Mary Elizabeth Braddon: The Christmas Hirelings (Children's Book)
This eBook edition has been formatted to the highest digital standards and adjusted for readability on all devices. Sir John Penlyon is a long widowed old man who lives alone with no close family left, after he disowned his daughter for marrying beneath herself. He is spending Christmas with his friend Thomas Danby and his niece Adela who points out that Christmas is quite dull without children and Sir John, otherwise a grim old man, agrees. Hearing that, Danby takes on himself to hire some children in order to bring up the atmosphere in the old house and cheer up his friend. He finds and brings three siblings, sweet and endearing children, who do indeed enliven the holiday. The youngest of them, little girl named Moppet, in particular, charms Sir John and endears herself to him. However, after some time spent in Sir John's mention Moppet, falls dangerously ill and Sir John begins to regret opening his heart. Yet, it is the time of miracles and Sir John is about to make sure of it.