When you’re a teenager it’s easy to be led astray. What’s hard is getting out of a bad situation.
Mature or distressing themes and strong language. This story deals with issues that are, unfortunately, true to life for some teens.
In keeping with our policy of not running from real life issues, we are hosting Bad Boy Gone Good with this advisory.
Greg and Jay got to Aston High at seven-thirty Monday morning. The school had two parking lots for students, one for seniors and one for juniors.
“I don’t think you should park in the student lot,” Greg said. “If Pete comes looking for you here that’s where he’ll look for your car.”
“So… where am I supposed to park?”
“The auto shop lot. Nobody ever checks it, and a car with a junior parking sticker would be able to park there all day.”
“How do you know that?”
“When I started here I signed up for Auto Shop. I was there two days before they found out I’d never taken metal shop, which was a prerequisite, so I had to drop it and sign up for another elective. I found out that anyone can park there, but they check that you have a student parking sticker.” Greg pointed at the junior parking sticker on the windshield. “Jay, my man, you can park there and no one will be the wiser.”
“You better be right. I sure don’t want my car to be towed.”
Jay drove around the block to the back driveway and backed his car into an empty spot in the auto shop lot. There were three other cars there, two without stickers.
“What are those two cars without stickers?” he asked.
“They’re students’ cars that’ll be worked on in the shop. See the sticker on the back bumper of that one? That ID’s it.”
They got out and locked the doors and headed to the administration building across campus.
Greg asked, “I’m surprised that you didn’t sign up for Auto Shop. What with you working on your car with Pete.”
“I wasn’t interested in cars that much. I had my provisional license and I just wanted transportation.”
“What electives are you taking? I never heard you say anything about your classes.”
“Library Science and Study Hall.”
“Library Science? Why that?”
“I like books and reading. I wouldn’t mind working in a library.”
“Whoa. I never would have figured.”
Jay grinned. He had been a different kid before his dad died.
“How about you, Greg, what elective did you end up taking instead of auto shop?”
“Computer Programming 2.”
Jay laughed. “Man, that’s a lot different than auto shop!”
“I gotta agree. But I like computers and programming, so it’s all good.”
While Greg didn’t have any friends at school, Jay did. A few guys waved or said ‘Hi’ as they hurried to the attendance office. Greg noticed no one said anything to him. ‘Same-as all over again,’ he thought.
A huge number of kids were lined up at the attendance office. They joined the line.
“What the hell is going on?” Greg asked.
Jay tapped the guy ahead of him. The guy turned and smiled.
“What’s going on?”
“You weren’t here on Friday?”
“No. I was in the hospital most of last week.”
“Hey, too bad. You missed the biggest excitement so far this year. Someone wrote a threatening message in the bathroom in the boys’ locker room. Friday morning some kid saw it. He took a photo of it and posted it on Instagram, and by brunch everyone had heard about it. The school went into lockdown, cops were all over the place, and there were tons of wild rumors about a guy with a gun and shit like that. It was all crap, and by the start of third period they decided it was a hoax. But it caused a mass exodus of students. Around 400 were pulled out of school by their parents, and the school had to release them from classes. That includes me. My mom got all panicky and she drove to school and I was yanked outta here. Totally bogus. Anyway, this line is so we can get back into school. How about you two?”
“We both got sick,” Greg replied.
Jay told the story he and Greg had concocted as the reason for not being at school. “We think it could be the burritos we ate in the cafeteria last Monday. So we have our forms from the hospital and we need to get admitted back into school.”
“I know where you should go ‘cause I went there by mistake this morning. Go down to that door at the end of the building.” He pointed to his right.
As they started to walk away, Greg turned and asked, “Hey, did you see the message?”
“Yeah. It said ‘All you fuckers will get shot today.’ Freaked the guy who saw it first, he took a pic and uploaded it, told a coach, and probably twenty minutes later everyone had heard about it.”
“What time did he find it?” Jay asked.
“When he went in to take a dump at the end of first period PE.”
Greg laughed. “This is a time I’m glad I was in the hospital instead of at school.”
