Princess in Training pd-6Meg Cabot
Princess in Training
( Princess Diaries - 6 )
MEG CABOT Princess In Training
THE PRINCESS DIARIES, VOLUME VI
For my niece,
Madison B. Cabot,
princess in training
“She will be more a princess than she ever was—
a hundred and fifty thousand times more.”
A LITTLE PRINCESS
Frances Hodgson Burnett
AEHS Albert Einstein High School
FALL SEMESTER COURSE SCHEDULE
Student: Thermopolis, HRH Princess Amelia Mignonette Grimaldi Renaldo
Gifted and Talented
Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome back from what I hope was a relaxing, yet intellectually stimulating, summer vacation. The faculty and staff of AEHS look forward to spending another exciting and fruitful academic year with you. With this in mind, we’d like to share these conduct reminders:
Please note that Albert Einstein High School is located in a residential—albeit vertical—community. It is important to remember that sound travels up, and that any excessive noise—especially on the steps of the front entrance of the school—that might be disruptive to our neighbors will not be tolerated. This includes shouting, screaming, shrill or explosive laughter, music, and ritualistic chanting/drumming. Please be respectful of our neighbors and keep the noise level to a minimum.
Despite what is often cited as Albert Einstein High School “tradition” on the first day of classes, students are expressly forbidden from defacing, decorating, or otherwise tampering with the lion statue, frequently referred to as “Joe,” outside the East Seventy-fifth Street entrance of Albert Einstein High School. Twenty-four-hour surveillance cameras have been installed, and any students caught defiling school property in any way will be subject to expulsion and/or fines.
It has been brought to the attention of this administration that last year, large numbers of cigarette butts were daily swept up from the front steps on the Seventy-fifth Street entrance. In addition to the fact that smoking is strictly prohibited on school grounds, cigarette butts constitute a visual eyesore, as well as a fire hazard. Please note that any students caught smoking—either by a staff member or on the new video surveillance cameras—will be subject to suspension and/or fines.
Please note that this year’s standard AEHS uniforms include:
Long- or short-sleeved white blouse
Long- or short-sleeved white shirt
Gray sweater or sweater vest
Gray sweater or sweater vest
Blue-and-gold plaid skirt or gray flannel trousers
Gray flannel trousers
Blue or white knee-highs or blue or black tights or nude-colored pantyhose
Blue or black socks
Blue-and-gold plaid tie
Blue-and-gold plaid tie
Navy blue jacket
Navy blue jacket
Please note that the wearing of shorts—including regulation gym shorts or athletic team uniform shorts—beneath skirts is prohibited.
Remember, classes commence the day after Labor Day, Tuesday, September 8, at 7:55 A.M. As always, tardiness will not be tolerated.
Principal GuptaMonday, September 7, Labor Day
WOMYNRULE: Did you SEE it??? Did you get that hypocritical piece of garbage she sent out last week? Just who does she think she’s kidding with that? You so know that that part about ritualistic chanting was directed at ME. Just because I organized a few student rallies last year. Well, we’re going to show her. She might think she can stifle the voice of the people, but the student body of Albert Einstein High is NOT going to be intimidated.
FTLOUIE: Lilly, I—
WOMYNRULE: Did you see that part about the surveillance cameras???? Have you ever HEARD of anything so fascist? Well, she can install all the surveillance cameras she wants, but that’s not going to stop ME. It’s just another example of how she’s slowly turning this school into her own academic dictatorship. You know they used surveillance cameras in Communist Russia to keep the proletariat in line. I wonder what she’ll bring in next. Ex-KGB militia, perhaps, as hall monitors? I so wouldn’t put it past her. This is a total invasion of our right to privacy. That’s why this year, POG, we’re taking matters into our own hands. I have a plan—
WOMYNRULE: —that will totally undermine her attempts to strip us of our sense of selves and bend us to her will. Best of all, it’s in complete compliance with school ordinances. When we’re through, Mia, she won’t even know what hit her.
FTLOUIE: LILLY!!! I thought the whole point of Instant Messaging was so that we could TALK.
WOMYNRULE: Isn’t that what we’re doing?
FTLOUIE: YOU are. I’m TRYING to. But you keep interrupting.
WOMYNRULE: Fine. Then go ahead. What do you want to say?
FTLOUIE: I can’t remember now. You made me forget. Oh, here’s one thing: Stop calling me POG!
WOMYNRULE: SORRY. God. You know, ever since that little brother of yours was born, you have gotten way…sensitive.
FTLOUIE: Excuse me. I have ALWAYS been sensitive.
WOMYNRULE: You can say that again, BL. Don’t you want to hear my plan?
FTLOUIE: I guess so. Wait a minute. What’s BL?
WOMYNRULE: You know.
FTLOUIE: No, I don’t.
WOMYNRULE: Yes, you do…baby-licker.
FTLOUIE: STOP IT!!! I AM NOT A BABY-LICKER!!!
WOMYNRULE: R 2. Just like the red panda.
