First Term at Appledore.

It's Shanti's first term at a boarding school. But she starts a few weeks into the term. Shanti soon realizes that her first term is going to be no walk in the park. Arguements, Tears, Friends and Enemies. Its all here. Sorry about the wierd lines gaps, i copied and pasted it and it went a bit wrong. Does any one know what i can do to stop it doing this?



          I looked at my reflection in the mirror. Ugh. What a disgusting dress. I can’t possibly wear it.

“Are you nearly done darling” came mum’s voice under the door.

I unlocked the door and walked stiffly out of the changing room.

“Oh icky” Mrs. Morreca’s face clouded. “Oh I’m sorry dear I didn’t mean to say that but I don’t think that that yellow suits your dark skin.”

“It’s ok mum. I don’t like it either. Can I get changed please?”

“Of course dear, then we’ll put it back and look for something else.”

Ten minutes later I was just walking past a bargain rail when I spotted a candy pink top,  a hot pink skirt and leggings the exact colour of the top.

“Ooh, mum, could I please have these?” I asked.

“Of course you can dear; they look much nicer than that dress. Try them on and see what they look like.”

Five minutes later I and mum were sitting in front of two glasses of chocolate milk, each with a pile of bags next to us.

“We really should do this more often darling, a day out just the two of us.”

          I nodded knowing that there was as much chance of being able to go out with my mum more than every two months for a day as there was as much chance of the whole world losing it’s gravity at midnight tomorrow. For one thing there are my twin baby sisters to look after, the whole house to redecorate and my twin brother who seemed determined to create as much havoc as possible for me. Almost as if to confirm my thoughts Mum glanced at her watch and jumped up. “Oh no I need to go and collect Sammi and Narinda from Dawn’s house now. Thank goodness it is only a five minute walk. Can you go; you can run I can’t?”

“Sure” I shrugged and got up picking up my bag.

Ding Dong. I lent against the wall and looked at my watch. Wow, two minutes and forty seven seconds.  Dawn opened the door and put her head round glancing at me curiously.

“Oh, sorry I’ve just run all the way from Talinderay’s Café. I’m here to pick up Sammi and Narinda.”

“Oh yes come in, come in. They are playing with Mary, my little one.”

          I looked and grinned. Sammi was drawing with wax crayons, and Nari was playing with Mary’s dolls house.

“Come on you two. Time to go home.”

“Look” called Sammi. “Mary’s letting me borrow her book on unicorns.”

I grinned. “That’s nice of her have you said thank you?”

“Thank you Mary.”

“Good girl.”

I pushed open our little gate and shoved the double buggy up the path stopping in front of the front door. I knocked and waited for mum to answer. She pulled the door open and grinned.

“Hiya girls, did you have a nice at Mary’s?”

“Yes” both girls chorused together.

“Oh, Shanti would you mind clearing the table. Ashki’s helping dad weed the garden or whatever he’s doing.”

“Sure I’ll just get these two out of this, wash my hands then I’ll do it.”

          I glanced over at mum peeling carrots by the sink, walking over to the table I picked up; leaflets, toys, books and two packets of uniform.

“Oh, are these for me and my brother.”

“Yes the green one’s yours and the blue one’s Ashki’s. For school I mean, you start on Monday.”

          I knew, I was nervous but couldn’t wait to start my new school. Since we’d moved last month Ashki and I had had to leave at half seven and we were still half an hour late on a good day. Why mum and dad had to move half way across the county in the middle of term I don’t know.

But now, all that would change, I was going to Appledore Boarding School For Girls and Ashki was going to Natbury Boarding School For Boys. Appledore would be my first boarding school.

I dumped the pile of stuff on the sofa, washed my hands and laid the table. Then I picked up Narinda and put her in her seat and went back into the living room, picked up Sammi and put her in her seat to the helped mum dish up their dinners.

“Dad, Ashki. Tea’s ready” I yelled opening the posh French doors.

“Ok, just be a minute” dad called back, wiping his muddy hands on the cloth on the bench in his shed.

“What’s for dinner” Dad asked as Mum picked the saucepan up off the hob.

“Potatoes, carrots and chicken stew with apple pie and cream for dessert” she answered.

After dinner I helped mum do the washing up then took Sammi up to have a bath.

“Yay” she cried as I put her little red duck into the bath. I washed and dried her; and took her downstairs and gave Narinda a bath as well.

