Anastasia Brown sat curled up in the window alcove in the drawing
room, buried in Joey Bettany’s latest book. The sound of her parents
drawing near disturbed her and, with a sigh she closed the book. The fifteen year old’s blonde hair hung down past her shoulders in a ponytail. As they entered the room she looked up with her piercing pale blue eyes.
Anastasia had suffered a bout of pneumonia the previous year. Her parents were famous ice skaters, a profession assisted by the many lochs of the Scottish Highlands, which freeze during winter. Anastasia was skating with them when she had fallen over and cracked the deceptively thinning ice, sinking under the surface into the freezing water. She was quickly rescued, but her lungs suffered and she had been unwell for several months.
Olivia and Edward Brown were heading on tour to Scandinavia. They had spoken to Anastasia’s doctor who advised against her following them there. He was adamant that she needed to be somewhere the climate would benefit her health. Luckily the Doctor had a friend whose daughter went to the Chalet School in Switzerland. He suggested it would be a good place for Anastasia to go whilst her parents were away, especially as the school had a good reputation for placing great importance on the health of its pupils. The problem was, Mr. and Mrs. Brown were not rich and the Chalet School fees were substantial. The doctor said he would talk to his friend about this, as it really was the best way to solve their problem.