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Author's Chapter Notes:

Thanks for all of the comments! Moving to the Trips now, and you might want to know I've changed a couple more things in this timeline than I probably needed to!


“Josette, tell us about the Chalet School,” said Lizzie.

“What's the magic word?”

“Pleeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaassssssssssseeeeeeeeeeeeeee,” said Lizzie and Joey in unison.

It was the night before the Triplets were due to start at the Chalet School, and as Lizzie and Joey pleaded with Josette for her to tell them about the Chalet School, the curious ear of Cecily twitched. She hunted around for some sort of bookmark, and slit a hair ribbon in the pages of the book before joining her triplets in seeking out for more information on the Chalet School.

“I'll tell you about the Chalet School, then,” Josette said. “What do you want to know?”

“What happens at school?” asked Joey.

“Well, we'll be walking there with Mum at the beginning,” said Josette. “We go to Prayers, then lessons start. Then break time, then more lessons, then Lunchtime. After that, we have things like games and that sort of thing, then we go home with Mum and do our Prep at home,”

“What are the mistresses like?” asked Lizzie. “What are all the staff like?”

“Well, you three will be with Miss Phipps,” Josette said. A wicked idea struck her. “She's evil. She'll lock you in the cupboard if you misbehave, or get something wrong,”

“Really?” asked Joey.

“The headmistress is even worse,” said Josette. “No-one ever knows what goes on in her office, no-one ever says, but it is believed that torture goes on in her office,”

“Really?” asked Lizzie.

Josette nodded solemnly. “And whatever you do, don't get on the wrong side of the Prefects. They turned a girl into a slave because she went on their wrong side,”

“Daisy is one, isn't she?” asked Cecily. “She wouldn't be mean, would she?”

“All people turn mean when they become Prefects,” Josette said.

“I hope I never become one,” and Lizzie shivered.

“You won't have any choice,” said Josette.

“What will we do in lessons?” asked Joey.

“Different subjects, like Maths, Science, English, History, Geography, French, German, so on, so forth,” Josette said.

“What's the library like?” asked Cecily.

“We're only allowed to access the Junior library at the moment,” Josette smiled. “But there are plenty of books there,”

“Good,” said Cecily. “I've almost finished all mine,”

“It is time for you triplets to be in bed,” said Rosa, coming in through the doorway.

“But Rosa,” Joey and Lizzie whined.

“It is a big day for you tomorrow,” said Rosa. “You'll need to be rested,”

“Please? Pretty pretty pretty please?”

But Rosa was firm on her point. Joey and Lizzie grumbled and groaned about it, but almost as soon as they were in their beds they were fast asleep. Cecily, who had obeyed without complaint, stayed awake, thinking about all she had heard. “It won't be that bad,” she told herself. “It can't be, she's making it up,”

And with that, she fell into a deep sleep and knew no more until the morning.

***

Morning came.

Everyone was at breakfast. The girls, apart from 3-year-old Ailie, were all dressed in a brown school uniform. In addition, Sybil had with her a trunk – she had asked to be a weekly boarder and Madge had, rather reluctantly, agreed that she could if she wanted to.

David also had his trunk. Today he'd be going back to his boarding school and a dominantly male area. He enjoyed his time at boarding school, but he also enjoyed some of the time he had at home. However, he was too fixated on school to ever admit homesickness, however light it may be. Jem was to take him to the station.

The females, including Ailie, headed for the Chalet School. It wasn't a very long one, but it wasn't a very short one either. Lizzie, Joey, and Josette ran ahead. Sybil walked on as well. Cecily clung to Madge's hand as they walked.

“Don't worry Cecily, it won't be horrible,” Madge said. “Your triplets will be there, and Josette and Sybil, and Primula and Daisy too. There will be some people you know,”

“The mistresses won't lock us up, will they?” asked Cecily.

“Of course not,” said Madge. “Any punishments will be because you deserve them, just like at home,”

“And Matey isn't called Matey because she was once a pirate?”

“No, and that reminds me,” said Madge. “You must promise me that if you feel even the slightest bit poorly you will go to Matey immediately. We don't want you to have any more serious illnesses,”

“I promise, Auntie Madge,” said Cecily.

“Good, so we don't need to worry about that,” said Madge. “You three, slow down,”

Josette, Joey and Lizzie slowed down. It was just as well, for in their haste they could have knocked Daisy Venables down. Daisy had been waiting for her sister to come so they could go on their way.

“Come on Primula, Auntie Madge and the cousins are coming!” Daisy yelled through the house.

It wasn't very long later that Primula was being led out by Margot Humphries, once Venables, once Russell.

“And are the both of you sure you've got absolutely everything?” she asked.

“Yes, mum,” they said in unison.

“Well, have a good term, keep your noses clean,” said Margot. “And don't fall into trouble,”

“Bye, Mum,” said Daisy.

“Goodbye,” said Primula.

“Bye girls,” Margot said.

Daisy and Primula joined the Russells and Maynards in the walk to the Chalet School. The walk wasn't too bad, and soon the rather large group arrived at the school gates.

“Bye girls,” said Madge. “Josette, Joey, Cecily, and Lizzie, I'll be picking you up just after Tea,”

“Bye Mum,”

“Bye Auntie Madge!”

The younger ones dashed in to the school, the elders going at a more sedate pace. Cecily still clung to Madge's hand.

“Go on dear,” said Madge, lowering herself to Cecily's level. “You should enjoy it,”

Cecily smiled wanly, then walked into the Chalet School grounds. Madge watched with a sigh.

“Come on Ailie,” she said. “Time to go home,”



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