          Once they were in bed I went down stairs with a book so I could read whilst mum and dad watched the news.

“Thanks darling” said mum as I walked into the lounge. “I have had such a busy day in town I just needed a sit down. Did they settle down quickly?”

“Yeah, I read Imogen’s Feast to them. They both just love that book especially Nari.”

“Oh that book. Yes I had to read that to them last night” called dad from the kitchen. “Oh, bother. Tess you can’t have a cup of tea I’m afraid. We need more milk.”

“I’ll go and get some in the morning mum” I said.

“Ok, dear. I think it’s about time you and Ashki went to bed.”

I glanced at him curled up in an armchair staring at his smeared gameboy screen.

“Ok, night mum night dad” I got up giving them both a kiss and a hug then going upstairs, and going to bed.

          Next morning I was woken up by my mum shaking me. “Shanti, Shanti wake up. It’s time for breakfast. Your dad went to get the milk he also got a little treat for you and the others.” I jumped out of bed and ran down stairs. I know dad’s little treats, last time he bought me a giant Cadbury’s milk chocolate bar. “Oh, wow thanks dad.” He’d obviously popped into HMV because in my place there was a new Candybubbles CD. Candybubbles is my favorite band ever. “It’s ok” he grinned.

“What’s for breakfast mum?” I asked turning round.

“Well, since we’ve moved here there have been a lot of changes and I’ve decided that you can choose what you want for breakfast; within reason of course.”

“Cool, could I have porridge with sultanas and toast afterwards?”

“Of course you can, I don’t suppose you could go and wake the twins up and Ashki. Please”

“Sure” I picked up my CD and headed upstairs. First I put my CD in my room then knocked loudly on Ashki’s door.

“Whad’ya want” came a muffled voice.

 “Mum says you need to come and have your breakfast and dad’s bought you something.” I heard the bed creak as he sat up. “I got a CD.”

“What’ve I got?”

“Not telling” I laughed and skipped down the landing.

One, Two, Three. On cue Ashki’s door opened and he thundered down stairs.

          With the twins I tried a different approach. Tapping softly on the door, I pushed it open and poked my head through the gap.

 “Girls; if you are good and get up now you’ll have a treat waiting for downstairs!” Just like it had with Ashki, it worked. Sammi and Nari leapt out of their beds. I laughed and picked them both up spinning them round, before going down stairs a laughing giggling girl in each arm. After breakfast I took the twins down the park so mum could do her Sunday Cleaning Frenzy, as I called it, when she rushed round the house hovering, dusting, sweeping the whole house top to bottom and dad could put up the old wooden swing on the big oak tree at the bottom of the garden.

“Weeeeee” yelled Sammi as I shoved the swing higher.

“Weeeeee” yelled Nari as I shoved her swing higher still.

For me the day shot past like a rocket with ten thousand fireworks stuffed up its bum.

          Bring Bring. I sat up in bed like a shot. It was my very first day at Danington High Boarding School. It was girls only school, no boys to snigger away at the back, no boys nicking your jumper and using it as a football at lunch. Would I fit in? And a green uniform not that awful red like at Newton High. I looked at my chair. Yep there was the green pleated skirt, the white blouse, the green cardigan and the white socks all hung over the back of my chair.

I ran down stairs and into the kitchen. “Hi darling, have some breakfast then I’ll take you there in the car. It’ll take a few hours to get there.”

“Ok” I poured milk onto my corn flakes and gobbled them down.

I went upstairs and put on my uniform feeling very proud. I picked up my new school bag, an orange satchel type thing which was slightly fluffy. Carefully, I put my pink pencil case; my rainbow striped organizer; a couple of books which I had forgotten to put in my suitcases; and my mobile. I glanced at the clock and ran down stairs my bag flung over my shoulder.

“Hey who’s the green giant? Oh whoops; it’s Shantina.”

Scowling at my brother I shoved my keys into my bag and picked my money up putting it into my glittery cat purse that I’ve had since I was three. I glanced round the kitchen to spot any thing that I might need. Aha, I reached over and picked my hairbrush off the shelf. Putting it in my bag I and mum walked out the front door.

“Hey Shantina; you’ve forgotten something.” I turned round to see Ashki leaning out of the bathroom window waving my toothbrush at me. “Thanks, but it’s in my trunk.”

“Ooh, cool I never knew you were an elephant.” I turned my back on him and continued walking down the path.


          “Are you nervous darling?” asked mum as she turned in at the gate.

