The top secret diary of davina dupree (page 2)

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As expected, the place was empty. It turns out that the teachers don’t just have one bedroom, they have a set of rooms – an apartment really – including a lounge, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom. Lucky things. Arabella set off across the thick carpet towards the open bedroom door. I stood in the doorway, constantly checking the corridor for unexpected teachers, my head swivelling like an excited dog’s on a car journey. I listened to her rummaging through the top drawer in the bedroom for what seemed like an hour but was probably only five minutes.

Then she shouted, ‘Wowzers, you’re never going to believe this!’

‘Shhh,’ I replied. ‘Tell me later. Justpleasehurry up.’

A few more rummaging sounds then, ‘Right, I’ve got it,’ she called. ‘It’s an old rusty key with a tag attached with “Bunker 37” written on it. Remember the number and we’ll find out what it means. It could be our next clue to what that pair are up to. ’

‘I’ll try,’ I whispered.

Then, Bam! A door down the next corridor crashed open and I heard a voice getting nearer and nearer. A loud,growlyvoice, to be precise. My knees gave way on the spot.

‘Arabella,’ I called under my breath. ‘I think Little and Large are coming!’

She sprinted back from the bedroom at once and without thinking we dived out of the door, across the hallway and barged in to the apartment opposite which was also empty, shutting the door quickly. Seconds later, Pike and Croaka’s voices arrived outside the room we were in. (Which turned out to belong to Mrs Turvy the music teacher and had piles of musical instruments all over the floor. I tripped over a double bass and hurt my knee.) I wondered if they’d spotted the door closing. Maybe they heard us…maybe we weren’t quiet enough. We held our breaths and waited…

‘Stupid school,’ Croaka grumbled in her deep voice, as we heard a door handle turn. ‘What a waste of time. All that fuss and nonsense about a bloomin’ photo. I can’t believe mad old Fairchild expected the teachers to stick around afterwards to entertain the imbeciles before tea. Surely the girls can dosomethingby themselves without bein’ spoon fed every step of the way. ’

‘I know how you feel, Chris,’ piped back Pike. ‘I’ve had enough of these spoilt brats too, but like you said the other day, we just have to be patient. It’ll be worth it in the end. The important thing is, I don’t think anyone noticed us slip away.’

‘Listen, Jacinta, I’ve been thinkin’. We’ve only got five and a half weeks left here and by the time blast off arrives, we need to know that map off by heart, back to front and inside out.’ Croaka dropped her voice. ‘We can’t afford to make any mistakes this time.’

‘You’d better come in and we’ll take another look at it then,’ Pike squeaked back. We heard a door close, then there was silence. I stared at Arabella. She looked about as shocked as I felt.

‘Let’s get out of here,’ I whispered. Arabella nodded. We let ourselves out, then tiptoed off as quickly and quietly as possible.

We’d just passed the sign that said, “SOUTH WING. TEACHER’S QUARTERS. STRICTLY NO ENTRY TO PUPILS”, when Cleo and Clarice rounded the corner.

‘Ooh, are the nerds being naughty?’ Cleo giggled. ‘I thought you’d both gone to the infirmary. Or did you just want to get out of the photo?’

‘I don’t blame you if you did.’ Clarice sniggered. ‘After all, who’d want to buy a photo with your ugly mugs ruining it?’ They high fived each other then carried on trotting down the corridor towards the first year’s common room, no doubt to insult more people. Arabella made a rude sign after them.

‘Bad-mannered bullies,’ I said loudly.

‘Just forget about them. They’re not worth even thinking about.’ Arabella said, but she did look rather upset.

Anyway Diary, it’s now midnight and we’ve been lying in our beds discussing what happened all evening and I can’t BELIEVE what Arabella just told me she found in Pike’s drawer next to the key. But I’m too tired to write about it now so I’m going to sleep, more tomorrow. Remember “Bunker 37” for me, Diary. Good night. ZZzzzzzzzzzz.

