What a fuss everyone was making about that stupid Evelyn Percival. Here was the head mistress even quite in a fume because she was a minute or two late in putting in an appearance."My name is Ruth," replied the girl so addressed, "and I can't guess ages. Come, Olive, let us find our French lessons and go.""Of course it is, Violet," replied Miss Collingwood in her good-natured way. "But what a naughty imp you were to hide under the laurel arch. The wonder[Pg 8] is you did not get right in the way of the horses' hoofs."
"I must say one thing," replied Olive, "and then I will turn to a more congenial theme. I hope Evelyn Percival won't take Miss O'Hara's part. You know, Janet, what strong prejudices Evelyn has."
"You have too good taste to like her, Olive, but do let us talk about something more interesting. How are you getting on with that table cover for the fair?"
Mrs. Freeman took her unwilling hand, led her into Miss Patience's dull little sitting room, which only[Pg 63] looked out upon the back yard, and, shutting the door behind her, left her to her own meditations."The first thing to do is to appoint a committee," she began.Bridget dropped back into her seat with a profound sigh. Presently the dinner gong sounded, and Miss Patience put away her papers and accounts, and shutting up her desk, prepared to leave the room. Bridget got up too. "I am glad that is dinner," she said; "I'm awfully hungry. May I go up to my room to tidy myself, Miss Patience?"
rummy joy hack
"Janet," said Mrs. Freeman, "come here for a [Pg 47]moment. I want you to use your young eyes. Do you see any carriage coming down the hill?"
All this time Miss Percival, the head girl of the school, was absent. She had been ill, and had gone home for a short change. She did not return until Bridget had been at the Court a fortnight."I shall look to you to help me with this wild Irish girl," she said with a smile. "Now, go to your lessons, my dear."
Dorothy went into her own little cubicle, drew her white dimity walls tight, and, standing before the window, looked out at the summer landscape."We have lost her," said Olive, with a sigh.
"I did not feel tired, Mrs. Freeman," replied the newcomer in an eager, irrepressible sort of voice. "You put me into my room and told me to go to bed, but I didn't want to go to bed. I have had my supper, thank you, so I don't want any more, but I have been dying with curiosity to see the girls. Are these they? Are these my schoolfellows? I never saw a schoolfellow before. They all look pretty much like other[Pg 13] people. How do you do, each and all of you? I'm Bridget O'Hara. May I sit near you, Mrs. Freeman?"
"I think, my dear, we won't talk quite so much," said Mrs. Freeman. "At most of our meals German is the only language spoken. Supper, of course, is an exception. Why, what is the matter. Miss O'Hara?"
"We are not by ourselves when we are together," replied Bridget. "Come along, girls, don't be such little despicable cowards! I'll square it with Mrs.[Pg 44] Freeman. You trust me. Mrs. Freeman will forgive us everything when the queen is coming back. Now, do let's be quick, we haven't a minute to lose!"