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    Chapter 23

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    Chapter 23
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    OLD AUNT SALLIE

    "Bunny! Bunny! Isn't this fun?" cried Sue, as she looked across at her brother in the other seat of the pony cart. "Don't you like it?"

    "Yes, I do," Bunny answered, as he pulled on the reins. "Do you, Wopsie?"

    The colored girl looked around without speaking. She looked on the ground, as though she would like to jump out of the pony cart. But she did not. The little horse was going faster than ever.

    "Don't you like it, Wopsie?" asked Sue. "It's fun! This pony goes faster than our dog Splash, and Splash couldn't pull such a nice, big cart as this; could he, Bunny?"

    "No, I guess not," Bunny answered. He did not turn around to look at Sue as he spoke.

    For, to tell the truth, Bunny was a little bit worried. The dog that had jumped out of the bushes, to bark at the pony's heels, was still running along behind the pony cart, barking and snapping. And, though Bunny and Sue did not mind their dog Splash's barking, when he pulled them, this dog was a strange one.

    Then, too, the boy, who had started out with the pony cart, was running along after it crying:

    "Stop! Stop! Wait a minute. Somebody stop that pony!"

    But there was no one ahead of Bunny, Sue and Wopsie on the Park drive just then, and no one to stop the pony, which was kicking up his heels, and going faster and faster all the while.

    "He's running hard; isn't he, Bunny?" asked Sue.

    "Yes, he--he's going fast--very fast!" panted Bunny, in a sort of jerky way, for the cart rattled over some bumps just then, and if Bunny had not been careful how he spoke he might have bitten his tongue between his teeth.

    "Don't--don't you li--like it--Wop--Wopsie?" asked Sue, speaking in the same jerky way as had her brother.

    Wopsie did not open her mouth. She just held tightly to the edge of the pony cart, and shook her head from side to side. That meant she did not like it. Sue and Bunny wondered why.

    True, they were going a bit fast, but then they had often ridden almost as fast when Splash, their big dog, drew them in the express cart. And this was much nicer than an express cart, though of course Bunny and Sue liked Splash better than this pony. But if they had owned the pony they would have liked him very much, also, I think.

    Now the pony swung around a corner of the drive, and he went so fast, and turned so quickly, that the cart was nearly upset.

    Sue held tightly to the side of her seat, and called to her brother:

    "Oh, Bunny! Don't make him go so fast! You'll spill me and Wopsie out!"

    "I didn't make him go fast," Bunny answered. "I--I guess he's in a hurry to get away from that dog."

    "Make the dog go 'way," pleaded Sue.

    Bunny looked back at the barking dog, who was still running after the pony cart.

    "Go on away!" Bunny cried. "Let us alone--go on away and find a bone to eat!"

    But the dog either did not understand what Bunny said, or he would rather race after the pony cart than get himself a bone. At any rate he still kept running along, barking and growling, and the pony kept running.

    The boy who had started out with the children, first walking along beside the pony, was now far behind. He was a small boy, with very short legs, and, as the pony's legs were quite long, of course the boy could not run fast enough to keep up. So he was now far behind, but he kept calling:

    "Stop that pony! Oh, please someone stop that pony!"

    Bunny and Sue heard the boy calling. So did Wopsie, but the colored girl said nothing. She just sat there, holding to the side of the seat and looking at Bunny and Sue.

    "I wonder what that boy's hollering that way for?" asked Sue, as the pony swung around another corner, almost upsetting the cart again.

    "I don't know," said Bunny. "Maybe he likes to holler. I do sometimes, when I'm out in the country. And this park is like the country, Sue."

    "Yes, I guess it is," said the little girl. "But what's he saying, Bunny?"

    They listened. Once more the boy, running along, now quite a long way behind the pony cart, could be heard crying:

    "Stop him! Stop him! He's running away! Stop him!"

    Bunny and Sue looked at one another. Then they looked at Wopsie. The colored girl opened her mouth, showing her red tongue and her white teeth.

    "Oh! Oh!" she screamed. "De pony's runnin' away! Dat's what de boy says. I'se afeered, I is! Oh, let me out! Let me out!"

    Wopsie, who sat near the back of the cart, where there was a little door, made of wicker-work, like a basket, started to jump out. But though Bunny Brown was only a little fellow, he knew that Wopsie might be hurt if she jumped from the cart, which the pony was pulling along so fast, now.

    "Sit still, Wopsie!" Bunny cried. "Sit still!"

