Hippo. “You ’re Williams tried to organize the cheering. responsible for this,” he said. "How are you “Get into it, fellows!” he begged. “Show going to get us out of it?''
'em the whole school is n't yellow.” “Did n't know I was.”
The Humming-bird, following a flying “But can't you see that you and the Bird Norton forward, heard the taunt. One of have wrecked our chance of winning?” his best friends was calling some one yellow.
“Oh, I 'm sorry enough for my part, but He had no time to analyze the charge; he acI don't blame the Bird; he got a raw deal.” cepted it as a reflection on the Hippo. He
"But he 's giving you a rawer one by not forgot everything except that he was filling filling your place. Thought you two stuck old Hip's place. together; thought you always protected each He saw the Norton player check his speed other."
to shoot for the goal. With all his power, “We are n't fighting any over this,” he lunged. There was a thud as the shot drawled Hip.
was blocked, a yell of delight as the Bird “No, you bet you 're not! The Bird 's as wheeled and started back up the ice, dribbig a quitter as you are."
bling the puck ahead of him, “Say, you leave the Bird alone!"
He was back of the first line of defense “I will. I've no use for a chap who 'll go now. He caroomed past the attacking cenback on his friend. Think that over."
ter. One more man, and then only the The Hippo did think it over, so much so crouching goal-keeper was between him and that he finally unburdened himself to the a tied score. He heard a sharp-called signal Bird. “If any one 's got the idea I 'm trying from across the rink, knew Dickson had orto get you in worse by not taking your place," dered him to pass, but thought only of the snapped the Bird, “here 's where we fool 'em goal and Hip. again. I don't care about what Cam said The heavier Hippo might have made the to me, but no one 's going to be able to say play. But the Norton back charged. There you ’ve wrecked the seven. We play the was a sharp check, a swirl of powdered ice, a game together. I'm going to play the Nor- groan from St. Jo's, and the puck was on its ton game for both of us.
way back up the rink again. The Hippo tried to prove it unnecessary “Obey signals!" shouted Dickson; "I 'll for the Bird to swallow his pride, but his put in another sub if you won't play the friend would not listen. “I'm going to take
game.” your place,” was all he would say.
The Bird's jaw set. Calling him a sub did He found Dickson cool and unenthusiastic not hurt. That was what he was. But to when he reported for practice the next after- tell him that he was not playing the game after noon, nor did any of the other six question such a run made him furious. St. Jo's had him as to his change of mind. As for the not come so near scoring before, and now they coach, he confined himself strictly to the found fault with him. They had graver work in hand.
reason a moment later. The speedy Nor