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When Heidi opened her eyes on her first morning in Frankfurt she

could not think where she was. Then she rubbed them and looked

about her. She was sitting up in a high white bed, on one side of

a large, wide room, into which the light was falling through

very, very long white curtains; near the window stood two chairs

covered with large flowers, and then came a sofa with the same

flowers, in front of which was a round table; in the corner was a

washstand, with things upon it that Heidi had never seen in her

life before. But now all at once she remembered that she was in

Frankfurt; everything that had happened the day before came back

to her, and finally she recalled clearly the instructions that

had been given her by the lady-housekeeper, as far as she had

heard them. Heidi jumped out of bed and dressed herself; then she

ran first to one window and then another; she wanted to see the

sky and country outside; she felt like a bird in a cage behind

those great curtains. But they were too heavy for her to put

aside, so she crept underneath them to get to the window. But

these again were so high that she could only just get her head

above the sill to peer out. Even then she could not see what she

longed for. In vain she went first to one and then the other of

the windows--she could see nothing but walls and windows and

again walls and windows. Heidi felt quite frightened. It was

still early, for Heidi was accustomed to get up early and run out

at once to see how everything was looking, if the sky was blue

and if the sun was already above the mountains, or if the fir

trees were waving and the flowers had opened their eyes. As a

bird, when it first finds itself in its bright new cage, darts

hither and thither, trying the bars in turn to see if it cannot

get through them and fly again into the open, so Heidi continued

to run backwards and forwards, trying to open first one and then

the other of the windows, for she felt she could not bear to see

nothing but walls and windows, and somewhere outside there must

be the green grass, and the last unmelted snows on the mountain

slopes, which Heidi so longed to see. But the windows remained

immovable, try what Heidi would to open them, even endeavoring to

push her little fingers under them to lift them up; but it was

all no use. When after a while Heidi saw that her efforts were

fruitless, she gave up trying, and began to think whether she

would not go out and round the house till she came to the grass,

but then she remembered that the night before she had only seen

stones in front of the house. At that moment a knock came to the

door, and immediately after Tinette put her head inside and said,

"Breakfast is ready." Heidi had no idea what an invitation so

worded meant, and Tinette's face did not encourage any

questioning on Heidi's part, but rather the reverse. Heidi was

sharp enough to read its expression, and acted accordingly. So

she drew the little stool out from under the table, put it in the

corner and sat down upon it, and there silently awaited what

would happen next. Shortly after, with a good deal of rustling

and bustling Fraulein Rottenmeier appeared, who again seemed very

much put out and called to Heidi, "What is the matter with you,

Adelheid? Don't you understand what breakfast is? Come along at once!"

Heidi had no difficulty in understanding now and followed at

once. Clara had been some time at the breakfast table and she

gave Heidi a kindly greeting, her face looking considerably more

cheerful than usual, for she looked forward to all kinds of new

things happening again that day. Breakfast passed off quietly;

Heidi eat her bread and butter in a perfectly correct manner, and

when the meal was over and Clara wheeled back into the study,

Fraulein Rottenmeier told her to follow and remain with Clara

until the tutor should arrive and lessons begin.

As soon as the children were alone again, Heidi asked, "How can

one see out from here, and look right down on to the ground?"

"You must open the window and look out," replied Clara amused.

"But the windows won't open," responded Heidi sadly.

"Yes, they will," Clara assured her. "You cannot open them, nor I

either, but when you see Sebastian you can ask him to open one."

It was a great relief to Heidi to know that the windows could be

opened and that one could look out, for she still felt as if she

was shut up in prison. Clara now began to ask her questions about

her home, and Heidi was delighted to tell her all about the

mountain and the goats, and the flowery meadows which were so

dear to her.