“A bit.”

“Come on. We’re here.” I stood tugged my trunk out of the boot and went up the steps. We were almost immediately surrounded by girls all demanding my name, how old I was.  Suddenly they were stopped by a bell ringing loudly signaling the end of lunch. As mum led me to the heads office I suddenly felt very nervous. To say the truth it was almost as if it had just sunken in, that I was at a boarding school were I would only see my mum at half term.  Thankfully Mrs. Fenda, the head seemed to be really nice. She took me to my dormitory first popping her head into a room which I presumed was my form room. “Sorry to interrupt Miss Kennenda but this is Shanti Morreca, the new girl. May I please ask someone to look after her for a few days?”

 Miss Kennenda looked round the class. “Natasha.”

 “Yes Miss.”

 “You are in Dormitory 9 aren’t you? Thought you were; could you please show Shanti round for a few days? Thank you.” Next Mrs. Fenda took me up to Matron where she left me.

“Come on then. I’d best help you unpack.” When we’d finished she took me down to my form room. As I stood at the front I was aware that nearly all the girls were staring at me. Was it because I was a dark brown? Or was it just because I was new? I didn’t know. I didn’t mind either way as long as there was no one like Emma here. At my old school Emma was the queen bee, the girl every one wanted to be. Everyone that is except me. Emma was a perfect English rose type girl. Pale pinkish-white skin, deep blue eyes, long blond hair, clever at every thing, except Drama, History and Art. Which happened to be the subjects I am best at and love. Not a great way to start a brilliant friendship. I suppose it didn’t help that every thing she liked I didn’t, every thing she thought was cool I thought was dumb and the same with her and my ideas of what was cool and what was fun. Also Emma had this ‘theory’ well that was what she called it. And that ‘theory’ was that that any one that was a different colour to ‘normal’ ie; white, whitish-pink, pink, pinkish-white, just wasn’t worth bothering about. Ah, I happened to be the only girl in the school, let alone the class that didn’t fall under Emma’s ‘normal’ skin colour category. Big Bummer. I looked around the room. Good, there were a couple of light brown girls at the back.

“Shanti, you can stay where you are. The rest of you come and stand out here. As I told you all last week, we will have a seating arrangement. And as you know I always keep my word. Right starting from the back row left corner. Shanti.” At this there were a number of groans, and as I walked past a group of girls I heard them mumble. ‘Lucky thing, that’s the best place, you’re at the back and next to a window.’ I stood behind the desk and waited to hear who I would be sitting next to.

 “Next to her, Cassandra,” She grinned at me as she slung her bag over the desk. I glanced round the room while Miss Kennenda gave out seats; slowly I drifted off into a daydream. Before I knew it Miss Kennenda had finished reading out the names and everyone was sitting down.

“Right class I will give you ten minutes or so to put your things into your new desks. Cassandra could you please get Shanti her books and Roberta could you please get her; her timetable, lists of jobs and very thing else she needs.” Cassandra went over to the cupboard and pulled out some books. Meanwhile, the dark haired girl on the desk, across the aisle, next to me had gone over to a drawer at one side of the room and was rummaging through papers in it. Finally they both found what they were looking for and plonked both piles on to my desk. Quickly I copied the teacher and subject off Cassandra’s books.

 “Thanks” I said handing them back to her. Then I opened my desk holding both piles on my lap. “Don’t move” Cassandra picked them up off my lap and dumped them down on the top of her desk. “Thanks.” “No problem. Here I’ll help you put your stuff in your desk.”

While were doing that I glanced at her. Yes, I liked the look of her.

  “Where are you from?” For a few seconds I felt offended thinking she meant my skin. But then I realized she meant where I lived.

  “Oh, right. Kingly. You?”

  “Abingdon. The next town to Kingly actually.”

  “Oh, yes. Cool.”

Just then a bell rang loudly. Natasha was at my desk like a shot.

  “You’re lucky and unlucky at the same time. I have to sit at the front right under Kenny’s sharp eyes.”

  “Why I am I lucky and unlucky?” I asked feeling slightly confused.

  “Oh, you’re lucky because you are right at the back next to the window. And you’re unlucky because you have to sit with Cassandra and Roberta and Jesi and that lot.”

  “How come I’m unlucky?”

  “We don’t like them.”

  “Huh. But how, I mean why I mean oh I’m confused.”

By now we were nearly at the door of the art room which was our next lesson.

