As it was all quiet, they peeped out. Alas! there lay the old Chinaman on the floor; he had fallen down from the table as he attempted to run after them, and was broken into three pieces; his back had separated entirely, and his head had rolled into a corner of the room.
The major-general stood in his old place, and appeared lost in thought.
“This is terrible,” said the little shepherdess. “My poor old grandfather is broken to pieces, and it is our fault. I shall never live after this;” and she wrung her little hands.
“He can be riveted,” said the chimney-sweep; “he can be riveted. Do not be so hasty. If they cement his back, and put a good rivet in it, he will be as good as new, and be able to say as many disagreeable things to us as ever.”
“Do you think so?” said she; and then they climbed up to the table, and stood in their old places.
“As we have done no good,” said the chimney-sweep, “we might as well have remained here, instead of taking so much trouble.”
“I wish grandfather was riveted,” said the shepherdess. “Will it cost much, I wonder?”
And she had her wish. The family had the China-man’s back mended, and a strong rivet put through his neck; he looked as good as new, but he could no longer nod his head.