[Pg 56]"Bridget, do look," said Mrs. Freeman; "you have trodden on that lovely bud!""No, Bridget, you cannot. You have been sent here to be under my care, and you must remain with me at least until the end of the term.""Hurrah! Hurrah! Long may she stay there! Now, do let us drop this tiresome subject. We have only ten minutes to ourselves before the rest of the committee arrive, and that point with regard to Evelyn Percival must be arranged. Come, Dorothy, let us race each other to the Lookout!"
"Oh, how very funny—how—how unpleasant. Did you tell papa about that when he arranged to send me here?"
"Oh, come at once!" said Violet, "there has been an accident, and Evelyn is hurt. Bridget is with her. Come, come at once!"
[Pg 53]This morning Bridget had been practically "sent to Coventry." Even Dorothy was cold in her manner to her. The small children who had hung upon her words and followed her with delight the evening before, were now too frightened at the consequences of their own daring to come near her. Janet, Ruth, and Olive had shown their disapproval by marked avoidance and covert sneers. Bridget had done a very naughty act, and the school thought it well to show its displeasure."Now, my dear child, will you come into the house with me? I ought to be in the schoolroom now."
"I hate school," she said. "I want to go back to the Castle. Can I go to-day?"
"Change my dress! Now I really don't understand you. Am I to come down in my dressing-gown?"If Dorothy chose to take the new girl's part, she supposed there was something in her, and would continue to suppose so until she had a conversation with Janet, or anyone else, who happened to have diametrically opposite opinions to Dorothy Collingwood.Miss Delicia hurried on, intent on some housewifely mission, and Olive entering the house went down a long stone passage which led to the sixth form schoolroom.
"Caspar shied at something," she said.
"What is that?"