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Dru stood back to admire her boarders’ display board.

She had organised them to produce a poster advertising the Apple

Bobbing Evening.  Some, who had northern roots, had wanted to call it

Ducking’, but she went with the Standard English appellation.

Isolde had drawn a very sophisticated Pomona, which she had copied

from a William Morris illustration.  She was nearly as good at Art as Juniper

Boothroyd-Smythe had been.

Of course, fertility goddesses had been in her own mind ever since she had

heard that companies such as Apple might consider freezing their female

employees’ eggs.

Everyone was becoming excited but she had had to discipline a Sixth Former

who had quoted Dorothy Parker in her hearing- whether deliberately or not

she was unsure.

Ducking for apples-change one letter and it is the story of my life.

How could someone so young be tainted with such a degree of

Schadenfreude?  Or was that emotion only connected to an absorption in

the misfortune of others?  She would have to look it up in one of the girls’

German dictionaries.

The girls had decorated the borders of the poster with pentgrams, which

apparently are the shape you see around the seeds if an apple is cut

horizontally.  Dru had checked with the Religious Studies Department and

had been assured that these were shapes used in Christian amulets long

before they had been appropriated, or misappropriated by Aleister Crowley

et al.

One could never be too careful as parents were so litigious nowadays

and anything that they disapproved of was difficult to implement.  Dru told

some that the activity was part of the core curriculum, which seemed to

satisfy them.  She drew their attention to Carmenta– a version of the

goddess Ceres. The former had invented the Roman alphabet and so

was educationally relevant.  This damped down the fires of protest.

She had had to resort to hanging the fruit on strings, however,

as there had been an objection as to the potential exchange of body fluids

if girls opened their mouths underwater while trying to bite and secure a

Cox’s Pippin, or whatever.  The aggrieved parent insisted on there being a

First Responder in attendance in case her precious darling choked.

Drusilla did not intend to be pipped to the post, however.  She was going to

go first and, if successful, she would be the first to marry.

Thankfully Nigel had answered the invitation in the affirmative and he

promised to bring some gingerbread men and a couple of carved



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