Monday, 9thSeptember

Greetings, Diary,

Just got back from our first whole school assembly. All three hundred and ten of us were seated in the sort of reclining armchairs you find in the first class sections on planes. There were trays attached to each chair, with fizzy limeade and biscuits waiting for each of us! The lecture theatre, where all assembles take place, looks like a huge wooden cave, with a platform at the front, where Mrs Fairchild stands. (And twirls and dances, as the mood takes her). The reclining armchairs are all at different levels so us girls can see the platform at the same time.

I had a good look at all the older girls dotted around me. It’s the first time I’ve seen them all together because usually they’re floating around Egmont looking superior and busy in groups of five or six, clutching flowery folders and talking importantly. Not like us first years who still don’t really know where everything is and get lost half the time.

I said hello to the serious looking girl sitting in the armchair next to mine. She had frizzy, mousy brown hair, wore glasses and turned out to be Suzie Bagshaw from the third year. She asked if I was enjoying being at Egmont and I said I was, but I was a bit disappointed with the art teaching because the teachers didn’t seem very good and it was my favourite subject.

Funnily enough, Suzie told me that until very recently, two DIFFERENT art teachers, Miss Cherry and Miss Wise, had taught together at the school. She said they were both BRILLIANT artists. One day, Mrs Fairchild had woken up to find hand written letters of resignation from both of them and they were never seen again. The whole school had been shocked and upset. Then Pike and Croaka just happened to turn up and walk straight in to the empty art teachers jobs. Suzie said no one liked them but then we had to stop talking because Mrs Fairchild started to sing.

When we’re all together like that we look like rows of candy in our pink, purple and white uniforms. The oldest girls look so grown up, because after the fifth year, you’re allowed to wear pink, purple and white business suits if you want. Until then we have to wear a white, frilly blouse, a pink hipster skirt with a silver belt encrusted with three diamonds, a purple cardigan with the school logo sewn on to it, (a hand holding the most precious stones in the world), an optional pink shawl and purple, wedged shoes with white knee length socks. It’s much better than my old uniform, which was mud brown and sludge green colours.

After she’d finished her song and read out a few notices, Mrs Fairchild announced (while doing a slow waltz), that the first year nominations for two head of year prefects were now open. She said we would not be allowed to vote for ourselves, but anyone who wants to stand can start a friendly campaign to prove to the rest of the first year how trustworthy, kind and deserving of support they are. Voting will take place just before the annual Egmont Art Show that will be held on 16thOctober, just before school breaks up for a week’s holiday. I saw Clarice and Cleo nudging each other and grinning, but I can safely say they WILL NOT be getting my vote if they stand.

Right, I have to go now Diary, as Arabella and I are taking our favourite ponies Whiskey and Hurricane out for a slow trot so we can chat in private. Mine is Hurricane because he’s not like his name, he is actually slow and relaxed.That’

Tuesday, 10thSeptember

Hiya Diary,

Right. Yesterday on our bumpy pony ride, Arabella and I talked over everything suspicious we’ve heard Pike and Croaka say. The naughty twins, Moira and Lynne, were out galloping madly around the paddock on their stallions, and they asked if we wanted to join them on a hack. It would have been fun as the twins are like a comedy double act – they often have our class, Sapphires, in complete stitches with their impressions of teachers - but we made our excuses as we needed to chat privately.

I’m going to list the main points we came up with here so I don’t forget them:


•  Pike and Croaka keep talking about “blast off” – we really need to find out what this means as its obviously important to their plan.

•  They intend to “reap the rewards” – of what?

•  In the art room, Pike talked about “those other poor idiots”. We think she means the art teachers who worked at Egmont before, the ones Suzie said were amazing artists. We need to find out why they left and where they are now, as it’s just possible they might be able to shed some light on Little and Large’s sneaky goings on.

•  They talked about, “The feeding”. Of what? A wild animal they’ve kidnapped, perhaps? I wouldn’t put it past them…

•  They want whatever they’re feeding to be “alive not dead”. I should hope so too or we’d have to go straight to the police.

•  We’ve found their mysterious key, now we just need to work out what “Bunker 37” means.

•  Croaka talked about learning a map off by heart. A map of what? Maybe the school. We have to find out.

