Molly’s Story

Molly Foley illustration


You take a deep breath. Quietly, slightly off-key, you sing: “Long to reign over us …”

Your stomach squeezes uncomfortably as the schoolmistress smiles. Best shrug it off. You’ll get your education, find a good job, and save enough money to go home to Ireland. Good plan, Molly. You keep your nose clean and do your work.

The schoolmistress is so impressed with you, she recommends you for a service position with a nearby family.

The Sommervilles are all right — though their daughter Edith is a bit of a dreamer. You cook and clean, but it’s lonely. Mr. Sommerville sometimes gives your rosary a peculiar look, and you tuck it away self-consciously.

Mrs. Sommerville likes your needlework especially — she reckons with training, you could become a proper seamstress.

Not a bad job, that. Good money, if you can get it. But you miss your family desperately. You’re tired of feeling like an outsider all the time, and Father needs help at the tavern.

Do you work at your family’s tavern, or become a seamstress?