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HOME > Short Stories > The Children's Pilgrimage > CHAPTER X. STARTING ON THE GREAT JOURNEY.
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 Cecile and Maurice ran quickly upstairs, pulled the rope with a will, and got into the Moseleys' attic.  
"We are safe now," said the little boy, who had not seen Lydia watching them from the street corner.
Cecile, panting after her rapid run, and with her hand pressed to her heart, stood quiet for a moment, then she darted into their snug little attic bedroom, shut the door, and fell on her knees.
"Lord Jesus," she said aloud, "wicked Aunt Lydia Purcell has seen us, and we must go away at once. Don't forget to guide me and Maurice and Toby."
She said this little prayer in a trembling voice. She felt there was not a moment to lose; any instant Aunt Lydia might arrive. She flung the bedclothes off the bed, and thrusting her hand into a hole in the mattress, pulled out the Russia-leather purse. Joined to its former contents was now six shillings and sixpence in silver. This money was the change over from Maurice's half sovereign.
Cecile felt that it was a very little sum to take them to France, but there was no help for it. She and Maurice and Toby must manage on this sum to walk to Dover. She knew enough of geography now to be sure that Dover was the right place to go to.
She slipped the change from the half sovereign into a sixpenny purse which Moseley had given her on Christmas Day. The precious Russia-leather purse was restored to its old hiding place in the bosom of her frock. Then, giving a mournful glance round the little chamber which she was about to quit, she returned to Maurice.
"Don't take off your hat, Maurice, darling; we have got to go."
"To go!" said Maurice, opening his brown eyes wide. "Are we to leave our nice night's lodging? Is that what you mean? No, Cecile," said the little boy, seating himself firmly on the floor. "I don't intend to go. Mammie Moseley said I was to be here when she came back, and I mean to be here."
"But, oh! Maurice, Maurice, I must go south, Will you let me go alone? Can you live without me, Maurice, darling?"
"No, Cecile, you shall not go. You shall stay here too. We need neither of us go south. It's much, much nicer here."
Cecile considered a moment. This opposition from Maurice puzzled her. She had counted on many obstacles, but this came from an unlooked-for quarter.
Moments were precious. Each instant she expected to hear the step she dreaded on the attic stairs. Without Maurice, however, she could not stir. Resolving to fight for her purse of gold, with even life itself if necessary, she sat down by her little brother on the floor.
"Maurice," she said—as she spoke, she felt herself growing quite old and grave—"Maurice, you know that ever since our stepmother died, I have told you that me and you must go on a long, long journey. We must go south. You don't like to go. Nor I don't like it neither, Maurice—but that don't matter. In the book Mrs. Moseley gave me all about Jesus, it says that people, and even little children, have to do lots of things they don't like. But if they are brave, and do the hard things, Jesus the good Guide, is so pleased with them. Maurice, if you come with me to-day, you will be a real, brave French boy. You know how proud you are of being a French boy."
"Yes," answered Maurice, pouting his pretty rosy lips a little, "I don't want to be an English boy. I want to be French, same as father. But i............
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