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A harum-scarum schoolgirl by Angela Brazil

Miss Chadwick and her assistants


Knowing

by experience that Diana generally received suggestions in this way, but sometimes ruminated over her remarks afterwards, Loveday shelved the question of thought-forms and their possible ill effects, and petted her spoilt room-mate instead till she cajoled her into a better temper. The green-eyed monster still reigned, however, and Diana sat at tea-time flashing, if not red daggers, very obvious untoward glances, as she caught a smile of comprehension pass between Adeline and Hilary. Nobody had time to take much notice of her heroics.

Everyone was too busy discussing school affairs. The very latest news was that the boat-house was at last to be unlocked, the boat thoroughly overhauled and painted, and that mistresses and students would go rowing on the lake. A rumour even began to circulate that certain favoured members of the school might be taken as passengers.

"We used when Mrs. Gifford was here," said Wendy. "She often got Mr. Thwaites from the village to come and row us. It was top-hole. And once he let Tattie and me try to row, but I 'caught a crab' and dropped the oar. I'd soon learn though, if I'd another chance."

"We ought to have two or three boats," decided Sadie.

"One for each form," amended Vi.

"You bet it's only seniors who'll have any luck," groused Diana, who was still in the depths of despondency.

style="text-align: justify;">"There's no knowing," said Jess hopefully.

Though they might not be certain of sharing in the pleasure of navigating the lake, there was at least an element of anticipation in the matter. It was just possible that some fine day Miss Todd might say to one of them: "Put on your jersey and you may go for a row". They felt it was one of those sporting chances that sometimes turn up in a life. They hung about the boat-house wistfully when Mr. Appleton from Glenbury did his task of overhauling, and if he went away for a few minutes they took advantage of his absence to scramble in and sit inside the boat and imagine how delightful it would feel to be really on the water. They began to practise boat-songs, just to be ready for any emergency, and would sit on the landing-place singing "Row, brothers, row!" or "My barque is on the shore".

It was very exciting when repairs got to the painting stage, especially when Diana did not notice, and took a leap inside, with equal disaster to Mr. Appleton's nice coat of paint and her own serge skirt. Great was the day when the _Peveril_ at last was dry, and Mr. Appleton launched her himself on the lake, and took Miss Todd, Miss Beverley, and Miss Chadwick for a trial trip. The school, watching enviously from the bank, decided that nothing but a steamer, or a small fleet of rowboats could satisfy its demands. They considered rowing ought to be a part of every girl's education.

As Diana had prophesied, the intermediates came in for no luck. Miss Chadwick and her assistants, with the four gardening students, monopolized the _Peveril_. They took Miss Todd, Miss Beverley, and Miss Hampson out for airings on the lake; occasionally a senior was invited, and once the four youngest girls in the school were given a brief treat. All the rest had just to look on and long. Diana, indeed, extorted a sort of half promise from Adeline that some time, when it was convenient, and if she was not too busy, and if nobody else wanted the boat, she would let her realize her ambition, but so far this promise had remained an empty one, a vague invitation that meant nothing. Diana, catching Adeline in the garden one afternoon, made a desperate effort to obtain its fulfilment.


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