Western Fiction posted December 13, 2012 Chapters:  ...7 8 -9- 10... 


Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Breanna's school is approved

A chapter in the book AN ORPHAN NAMED JO

Chap 3 pt 2 Getting Approval

by c_lucas



Background
This will be the story of Caitlin Anna Wiley. Her name will change to Jo Wiley when, as an orphan, she will be arrested for stealing an apple, valued at two cents.





CHAPTER THREE
PART TWO
NEW YORK CITY
FIVE POINTS SLUMS
 
APRIL, 1877
**
The ending of the last chapter:
 
“Yeh and yer Aunt Heather. This be fresh, clean water, not New York water. Me fader said so.” Lila pushed Caitlin to the ground and took a long drink. “It be good water.” She wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. “Taste it. Yeh’ll be seeing.” Lila grabbed Caitlin by the hair and twisted her arm behind her back.

Soon a crowd of children gathered around them. A tall boy turned the spigot on high and helped Lila to force Caitlin’s face into the water.
**
Lila released her hold on Caitlin, but the boy held Caitlin’s face in the water. “Let her go. She be learning her lesson.”
 
“This little bitch kicked me where it hurt and I be planning on getting me revenge.”
 
Lila rushed him and knocked him away from Caitlin.
 
The boy turned his attention to Lila. “So, yeh be changing side, are yeh.” He pushed her. She lost her balance and fell. “Let’s be seeing how yeh be liking the water treatment.”
 
Caitlin was behind the boy when he bent over and reached for Lila’s hair to pull her up.  Caitlin kicked him between his legs three times as fast as she could.
 
He screamed, grabbed his crotch and rolled on the ground.
 
“Run, Lila!” Caitlin took off for her home with Lila right behind her. She looked back at the boy, who was still on the ground holding his crotch. She slowed down to let Lila to catch up with her. “Come to me building, he won’t dare follow us there.”
 
“Why did yeh be heping me after what I did?” Lila slowed, fighting for  breath.
 
“Friends be fighting each other. He had no right to interfere.”
 
“But I be holding yeh face in the water.”
 
“Yeh wouldn’t have for long. I would be breaking free of yeh when he interfered.”
 
“How could yeh’ve stopped me?  I be having yeh by the hair and yeh arm behind yer back.”
 
“And I be having yeh just where I wanted yeh. I be ready ta used me heels on yer shinbones and toes, when he grabbed me.”
 
They climbed the steps and went inside. Caitlin started climbing the stairs.
 
Lila stopped. “What are yeh going ta be telling yer mother?”
 
“The truth. Yeh be coming to me aid when the bully held me face in th’ water.”
 
“But yeh be lying because I be heping him.”
 
“It would be depending on where I be starting me story. If Mammy be by herself, she won’t say anything in front of yeh. She’ll be happy we still be friends.”
**
 
The two girls stopped on the second landing. The sound of hammering and talking drew their attention. Caitlin pressed against the wall and peeked into the room.
 
Mrs. Sullivan spied the girl and waved for her to come in.
 
“Uh oh! We be caught." Caitlin took Lila’s hand and pulled the girl into the room.
 
Mrs. Wiley looked at her daughter's wet clothing and hair. “What be happening to you, me pumpkin? Yeh both be looking like drowned puppies.”
 
“We be playing, Mammy.” Caitlin forced a smile. “I be winning the contest. I got wetter than Lila.”
 
Mrs. Sullivan walked over to the two girls. “Yeh both be looking awful nervous and yeh be holding Lila very tight. Yeh be sure yeh be playing?”
 
Caitlin released Lila’s hand. “Yes ma’am. We be using the park’s water. It be cleaner than our water.”
 
Conor walked in carrying more boards. “Is that why Timothy Flannigan be holding his privates and calling yeh names? He be running away when I crossed the street to find out what was going on. Me think, me cailin, yeh have learned Heather’s bad habits.”
 
“And I be knowing just when she be learning Heather's lessons.” Arthur laughed.
 
 Caitlin glanced at the laughing adults. “He be a sore loser. Timothy barely got wet. Can me friend and me hep?”
 
Breanna looked at Kathleen who shrugged her shoulders. “Why don’t you and Lila be helping by sweeping the floor and gathering up the trash.”
 
“Yeh be owing me an explanation before dinner time, me pumpkin.” Kathleen went back to emptying books from their cases.
 
Caitlin glanced at Lila and nodded to her mother. “Yes, Mammy.”
**
 
Liam and Wolfgang brought in more cases of books and supplies. The herbalist said his goodbyes and went to open his shop. Liam helped  unpack the cases and stored the contents under the guidance of his mother. The newly-built wall shelves began to be filled.
 