Jay pointed to the clock on the side of the administration building. “Hey, Greg. Check the time. We better get over there and get admitted so we can go to Homeroom on time.”
Jay turned to the guy they’d been talking to. “Thanks for the update. Nothing exciting ever happens when I’m in school.”
When they got inside the admissions office Jay got in line for Ms. Fintch, who called out “Next” even though he and Greg were the only ones in line.
“My name’s Jaydon Oron. I was in the hospital last week and missed classes on Tuesday through Friday. Here’s my form from the hospital,” Jay said.
“This says you were at St. Mark’s in San Carlos.”
“Yeah. That’s correct.”
“What were you doing in San Carlos?”
“I felt real sick on my way to school so I decided to drive to where my stepmother works in Palo Alto. I didn’t make it, and ended up in St. Mark’s in San Carlos.”
“This doesn’t say why you were sick.”
“Yes, it does.” Jay held out his hand inviting her to give him the form from the hospital so he could point it out.
“Never mind,” she said. She entered something in her computer, stamped the top of the form, printed a return slip, and handed it to him.
“Give this to your Homeroom teacher. You won’t have to show it in any of your other classes.”
“Thank you,” Jay responded, and stood by the door to wait for Greg.
Greg was next so he stepped up to the counter. “I’m Gregory Cameron. I was riding to school with Jaydon, and we both had the same stomach problem.”
“You both got sick and were in the same hospital?” She looked unconvinced.
“Yes. We think it could have been the burritos we ate in the cafeteria on Monday. My dad’s an attorney and he asked me to find out if any other kids came down with bad stomach problems like what Jay and I had. Were there?”
She stamped his form. “That’s privileged information. Here’s your return slip. Give it to your Homeroom teacher. You won’t have to show it in any of your classes.”
Greg stepped outside, and he and Jay walked to the language arts building for their Homeroom. Greg laughed. “Shit, that form from the hospital worked. That old lady was sure suspicious. But she couldn’t ask many questions because of the privacy rules.”
“Did you notice how freaked she got when you mentioned that your dad is an attorney? I think if you’d told her that both he and your mom were attorneys she could have had a heart attack.”
“Or shit her pants. That would have made a mess.”
“And smelled so bad we would probably have barfed up our breakfast.”
They laughed as they entered the building, and that caught the curious stares of other kids, some of whom grinned and others turned away or ignored them.
Homeroom at Aston was only ten minutes, but that’s where attendance was taken and put onto the school administration’s computer network. Every classroom had a PC that connected to the network, and teachers in other classes could see whether someone was marked as absent. If they were they’d be told to go to the attendance office to get an admission slip. Therefore, it was important for Greg and Jay to get to their Homeroom so they’d be marked present.
They walked in and handed Mr. Harter the return slips and he checked them present. Other than attendance, Homeroom was used for making announcements and for kids to try to finish some of their homework or cram for an exam.
Greg sat down and Jay sat in the seat to his right. Someone in the seat in back of Greg said, “And so begins another day at Asshole High School.”
Greg turned around and Davis Sung was grinning and asked, “How’s it going?”
That surprised Greg. Davis had never talked to him before.
“Good. How about you?”
“Okay. You were MIA last week.”
“Got sick and had to go to the hospital. Turned into a big freakin’ deal. Jay got it, too. We think it was from eating those burritos in the cafeteria last Monday.”
“You were in the hospital all week?” He seemed incredulous.
“Tuesday through Friday. We were really sick.”
“Damn, man, that sucks.”
“Tell me about it!”
“Hey, you missed all the excitement on Friday.”
“We heard about it this morning. What kind of douche would write something like that on a bathroom stall wall.” Greg shook his head.
“Even worse if it had been real. Like that high school in Colorado.”
Jay decided to join the conversation. “Yeah, and a lot of others, too. Some kids are just fucking crazy.”
“I heard that they got a lead on who did it. Can you believe this, the idiot left his fingerprint on the wall in that stall. Seems like he got a finger in the ink of one of the characters in what he wrote and didn’t notice it. When it dried it was a good print and the crime scene guys caught it.”
“What a sap,” Jay said.
“Did you go home?”
