Hortense knew very well what Papa and Mamma were talking about, for she was ten years old and as smart as most girls and boys of that age. But she went on eating her breakfast and pretending not to hear. Papa and Mamma were going a long way off to Australia, provided Grandmother and Grandfather would care for Hortense in their absence. So Mamma had written and this was the answer.
"Would you like to stay with Grandfather and Grandmother while Papa and Mamma are away?" her mother asked. Hortense would like it very much for she had never been in her grandfather's house. Grandfather and Grandmother had always visited her at Christmas and other times and she had imagined wonderful stories of the house that she had never seen.