Before dinner time, the room had been turned into a classroom. Ragan and Shannon applied the finishing touches, by designating different tables as grade levels. Then they aligned the desks along one side of the wall with a newly curtained window, depicting baby animals of the world.
 
“We be finishing two days ahead of schedule. Sheriff Kelly and the superintendent will be here Friday. Tomorrow we will register the students and school will start on Monday.” Breanna smiled at her helpers. “Good job. I best get downstairs and see how the clinic is doing. Lila, yer mother is helping Mona in the clinic. Why don’t yeh come with me.”
 
“Yes, ma’am.” She followed Mrs. Sullivan slowly out of the room, casting glances at Caitlin.
 
Conor put his arms around Shannon. “We best be getting our kids and go home. Tomorrow will be a busy day.” He kissed her on the cheek. They waved goodbye to everyone and left. Soon Kathleen and Caitlin were the only ones left in the room.

Kathleen sat down at the third grade table and motioned for Caitlin to sit next to her. "Do you be having something you be wanting to tell me, me Pumpkin?"
**



May, 4, 1877
 
“Well, Mrs. Sullivan, It looks like you have a certified Early School. You have a Qualified Principal and Teacher, plus seventeen students of all ages. In that this is a family affair, you are set to go.”  The Superintendent nodded. “Thanks to your husband, the health needs will be met.” He shook hands with Breanna.
 
‘Sheriff’ John Kelly shook her hand also. “You have some fences that need to be mended. Cullen will receive my backing to settle things with the bishop.  
 
“I will be presenting this to the Board of Instruction, at our Monday morning meeting. I see no problem with getting their approval. Then your license will be up for review in three years.” The Superintendent nodded, settled his hat on his head and looked at John Kelly.
 
“Ask Cullen to come see me next Monday morning.”  The two men left.
 
Ragan, Shannon and Kathleen walked into the classroom.  “Do we be having a school?” Ragan asked.
 
“According to the Superintendent, it will be official by Monday afternoon.” The three women cheered Breanna’s announcement.
**

Kathleen and Breanna went downstairs to the clinic while Ragan and Shannon made plans for their first day of classes.  Mona, bandaging a young girl’s arm, looked at Breanna and Kathleen’s smiling faces as they entered the clinic.
 
“I be taking it that we be having a school?” Mona asked, as she finished her bandaging.
 
“That we do,” Breanna answered, eyeing the Mona’s handiwork.
 
“Is there anything I should be knowing about?”
 
“No ma’am. The three mothers-to-be came for their appointments. After I examined them, I be showing them th’ exercises Heather mentioned in her last wire. Then we be practicing them.” Mona kissed the little girl and released her.
 
 Joleen entered, leaving the door open. She exchanged hugs and kisses with her mother before sitting at the table. “The wee ones be doing fine. If yeh not be minding, I would like to help Ragan and Shannon get ready.”
 
“There’ll  be another class we can teach,” Kathleen said as she handed Joleen a cup of tea. “We can teach the cailins about babies before they start having their own.”
 
Breanna and Mona sat at the table. Kathleen set three cups of tea on the table before sitting down in front of the third.
 
“You be having a good idea, Kathleen. We can teach the cailins and they’ll be getting credit for their class.”
 
Mrs. Doyle, Lila’s mother, walked in followed by the two girls. “Top of the morning, ta yeh. These two be chasing a bully from the park.”
 
Kathleen looked at Lila and Caitlin. “Would that be Timothy Flannigan?” She looked at her daughter.
 
“Lila went to get a drink of water and Timothy be sneaking behind her and forcing her face into the fountain. I be getting behind him and giving him another lesson. He released Lila and grabbed me legs and pulled me down. Lila started to give him a lesson. She missed and he jumped up and ran off.”
 
“Pumpkin, you best be telling Mrs. Doyle, what yeh be telling me.” Kathleen took a sip of tea.
 
“Do I need to be getting me Mantle of Truth?” Breanna asked.
 
Lila’s face paled. Caitlin took her hand. “No ma’am, we be telling the truth, this time.”
**
 
http://oneroomschoolhouse.edublogs.org/artifacts/
Rules for teachers
 
http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=moa;idno=AAS2151
Education in the 19th century.
 
 


Recognized


Thank you, Fran M. for the use of your image, "School Room."

Abbreviated list of dialect:
Divil = Devil
Fader = Father
hep=help
ta=to
yeh=you
yer=your
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