“Nah. Stuck around until they announced that we could go to our third period classes. So I missed PE, no loss there, and English 3.”
“You have PE first period?” Greg asked.
“Man, that sure sucks,” Jay commented.
“You got that! One good thing, I don’t shower in the morning at home because I have to shower at the end of PE anyway. Gives me another fifteen minutes of sleep.”
The bell rang and they grabbed their backpacks and stood up.
“See you guys later,” Davis said, then put out his fist for a bump and they did.
Jay had Algebra 2 and Greg had Advanced Placement United States History first period — that long name had been shortened to a-push and usually spelled in all caps, APUSH. They said they’d see each other at lunch and left for their classes.
At lunch Greg and Jay carried their trays to an empty table and sat down.
“I was surprised that Davis guy was so friendly in Homeroom,” Greg said. “He’d never talked to me before. We have PreCalc second period and he was just as friendly. He offered to help me get caught up.”
“Same here. A girl in Library Science sat next to me and started talking, real friendly like.”
Greg grinned. “Was she cute?”
“Not as cute as you!’
Greg blushed. “So what’s her name?”
“Jennifer… um, Jennifer Jenkins.”
“I wonder if she’s related to the doctor I had at St. Mark’s Hospital. His name is Jenkins.”
“Could be. But St. Mark’s is way down in San Carlos.”
“No reason they couldn’t live in San Bruno and have a daughter going to Aston High.” Greg grinned and wiggled his eyebrows. “You might have a girlfriend, Jay!”
“I’d rather have a boyfriend.”
Greg looked at Jay. “I thought you said…”
Jay interrupted, “Maybe I’ve decided to try out the other side of the street. You game?”
Greg stared at Jay and bit his bottom lip. After a few seconds he smiled and replied, “Sure.”
“Cool,” Jay responded.
As they started eating, a tall guy walked up to the table and set his tray down. “Okay if I sit here? My name’s Ryan.”
“Sure. I’m Greg and this is Jay.”
“Is it okay if a friend of mine sits here too? He’s heading this way.”
Jay grinned and shrugged his shoulders. “This table’s not reserved.”
Davis Sung walked up, put his tray on the table, and sat down. “Hey,” he said.
“Hey, Davis. So I guess you and Ryan are friends, right?” Greg asked.
“Yeah. Best friends and next-door neighbors. We’ve known each other since we were little kids.”
“Wow, so, that’s a long time.”
“Sometimes too long,” Ryan said, then he laughed and unsuccessfully tried to move away from an elbow in the side from Davis.
“Greg, you haven’t been here very long,” Davis said. “Where’d you move from, if it’s okay for me to ask?”
“Bellingham, Washington. I went to Sehome High.”
“That’s tough, having to move in the middle of your junior year in high school.”
“Yeah, it is. And I gotta tell you, no offense intended, when I got here it was like totally clique city. No one was friendly.”
Davis took a deep breath. “Can I tell you something, and you promise you won’t get pissed at me?”
“You walked around here with a scowl on your face and a huge chip on your shoulder looking like you were pissed at everyone and everything.”
“I said ‘Hi’ to you the first few days in Chem and you like totally ignored me,” Ryan added.
Greg closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He opened them and looked at Ryan then at Davis. “You’re right. I probably did come across as a badass. I got yanked out of school and away from all of my friends and ended up here in the middle of the semester. That really pissed me off. We’re here three weeks and my folks take off on another one of their long fucking business trips. In Bellingham I had lots of friends so their trips weren’t a problem.” Greg chuckled. “Good, actually. I mean, I had our house all to myself and my friends. We didn’t do any parties, but friends came over all the time.
“So I get sort of dumped here and except for Jay I haven’t got any friends. Mostly I’ve been all by myself in a big house and that got real lonely real fast. So I guess I did have a bad attitude. I’m sorry for that.”
“So what made you change to the light side?” Davis asked. “I saw you in that lineup to get admitted after Friday’s fiasco and you were talking to Brandon all friendly like.”
Greg grinned and looked at Jay.
