Melisa, Tabitha and Vanessa peeked around the corner, stifling giggles. Miss Gibson and Mr. Martin were walking to class, and just about to enter the ‘zone’. The three girls had set up a bucket of ice water, balanced carefully on a tree branch. When the two teachers took the next step, they would trip the wire, and the water would cascade down, drenching them. And it happened! Just as they had planned; and the reaction was priceless! Hands over mouths to keep the giggles in, the three turned and ran off, into the trees, where they collapsed in laughter.
Meantime, Miss Gibson and Mr. Martin were exclaiming angrily, shaking the water off, and heading for the Head’s office. “Those girls have to be chastised!” Miss Gibson declared. “They have been allowed to get away with too much!”
“Yes, but only if we can prove it was them.” Mr. Martin agreed. “So far, no one has seen them anywhere near the scene of the crime.” He shook his head. “You and I know they have been responsible for most of the pranks, but we have to have proof!”
“Hmph!” Miss Gibson grumped. “Just the name they call themselves is a dead giveaway. ‘The Purple Particles,’ indeed!”
“Yes. Ingenious, that. No one can tell where a particle is at any given time, and it certainly fits. One never knows where or when they will strike next.” Mr. Martin smiled.
“How can you smile about it?” Miss Gibson asked. “My dress is ruined, so is your suit!” She shook water out of her hair as they walked into the administration building. “I want them expelled. They don’t belong in such a prestigious academy.”
Mr. Martin followed her to the office of the Head Mistress, hiding a smile behind the handkerchief he was using to wipe his face. Yes, the girls had to be reined in, but they were three of the most inventive students in the school; and three of the smartest. If their inventiveness could be directed into constructive ways, they could bring much honour to Prescot-Mainbridge Academy.
Meanwhile, the girls had settled down, and joined the other students heading sedately to class. Their eyes still sparkled with mischief, but their faces were solemn. They were enjoying the whispers and giggles as the other students talked about the unexpected shower Gibson and Martin had received. “It had to have been The Purple Particles again,” Jody Mitchell said. “It had their M.O. all over it!.” The others giggled, and agreed.
After class, Lisa, Tabby and Van headed off to Lisa’s room together, arms full of books, and groaning about homework assignments. Once there, however, Tabby dropped her books of the bed, and turned to Melisa. “Really, Lisa that was such a juvenile trick! It was something we’d have done when we were kids!”
Lisa dropped her books on her desk, and turned, grinning. “Yes, it was. But it was exactly what they deserved; her with her nose stuck in the air, wearing silk, no less. Who wears silk to teach in this Academy? And have you heard her talking to the girls? ‘Oh, but girls, why ever do you want to learn to cook, or sew? You can be so much more than housewives!’ To girls whose families can barely make ends meet. The only reason some of them are here, and not out working already, is because of the scholarships.
“And that Mr. Martin, with his oh so expensive suits! I heard his valet, and can you believe he has one? He was talking to Mrs. Peters about how to restore silk that has been marked with water stains. I hope they both hand in their notices. None of the kids like them, I know several who have complained to Mrs. Whitbridge about Miss Gibson. Some of the parents are complaining, too, and threatening to take the kids out of the Academy. We’ll just have to think of something better for next time.”
“Hmmm….we don’t want to do anything that will end up costing the academy money.” Tabby said. “Do you remember when we put that mannequin in Mr. Brady’s room, and got pictures that looked like they were making out?” She giggled. “Can you imagine what Mr. Martin would do if we could do something like that to him?”
They all laughed at the memory. “And remember how we got rid of Mrs. Grump?”
“Oh, yes, Mrs. Grump, aka Mrs. Greydon. Easter egg dye added to her bath powder, and red Kool-Aid mixed in her hair dye. She certainly was colourful, wasn’t she? I wonder…. This will take some thinking, and very careful organisation.” Tabby sighed. “Well, that will have to wait. We have that science project to work on right now. Mr. Bains didn’t give us much time, so we really have to put our minds to it.”
Lisa and Van sighed, too, and nodded. Now, what could they do for the science project that would be exciting and different enough? Three heads bent in thought, as three agile minds went to work.