  “Oh their parents aren’t nearly so well off as mine. I do think it’s a shame that people of my high quality who pay such high fees have to be in the same school as those that only pay half the fees. It is so unfair on us to have to pig it out with people like that.” That was the first time I heard about Natasha's wealth, but it certainly wasn’t the last.

  “Oh, yes I guess so” I was trying hard to pretend I didn’t mind but deep down I felt hurt. I knew that my mum only paid half fees for me and my brother to go to our schools. In the art lesson I went over to sit with Cassandra but Natasha pulled me back.

  “Where are you going?” she asked almost accusingly.

  “I’m going to sit with Cassandra.”

  “But, I just told you how much I despise people who only pay half fees.”

  “Nice to know that Natasha, I’m so pleased to know how you feel about me.”

With that I picked up my bag and went over to Cassandra’s table.

  “Is it ok if I sit here?” I asked doubtfully as I knew she had heard most of what Natasha was saying to me in the corridor.

  “Sure” said Cassandra. Thankfully I sat down.

  “What was Tasha saying to you? What ever it was you didn’t agree with her, it sounded like you were having a row.”

  “We were” I admitted standing up as a tall graceful lady swept into the big room.

  “What ever you’ve only been here and hour and you’re already arguing with Tasha.”

  “What a great way to make friends” laughed a girl who’s name I didn’t know.      

  “Hang on a minute you don’t know most of our names. I’m Cassandra, Cassie to friends, that’s Roberta also known as Bobbie, she’s Jesi, those three are Trixie, Lu-Lu, Harriet, or Harrie, and last and of course least Jenna.”

  “Oi” laughed Jenna.

Miss Loinen, the art teacher, took me on one side and explained what the rest of the class had been doing. I picked a piece of paper up of the table and set to work; drawing a picture of something that came to mind when the word circus was said, an elephant with a bat in it’s trunk and a keeper throwing a ball for the elephant.

  “Wow” gasped Bobbie glancing over my shoulder. “That’s really good Shanti.”     

  “Thanks yours is good as well. How did you draw a person on a horse so well? It looks like the real thing. Have you been to many circus's?"


Bobbie glanced at Lu-Lu.

  “You tell her.”

  “Ok, I shall, seeing as Little Miss Poisonous will as soon as she gets the chance. Bobbie spends her holidays at festivals and travelling round the country in her little caravan with her parents, Bobbie is a gypsy girl.” I could see from their faces they expected me to come out with something mean. Instead I laughed. “Your faces are hilarious.”

  “Then you don’t mind?” asked Bobbie anxiously.

  “Mind. Why ever should I mind?”

  “Well, I, we weren’t sure if you would want to be friends with us. Natasha was at first then I accidentally let slip about me being a gypsy girl and she hasn’t had anything to do with us since. She joined the popular girls and that was that” finished Bobbie almost triumphantly.

  “Oh, by the way why were you and Natasha arguing?” butted in Harrie.

  “Oh nothing much just that Tasha was going on about how you lot don’t pay the right amount of fees and how it was unfair. I came to sit with you lot and she moans I wasn’t listening.”

  “And, don’t just stop” said Harrie impatiently.

  “There’s nothing else to tell except that while she was burbling on about all that there was one little tiny thing she didn’t know.”

  “What, what didn’t Natasha know?” butted in Harrie again.

  “My parents paid half fees for me.”

  “Ha, I bet that showed her” laughed Lu-Lu.

  “Yeah, she’ll probably go all sulky on me now.”

  “No she won’t she’ll try and get back your friendship.”

  “Get it back, what ever for? She didn’t even have it in the first place.” The others giggled.

  “Any way she’ll try and get your friendship by telling tales of her wealth and stuff like that.”

  “Ok, I’ll watch out for that.”

  “Good. If you don’t she’ll have you under her in no time” said Trixie.

Just then a bell rang and a groan came from Natasha over at the other side of the room.

  “What’s up?” Lu-Lu called.

  “Stupid bell made me jump, spilt blue water over pink brush, now I’ve got a giant purple splodge on my picture.”

 Natasha glanced down and gave another loud groan. “Oh no, I’ve got paint on my tie and blouse.” She ran over to the sink and started running water.

  “Come on Shanti, that was the lunch bell, we have to wash our hands, tidy our hair and line up out the dinner hall.”

  “I’m going to help Tasha.”

  “But we’re having chips today” protested Trixie.

