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The Head Girl at the Gables
written by "Brazil, Angela, 1868-1947"
...at it must come to her ears. As a matter of [67]fact, Lorraine learnt the whole story before she had taken off her boots. She made little comment, but went into class with a cloud on her face. The head girl was going through the difficult experience, shared by all who are suddenly placed in authority, of trying to hold the reins so as to satisfy everybody. To keep slackers up to the mark without gaining for herself the unenviable reputation of "a Tartar", to be pleasant with the juniors without loss of dignity, to preserve old standards while adopting new ones, called for all the tact she possessed. She often felt her cousin a great impediment. Vivien was one of those people who love to give good advice, and to say what they would do in certain circumstances, urging on others drastic measures which they would probably never enforce themselves if they happened to be in authority. Sometimes, however, the objections were just, and this was a case in point. The matter floated in Lorraine's mind all the morning, as a kind of background to English literature and mathematics. She called a monitresses' meeting for four o'clock that very day. When afternoon school was over, and Miss Janet, with the big volume of Milton, had taken her departure, Lorraine assembled her committee, intercepting Patsie and Audrey, who were trying to sneak from the room. "Look here, you've got to stop!" she assured them. "I've to call at the dressmaker's; I've brought my bicycle on purpose!" objected Audrey. [68]"Then the dressmaker will have to wait ten minutes." "And I'm due at the dentist's," declared Patsie. "The dentist can wait too! It's most important for us all to be at this meeting. I can't possibly let any one off it." Rather sulkily, Audrey and Patsie went back to their desks. Possibly they might have rebelled, but public opinion was plainly against them. Vivien was looking virtuous, and Dorothy made some pointed remarks about duty before p...

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