The command was followed out to the letter.
Talk about antagonism,” glowered Janet. “I call the whole proceedings an outrage, and if you want to know what I would do about it, I would ask a Wellington official to sue this dinky little town for damages.” She snapped out the words as if each syllable were a blow on the very heads of the offenders.
“Don’t you get excited, Janet,” cautioned Jane. “We have our lady-like hands very full at the moment, and to run into more trouble would be positively rash. Besides, here is Judy, unrumpled as a babe from its cradle; seems to have enjoyed the whole thing and I can guess why.”
“So can we,” quickly followed Dozia. “She will put the experience down in her field work for Social Service. This extra year promises to turn out at least two stars in that course.”
They were in the lavatory hastily fixing up for tea, almost late but thankful to be within the gates before the gong sounded. The adventures of that afternoon had been thrilling indeed, and a few of the girls shared with Jane the suspicions now settling upon the two freshmen, Shirley Duncan and Sarah Howland. Their presence at Dol Vin’s shop, the sobbing heard behind doors, and that wild run of the girl who tried to get away from the place by actually scaling a back fence, and who was recognized as the demure little Sarah, all this furnished plenty of material for a mystery story.
But it was the innocent remark of the grateful messenger boy, that put the climax in at the very peak of interest.
“I know the right girl didn’t sign the slip,” he had told Jane and Judith, “because that black haired one has a queer name and she isn’t Sarah Howland.”
So the precious package was for little Sarah Howland. And it was being sent to her, care of Dol Vin. Also, and more important than either particular, the delivery of that message had landed Judith Stearns in court.
Was it any wonder ghosts had been crowded out of the day’s or night’s programme?
“Don’t worry,” calmly advised the heroic Judith. “What happened this afternoon is only an introduction. The real thriller is yet to come.”
“When?” anticipated Velma.
“Oh, it threatens to be a serial. I may be able to give you a reel or two tonight after study hour.”
“Come down to my room,” begged Janet. “I have such a big couch and a whole raft may pile up on it.”
“That’s a good idea,” agreed Jane as the last towel was tossed into its basket. “Besides, we haven’t a thing to eat in our quarters and what’s a good yarn without grub? Land sakes, hear the crockery! We’ll miss the hash, I fear me,” and only the restraining influence of Miss Fairlie in the lower hall saved a third rail flight via ballustrades.
Sweeping into the dining room Jane’s eyes seemed attracted to a corner in freshmen’s quarters. It might have been her excited imagination or pure incident, but she did look straight into the frightened blue eyes of little Sarah Howland.