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'What's up, Courtney?' Kate asks, sweetly. 'Not jealous, are you?'

     Courtney examines her pale pink fingernails. 'Jealous?' she snarls. 'Not a chance. Good Luck with your placement, Cathy... I have a feeling you'll need it!'

The bus arrives and Courtney elbows her way to the front and gets on, blond hair swishing.

'I dont like Courtney Taylor,' I say. 'She has a nasty streak...'

About a mile wide,' Kate agrees. 'I dont think she is a model material, unless maybe it was an advert for sour grapes.'

Kate and i find a seat together near the back.

   'Want to know what Courtney's placement is?' Kate grins.

She's going to be working in a factory that makes thermal underwear. You know, long-johns and woolly vests and big knickers that come down to your knees.... No wonder she's mad at you!'

I pictured Courtney Taylor packing thermal knickers and polo-necked vests into boxes, and i have to smile.

'She might be right, though,' I confess to Kate. 'What if I am out of depth at Bella Marlow's studio? What if I cant cope?'

Kate rolls her eyes. 'You'll cope,' she tells me, firmly. ' You work  about a million times harder than Courtney Taylor. and you are not a quitter. And you are great with a camera, Cathy- that's why she picked you! They read your application letter and they recognised someone whobreally lives photography.'

'I know, but....'

'No buts,' Kate insists. 'You are the best person for that placement, end of story. If you were Bella Marlow, who would you pick? A talented ypung photography student or a would-be model who just wanted to grab a chance to be in the limelight? Think about it!'

I frown. 'But... Kate, it's fashion photography,' I sigh. 'Thats scary. It's a  different world. What if I dont fit in?'

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