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When Frank and I heard that a new family was coming to live next door we hoped that there would be some boys in it--one boy, at least. Boys were scarce in Springdale. There wasn't a single boy nearer to us than half a mile, and that was too far away for much use when it came to games. We lived in a pretty good place for fun, too, for there was a glorious pond just below our house and a splendid coasting hill above; we had jolly barns, too, and a big fir grove behind them, just the thing for Indian ambushes. But all these splendid natural advantages were pretty much wasted because we didn't have anybody else to play with.
But to our disgust the Harrises had just one girl!
Frank and I didn't like her from the start. She wasn't even a jolly-looking girl, who might have been some use in games, even if not so good as a boy. She was small and thin and homely, with a freckled face and a kind of scared, timid look. Her name was Nan.
The first Monday after they came Nan went to school. She started just after we did and followed behind us …