Meanwhile her tutor had arrived; Fraulein Rottenmeier, however,

did not bring him straight into the study but drew him first

aside into the dining-room, where she poured forth her troubles

and explained to him the awkward position in which she was

placed, and how it had all come about. It appeared that she had

written some time back to Herr Sesemann to tell him that his

daughter very much wished to have a companion, and had added how

desirable she thought it herself, as it would be a spur to Clara

at her lessons and an amusement for her in her playtime. Fraulein

Rottenmeier had privately wished for this arrangement on her own

behalf, as it would relieve her from having always to entertain

the sick girl herself, which she felt at times was too much for

her. The father had answered that he was quite willing to let his

daughter have a companion, provided she was treated in every way

like his own child, as he would not have any child tormented or

put upon which was a very unnecessary remark," put in Fraulein

Rottenmeier, "for who wants to torment children!" But now she

went on to explain how dreadfully she had been taken in about the

child, and related all the unimaginable things of which she had

already been guilty, so that not only would he have to begin with

teaching her the A B C, but would have to start with the most

rudimentary instruction as regarded everything to do with daily

life. She could see only one way out of this disastrous state of

affairs, and that was for the tutor to declare that it was

impossible for the two to learn together without detriment to

Clara, who was so far ahead of the other; that would be a valid

excuse for getting rid of the child, and Herr Sesemann would be

sure to agree to the child being sent home again, but she dared

not do this without his order, since he was aware that by this

time the companion had arrived. But the tutor was a cautious man

and not inclined to take a partial view of matters. He tried to

calm Fraulein Rottenmeier, and gave it as his opinion that if the

little girl was backward in some things she was probably advanced

in others, and a little regular teaching would soon set the

balance right. When Fraulein Rottenmeier saw that he was not

ready to support her, and evidently quite ready to undertake

teaching the alphabet, she opened the study door, which she

quickly shut again as soon as he had gone through, remaining on

the other side herself, for she had a perfect horror of the A B

C. She walked up and down the dining-room, thinking over in her

own mind how the servants were to be told to address Adelaide.

The father had written that she was to be treated exactly like

his own daughter, and this would especially refer, she imagined,

to the servants. She was not allowed, however, a very long

interval of time for consideration, for suddenly the sound of a

frightful crash was heard in the study, followed by frantic cries

for Sebastian. She rushed into the room. There on the floor lay

in a confused heap, books, exercise-books, inkstand, and other

articles with the table-cloth on the top, while from beneath them

a dark stream of ink was flowing all across the floor. Heidi had disappeared.

"Here's a state of things!" exclaimed Fraulein Rottenmeier,

wringing her hands. "Table-cloth, books, work-basket, everything

lying in the ink! It was that unfortunate child, I suppose!"

The tutor was standing looking down at the havoc in distress;

there was certainly only one view to be taken of such a matter as

this and that an unfavorable one. Clara meanwhile appeared to

find pleasure in such an unusual event and in watching the

results. "Yes, Heidi did it," she explained, "but quite by

accident; she must on no account be punished; she jumped up in

such violent haste to get away that she dragged the tablecloth

along with her, and so everything went over. There were a number

of vehicles passing, that is why she rushed off like that;

perhaps she has never seen a carriage."

"Is it not as I said? She has not the smallest notion about

anything! not the slightest idea that she ought to sit still and

listen while her lessons are going on. But where is the child who

has caused all this trouble? Surely she has not run away! What

would Herr Sesemann say to me?" She ran out of the room and down

the stairs. There, at the bottom, standing in the open door-way,

was Heidi, looking in amazement up and down the street.

"What are you doing? What are you thinking of to run away like

that?" called Fraulein Rottenmeier.

"I heard the sound of the fir trees, but I cannot see where they

are, and now I cannot hear them any more," answered Heidi,

looking disappointedly in the direction whence the noise of the

passing carriages had reached her, and which to Heidi had seemed

like the blowing of the south wind in the trees, so that in great

joy of heart she had rushed out to look at them.

"Fir trees! do you suppose we are in a wood? What ridiculous

ideas are these? Come upstairs and see the mischief you have done!"

Heidi turned and followed Fraulein Rottenmeier upstairs; she was

quite astonished to see the disaster she had caused, for in her

joy and haste to get to the fir trees she had been unaware of

having dragged everything after her.

"I excuse you doing this as it is the first time, but do not let

me know you doing it a second time," said Fraulein Rottenmeier,

pointing to the floor. "During your lesson time you are to sit

still and attend. If you cannot do this I shall have to tie you

to your chair. Do you understand?"

"Yes," replied Heidi, "but I will certainly not move again," for

now she understood that it was a rule to sit still while she was

being taught.

Sebastian and Tinette were now sent for to clear up the broken

articles and put things in order again; the tutor said

good-morning and left, as it was impossible to do any more

lessons that day; there had been certainly no time for gaping

this morning.