   “Oh, ok I’ll come then.” I followed them out of the room.

          After lunch the girls showed me round the school, the gym, all the classrooms, the dormitories and the common rooms.

   “And this is the Form 1 common room. We each have lockers where we can keep our belongings that one in the corner is yours. Did you bring a hamper? You know with your games and stuff in” said Jenna, walking into a big airy room.

  “Yes, it’s in my dormitory. I’ll go and get it.”

  “Ok, do you want me to go with you?”

  “I’ll go” said Natasha walking in through the door behind us. “I’m the one that’s meant to be looking after her not you.”

On the way up to Dormitory 9 I said. “I’m sorry about earlier. I have an awful temper sometimes. It just flares up and before I even know what I’m doing or saying, I’m stomping off in a huff.”

Natasha seemed a little taken aback. I had a sly feeling she was going to say something mean and cutting, but my little speech seemed to have taken the wind out of her sails.

  “Oh, that’s ok. I have a bit of a temper to. I don’t really mind you, or the others, only paying half fees. But my parents have always said that only people who have the same amount of wealth as us are worth bothering about. I’m afraid they seemed to have drummed it into me, and like you just said before I even know what I’m saying the other person has stomped off. In fact, I didn’t even realize what I’d said until you’d sat down with the others. I felt dreadful. Please forgive me.”

I laughed. “Don’t look so worried. I would be being horrible if I didn’t forgive you when so many other people have forgiven me for exactly the same thing.”

  “Oh thank you so much. I’m sorry you got such a bad view of me the minute I was in your company. I expect the others told you all about me and Bobbie.”

  “Yes they have. But don’t worry I’ll get them friends with you. I expect you didn’t realize what you’d said then until they stormed off.”

  “I hate to say it but you’re right. Anyway we’d better take this hamper down to the common room or they’ll be coming up thinking we’ve both been kidnapped or something.”

  “There you are we were wondering whether to send someone to look for you” cried Cassie as they walked into the room. “Any way I hate to leave you all alone with her but we have to go and find Miss Watson, the geography teacher and give her our homework.”

  “Oh, that’s ok.”

When they’d gone Tasha helped me put everything into my locker. She explained that the basket thing at the bottom was for putting all my edible bits in and the shelves were to put jigsaws, sewing, a few books and any thing else the girls wanted to put in their locker.

  “But be careful, Matron goes through these lockers each month and if she find something she thinks isn’t nice, like a tin of stale biscuits or whatever then she takes it out and leaves a note telling the person where it is and why” she warned me.

Suddenly a bell rang loudly and there was the sound of running feet everywhere.

Miss Kennenda called the register and sent Jodie, who, according to Cassie was a real brainpan, to take the register to the main office. Miss Kennenda left and   the French mistress came in.

  “Now girls, get out your French books, Penny please can you hand the text books. Level 5 ones please.” Mam’zelle said in her brisk sharp voice. “Shanti, come up here and I’ll explain to you what the others have been doing.” It turned out they were doing the topic I had just done at my old school.

I left her desk and sat down, opening my book I started the questions but I hadn’t got very far at all when the lesson finished.

  “I will take your books in and mark them. You have all had enough time to have completed the task set so I will be disappointed if any of you have done not less than five questions.” I stared at her in horror. I had only reached number three and I certainly hadn’t done it very well at all.

  “And since you are all such good hard working girls. You can write me up on a piece of paper the reason why France isn’t a country with a king or queen. Shanti, that includes you as you have just done it at your last school. I will have that tomorrow. You can do it study time and I expect not less than eleven mistakes in the whole thing. Two pages long if you please.”

At this there were a couple of mutters from the middle row. I gaped at Mam’zelle in horror. I would never get all that done in time for tomorrow where would I find the time? Almost as if she had read my mind. Kerrie, who I was sat next to and was really nice, turned to me and said. “In the evening our year has to go the gym for half an hour to an hour and do any homework set that day. If you finished before the bell goes then you have to ask permission to leave from the mistress taking the study time that evening.”

  “Ok, thanks. But what happens if you don’t finish in the given time?”

  “Oh, then you have to finish it in the common room in your spare time.” By this time we were nearly at the door of our common room.

  “Each form has morning break and lunch, but we also have the weekends, and after school. Mobiles are only allowed on weekends." Just then Tasha came up to me.

  “Hey Shanti, do you want to go down into town with me, everyone else is busy and it’s my aunts birthday next week so I need to get her a present.”

