After having endured the noise of the lunchroom the previous day, Braithwaite decides to eat his lunch in the staff-room. When he sits down, he feels exhausted from the tension of his classroom. As he begins to eat, Miss Blanchard enters and joins him. Soon, they are talking about things that they both enjoy: books, music, theater, and movies. Braithwaite expresses his surprise that the students at the assembly listened to the classical music, and Miss Blanchard agrees.
Then, Miss Blanchard asks him how his day is going. When he tells her, she remarks, "Good Lord. Maybe Weston was right, after all." Braithwaite replies that he has decided to take the advice of Miss Clintridge and maintain order and discipline. When the other teachers enter the room, they also ask Braithwaite how his morning has gone. Weston says that his students do what he tells them, but one of the teacher remarks, "And that's about all you'll get, Big Boy." Soon, comments circulate the room; Weston suggests,"Maybe Braithwaite will try a little black magic on them?"
"What kind of magic do you try, Weston? Mrs. Drew's voice grew cold.
Braithwaite leaves the staff-room knowing that almost everyone wants him to do well. As the afternoon session begins, Mr. Braitwaite decides to instruct his class on the measurement system. While he does so, he notices that the students have become surly and watchful.
On the way home, Braithwaite stops into a tobacco shop where he sees rental listings. Once he hears that Braithwaite is a teacher, the shopkeeper tells him that none of the listings are good enough for a teacher, but if he comes back, there may be one for him. Braithwaite is surprised at his remarks.
He smiled and turned back into his shop, and I walked on in wonderment at the amazing unexpectedness of human kindness.
That evening Braithwaite discusses with the Belmonts the situation in the classroom, and all three agree that Braithwaite must gain the students' respect and confidence before their resentment turns into something else.