"I SAY NO."
by WILKIE COLLINS
BOOK THE FIRST--AT SCHOOL.
THE SMUGGLED SUPPER.
Outside the bedroom the night was black and still.
The small rain fell too softly to be heard in the garden; not a
leaf stirred in the airless calm; the watch-dog was asleep, the
cats were indoors; far or near, under the murky heaven, not a
sound was stirring.
Inside the bedroom the night was black and still.
Miss Ladd knew her business as a schoolmistress too well to allow
night-lights; and Miss Ladd's young ladies were supposed to be
fast asleep, in accordance with the rules of the house. Only at
intervals the silence was faintly disturbed, when the restless
turning of one of the girls in her bed betrayed itself by a
gentle rustling between the sheets. In the long intervals of
stillness, not even the softly audible breathing of young
creatures asleep was to be heard.