Posts tagged ‘Jane Fairweather’

February 24th, 2016

Modern Art

Problems happen on a school trip, and there are consequences.

By Jane Fairweather

“You cannot like having to go to this stupid gallery, Lanky!” Mary Cobb was almost screaming as the girls of the small Sixth Form Art set sat briefly in a cafeteria over a bun and a glass of pop, preparatory to their visit.

Gwen had been aware all that morning that the tension between herself and Mary Cobb and Janet Smith was even worse than normal. She had been happy at St Bartholomew’s, which was a pleasant, creative school, but unfortunately lacked a Sixth Form. Now for over a year she had endured loneliness in the Sixth Form of the Harrigan School.
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February 6th, 2016

A Day in the Life

A woman is diverted from important preparations

By Jane Fairweather

Mrs Miles was fiddling with the lamb chops for the elaborate evening meal that she was getting ready for her husband’s guests. She was well aware it was not unlikely, if all went well, that her husband would be promoted from regional manager to something rather higher up in his company. “National sales manager” had been mentioned, she was well aware, though what that entailed she was not too sure. Certainly it meant more money, but also she suspected more time with her husband wandering the country and not at home with her. There had even been a broad hint that it might be helpful if she was prepared to move the family lock stock and barrel to London, or somewhere near it.
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December 12th, 2015

The Favourite

Should a girl be sent to the headmistress? Maybe there’s an alternative.

By Jane Fairweather

“Natalie Haydn-Pickford, despite your constant avoidance of the issue throughout this interview, your work this term is a disgrace and I need a response. I do not know what has got into you. You got A’s in virtually every essay you did in the Lower Sixth. Now, only a couple of months later, when your teachers are lucky enough to be favoured with an essay by you then the average mark is D, if that. What is the matter with you? A bright girl like you should be gliding through this year with something approaching ease. As it is, I seriously doubt if we shall be entering you for Higher School Certificate, let alone scholarship exams to the universities.”
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November 23rd, 2015

Per Ardua ad Astra

(Through adversity to the stars)

It’s World War II and tensions occur in an American school.

By Jane Fairweather

The wind was beating outside on the bare trees that not long ago had been wild with all the colors of the fall. Mr Carmichael wondered to himself which was more depressing. Was it the overweight woman who was standing before his desk ringing her hands, who he employed as house mother for the senior girls, but also as a Math teacher, though he always wondered how she made herself understood with her Southern drawl in this New England School? Was it this banshee of a wind? Or was it the dreadful war in Europe, which the Germans seemed well on the way to winning, despite the Battle of Britain and despite the brief halt that the Russians seemed to have forced the Nazi armies to make before Moscow? And his own mighty country was doing goddam all about it and standing on the sidelines. The world outside America would be Nazi before next winter, if this went on, or no doubt partly Japanese; the Japanese were doing awful things in China. However, he really ought to find out what this woman was blathering on about. He wondered, not for the first time, why he had been so misguided as to let her linger on his staff, but even reasonable Math teachers were not in great supply and with House Mothers perhaps better the one you knew!
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September 22nd, 2015

The Tale of a Weekend

A lover’s tiff leads to unusual consequences at work and school.

By Jane Fairweather

“No! I will not go out to the pictures with you tonight!” Geraldine Hislop said very loudly in a voice that was close to a scream, though she had gone to the pictures with Gerald Ibbotson most Friday nights for nearly two years.

Her boyfriend of those nearly two years smiled sardonically, for he was well used to her flashes of defiance, and said quietly: “But it is Dr Zhivago and the reviews are wonderful. If we don’t catch it this week then we won’t. And I will pay!”

“You mean your bloody parents will pay. You ought to get a little job like me.”
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July 31st, 2015

Visits to the Headmistress – A new Jane Fairweather ebook

visitstotheheadmistressfrontcover

Jane Fairweather’s new ebook , VISITS TO THE HEADMISTRESS (published by Stormy Nights Publications and available through Amazon.co.uk) looks through the eyes of headmistresses (and one headmaster) who are compelled to make use of corporal punishment on their erring Sixth Form girls (not to mention one pupil teacher from the 1890’s). The stories wander a surprisingly wide territory, often going off in unusual directions. The Gentle Woman (1935) is more a novella than a story and explores broader themes than the rest of the book.

An Extract (Taken from ‘Letting the School Down’):

“Well, Joy MacLean, what can I do for you?” enquired Miss Randolph, glancing with faint amusement at the captain of the First Hockey XI who had just stepped, looking distinctly fraught, through her headmistress’s door.

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July 2nd, 2015

The Fight

When a girl gets into a fight, her friend comes to her aid, with consequences for them all.

By Jane Fairweather

Jennifer Ivens wound herself up for an ace. She was well aware this was something she rarely achieved, but with her score in the final set against her best friend Becky Hadlee at 40-30 and 5-3, she so wanted to win this match before Miss Compton, the Games Mistress, called an end to the afternoon’s activities. They had already had two ding dong sets and taken one each, and although it was only a games afternoon, something in Jennifer really wanted to win this.  She let fly as hard as she could, fully expecting to miss and have to deploy her very solid second serve, but no. For once the ball landed perfectly and shot past Becky.
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April 19th, 2015

A Small Matter of Uniform

Uniform rules are strict, even for sixth form girls.

By Jane Fairweather

“Come on Lemon, we’d better get a move on or we’ll be late for Carstairs’ history!” Josephine Renniston, generally known as Jo because her rumbustiousness had reminded her mother of the heroine of Little Women, called out to her best friend, Jane Smith, alias Lemon for reasons that had long been forgotten.

“No, not just yet. We’ve got two minutes. Besides, don’t you want to see the gorgeous things Daddy sent for my birthday?!”

“I’ve seen them more than once! And it’s a week since your birthday.” Said Jo dryly.

Her friend’s obsession with pretty feminine underwear was something that Jo would never quite understand; her own idea of quiet rebellion was to put on tights and thin nylon briefs instead of the absurd combination of very full and inelegant school knickers and nylon stockings with suspender belt that the school rules decreed for Sixth Formers, though in fact hardly anyone obeyed those rules, even if Miss Dodd, the deputy head, had been making rumblings about it in recent days.
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March 26th, 2015

The Birthday Party

 Drama during World War One, where we meet again the character of Jennifer Franklin

By Jane Fairweather

“My dear Mrs Franklin,” said Miss Anne Archibald with a gracious air. “We are so glad to have you among us. So brave of you in the middle of a war to declare yourself a pacifist and leave your warrior husband. And you have made such an impression among us. But did you not say it was your birthday today? And indeed the post has brought you some parcels.”

Jennifer Franklin blushed, for she felt a just little guilty at the scale of her deception, thinking of that very gallant and patriotic naval officer who was her husband; he was no doubt as busy as a naval attaché in the British embassy in Paris in the midst of a great war would be expected to be.
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February 17th, 2015

The Princess and the Agent

 What better place to hide a foreign princess in fear of her life than a small private school?

By Jane Fairweather

“What do you make of her?” Jean Macintosh, Raven House of Eagle School’s head of house asked Charlie Starkie, her deputy.

“Who?” Charlie enquired. “Miss Swallow or the new girl?”

“Well I really meant Miss Swallow. It seems a little bit odd without old Tinpot.”

“A bit of a wimp if you ask me. It says a lot that nobody’s thought of a name for Miss Swallow yet. Though I suppose it is never easy to follow a housemistress who has been here since the year dot.”
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