Darrell, Sally, Alicia and all of their friends are now in the Fifth form at Malory Towers. They look forward to being in Miss James' class but also find out that fierce Moira Linton, the old fifth form head has been left down with Catherine Gray, a saintly but very silly girl. This makes the new fifth formers uncomfortable. Even worse is the new girl in their form, Maureen Little. Hilariously she has exactly the same character as Gwendoline, and the two are forced to become friends (though Maureen cannot take hints and is delighted). On the second day of term, Miss James announces that the fifth form are to provide some entertainment at Christmas, so they decide to produce their own pantomime of 'Cinderella', which Darrell is asked to write. She thoroughly enjoys this new task in addition to being made Games Captain.
Immediately after a committee meeting the boastful Maureen cannot help criticising her peers on their work for the pantomime and insists that she could undertake all of the writing and designing. However she is heavily criticised when Darrell and Moira see her poor drawings and verses. In the meantime, Darrell is organising a lacrosse match and wants her sister to play in the team. Moira encourages her to do so, but cunning June accuses Darrell of favouritism to Moira. Rehearsals for the pantomime come next, but dictatorial Moira is harsh with everyone and is hated by the entire cast. It is the final straw for Moira when Alicia, who has a conjuring role, resigns from the show. She also starts receiving some spiteful anonymous letters and has no idea who it is. So Moira and Darrell are shocked when they find out who sent them.
This report prepared by Liza Rosette