12. THE AWARD
December 11, 1974
While studying for an academic contest in the barn, Mary accidentally knocks over a reading lamp and starts a fire. Caroline punishes Mary by forbidding her to participate in the contest and, afterwards, reluctantly enforces it.. Mary takes a part-time job at the mercantile to repay Ms. Beadle for a book damaged in the fire. Despite her job and chores, Mary continues to find time to study for the contest. In the end, she respect her Ma’s wishes and does not participate in the contest.