"What is it, my dear?" The head mistress drew herself slightly up, and looked in some surprise at her pupil."Yes, darling, I did. Shall we go into the common room now? I'm dying to see it.""I must break you in gradually, dear," she said. "As this is your first day at school you need not do any lessons, but you must come with me presently to the schoolroom in order that I may find out something about your attainments."
Bridget raised her brows the tenth of an inch. The faintest shadow of surprise crossed her sweet, happy face. Then she walked down the long room, nodding and smiling to the girls.
"New girl!" exclaimed Katie, "why, she's about the very oldest girl in the school—the oldest and the nicest. She's the head of the school. We call her our queen. She's not like you, Biddy, of course; but she's very nice—awfully nice!"
"No, miss, that it can't," said Marshall, who felt as she expressed it afterward, "that royled by Miss May's 'aughty ways." "I won't keep Miss Collingwood any time, miss, ef you'll be pleased to walk on.""My dear, you have been ill, which accounts for your nervousness. But in any case a person with the stoutest nerves may be pardoned for fainting if she is flung out of a carriage. I cannot imagine how you escaped as you have done."[Pg 56]
"Now, let's go on," said Janet, in her calm tones. "Let us try and settle something before the supper bell rings. We must have a committee, that goes without saying. Suppose we four girls form it.""Thanks!" said Janet calmly.
"Well," said Janet, "if you insist on spoiling everything, girls, you must. You know what Evelyn is."
The girls entered the wide, long dining hall and immediately took their places at the table.
"And we are not allowed to go out of the grounds by ourselves," cried several other voices.