  “Sure, I’ll just get my purse.”

          The rest of the day seemed to go very quickly, before I knew it. I was in bed listening to girls whispering to each other. I shut my eyes and rolled over to face the window.

            RING RING.  I was woken up by a bell ringing loudly from somewhere out the dorm. I opened my eyes and saw several girls sitting up in bed rubbing their eyes.

  “Mornin’ Shanti” called Tasha from the other end of the dorm.

  “Huh, oh right hello” I mumbled sleepily.

  “Not used to bells waking you up are you?”

  “No. I’ll get used to it, eventually.”

  “That’s the spirit. Come on, up you get. Matron will be coming round soon. She’ll pull you out of bed if you aren’t out before she comes round.”

Hearing that I jumped out of bed and gasped. I’d caught sight of the view out of the window. The sun was pouring in and the Cornish sea looked lovely shining and glistening in the rays.

   “Lovely isn’t it?” I spun round to see who was speaking. Jodie, the ‘brainpan’ was standing beside me looking out of the window too. I gathered she must have been sleeping in the bed next to me.

          Twenty minutes later I met up with Cassie and the rest as I walked out of my dorm with them as they had come to see if I was ready. I was so, as I could smell breakfast smells wafting up the stairs and through the door which had been opened once everyone was dressed and busy making their beds. I picked up a bowl of cornflakes and a plate of hot buttery toast. As I sat down. Trixie spoke to me. “How come you are getting along so well with Tasha and Co?”

  “I think their all really nice. It’s just that she’s a bit like me...”

  “A bit like you, but you’re so nice and their so mean” interrupted Lu-Lu.

  “No I mean her parents have drummed it into her head that she’s the best. And like me she’s got a tongue that runs away with her.” Seeing their confused faces I tried to explain. “I mean that she says things and the other person stomps off before she even knows what she’s saying or said. I do that but it’s my temper that causes my tongue to run off. Her parents caused hers.” I gazed round the table, to my dismay my gaze was met with cold, stony glares. Oh, how thankful I was when Bobbie gave a grin.

  “Oh I get it now. Tasha probably said what she said to me before she even realized what she’d said.”

  “Yes, that’s it.”

  “I don’t see why she didn’t say sorry” said Cassie scornfully.

  “Well, you know she did try” said Bobbie. “But we never gave her the chance.”

  “Sticking up for Snoberella now are we” Cassie turned to the other girls.            

  “Come on lets leave the snob stickers alone.” With that all the other girls on the table save Bobbie and my self got up and went over to another table.

  “Oh no, I didn’t mean for them to, I mean I wanted to all be friends together not have one group going into a huff when I’m hanging out the other group.”

  “Oh never mind about them, that’s one of Cassie weak points; once she has something in her head then it would take an awful lot of guts and courage to stand up to whatever she thinks. Any way lets go and find Tasha and tell her the baddish good news” replied Bobbie sounding a lot more confident than she actually looked.

          We both got up and walked out of the door, as I followed Bobbie I became aware that that all the girls round Cassie’s table were giving us hostile glares. I glanced round and held my breath; they were sitting with the whole of the rich snobs that usually made up Tasha’s gang, but this morning with one tiny little difference; Tasha wasn’t there.

  “Oh wait a minute” I went over to the table and asked where she was. “She’s in the dorm, sniveling most likely” was the reply I got from and extremely rich looking girl called Immie.

  “What was that all about?” Bobbie asked as I walked out the door and made my way to the stairs.

  “Their answer confirmed my thoughts.”

  “Huh, what thoughts? Which answer?”

  “They and Natasha have had a row over something or other and now they aren’t talking to her. Apparently they think she’s in the dorm sniveling.”

  “Wow, they must have said something really really horrible to her if they made her cry.” By now we were at the dorm door.

  “Hang on” said Bobbie glancing both ways down the corridor. “Matron doesn’t like girls going into other girls dorms at night or while the girls are changing.”

  “Well, it’s not night and no one’s changing right now so you can come in” I said pushing the door open and going inside. The first time I looked round I couldn’t see her. But then on closer inspection of her bed I realized the big lump wasn’t the bed clothes but something under there. Bobbie seemed to have realized before me as she swiftly walked over to the bed and tapped the bump. It moved.

  “Natasha, you can come out, it’s me and Shanti. The others are hanging out with your mates. I promise honestly I forgive you.”