“Probably the best thing is that Jay lives with my family now. Long story, and it’s up to him to tell it if he wants. Just having someone there so I wouldn’t live like a hermit or something, it’s really made a difference.” Greg didn’t tell them that Jay moved in just two days ago. “I think I’m a lot happier now. Not to mention that Jay’s got a car so instead of a thirty-five minute combination of walking and riding a SamTrans bus to get to school, or about the same riding my bike, it’s only fifteen minutes now.”
“Oh, so I’m just your chauffeur now?” Jay joked.
“No, you’re way more than that,” Greg replied. “You’re my best friend.”
“So, what classes are you guys taking? What do you do for entertainment around San Bruno?” Greg asked. That started a discussion on many topics that lasted through the lunch period.
As they left for their next classes, Greg and Jay both thought about the lunch period and how different it had been. ‘Maybe things are changing around here,’ they each thought.
Greg had AP Chemistry seventh period. He and Ryan walked up to the classroom door from different directions at the same time.
“Hi, Greg. Ready for the quiz today?”
“Probably not. I’m four days behind, and even though I went through the material last night I don’t think I’ve absorbed it all.”
“I don’t think it’s going to be that hard. Mr. Lazelle said he was going to lecture on something, I forgot what, and we were going to work on an experiment too, so the quiz will have to be on the short side. And short equals easy, right?” Ryan grinned and bumped Greg with his shoulder.
Greg grimaced in return. “Yeah, sure.” Then he shook his head as a ‘no.’
“Let’s sit at that lab table in the middle row by the windows,” Ryan suggested.
“Okay.” Greg chuckled. “You know, I usually sat in the back near the door so I could escape as soon as I heard the bell. It sort of became a game. Get everything put away and my book in my backpack so I was ready to split just before the bell and make sure Mr. Lazelle didn’t notice me. Then I’d rush to the bus stop so I’d be there before the 3:30 bus pulled away.”
“Where do you live?” Ryan asked.
“2287 Spyglass Drive. That’s on the west side of town.”
“Man, I don’t believe it. I live at 2275 Seacliff Drive. That’s like almost in back of you. We’re practically back-to-back neighbors.”
“Sorry, we live on the north side of the street,” Greg said, “so our backyards don’t back against each other. Do you have a gate in your back fence?”
“Yeah, but what good would… oh, I see what you mean. We’re near the end of our cul de sac, so I can walk through our gate then through the woods to your street. And for you it’s vice-versa.”
“You’ve got it, and our house is at the end of our cul de sac. Say, do you take the bus to school?”
“No. My dad’s a doctor at St. Mark’s Hospital, so he usually drives us to school. If he’s….” Ryan stopped because Greg was laughing so hard he had a tough time stopping to catch his breath.
Ryan stared at Greg. “What?”
Finally, Greg stopped lauging and replied. “If your last name is Jenkins, then your dad was my doctor when I was in St. Mark’s Hospital last week. I can’t believe it! This is just too freakin’ amazing.”
“My last name is Jenkins. And my dad is on the staff at St. Mark’s hospital. Welcome to the wonderful world of coincidences.”
They heard the bell for the class to begin, and Mr. Lazelle and a lab tech handed out the papers for the quiz.
Fortunately for Greg the quiz had questions from the material that he’d read the night before, and he felt he had the right answers for every question. The lab tech collected the answer sheets and Ryan asked Greg how he thought he’d done on the test.
“I think I aced it. I read this exact material last night and remembered it. How about you?”
“I think I did okay. A couple questions were confusing, and I hope I got those right. The rest were pretty easy.”
Mr. Lazelle called the class to order and he started his lecture on organic polymers and described the lab exercise Greg and Ryan, as lab partners, would work on and complete during class.
The AP Chemistry class, and the school day, finished when everyone heard the bell. Greg walked from the Physical Sciences building to the Auto Shop where Jay had parked his car. Those two buildings were close, so Greg arrived to find Jay’s car exactly where he’d parked it.
Greg put his backpack on the ground next to the right front fender, sat on it and leaned back. After about five minutes Jay arrived, grinning.
“You look happy,” Greg said.
