FIRST of all, I must tell you who I am.
My name is PE-NEL-O-PE, but Jock always calls me Pen. I am eight years old; Jock is half-past six.
We live with mother and father and Rover and Tibby in a house not very far from a large city.
Mother is the nicest person I know in all the world.
Father is a very big man. He always has lots of money in his pocket. He goes to business in a train every day.
We have a real farm, quite near to our house, where they keep cows, chickens, pigs, horses, and geese. Jock and I often go to see them all.
One day in summer we went to see the farmer. I had my blue dress on, so that the cows would not be angry when they saw me.
We met the farmer near the stable. “Come,” he said; “I have something to show you to-day.”
“What is it?” we said both at the same time.
“Come and see,” was all that he would say.
Then he took us into the stable where he keeps Nobby, the big brown horse, who likes sugar.
Now Nobby was not there, but in the straw were seven little puppy dogs—oh, so sweet and cuddly!
Jock danced round and round the farmer. “May we have one?” he said.
“Ask mother,” said the farmer, and off we ran at once.
Mother was at the garden gate.
We ran up to her. Jock was first, but it was nearly a dead heat. Mother opened the gate and said,—
“Well, what have you seen to-day?”
“O mother,” said Jock, out of breath.
“O mother dear” I said, out of breath also.
“Farmer has such lovely puppies,” we both said at once. “May we have one to keep?”
By this time we both had our arms round mother’s waist, and she was laughing.
“Yes, we can,” I said, for I knew.
“If father says yes,” said mother. “You must ask him when he comes home.”
So we went to the station to meet him. Jock took his bag, and I took his paper parcel to carry it home for him.
On the way home I asked him if he liked dogs, and he said, “Of course.”
Then Jock said, “Little dogs?”
“One at a time is all right.”
“One puppy dog with brown spots on white?” Jock went on.
“Where is it?” asked father, and his eyes were laughing; you could not see his mouth for his beard.
Then we told him, and he said “Yes,” just at the garden gate. So that was how we got Rover.
Rover was very soft and downy when he first came to us. But he soon grew to be a big dog.
Jock and I taught him many tricks; and he can beg very nicely, if we let him get on the couch in the dining-room.
We put sugar on his nose, and he waits until we count One, Two, THREE.
Then he throws the sugar into the air and catches it.