Clara had to rest for a certain time during the afternoon, and

during this interval, as Fraulein Rottenmeier informed Heidi, the

latter might amuse herself as she liked. When Clara had been

placed on her couch after dinner, and the lady-housekeeper had

retired to her room, Heidi knew that her time had come to choose

her own occupation. It was just what she was longing for, as

there was something she had made up her mind to do; but she would

require some help for its accomplishment, and in view of this she

took her stand in the hall in front of the dining-room door in

order to intercept the person she wanted. In a few minutes up

came Sebastian from the kitchen with a tray of silver tea-things,

which he had to put away in the dining-room cupboard. As he

reached the top stairs Heidi went up to him and addressed him in

the formal manner she had been ordered to use by Fraulein Rottenmeier.

Sebastian looked surprised and said somewhat curtly, "What is it

you want, miss?"

"I only wished to ask you something, but it is nothing bad like

this morning," said Heidi, anxious to conciliate him, for she saw

that Sebastian was rather in a cross temper, and quite thought

that it was on account of the ink she had spilt on the floor.

"Indeed, and why, I should first like to know, do you address me

like that?" replied Sebastian, evidently still put out.

"Fraulein Rottenmeier told me always to speak to you like that,"

said Heidi.

Then Sebastian laughed, which very much astonished Heidi, who had

seen nothing amusing in the conversation, but Sebastian, now he

understood that the child was only obeying orders, added in a

friendly voice, "What is it then that miss wants?"

It was now Heidi's turn to be a little put out, and she said, "My

name is not miss, it is Heidi."

"Quite so, but the same lady has ordered me to call you miss,"

explained Sebastian.

"Has she? oh, then I must be called so," said Heidi submissively,

for she had already noticed that whatever Fraulein Rottenmeier

said was law. "Then now I have three names," she added with a sigh.

"What was it little miss wished to ask?" said Sebastian as he

went on into the dining-room to put away his silver.

"How can a window be opened?"

"Why, like that!" and Sebastian flung up one of the large windows.

Heidi ran to it, but she was not tall enough to see out, for her

head only reached the sill.

"There, now miss can look out and see what is going on below,"

said Sebastian as he brought her a high wooden stool to stand on.

Heidi climbed up, and at last, as she thought, was going to see

what she had been longing for. But she drew back her head with a

look of great disappointment on her face.

"Why, there is nothing outside but the stony streets," she said

mournfully; "but if I went right round to the other side of the

house what should I see there, Sebastian?"

"Nothing but what you see here," he told her.

"Then where can I go to see right away over the whole valley?"

"You would have to climb to the top of a high tower, a church

tower, like that one over there with the gold ball above it. From

there you can see right away ever so far."

Heidi climbed down quickly from her stool, ran to the door, down

the steps and out into the street. Things were not, however,

quite so easy as she thought. Looking from the window the tower

had appeared so close that she imagined she had only to run over

the road to reach it. But now, although she ran along the whole

length of the street, she still did not get any nearer to it, and

indeed soon lost sight of it altogether; she turned down another

street, and went on and on, but still no tower. She passed a

great many people, but they all seemed in such a hurry that Heidi

thought they had not time to tell her which way to go. Then

suddenly at one of the street corners she saw a boy standing,

carrying a hand-organ on his back and a funny-looking animal on

his arm. Heidi ran up to him and said, Where is the tower with

the gold ball on the top?"

"I don't know," was the answer.

"Who can I ask to show me?" she asked again.

"I don't know."

"Do you know any other church with a high tower?"

"Yes, I know one."

"Come then and show it me."

"Show me first what you will give me for it," and the boy held

out his hand as he spoke. Heidi searched about in her pockets and

presently drew out a card on which was painted a garland of

beautiful red roses; she looked at it first for a moment or two,

for she felt rather sorry to part with it; Clara had only that

morning made her a present of it--but then, to look down into the

valley and see all the lovely green slopes! "There," said Heidi,

holding out the card, "would you like to have that?"

The boy drew back his hand and shook his head.

"What would you like then?" asked Heidi, not sorry to put the

card back in her pocket.


"I have none, but Clara has; I am sure she will give me some; how

much do you want?"


"Come along then."

They started off together along the street, and on the way Heidi

asked her companion what he was carrying on his back; it was a

hand-organ, he told her, which played beautiful music when he

turned the handle. All at once they found themselves in front of

an old church with a high tower; the boy stood still, and said,

"There it is."

"But how shall I get inside?" asked Heidi, looking at the fast

closed doors.

"I don't know," was the answer.

"Do you think that I can ring as they do for Sebastian?"

"I don't know."