“I am, that I am. I met a couple of guys in Study Hall who are boyfriends and out here at school and their folks know and think it’s fine. We talked about what it’s like to come out at school, what’s good and what’s bad. I’ll have to tell you about it.”
“Who are they?”
“Paul Meadows and Rick Manenking.”
“They’re in some of my classes. Paul is in APUSH, Rick is in Computer Programming 2 and English 3. Weird they’re both taking Study Hall instead of regular college-track courses. When do you want to tell me what you talked about?”
“How about we do that tonight?”
“Okay. I’ll try to remember to talk about it. I’m curious. Now let’s get going. I tried to call my folks at home again and I got voicemail. And the same when I called their cell phone numbers.”
They got to Greg’s house at three forty-five and parked in front. Greg unlocked the front door and turned off the alarm system. The first thing he did was to check voicemail, and there was a message. He played it and they both listened.
“Hi Greg. Our flight has been delayed due to weather. The new arrival time is 4:10 PM. We hope. See you a little while after that. Dad.”
“If they get in at ten after four it’ll take them at least forty-five minutes to get their luggage and get a cab. They’ll get home around five thirty, and they’ll want to clean up. They’ll probably be hungry when they get here. I wonder what I should fix for dinner.”
“I saw a frozen pot roast in the freezer. There are instructions for defrosting and heating it in the microwave. Why don’t you fix that with some veggies and potatoes? I can make a salad and help with the other stuff,” Jay offered.
“Cool. Let’s do that.”
It didn’t take long for everything to be ready to go. It would take about twenty minutes to get it ready to serve once Greg’s folks arrived home.
“What do you want to do while we wait? Watch TV?” Greg asked.
“How about getting a start on our homework?”
“I’d rather watch TV, but you’re right. We have a lot of assignments to catch up on, so let’s get going. Let’s head upstairs.”
At about five forty-five Greg heard his folks arrive.
“Greg! We’re home!” his dad called out.
Greg led Jay down the stairs to the entry hall where the cab driver had just been paid and left.
Greg got a big hug from his mom, then from his dad. After the usual “Hello, how are you, we’ve missed you, it’s so good to be home” greetings, he introduced Jay.
“Mom, Dad, this is Jay Oron.”
Jay nervously stepped forward and shook hands with Greg’s dad.
“It’s nice to meet you, Mr. Cameron.”
“Likewise, Jay. I’m looking forward to hearing about that situation with your stepmother and stepfather.”
He turned to greet Greg’s mom and was surprised when she wrapped him in a hug. “It’s nice to meet you, Jay,” she said.
“It’s nice to meet you, Mrs. Cameron.”
“All this ‘mister’ and ‘misses’ stuff is too clumsy,” Greg’s dad said. “Our names are Dave and Beth. Please address us that way.”
“Uh… okay, thanks, uh, Dave.”
Dave grinned. “That’s great. Just keep it up.”
Greg rubbed his hands together. “Why don’t you get cleaned up, and Jay and I will finish fixing dinner. We have pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, carrots and peas, a salad, and an apple pie for dessert.”
“That sounds fantastic,” Beth said. “Airline food makes TV dinners look gourmet. A nice home-cooked dinner will be wonderful.”
“We’ll go upstairs and clean up and be down in about a half hour,” Dave said. “Is that okay?”
“Sure, Dad. We’ll have everything ready by six thirty.”
“Let me help you with your suitcases,” Jay offered.
“Thanks, we appreciate that. Why don’t you take Beth’s two roller-bags. One is heavy and the other is light. I can handle mine.”
“I can help too,” Greg said.
“I’d rather you get that dinner ready. We’ll be okay with Jay’s help.”
The talk during dinner concentrated on school and classes and how Greg and Jay would catch up on the four days they lost. Greg complained about his continuing inability to get a meeting with his counselor, and how he met with the vice principal during morning break and threated that his dad, an attorney, would be there to find out why the counselor wasn’t available to meet with him.
Greg also reminded his parents that Doctor Jenkins had told him that he would need to see Doctor Cardin in thirty days to get a thorough physical exam. Beth said Jay should do the same, and that she’d call and make the appointment for both of them on the same day about a half hour after school. Jay told them that he had his own medical insurance, so there wouldn’t be any problem about paying for the exam.
