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Detail of 'Combing the Hair ('La Coiffure')' by Degas, about 1896.
© The National Gallery, London


Scarlet, velvet cloths hung low from the ceiling on a long gold curtain rail in Andrea's room. Andrea, a fourteen-year-old redhead, sat patiently on her favourite red chair, wearing her favourite red dress, while Deborah, the hired help, combed it thoroughly while muttering under her breath.

'If mother hears you're not doing my hair properly she'll sack you right away,' Andrea boasted.

'Your mother, young lady, won't see you for the next month, so don't you try and threaten me.'

Deborah threw the comb on the table with fury and stamped out of the room like a rampaging rhino. She seemed to be angry about something, still muttering and mumbling, she made her way down the hall, slamming Andrea's bedroom door behind her.
Other transcripts:
"The Fatal Bump"
"I Hate My Hair"
"Think Happy Thoughts"
Jacqueline's instructions
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Image of 'Combing the Hair ('La Coiffure')' by Degas, about 1896.Click here for About the Painting.
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More about Jacqueline Wilson