This short story, prompted by St. Nicholas Magazine and published in the December 1927 issue, is about Christmas at boarding school. It was written by Sallie Freeman, age 17.
By Sallie Freeman (Age 17)
Bee stirred restlessly in her bed. Why did her family choose Christmas to have the measles? How she hated to be left at school, over the vacation, with the silly twins, and that crabby old matron, Miss Primme! Life seemed very dismal and dreary.
“Good Heavens!” Bee shot bolt upright in her bed and looked wildly around her. What awful screechings! Jumping out of bed, she ran to the window. “Am I dreaming?” she murmured dazedly. For up on the hill behind the orchard, she saw, by the light of a huge bonfire, Indians prancing madly around emitting terrifying war-whoops!
The door of her room burst open and the twins rushed in. Before a word could be spoken Miss Primme swept in on the scene, “Slip on some clothes, girls,” she commanded crisply. “We’re going to find out what it’s all about!”
“What!” An amazed chorus of three answered her. Was this intrepid person their crabby old matron?
A few minutes later they filed out into the garden. At the end of the orchard, Miss Primme dropped to her knees, “We might as well do this thing thoroughly,” she remarked. This couldn’t be Miss Primme! But nevertheless they dropped to their knees also. Suddenly one twin had a bright idea,
“Taking movies!” she whispered, but was immediately squelched.
“On Christmas Eve? You’re crazy!”
Then a noise burst out that almost sent them rolling back down the hill in surprise. Out of the shadows came some people clapping heartily! When they discovered the little group from the school, several rushed forward with laughing explanations. The Boy Scouts had given a pioneer Christmas play, and to make it more realistic, they held it outdoors.
Back in Jarndyce Hall, sipping hot chocolate in Miss Primme’s room, the twins and Bee came to the conclusion that Miss Primme was really human after all, and life was not so dreary!