Heidi had by this time caught sight of a bell in the wall which

she now pulled with all her might. "If I go up you must stay down

here, for I do not know the way back, and you will have to show me."

"What will you give me then for that?"

"What do you want me to give you?"

"Another twopence."

They heard the key turning inside, and then some one pulled open

the heavy creaking door; an old man came out and at first looked

with surprise and then in anger at the children, as he began

scolding them: "What do you mean by ringing me down like this?

Can't you read what is written over the bell, 'For those who wish

to go up the tower'?"

The boy said nothing but pointed his finger at Heidi. The latter

answered, "But I do want to go up the tower."

"What do you want up there?" said the old man. Has somebody sent you?"

"No," replied Heidi, "I only wanted to go up that I might look down."

"Get along home with you and don't try this trick on me again, or

you may not come off so easily a second time," and with that he

turned and was about to shut the door. But Heidi took hold of his

coat and said beseechingly, "Let me go up, just once."

He looked around, and his mood changed as he saw her pleading

eyes; he took hold of her hand and said kindly, "Well, if you

really wish it so much, I will take you."

The boy sat down on the church steps to show that he was content

to wait where he was.

Hand in hand with the old man Heidi went up the many steps of the

tower; they became smaller and smaller as they neared the top,

and at last came one very narrow one, and there they were at the

end of their climb. The old man lifted Heidi up that she might

look out of the open window.

"There, now you can look down," he said.

Heidi saw beneath her a sea of roofs, towers, and chimney-pots;

she quickly drew back her head and said in a sad, disappointed

voice, "It is not at all what I thought."

"You see now, a child like you does not understand anything about

a view! Come along down and don't go ringing at my bell again!"

He lifted her down and went on before her down the narrow

stairway. To the left of the turn where it grew wider stood the

door of the tower-keeper's room, and the landing ran out beside

it to the edge of the steep slanting roof. At the far end of this

was a large basket, in front of which sat a big grey cat, that

snarled as it saw them, for she wished to warn the passers-by

that they were not to meddle with her family. Heidi stood still

and looked at her in astonishment, for she had never seen such a

monster cat before; there were whole armies of mice, however, in

the old tower, so the cat had no difficulty in catching half a

dozen for her dinner every day. The old man seeing Heidi so

struck with admiration said, "She will not hurt you while I am

near; come, you can have a peep at the kittens."

Heidi went up to the basket and broke out into expressions of delight.

"Oh, the sweet little things! the darling kittens," she kept on

saying, as she jumped from side to side of the basket so as, not

to lose any of the droll gambols of the seven or eight little

kittens that were scrambling and rolling and falling over one another.

"Would you like to have one?" said the old man, who enjoyed

watching the child's pleasure.

"For myself to keep?" said Heidi excitedly, who could hardly

believe such happiness was to be hers.

"Yes, of course, more than one if you like--in short, you can

take away the whole lot if you have room for them," for the old

man was only too glad to think he could get rid of his kittens

without more trouble.

Heidi could hardly contain herself for joy. There would be plenty

of room for them in the large house, and then how astonished and

delighted Clara would be when she saw the sweet little kittens.

"But how can I take them with me?" asked Heidi, and was going

quickly to see how many she could carry away in her hands, when

the old cat sprang at her so fiercely that she shrank back in fear.

"I will take them for you if you will tell me where," said the

old man, stroking the cat to quiet her, for she was an old friend

of his that had lived with him in the tower for many years.

"To Herr Sesemann's, the big house where there is a gold dog's

head on the door, with a ring in its mouth," explained Heidi.

Such full directions as these were not really needed by the old

man, who had had charge of the tower for many a long year and

knew every house far and near, and moreover Sebastian was an

acquaintance of his.

"I know the house," he said, "but when shall I bring them, and

who shall I ask for?--you are not one of the family, I am sure."

"No, but Clara will be so delighted when I take her the kittens."

The old man wished now to go downstairs, but Heidi did not know

how to tear herself away from the amusing spectacle.

"If I could just take one or two away with me! one for myself and

one for Clara, may I?"

"Well, wait a moment," said the man, and he drew the cat

cautiously away into his room, and leaving her by a bowl of food

came out again and shut the door. "Now take two of them."

Heidi's eyes shone with delight. She picked up a white kitten and

another striped white and yellow, and put one in the right, the

other in the left pocket. Then she went downstairs. The boy was

still sitting outside on the steps, and as the old man shut the

door of the church behind them, she said, "Which is our way to

Herr Sesemann's house?"

