rainstorm by my side under that hat! When you're done with it, leave it to me in your will. I have a fancy for it. Will you?"
"Here, take it—take it. I'm done with it. Mary scolds me every day about it. No p—peace in life because of it. Here's a new one I bought the other day—good one—good enough."
He lifted a box which had fallen from his cluttered office table, and took from it a new hat which had evidently not been unpacked before. He tried it on his head, turned it about and about, took it off and gazed at it within and without, then hastily tossed it aside and, snatching his old one from David put it on his head, and they started off.
Hoyle had been placed in a small ward where were only two other little beds, both occupied, with one nurse to attend on the three patients. One of them had broken his leg and had to lie in a cast, and the other was convalescing from fever, but both were well enough to be companionable with the lonely little Southerner. Hoyle's face beamed upon David as he bent over him.
"I kin make pi'chers whilst I'm a-lyin' here," he cried ecstatically. "That thar lady, she 'lows me to make 'em. She 'lows mine're good uns." David glanced at the young woman indicated. She was pleasant-faced and rosy, and looked practical and good.
"He's such an odd little chap," she said.
"What be that—odd? Does hit mean this 'er lump on my back?"