FTLOUIE: Just because I didn’t think it was appropriate for my mother to take her six-week-old newborn on a peace march across the Brooklyn Bridge does not make me a baby-licker!!!! ANYTHING could have happened during that march. ANYTHING. She could have tripped and accidentally dropped him and he might have bounced off the safety railing and fallen hundreds of feet into the East River and drowned…if the fall didn’t crush all his little bones to pieces first. And even if I dove in after him, we might both have been swept out to sea by the current…OH, THANKS, LILLY!!! Why did you have to remind me????
WOMYNRULE: Remember what the zookeeper had to do to the red panda?
FTLOUIE: SHUT UP!!!! NO ONE IS GOING TO TAKE AWAY MY BABY BROTHER BECAUSE I LICK HIM TOO MUCH!!! I HAVE NEVER ONCE LICKED ROCKY!!!!
WOMYNRULE: Yes, but you have to admit you are a little obsessive-compulsive about him.
FTLOUIE: Well, SOMEBODY has to worry about him! I mean, between my mother wanting to lug him around to all sorts of inappropriate venues such as antiwar rallies—sometimes even taking him there on the SUBWAY, which you know is just a breeding ground for g
erms—and Mr. G tossing him into the air and causing his head to smack against the ceiling fan, I frankly think Rocky is LUCKY to have a big sister like me who looks out for his welfare, since God knows no one else in the family is doing it.
WOMYNRULE: Whatever you say…baby-licker.
FTLOUIE: SHUT UP, LILLY. Just tell me your stupid plan.
WOMYNRULE: No. I don’t want to now. I think you’re better off not knowing. Baby-lickers like you, who worry too much, are probably better off not knowing things too far in advance, as they will just cause you to lick the baby harder.
FTLOUIE: Fine. I don’t have time to hear your stupid plan anyway. Your brother’s on the phone. I gotta go.
WOMYNRULE: WHAT? Tell him to hold on. THIS IS IMPORTANT, MIA!
FTLOUIE: This may come as a surprise to you, Lilly, but talking to your brother is important, too. At least to me. You know I’ve only seen him twice since I got back Friday—
WOMYNRULE: I’m sorry I called you a baby-licker. Just wait one minute while I tell you—
FTLOUIE: And once was dorm move-in day on Saturday and hardly counts since he was all sweaty from carrying that mini refrigerator up all those stairs after the elevators broke down—
WOMYNRULE: MIA!!! ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING TO ME????
FTLOUIE: And your parents were there and so was his Resident Advisor. And then on Sunday we went out but I was still jet-lagged and I accidentally—
FTLOUIE: —fell asleep while he was showing me his—
FTLOUIE: —newest Magic deck since Maya dropped his last one—
FTLOUIE: —and it got all mixed up with the decks he doesn’t use anymore—
WOMYNRULE: KILL YOU!
FTLOUIE: terminatedMonday, September 7, Labor Day, 10 p.m., the loft
Another school year. I know I should be excited. I know I should be thrilled at the prospect of seeing my friends again after having been on foreign soil for the past two months.
And I am. I am excited. I’m excited to see Tina and Shameeka and Ling Su and even—I can’t believe I’m saying this—Boris.
It’s just…well, it’s going to be so DIFFERENT this year, with no Michael to pick up on the way to school and sit with at lunch and have drop by before Algebra—ACK! No Algebra this year, either! Geometry! Oh, God. Well, I’ll just think about that one later. Although Mr. Gianini (FRANK. MUST REMEMBER TO CALL HIM FRANK.) says people who do badly in Algebra always do really well in Geometry. Please, please let that be true.
And okay, it’s not like Michael and I ever used to make out in front of my locker or anything, what with his lack of enthusiasm about PDA and my bodyguard and all.
But at least—because there was always a chance I could run into Michael in the hallway at any moment—I had something to look forward to at school.
And now, because Michael has graduated, there’s nothing to look forward to. Nothing.
Except for the weekends.
But how much time is Michael even going to have to spend with me on weekends? Because he’s in college now, and he has so much homework already there’s no way we can see each other on weeknights—not that, between princess obligations and my OWN homework, that was ever going to happen anyway. But still. It’s like—
God, what is WRONG with my mother? Rocky was just crying there for, like, FIFTEEN MINUTES while she did absolutely NOTHING. I went out into the living room and there she was with Mr. G, just sitting there watching Law and Order, and I was all, “Hello, your son is calling you,” and Mom, without even looking up from the TV, was like, “He’s just fussing. He’ll settle down and go to sleep in a minute.”
What kind of maternal compassion is THAT? Lilly can call me a baby-licker all she wants, but is it really any wonder I’m as maladjusted as I am if this is an example of how my mother treated me as a baby?
So then I went into Rocky’s bright yellow room and sang one of his favorite songs—“Behind Every Good Woman” by Tracy Bonham—and he calmed right down.
But did anyone thank me? No! I walked out of his room and my mom actually looked at me (only because there was a commercial) and went, very sarcastically, “Thanks, Mia. We’re trying to get him to understand that when we put him down for the night, he’s supposed to go to sleep. Now he’s going to think all he has to do is cry and someone is going to come in there and sing a song to him. I just got him over that while you were in Genovia this summer, and now we’re going to have to start all over again.”
