Mae ran with long stride through the meadow. She saw a mountain in the distance. It seemed EVER SO SLIGHTLY smaller than her earliest memory of the mountain, so she concluded that it, like all land masses, was slowly eroding. It was still tall and beautiful, with its snowy top and pine trees growing. She suddenly heard soft footsteps walking to her. Mae turned around and viewed her younger brother Arson stepping towards the place where she was standing. He called to her, "Mae! I do not mean this to intrude your peaceful time, but Mother wants you to run back inside to help her with the farm chores." Mae began to whine, but then she realized that Mother needed her help. So Arson had persuaded her to join him and Mother in their cabin. The two children walked back to the house, happy to be together. Mother greeted them at the door with a warm grin. "Arson, thank you for fetching your sister. Mae, thank you for coming in so obediently. Now, Mae, please decide what leftovers we will eat tonight, divide them among your father, myself, Arson and you and please don't omit anyone. I then give you permission to go outside until Father arrives from town." Mae nodded and went about her task well. She took out all of the dishes and ran to the table, but she accidentally collided with a cupboard and dropped their best china plates. Mae gasped and emitted a cry of horror. Mother came running down the stairs and, instead of spanking Mae, hugged her. Mae said,"I am sorry." Mother told her, "Mae, those china plates did not mean everything to me. I have you and I have other plates. I still love you, and I will just wipe those pieces up and start fresh." Mae hugged her mother. "Thank you, Mom."