Miss Annersley and Miss Wilson sat in the Heads study waiting for the arrival of the school for the new term. Miss Wilson glanced at her watch, "Not long now Hilda" she said, "We ought to be getting ready to greet the girls."
Miss Annersley opened her grey/blue eyes which had never yet needed glasses and smiled at her friend, "You're quite right Nell," she answered, but, instead of rising Miss Annersley gave a deep sigh.
"Hilda? Is there anything wrong?" enquired Miss Wilson, worried by the sigh and the Heads expression.
"Not really," replied Miss Annersley, "But...oh, just for once I would like a term where nothing alarming or unexpected happened."
"Wouldn't that be nice," answered Miss Wilson, "However it is unlikely to happen, this is the measles term after all, and we have one or two potentially dangerous expeditions, as well as the usual new girls who will require a lot of help before they settle down and become real chalet girls."
"Yes, you're right" said Miss Annersley sadly, and together they rose and went to greet the arriving school.
Over at Freudsheim, Joey Maynard, having packed the triplets off to school nice and early was also looking forwards to a peaceful term. She was hoping to be busy for some of it. Maybe this time she really would present the school with those long promised quads. That would cause a sensation.
At the school Len, Con and Margot were on the front steps awaiting the coaches bringing the rest of the school up to the Chalet.
"Will there be any new girls this term?" enquired Margot.
"Yes," replied Len "Mamma wants me to sheepdog one. I believe she is the daughter of a former pupil, but she has gone off the rails slightly and is not happy about coming here."
"What’s her name?" asked Margot.
"Susan," said Len.
"That’s a shame," commented Con, "Mamma has already used that name in one of her books.
"Yes," said Margot, "A new girl without an unusual name, that hasn't happened in a while."
The triplets lapsed into thoughtful silence, until Con spotted the buses approaching up the drive.
Len found it easy to spot the new girl, she stood slightly alone, clutching her umbrella. Len hurried towards her.
"Hello, you must be one of the new girls, Susan isn't it? I'm Len Maynard, my mother has asked me to be your sheepdog."
"Your Mother?" answered Susan in surprise, "Why has your mother asked you to sheepdog me?"
"Well, she was the first Chalet girl you know, and in a way she has never really left so she likes to extend a helping hand to any new girls. Especially ones who are the children of former pupils."
"I see." said Susan, "Well, that’s very kind of you, but I must say I do intend on settling down and being a real Chalet girl as soon as possible."
"Oh," said Len, in some confusion, "but I thought..."
Susan laughed, "You thought I didn't want to come here. You are right. However on thinking things over I realised that it was far to good and opportunity to miss, and I may as well make the most of it."
"Well," replied Len, at a bit of a loss, "Umm... Oh yes, my mother will be having you and the other new girls over tea soon, she always does. She is Josephine M Bettany you know."
"Who? Oh, the author. I have read some of her books, they are a pleasant read I suppose. Someone told me she lived here."
"Do you know about the languages rule?" asked Len, somewhat desperately.
"Indeed. Mother showed me the prospectus and I read it from cover to cover. I already speak some French and German so it really won't be a problem."
At this point, to Len's relief Miss. Annersley raised he hand for silence, and feeling slightly bewildered Len hustled the new girl into line.