The bed sheets were pulled down and Tasha’s face appeared. But how different she looked. Her cheeks were tear stained and her eyes were rimmed with red lines. Suddenly the bell went making us all jump, I and Bobbie glanced at each other then down at Tasha, well Tasha’s bed sheets, the sound of the bell had made Tasha dive underneath again. Bobbie was first to speak.

  “You go down and tell Kenny that Natasha’s got a bit upset and I’ll bring her down when she’s, well calmer than she is now.” I nodded and went out of the room at the sound of Bobbie's voice I stuck my head in again. “Oh, and could you go and to her desk and tell her privately it would make the others jump for joy if they heard that she’s a little upset.”

I gave Kenny the message and took my place beside Cassie.

  “Now class sorry about this but you’re all going to have to move places again as I am not happy with the work that was produced yesterday. So if I call out your name you will stay where you are.” To my relief although I had to move it was only into Cassie’s old seat. Cassie, to her disgust was now sitting right at the front in what was apparently known as the dreaded seat the seat right in front of Kenny’s desk. Kenny was half-way through the register when Bobbie and Tasha walked in.

  “Ah, there you are you two Roberta you are now sitting in Shanti’s old place next to Shanti, Natasha you are in Roberta's old seat also next to Shanti. Natasha I hope you are feeling better.” Tasha nodded as both Bobbie and Tasha sat down in their seats. Miss Kennenda went out leaving Cassie to hold the door for Mrs. Winton, the English mistress to come in. Cassie did so with a very sulky look in her face which turned even sulkier when she saw me sitting in the middle of Bobbie and Tasha. I turned to Bobbie.

  “Well, what happened?”

  “Apparently” Bobbie lowered her voice to a whisper so Tasha couldn’t hear her. “Apparently the others said she was a real @*!@^$#. And that she was so rich even her snot was made of liquefied emeralds. And other stuff equally as nice. Not.” I glanced at Tasha who was huddled over her desk. “No wonder she was upset.”

  “Yeah I know, also I think we’d better look after her a bit. It seems like the hard tough ‘I don’t care a bit’ attitude was just a kind of shell she’s built to protect the fact that inside she’s as soft and squishy as marshmallows and cream really.”

   “Marshmallow’s yummy. Sorry, I just love marshmallows especially with cream yummy yummy yummy.” I grinned. “Yeah, I’ll keep an eye on her and if we both work together we can make her be friends with the others again.”

Bobbie looked doubtful. “Hm, I know you mean well but you don’t know Cassie like I do. Once she’s got something into her head she makes sure it’s in everyone else’s heads. And she can be very forceful and bossy when she wants to be.”

          Suddenly we both heard Miss Winton’s voice behind them. “Shanti, where is your  book and why haven’t you done the homework I set?”

  “I...I...I…” Thankfully for me Bobbie came to my rescue.

  “Miss Winton, Shanti only arrived yesterday she wasn’t here when the homework was set.”

  “Well, Roberta will you get Shanti her book. Shanti the others have been doing the story of Kiminiania, the magic island that comes alive.”

  “Oh, that’s one of my favorite books and I’ve seen the film.”

  “That’s good, at the moment we are on the first chapter so you haven’t missed much. Ah, thank you Roberta.” Miss Winton turned to leave but then seemed to remember something else. “Roberta please let Shanti share your sheet I will photocopy one for next lesson.”

I copied down each question and found, to my relief, that the questions were much much easier than the French questions had been. Oh no, the French prep I had only done half of it and it had only reached half a page. I glanced at Miss Winton’s desk. I decided to risk it.



  “When do we have French today?”

  “In two lessons, why?”

  “Oh, pifflesticks. I haven’t finished the homework.”

  “Old Mam'zelle won’t be pleased with you. Anyway you’re new so hopefully she’ll forgive you.” Just then Miss Winton’s head shot up. “Who’s whispering?” she asked in a crisp voice. I put my head down and tried to look innocent.

          Suddenly the bell rang and I breathed a sigh of relief as Miss Winton

swept out of the room.

  “That’s something you have to be careful of in Bat’s classes.”

  “Why do you call her Bat?” I asked getting really confused with all the

different names for the teachers the girls had.

  “Oh, we call her Bat because she can hear like a bat” I must have looked

confused as Bobbie quickly added after glancing at the door. “For example we

were whispering right? Right, well she could hear us and we are sitting as far

away from her desk as possible and she could still hear us. That’s why we call

her Bat or Batty.”

