All the women are staring at the platform, where there stands a very short, pretty lady... with gloves, of course. She's pretty, that is, until she peels her face off. No joke. Then – without her mask – she's pretty much the most revolting thing on the planet. That's The Grand High Witch (the GHW, from here on out).
On the GHW's orders, the other women take off their gloves, shoes, and wigs. It's not a pretty sight underneath their disguises.
The narrator quickly realizes that they might be able to smell him out, but luckily he hasn't bathed in a while. If only we were all so lucky.
Finally, the GHW begins to speak. She has a funny accent where she uses "v"s for "w"s and rolls her "r"s a lot. Sometimes she rhymes. If you're not reading along in your book, Shmoop thinks you should go check out some of her dialogue to see how Roald Dahl transcribes it – it's really funky.
She screams and yells (lots of exclamation points ensue) about disgusting children, and even kills one of the other witches (with her eyes – and pretty violently) when that witch suggests that they can't possibly wipe out all the children in England in one year. Talking back in Witch School gets you more than a visit to the principal's office, apparently.