    "But we's bein' runned away wif!" exclaimed Wopsie. "Didn't yo' all done heah dat boy say so? We's bein' runned away wif! I wants t' git out! I don't like bein' runned away wif!"

    "It won't hurt you," said Sue. She did not seem at all afraid. "It won't hurt you, Wopsie," Sue went on. "Me and Bunny has been runned away with lots of times, with our dog Splash; hasn't we, Bunny?"

    "Yes, we have, Sue. Sit still, Wopsie. I'll stop the pony."

    Bunny began to pull back on the lines, and he called:

    "Whoa! Whoa there! Stop now! Don't run away any more, pony boy!"

    But the pony did not seem to want to stop. Perhaps he thought if he stopped, now, the barking dog would bite his heels. But the dog had given up the chase, and was not in sight. Neither was the running boy.

    The boy had found that his short legs were not long enough to keep up with the longer legs of the pony. Besides, a pony has four legs, and everybody knows that four legs can go faster than two. So the boy stopped running.

    "Can you stop the pony?" asked Sue, after Bunny had pulled on the lines a number of times, and had cried "Whoa!" very often. "Can you stop him?"

    "I--I guess so," answered the little boy. "But maybe you'd better help me, Sue. You pull on one line, and I'll pull on the other. That will stop him."

    Bunny passed one of the pony's reins to his sister and held to the other. The children were sitting in front of the cart, Bunny on one side and Sue on the other. Both of them began to pull on the lines, but still the pony did not stop.

    "Pull harder, Bunny! Pull harder!" cried Sue.

    "I am pulling as hard as I can," he said. "You pull harder, Sue."

    But still the pony did not want to stop. If anything, he was going faster than ever. Yes, he surely was going faster, for it was down hill now, and you know, as well as I do, that you can go faster down hill, than you can on the level, or up hill.

    "Oh, I want to git out! I want to git out!" cried Wopsie. "I don't like bein' runned away wif! Oh, please good, kind, nice, sweet Mr. Policeman, stop de pony from runnin' away wif us!"

    "Where's a policeman?" asked Sue, turning half way around to look at Wopsie. "Where's a policeman?"

    "I--I don't see none!" said the colored girl, "but I wish I did! He'd stop de pony from runnin' away. Maybe if we all yells fo' a policeman one'll come."

    "Shall we Bunny?" asked Sue.

    "Shall we what?" Bunny wanted to know. He had been so busy trying to get a better hold on his rein that he had not noticed what Sue and Wopsie were talking about.

    "Shall we call a policeman?" asked Sue. "Wopsie says one can stop the pony from running away. And I don't guess we can stop him, Bunny. We'd better yell for a policeman. Maybe one is around somewhere, but I can't see any."

    "All right, we'll call one," Bunny agreed. He, too, was beginning to think that the pony was never going to stop. "But let's try one more pull on the lines, Sue. Now, pull hard."

    And then something happened.

    Without waiting for Sue to get ready to pull on her line, Bunny gave a hard pull on his. And I guess you know what happens if you pull too much on one horse-line.

    Suddenly the pony felt Bunny pulling on the right hand line, and the pony turned to that side. And he turned so quickly that the harness broke and the cart was upset. Over it went on its side, and Bunny Brown and his sister Sue, as well as Wopsie, were thrown out.

    Right out of the cart they flew, and Bunny turned a somersault, head over heels, before he landed on a soft pile of grass that had been cut that day. Sue and Wopsie also landed on piles of grass, so they were not any more hurt than was Bunny.

    The pony, as soon as the cart had turned over, looked back once, and then he stopped running, and began to nibble the green grass.

    "Well, we aren't being runned away with now," Bunny finally said.

    "No," answered Sue. "We've stopped all right. Wopsie, is you hurted?"

    The colored girl put her hand up to her kinky head. Her hat had fallen off into her lap. Carefully she felt of her braids. Then she said:

    "I guess I isn't hurted much. But I might 'a' bin! I don't want no mo' pony cart rides!"

    Before the children and Wopsie could get up they heard a voice calling to them:

    "Bress der hearts! Po' li'l lambs! Done got frowed out ob de cart, an' all busted t' pieces mebby. Well, ole Aunt Sallie'll take keer ob 'em! Po' li'l honey lambs!"

    Glancing up, Bunny and Sue saw a motherly-looking colored woman coming across the grass toward them. She held out her fat arms to the children and said:

    "Now don't cry, honey lambs! Ole Aunt Sallie will tuk keer ob yo' all!"
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