Dave and Beth talked about the business expansion to Toronto and Chicago. Jay seemed interested, and asked questions about the business. Dave, in particular, was happy to answer his questions. Greg also learned more about the business than he’d ever known, which made him feel embarrassed for not having shown much interest in the past.
After dinner Dave and Beth sat in the family room and talked about their impressions of Jay. What they couldn’t understand was how he could change from a kid who got Greg into trouble to the intelligent, friendly boy they just talked with over dinner.
Greg and Jay did all of the cleanup then joined the adults in the family room.
“Dad and Mom, I wrote you about Jay and why he’s here, and he’d like to tell you what he told me and the police about his life over the past couple years. Jay?”
Jay took a deep breath and let it out slowly. It took about a half hour to tell his story because Dave and Beth both had lots of questions, which Jay answered truthfully. Again, Greg learned more about Jay’s life.
When Jay finished he sat trying to hold back tears. Dave turned to Beth and raised his eyebrows in a silent question, and Beth replied with a short nod.
“Jay, you’re welcome here for as long as needed. My biggest concern is that you have to become drug free. No pot, no other drugs, no alcohol. Can you agree to that?”
“Yes, sir, I can.”
“It’s not easy. When you’re a teenager it’s critical that you get off of all drugs, including pot and alcohol which are the two that are the easiest to access. Taking drugs at your age can cause cognitive problems later on. There are eight-step and twelve-step programs that claim they have good success records. We’ll work with you so you can pick a program that will help you get off of pot. We’ll help you in every way that we can.
“Greg, your mother and I want you to go on the same program as Jay. You also have to become drug free. No pot, no other drugs, no alcohol. Can you agree to that?”
“Yes, Dad and Mom, I can.”
Dave smiled. “Now, Jay, the first thing I’ll do tomorrow is contact our attorney to get that permanent restraining order against Pete Medrano. I’ll also have the attorney find out about declaring you an emancipated minor.
“I’m worried about you driving to school. There are two reasons. First, Pete might go to Aston High looking for you, and your car is like a sign saying you’re there. Second, your provisional driver’s license doesn’t allow you to have any person under the age of 20, that includes Greg, as a passenger until you’re 18 years old or you become an emancipated minor. So Beth will drive the two of you to school and pick you up after school each day. If there is an after-school event or club meeting you want to attend, just let her know in advance.
“When Beth drives the two of you to school tomorrow she’s going to talk to the principal or vice principal about two things.
“First, she will demand that she and Greg meet with his counselor tomorrow morning. No excuses. To make room for Greg they can reschedule a student or two, shorten each session by five or ten minutes, or extend her day by having her see a student after the final bell.
“Second, she will obtain permission for each of you to carry, and in an emergency use, your cell phones while you are at school.
“Jay, what carrier do you use?”
“My smartphone is paid for. I bought it on E-Bay. I use Metro and have a pre-paid plan. There’s about $90 in my Metro account for calls, texts, and data, and for the monthly charge. I add money every month if it looks like it’s getting low.”
“Did your stepmother co-sign your Metro account?”
“No, my dad did. Doris doesn’t know anything about what company I use.”
“Does she know your phone number?”
“That means it would be easy for her to find out who the carrier is. Tomorrow after you guys get home I’ll take you to a Metro store to get a new number for your phone and a new SIM card. So tonight back up everything in your phone’s memory. Metro will transfer everything on your current SIM card to the new one, but it’s best to have a backup. We’ll set it up so calls to the old number won’t be forwarded to the new number. Is having a new number going to be a problem?”
“No, not at all. Well, maybe. Greg will have to try to memorize my new number. I’m not sure how long that will take.” Jay grinned, and Dave and Beth laughed. Then Greg whacked Jay with one of the pillows from the sofa where they were sitting. He was grinning too.
“Alright,” Dave said, “the next thing is I want to set up a meeting so you and I can talk to the trustee that’s holding your account, if that’s okay with you.”
