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Ailie came in looking fed up and sat down heavily on the settee. Madge raised an eyebrow at her 17-year-old daughter “What’s the why of that?”

“It’s Aunt Joey.” Ailie sighed “ever since she heard I was to be head girl next term she keeps lecturing me, telling me that I should follow her example, be like her because, she says, everyone says she was the best head girl ever.”

Madge smiled slightly “She says it, no one else does Ailie, and it’s not true anyway. She was a passible head girl but she was never the best.” “Really?” Ailie sat up slightly, looking interested” but she says….”

“Yes, I know,and sadly she believes it, you know how fixated she is with being the school’s first pupil.”

Ailie grinned “Don’t we all, there’s no one within miles that hasn’t been told that by her.”

“Quite, and until Nell and Hilda stopped her she was always at the school, it wasn’t healthy for her.”

“I know everyone, well mostly everyone, was pleased when she stopped coming. Ailie said honestly “It was getting too much.”

“I know, and I supported Hilda and Nell in their decision. “Madge looked thoughtful. “You’ve not always been a little angel yet we all feel you will make a good head girl.”

“Huh, that’s not what Aunt Joey says.” Ailie grunted.

“She has no right to criticise you. “Madge said firmly, Allie looked unconvinced and Madge made up her mind “Your aunt was never a model of perfect behaviour, or even a good example at times.”

“Will you tell me more?” Madge nodded, in truth she was also tired of ‘first pupil’ and ‘best head girl’ and wished she could stop it. ” Not to be spread around though Ailie.”

“Understood, would you like a coffee first? “Madge agreed and soon they were settled with coffee and biscuits. Madge looked thoughtful “Your aunt wasn’t a bad head girl, but she had faults she seems to have forgotten and really should not lecture others.”

“Like what?” Ailie asked interested “I confess its starting to get me down the way she is going on.”

“Well don’t let it, Nell, Hilda and I chose you and that’s the important thing.” Madge paused to sip her coffee “At first Joey didn’t want to be head girl, it would ruin her fun etc.”

“Why was she?”

“She was the best choice we felt then, now I actually think another might have been better, and she was young and we felt it might help her. But she hated the idea, in fact it got to the point where I was just about to appoint another and she changed her mind, “Madge laughed ruefully “I left it a bit late though.”

“But surely it’s a chance to give something back.” Ailie remarked causing Madge to regard her youngest daughter thoughtfully.

“Some see it that way, others it’s an honour, others are scared stiff but do their best. Len never wanted to be head girl, she felt Ted would do a better job.”

“They made a good team, Ted probably would have done a good job, but Len did, in her way.”

“Her way?”

“Well she’s not aunt Joey, nor Mary-Lou.” Ailie clarified “she was too gentle, but people trusted and respected her, surely that was a good thing?”

“Indeed, trust is very important. “Madge agreed “without it you have nothing.”

“Hope people trust me.”muttered Ailie.

“Well we have in picking you. “Madge told her briskly causing her daughter to smile.

“So aunt Joey changed her mind and became head girl, what happened after that?”




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