Well, EXCUSE ME! I may be a baby-licker, but is it really such a crime to have a little compassion for my only sibling? JEESH!
Let’s see, where was I?
Oh, yeah. School. Without Michael.
Seriously, what is even the point? I mean, yeah, I know we’re supposed to be going to school to learn stuff and all of that. But learning stuff was so much more fun when there was a chance of spotting Michael by the water fountain or whatever. And now I fully have nothing like that to look forward to until Saturday and Sunday. I’m not saying that life without Michael isn’t worth living, or whatever. But I will say that when he’s around—or even when there’s just a chance that he MIGHT be around—EVERYTHING is a lot more interesting.
The only bright spot in what appears to be a school year otherwise completely devoid of them is English. Because it looks as if our teacher, Ms. Martinez, might actually be enthusiastic about the subject. At least if this note she sent around to all of us last month is any indication:AEHS
A letter to all members of Ms. Martinez’s tenth grade English class:
I hope you don’t mind receiving a note from me before the new school year even starts, but as the newest teacher on the AEHS staff, I just wanted to introduce myself, as well as get to know all of you.
My name is Karen Martinez, and I graduated with a Master’s Degree in English Literature from Yale this spring. My hobbies include Rollerblading, tae bo, visiting the many wonderful sights of New York City, and reading (of course!) literary classics such as Pride and Prejudice.
I hope to get to know each and every one of you this year, and to aid me in doing so, I’m asking each of my students to come to our first class period prepared with a short biography as well as an expository writing sample (no longer than 500 words) on what you learned during your summer vacation. As you know, life’s lessons don’t stop during the summer months just because school is not in session!
I’m sorry to be assigning homework before classes even begin, but I assure you that this will aid me in helping you to become the best writer you can be!
Thanks very much, and enjoy the rest of your summer!
Clearly Ms. Martinez is extremely dedicated to her job. It’s about time AEHS finally got some teachers who actually care about their students—Mr. G excepted, of course.
Frank, I mean.
I am especially excited because Ms. Martinez is the new advisor to the school paper, on which I am a staff member. I really feel, judging by how much Ms. Martinez and I have in common—I really liked Pride and Prejudice, especially the version with Colin Firth—and I tried rollerblading once—that I’m going to benefit greatly from her teachings. I mean, being an aspiring author and all, it’s very important that my talent is appropriately molded, and I already feel confident that Ms. Martinez is going to be the Mr. Miyagi to my Karate Kid—writing-wise. Not, you know, karate-wise.
Still, it’s hard to figure out what to say in my bio, let alone my expository writing sample on what I learned this summer. Because what am I going to write? “Hello, my name is HRH Princess Amelia Mignonette Grimaldi Thermopolis Renaldo? You might have heard of me, on account of there’ve been a couple movies based on my life.”
Although to tell the truth, both of those movies took a lot of liberties with the facts. It was bad enough in the first one that they made my dad dead and Grandmère
all nice and everything. Now, in the latest one, I supposedly broke up with Michael! Like that’s going to happen. That was entirely projection on the part of the movie studio, I guess to make the story more exciting, or something. As if my life isn’t exciting enough without any help from Hollywood.
Although I do have a lot in common with that Aragorn guy from The Return of the King. I mean, we’ve both had the mantle of sovereignty thrust upon us. I would much rather be a normal person than heir to a throne. I kind of got the feeling that Aragorn felt the same way.
Not that I don’t love the land over which I will one day rule. It’s just that it’s really boring to have to spend the better part of your summer with your dad and your grandma when you’d LIKE to be spending it with your new baby brother, not to mention your BOYFRIEND, who is starting COLLEGE in the fall.
Not that, you know, Michael is going AWAY to college or anything; he’s only going to Columbia, which is right in Manhattan, although it’s way uptown, way farther uptown than I usually go, except for that one time we went to Sylvia’s for fried chicken and waffles.
Anyway, I wrote the following bio for Ms. Martinez while I was still in Genovia last week. I hope that when she reads it she’ll recognize in my prose the soul of a fellow lover of writing:
From the Desk of
Princess Amelia Renaldo
by Mia Thermopolis
My name is Mia Thermopolis. I’m fifteen, a Taurus, heir to the throne of the principality of Genovia (population 50,000), and my hobbies include being taught how to be a princess by my grandmother; watching TV; eating out (or ordering in); reading; working for the AEHS newspaper, The Atom; and writing poetry. My future career aspiration is to be a novelist and/or a rescue dog handler (like when there’s an earthquake, to help find people trapped under rubble).
However, I will most likely have to settle for being Princess of Genovia (POG).
That was the easy part, really. The hard part was figuring out what to say about what I learned during my summer vacation. I mean, what DID I learn, anyway? I spent most of the month of June helping Mom and Mr. G adjust to having an infant in the house—which was a very difficult transition for them, since for so many years all inhabitants of our household were entirely bipedal (not counting my cat, Fat Louie). The introduction of a family member who will eventually—perhaps even for a year or more—get around mostly by crawling, made me acutely aware of the entirely unbaby-safe environment in which we live…although it didn’t seem to bother Mom and Mr. G so much.