It was a clear, cold, winter evening, and all the Sinclairs but Annie had gone out for a neighborly visit.
She had resolved to stay at home and study a long, difficult lesson in Natural Philosophy.
Left to herself, the evening passed quickly, but the lesson was learned a full half hour before the time set for the family to come home.
Closing her book, she leaned back in the soft armchair in which she was sitting, soon fell asleep, and began to dream.
She dreamed that it was a very cold morning, and that she was standing by the dining-room stove,
looking into the glass basin which was every day filled with water for evaporation.
"Oh, dear," she sighed, "it is nearly school time."
I don't want to go out in the cold this morning.
Then there is that long lesson. I wonder if I can say it.
Let me see—it takes two hundred and twelve degrees of heat, I believe, for water to evaporate.
"Nonsense!" "Ridiculous!" shouted a chorus of strange little voices near by; Look here! is this water boiling?
What an idea; two hundred and twelve degrees before we can fly, ha, ha!
"Who are you?" asked Annie, in amazement. "Where must I look?" "In the basin, of course."