  “I get it” I said hurriedly as a tall girl at the front stood up.

  “Oh no,” I saw Bobbie glance at the girl then at Tasha.

  “What’s wrong?” I heard myself asking.

  “That girl, the one that’s now standing up. She’s like the boss of the snobs

and rich folk.”

Hearing this I looked at Tasha whose face, seeing the girl standing up, had gone

pale which, when the girl started walking towards them, went even paler so

pale it went white with fear and whatever else was running through Tasha's


Slowly, oh how slowly the girl walked up to Tasha’s desk then stopped right in

front of the shaking girl.

  “Well, well mixing with the poor and lowly are we. Whatever’s happened to

the superior Natasha I know.” All this was said in a loud voice so

everyone could hear. Tasha gave a sob, stood up, which made the girl take a

step back, thinking Tasha was going to hit her, but Tasha had no intentions of

hitting any one as she ran out of the door and disappeared down the corridor.

without thinking I stood up and ran after her, by the sound of feet I gathered

that Bobbie was running after me. I turned to Bobbie “where do you think she’s

going?” I puffed, feeling thankful that I like running. Instead of answering

Bobbie simply pointed at Tasha who seemed to be heading for a side door. Sure

enough Tasha ran out side and turned left.

  “Oh no” I stopped and looked at Bobbie who’d stopped running and had a

dismayed look on her face.

  “What’s wrong?” I asked trying hard not to laugh at her face. “She’s gone the

way to the hills. She’ll have gone to her cave; she found it when the whole form went for a walk last term."

  “Well, come on lets go after her. You do know where it is don’t you?” Bobbie nodded. “Come on then, what are you waiting for.” Instead Bobbie led me to a shed, and, opening the door went inside pulling me behind her. Only when the door was closed did she start talking.

  “Yes I know where the cave is but for one thing; we aren’t supposed to go anywhere out of school grounds without anyone knowing where we are, two; we’re supposed to be in math right now, and three; I can tell you, Kenny is not going to be pleased when Becca, the tall girl, tells her that all three of us ran off during change over.”

          Just then our conversation was interrupted by a third former opening the door. “Golly, what are you two doing in here?” came a very surprised voice as she spotted us.

  “Long story, hey can you go and tell Kenny that Tasha was feeling a bit upset so we, Bobbie and Shanti, took her out of the classroom until she had calmed down.” The girl gave a grin. “Don’t worry, I’ll tell her.” She strolled off; we waited a minute then shot off out of the shed past the kitchen gardens and up into the hills until we reached the third cave we’d passed. “In here” Bobbie yanked me inside; it wasn’t long before I became aware that someone was crying.

  “Tasha, are you ok?”

  “Go away.”

  “Tasha, please tell us what’s wrong.”

  “Just go away and leave me alone.” I felt something by my ear as Bobbie lent over to whisper.

  “Walk to the entrance, so she thinks we’ve gone then when she’s calmed down a bit speak again.” I did as she said and soon the crying stopped.


  “Why are you still here, I thought you’d gone.”

  “Natasha, we’re not going until you tell us what the matter is.”

Suddenly, a voice came; I recognized it as the third former from earlier.

  “Hey, you three, Kenny wants to see you all at lunch time. Becca told on you before I was in the room I’m afraid. She was just finishing as I walked in.”

 “Oh, thanks.”

  “It’s ok; oh I don’t suppose any of you are going to town on Friday are you?”

  “I might; why?” answered Bobbie.

  “I’ve got a letter I need posting but I don’t have a spare ten minutes, do you think you could post it for me. I would send it by email but my accounts not working at the moment.”

  “Sure, I’ll pop into your form-room tonight and pick it up” said Bobbie.

  “You’re a life saver” grinned the tall girl.

A couple of seconds later Bobbie glanced at her watch.

  “Golly, it’s quarter to one; we’ve been here an hour and a half. Lunch starts at one, and we’re first today. Come on, we’d better go, it takes twenty minutes to get back to school and then we’ve got to get ready for lunch. Oh and the meeting with Kenny won’t be fun.” Quickly the three girls made their way back to the school and were just in time to get their lunch before the second year came in.

          Just as they sat down at the end of a table, Jodie came running up to them.

“There you l…lot are” she puffed. “Cassie and c…crew run fast.” I handed her my glass of water and she gulped it down thankfully.


The End

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