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Too clever by half


Jennie, Beth, and Anna sat on the sofa in the Sixth Form Common Room glowing with relief. They'd just achieved the impossible: they'd talked their way out of a certain thrashing from the Headmistress.

Mrs Winchester was nobody's fool and when the Head Girl had reported that she'd seen the three pupils out-of-bounds in the shop located just across the road from the school, and so enticingly laden with confectionery, cigarettes, and even (for the highest risk-takers) wine and beer, the Headmistress had summoned the trio to her study. As they waited nervously outside, Anna whispered to them.

"Leave the talking to me. I've got a plan."

Hope flickered in Jennie and Beth's trembling hearts.

"So," said Mrs Winchester sternly, "Cynthia says she saw you in the Blue Moon. What do you have to say for yourselves?"

"In the Blue Moon, miss? Of course we weren't, it's out of bounds. There must be some mistake." All the girls were eyeing the Dragon cane lying  on the desk.

"I doubt it, the Head Girl seemed very certain. So where were you at seven o'clock this evening, then?"

"At seven o'clock, miss, we were in the Common Room, listening to the Archers on the wireless. We never miss an episode."

Jennie and Beth did their best to stop their eyebrows shooting up. None of them ever listened to the radio serial.

"Oh, were you?" said Mrs Winchester, rising from her seat and picking up the cane, which she flexed menacingly. "So tell me, what happened at Ambridge tonight?" The Headmistress was a fan of the show.

"Well," said Anna coolly, "let's see. They decided to plough 5 Acre, but when Josh got home, he found Jill collapsed on a rug in front of the fire, and so he called the doctor..."

"All right, so you obviously were listening to the radio. Cynthia must have been mistaken. Just as well for you, because if you had been in the shop, you'd all have felt this across your backsides!" She swished the dreaded cane meaningfully. "So, off you go then."

Back in the Common Room, the girls turned delightedly to Anna. 

"How on earth did you know what was on the Archers tonight?"

"While you two were trying to decide which sort of wine to buy, I happened to hear the wireless playing in the background. I wasn't really interested, but wasn't it a good thing that I listened? You both owe me big time for the fact that your're sitting comfortably!"

"Absolutely! Shall we open the wine?"

It was then that the Head Girl appeared through the door.

"I hear that you've cheated your way out of a meeting with Winnie's Dragon and made me look like a fool at the same time. So, let me ask you a few questions, and they won't be about the Archers!"



Jennie, Anna, and Beth feeling good about pulling the wool over the Headmistress's eyes

Photo: amariseliane

Mrs Winchester's cane rack: the Dragon at the top

For more illustrated stories, see the Spankings tab

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