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The Tiara Club at Ruby Mansions 3: Princess Georgia and the Shimmering Pearl
Princess Chloe started sneezing first. She sneezed twice over breakfast and about fifty times during our first class, which was Velvet Trains and How to Wear Them. And by lunchtime, she just couldn't stop. And her nose kept running and her eyes were red and she looked terrible. Poor Chloe!
"I thig I'd better tell Fairy G. that I'b dot feeling very well," she said.
Of course Fairy G. took Chloe straight to Ruby Pillows, which is where we go when we're sick. It's a lovely airy room up at the top of Ruby Mansions, and we don't mind being there at all, even though Lady Araminta is very strict. She's the nurse in charge of Ruby Pillows. Fairy G. (our school Fairy Godmother) comes to visit a lot, too, and to check that everything's all right. It's weird—you'd think a Fairy Godmother would just wave her wand and make everyone better, but she won't. She says it's cheating and a waste of good magic.
By the middle of the afternoon, Princess Lauren was sneezing as well, and that night there were only four of us princesses in the Poppy Room: Amy, Jessica, Olivia, and me. The others were tucked in at Ruby Pillows, sniffing and snuffling and feeling miserable.
"Do you think I might catch it next?" Jessica asked hopefully as she climbed into bed. "There's that test tomorrow, and I just know I'm going to fail. I'll never be able to Design a Floral Bouquet to Present to a Very Special Princess, but if I catch the bug, I'll miss the exam!"
Olivia giggled. "'Now, princesses, please remember that a Perfect Princess never makes amistake, and always knows how to spell Variegated Nasturtiums!'"
Olivia is so funny—she sounded exactly like Queen Mother Matilda! We all laughed, but my laugh turned into a sneeze.
"Oops!" I said, and fished under my pillow for a hankie. "Maybe it'll be me that misses the test."
Jessica made a face at me. "That's not fair. You're sure to pass—you're great at flower arranging."
"You're the best of all of us," Amy told me and she giggled. "It makes the twins so jealous!"
Olivia nodded. "Princess Diamonde went absolutely purple after it was your turn to do the flowers for assembly, and I'm sure Princess Gruella tried to knock the vases over."
"She did," I said. "Atchoo! Atchoooo!"
Amy looked at me anxiously. "Do you feel sick? Do you want me to get Fairy G.?"
I shook my head. "I'll be okay for tonight," I said, although I was beginning to feel a bit woozy.
But by the morning, I felt terrible and I didn't even manage to wish the others good luck before Fairy G. whisked me away to Ruby Pillows.
But none of us took part in the exam. When I woke up later on that morning and looked around, I saw every bed was full. All six of us from the Poppy Room were there, and the twins, Diamonde and Gruella, were too.
"I feel terrible!" Diamonde wailed.
"You're not as bad as I am," Gruella told her. "I feel awful!"
"That's why you're here," Lady Araminta said crisply, and she tucked in Diamonde's and Gruella's covers so tightly they could hardly breathe.The Tiara Club at Ruby Mansions 3: Princess Georgia and the Shimmering Pearl. Copyright � by Vivian French. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.