"I don't know," was the answer.

Heidi began a description of the front door and the steps and the

windows, but the boy only shook his head, and was not any the wiser.

"Well, look here," continued Heidi, "from one window you can see

a very, very large grey house, and the roof runs like this--" and

Heidi drew a zigzag line in the air with her forefinger.

With this the boy jumped up, he was evidently in the habit of

guiding himself by similar landmarks. He ran straight off with

Heidi after him, and in a very short time they had reached the

door with the large dog's head for the knocker. Heidi rang the

bell. Sebastian opened it quickly, and when he saw it was Heidi,

"Make haste! make haste," he cried in a hurried voice.

Heidi sprang hastily in and Sebastian shut the door after her,

leaving the boy, whom he had not noticed, standing in wonder on

the steps.

"Make haste, little miss," said Sebastian again; "go straight

into the dining-room, they are already at table; Fraulein

Rottenmeier looks like a loaded cannon. What could make the

little miss run off like that?"

Heidi walked into the room. The lady housekeeper did not look up,

Clara did not speak; there was an uncomfortable silence.

Sebastian pushed her chair up for her, and when she was seated

Fraulein Rottenmeier, with a severe countenance, sternly and

solemnly addressed her: "I will speak with you afterwards,

Adelheid, only this much will I now say, that you behaved in a

most unmannerly and reprehensible way by running out of the house

as you did, without asking permission, without any one knowing a

word about it; and then to go wandering about till this hour; I

never heard of such behavior before."

"Miau!" came the answer back.

This was too much for the lady's temper; with raised voice she

exclaimed, "You dare, Adelheid, after your bad behavior, to

answer me as if it were a joke?"

"I did not--" began Heidi--"Miau! miau!"

Sebastian almost dropped his dish and rushed out of the room.

"That will do," Fraulein Rottenmeier tried to say, but her voice

was almost stifled with anger. "Get up and leave the room."

Heidi stood up frightened, and again made an attempt to explain.

"I really did not--" "Miau! miau! miau!"

"But, Heidi," now put in Clara, "when you see that it makes

Fraulein Rottenmeier angry, why do you keep on saying miau?"

"It isn't I, it's the kittens," Heidi was at last given time to say.

"How! what! kittens!" shrieked Fraulein Rottenmeier. "Sebastian!

Tinette! Find the horrid little things! take them away!" And she

rose and fled into the study and locked the door, so as to make

sure that she was safe from the kittens, which to her were the

most horrible things in creation.

Sebastian was obliged to wait a few minutes outside the door to

get over his laughter before he went into the room again. He had,

while serving Heidi, caught sight of a little kitten's head

peeping out of her pocket, and guessing the scene that would

follow, had been so overcome with amusement at the first miaus

that he had hardly been able to finish handing the dishes. The

lady's distressed cries for help had ceased before he had

sufficiently regained his composure to go back into the

dining-room. It was all peace and quietness there now, Clara had

the kittens on her lap, and Heidi was kneeling beside her, both

laughing and playing with the tiny, graceful little animals.

"Sebastian," exclaimed Clara as he came in, "you must help us;

you must find a bed for the kittens where Fraulein Rottenmeier

will not spy them out, for she is so afraid of them that she will

send them away at once; but we want to keep them, and have them

out whenever we are alone. Where can you put them?"

"I will see to that," answered Sebastian willingly. "I will make

a bed in a basket and put it in some place where the lady is not

likely to go; you leave it to me." He set about the work at once,

sniggling to himself the while, for he guessed there would be a

further rumpus about this some day, and Sebastian was not without

a certain pleasure in the thought of Fraulein Rottenmeier being a

little disturbed.

Not until some time had elapsed, and it was nearing the hour for

going to bed, did Fraulein Rottenmeier venture to open the door a

crack and call through, "Have you taken those dreadful little

animals away, Sebastian?"

He assured her twice that he had done so; he had been hanging

about the room in anticipation of this question, and now quickly

and quietly caught up the kittens from Clara's lap and

disappeared with them.

The castigatory sermon which Fraulein Rottenmeier had held in

reserve for Heidi was put off till the following day, as she felt

too exhausted now after all the emotions she had gone through of

irritation, anger, and fright, of which Heidi had unconsciously

been the cause. She retired without speaking, Clara and Heidi

following, happy in their minds at knowing that the kittens were

lying in a comfortable bed.



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