“Sure, that’s okay. More than okay. I’ll give you the name of the woman who manages my account along with her address and phone number.”
“Then I think that’s it, for now. We’ll keep you updated on what we do and find out and get resolved. I want you to be a party to everything we’re doing for you.”
Jay blinked a few times to keep the tears away. “I don’t know how to thank you. Sorry for the language, but I almost fucked up Greg’s life and mine too. You guys are fantastic.”
Beth smiled at the two boys. “You two should go to your rooms now and start on your homework that you haven’t finished.”
“Thank you, Dave and Beth. You’re… just fantastic.” Again, Jay blinked away tears.
When they got upstairs Jay followed Greg into his room and shut the door. He grabbed Greg and hugged him, and held on, and buried his face in Greg’s shoulder and let the tears flow. Greg hugged back, and held Jay until he stopped crying.
“Shit, I feel like such a little kid, crying on your shoulder like that.”
“Bullshit! This has been an emotional roller coaster for you. Crying is a good relief.”
“If you say so. I still think it’s not very… mature.”
“You gotta be kidding. Not mature?”
“Alright, alright. I just hate to do it. And what people will think if they see me.”
“I’ll never think less of you if you cry about something. Neither will my folks. Anyone who does is an asshole. Just ignore them.”
“Lemme change the subject,” Jay said. “What do you think Pete is up to right now? I wonder if he got his copy of the emergency protective order. If he did it must have blown the top of his head off.”
That wasn’t quite the effect that the emergency protective order had on Pete. What he did is start shouting at Doris.
“It’s your fault that he got this fucking emergency protective order. Did you read this shit? I can’t come within 300 feet of him or anywhere he might be. That’s even if he isn’t there! That includes this house! That means I have to find somewhere else to stay ’cause if I stay here I can get thrown in jail. Where the fuck am I supposed to go? If you’d done a better job of disciplining him and making him toe the line this wouldn’t have happened. That little fairy got to the cops and….”
Doris interrupted his rant and repeatedly poked Pete in his chest as she talked. “Bullshit! It’s your fault. You’re the one who beat him up. You’re the one who threw him out of the house. You got anger management problems, boy-o! Now what we’ve gotta do is go find a lawyer and get your fucking emergency protective order rescinded or squashed or whatever the fuck they call it. And you’ve gotta be Mister Nice Guy, all sad about the mistake and how Jado has it in for you. And don’t yell at the lawyer! Got it? Well? Say something!”
“What I’d say you wouldn’t like, bitch. I’m not going to any panty-waist lawyer who’ll squeeze every dime we got out of us. I’m going to get that fairy Jado and make him wish he hadn’t been born.”
“And just how the hell are you going to do that?”
“Aston High School is listed on the stay-away list. I’ll go there tomorrow and haul his ass out of there. Then I’ll give him some of the discipline that he never got from you.”
“You’ll end up in jail if you go to that high school. They won’t let you in to find him.”
“No problem, I’ll go at lunch. Every kid eats lunch. He’ll be in the cafeteria. I’m gonna go in there and grab him. No one’s gonna be able to stop me going in or going out. Just let ’em try!”
“Jesus fucking Christ! You are so fucking stupid it makes my head ache. You think they’re gonna just let you walk into the school and wander around in the cafeteria looking for him? That’s one of the stupidest ideas….”
She stopped talking because Pete slugged her in the mouth, hard, and she fell and hit her head on the corner of the coffee table on her way to the floor. She lay there with her eyes open. He didn’t realize that she wasn’t conscious.
He stared down at her and growled in response to what she’d been saying, “I’m going to the shop. I can sleep in the back room. Then around noon I’m going to the school and that kid is gonna come with me. You just keep your mouth shut or I’ll give you some of what I’m gonna give him, got it?”
There was no response from Doris as Pete stormed out of the house and, tires squealing on the pavement, drove away in his black SUV. Bob Porter watched from his kitchen window.
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This story and the included images are Copyright © 2015 by Colin Kelly (colinian). The original image is Copyright © 2006 by iStock | 6187400. They cannot be reproduced without express written consent. Codey's World web site has written permission to publish this story. No other rights are granted.
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