•  The thing Arabella told me she found next to the rusty key was an open wallet, absolutely STUFFED with money, with a photo of a pretty, smiling lady in it. She said she didn’t think there was anything else in the wallet but she didn’t have time to check all the pockets. We think Croaka and Pike must have stolen it. Maybe they pick pocketed a lady in a shopping centre or something. We’ve decided that if we find out they’re DEFINITELY criminals, we’re going to tell Mrs Fairchild straight away so she can call the police and have them arrested.


We’ve got lots of detecting work to do and our best clue is “Bunker 37”. We’ve decided to spy on Pike and Croaka during each art lesson, to see they let any more clues slip.

Thursday, 12thSeptember

Oh dear, Diary!

Cleo and Clarice have started serious campaigns to get voted in as head of year prefects. It’s a bit of a joke really, because they’re usually so mean, but at the moment they’re being sickly sweet to everyone just to get people’s votes. It’s all They even baked cupcakes this morning and offered them around in the common room but I didn’t take one.

The problem is, Arabella’s decided that her and I should also run for the prefect jobs, just because she hates Cleo and Clarice so much. It’s a nightmare, Diary, I’m telling you! I tried to get out of it but she wouldn’t give up so in the end I said I’d do it just to keep her quiet.

As you can imagine, Cleo and Clarice are being perfectly beastly to us about it. They went in to cackles of laughter when they first heard we were in the running and each time they see us they shout, “Losers” really loudly. Nasty things.

Arabella has emailed her dad, asking him to have two campaign t-shirts made, with a photograph of us two printed on the front, (she sent him one she took this morning just before French, I have my eyes shut and she looks cross eyed) with “Vote for Arabella and Davina” written in blue sequins above our faces. Oh lawks, I hope she doesn’t expect me to wear it around school, because it would be so EMBARRASING DOT COM!

Anyway, we have art this afternoon, so you never know, Diary, we might learn some more about Pike and Croaka’s dirty secrets if we keep our ears and eyes open…

Friday, 13thSeptember

OK Diary,

Action stations! Yesterday during art I overheard Croaka – who seems to be the brains of the bunch – tell Pike to meet her in Little Pineham after school and to bring the key.

Little Pineham is the nearest village to our school and first year pupils are strictly NOT allowed to go there without a teacher. There are two supervised visits a month and I’m rather scared at the moment, because Arabella and I are about to break the rules. We’re going to sneak out tomorrow, which is Saturday so no lessons, and get the bus there ON OUR OWN! WITHOUT TELLING ANY TEACHERS!

There is a reason for this madness. You see, Arabella’s been to Little Pineham before - she was one of the few pupils who arrived here by train on the first day and the station is on the edge of the village. Her parents aren’t as rich as mine, I don’t mean that in a bad way, (at least her parent’s miss her and email and phone all the time, I’d rather have not-so-rich parents that did that. Mine have only sent me one postcard so far that said, “Hello Darling, hope you’re having fun. We’ll be away at our undisclosed location for an undisclosed length of time but that doesn’t matter now you don’t live at home, does it? Lots of love Mum and Dad”), and they were trying to save money. When Croaka talked about taking the key to Little Pineham, Arabella suddenly remembered seeing a row of storerooms – which I suppose could also be called bunkers - opposite the station, each with a heavy padlock on its doors. So we’re going to Little Pineham to investigate these storerooms/bunkers and see if there is a numberthirty seven, like it says on Pike’s key tag. The mystery continues…

I’m going to go now, Diary, because my hand won’t write properly. It’s shaking a bit because I’m so nervous.

P.S. I got a letter from Carrie today and guess what? She’s coming to visit me next weekend! A week tomorrow in fact. Isocan’t wait to see her. I’m going to tell her all about Pike and Croaka.

Sunday, 15thSeptember

Uh oh Diary,

What have we got ourselves in to? The situation is a lot more serious than we thought.

Yesterday morning when I walked past the art room (without being seen of course), I saw that the charming pair, Clarice and Cleo, had roped the other charming pair, Pike and Croaka, in to giving them lots of paint and paper to make campaign posters with. Pike and Croaka did NOT look very impressed about this as it meant they had to stay in the art room for as long as Clarice and Cleo were there. (The rules say that no pupil is allowed to stay in classrooms by themselves at the weekends). This was good news for us as it meant we could go to Little Pineham without worrying we’d bump in to Little and Large.

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