I squelched into the kitchen for breakfast, glared at Louisa and her smirking criminal compatriot Emily. I wondered why they were kept on: perhaps their bottoms were used for demonstrations. My backside was dry as I ruminated over breakfast. I was peripherally aware of Mrs. Cleanknockers conversing with Cook but concentrated on my porridge. Therefore, I jumped when her voice boomed loudly. “Ruby! Why is your uniform wet?” I swallowed hard. “I dropped my chamber pot outside ma’am.” The breathless silence was broken by sniggers. “Be quiet!” she bellowed. In the fraught tension I felt her presence hover. “Clumsy today?”
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