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The Little Nightcap Letters

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NIGHTCAP LETTER No. 2 FROM AUNT FANNY. You little darling:

What do you think happened the other day? why, a lady came to see me, bringing with her just about the dearest little Kitty that ever lived. Not a Kitty with whiskers, and four paws, and a fur coat, but a sweet little girl named Kitty, with lovely blue eyes, a great many soft brown curls, and the same number of sweet rosy lips that you have. How many is that, I should like to know? I had never seen the lady, or the little girl before, and of course I did not know their names until afterwards. So I bowed, and smiled, and looked as pleasant as ever I could.

Then Kitty said in a sweet trembling voice—"Is you Aunt Fanny?"

I laughed a little bit, and answered, "Yes, dear."

What happened then? Why in a moment she ran up to me, climbed upon a chair close by,—threw her arms around my neck, and gave me such a precious little smothering hug, and so many sweet kisses, with her soft face pressed with all her might upon my cheek, that I almost lost my breath, and was perfectly astonished, as well as delighted.

Then the little girl said: "Oh thank you, dear Aunt Fanny, twenty-ten times, for my Baby Nightcaps! I love them! I love you! I love you dreadfully!" Oh! how glad I was to hear that! I was glad "twenty-ten" times. It was sweeter to me, than a whole basket full of sugar candies would be to you—and I kissed her on both her round dimpled cheeks, and sat down, and took her on my lap, and hugged her to my heart, and said—"what a darling! what a dear little thing!"

Then I looked at the lady. She was laughing and blushing, and I was laughing and blushing, and the little girl was laughing and blushing. Don't you think we three were having a very funny kind of time? I did.

At last the lady said: "I hope you will excuse me for bringing Kitty to see you; but she begged so hard for 'just one little look at Aunt Fanny,' I could not bear to refuse her. I am afraid she has taken a great deal more than 'one little look.' I hope she has not kissed a piece out of your cheek?"

At this, Kitty looked up in great alarm at my cheek—but seeing that it was not bleeding, and had no hole in it, she patted it softly with her little tender dimpled hand, and said: "Aunt Fanny, Aunt Fanny," in a little speck of a whisper to herself a great many times.

Then I said: "I am so glad to know that you were pleased with Baby Nightcaps. Would you like me to ask poor lame Charley's mother for more?"

With a joyful little scream, she hugged me again, and kissed my cheek—very softly this time, for fear of hurting me, and said: "Oh! Aunt Fanny! if you only will, I will give you a whole paper full of perlasses candy, and one of my new handkerchickers; and when you are old and blind, I will take you in my arms, and carry you up stairs, and put you in my lap and teach you your letters, and ask mamma to read the Bible to you—all about Joseph, you know, and his wicked bredders; it will make you ki."

Wasn't she a cunning little thing? I could not help laughing, to think of such a little mite of a child, talking of taking me in her arms; and then I could not help the tears coming, at her offer to have her own mamma read the Bible to me—was it not sweet?...