Chapitre 1

sat in a lawn chair, watching the mower at work, feeling the warm, soft sunshine seep into his bones. The mower reached the edge of the lawn, clucked to itself like a contented hen, made a neat turn and trundled down another swath. The bag holding the clippings bulged test .


Suddenly the mower stopped and clicked excitedly. A panel in its side snapped open and a cranelike arm reached out, Grasping steel fingers fished around in the grass, came up triumphantly with a stone clutched tightly, dropped the stone into a small
container, disappeared back into the panel again. The lawn mower gurgled, purred on again, following its swath.
Gramp grumbled at it with suspicion. "Some day," he told himself, "that dadburned thing is going to miss a lick and have a nervous breakdown."
He lay back in the chair and stared up at the sun-washed sky. A helicopter skimmed far overhead. From somewhere inside the house a radio came to life and a torturing crash of music poured out. Gramp, hearing it, shivered and bunkered lower in
the chair.
Young Charlie was settling down for a twitch session. Dadburn the kid.
The lawn mower chuckled past and Gramp squinted at it maliciously.
"Automatic," he told the sky. "Ever' blasted thing is automatic now. Getting so you just take a machine off in a corner and
whisper in its ear and it scurries off to do the job."
His daughter's voice came to him out of the window, pitched to carry above the music.
Gramp stirred uneasily. "Yes, Betty."
"Now, Father, you see you move when that lawn mower gets to you. Don't try to out-stubborn it. After all, it's only a
machine. Last time you just sat there and made it cut around you. I never saw the beat of you."
He didn't answer, letting his head nod a bit, hoping she would think he was asleep and let him be.
"Father," she shrilled, "did you hear me?"
He saw it was no good. "Sure, I heard you," he told her. "I was just flexing to move."
He rose slowly to his feet, leaning heavily on his cane.
Might make her feel sorry for the way she treated him when she saw how old and feeble he was getting. He'd have to be
careful, though. If she knew he didn't need the cane at all, she'd be finding jobs for him to do and, on the other hand, if he laid it on
too thick, she'd be having that fool doctor in to pester him again.
Grumbling, be moved the chair out into that portion of the lawn that had been cut. The mower, rolling past, chortled at him





a -

reférence, ldsldls

3 -


4 -

New test