One from the past - The 'Excluded Bully' Incident

This I wrote when I was like 14 years old and blogger was but a distant dream....

Presented here in it's unedited form, I wonder if this piece stands the test of time, and if I can post it without cringing. It was deemed good enough to get 49/50 and was put into the school magazine at Chis and Sid. Presented today for your pleasure - The Excluded Bully incident.

A summer's day it was sometime near the middle of June, I think. I'm tired from a game of football. My best friend and I sit by the side of the pitch to joke and watch the rest of the game. As we speak in the glaring sun, the bully pulls himself from the back of our minds to the forefront of our conversation.

"I heard about the fight yesterday. Heard the other kid didn't stand a monkey's chance.”

“No, he barely put up a fight. I would have at least got a few hits in", I reply. "Not the type of bloke I'd like to meet down a dark alley on a Saturday night."

"In Brixton", I add.

The acorn caught my eye at this point, or was it a chestnut. Crikey, this is five or six years ago, it's sort of hard to remember. It was the size of an acorn but brown like a chestnut. Maybe a small chestnut. I'm no tree expert myselt but I'd say a small chestnut. I picked it up and felt its unique, slippery, round shape in my hand.

"What's that?" "A small chestnut, I think."

I sighed as the sun streamed blissfully on the game of football and its spectators. I tossed the chestnut carelessly over my left shoulder with a simple flick of the wrist.



I turned round and caught sight of the bully! The sun raged down.


"So which of you threw this?"

It wasn't a nice tone. He wasn't a very happy man.

"It wasn't me."

Thanks. I thought you were my mate. Well all's fair in love and war. Please ground, open up and swallow me. No response. Perspiration. The sun eats some sweat from my brow. More perspiration.

"Who threw it then?"

He knows it was me. He's just trying to scare me. Well he can't scare me. I feel a lump in my trousers, and I'm not pleased to see him. Even more perspiration.

"Was it you?"

Of course it was me but I'm not going to admit it, am I, you fool? Well of course not or he'll beat me up. The sun's at me like a wild dog. Perspiration is accumulating into my own personal lake. I hear a voice say, "No" in a defiant, yet sarcastic voice, with somehow pleading undertones.

"Okay, who's the joker who put superglue on my shoes?" I look down almost hoping to see a ball and chain on my legs to explain why they're so darn heavy. If I'm this scared, can't I just turn and run. I read somewhere about the "Fight or Flight" hormone. It is now that I begin to doubt its existence. If it did exist I'd be above Canary Wharf and the resident Thamesmead swans would be jealous. Fight doesn't seem to be an option anyway. Why is it that my mind says the famous words of Monty Python, "Run away", but my body insists on staying right here to make sarcastic comments until he beats me to a pulp. A car goes by carelessly on the other side of the fence as I look over his shoulder I shout out, "0i! You! You in the car! Can you stop and help me please. This kid's gonna beat me to mash!" But nothing emits from my mouth. My voice box is gone. Who stole it?

"Go on, was it you?"

Oh, my voice box is gone so if I say something sarcastic it won't come out. My mate stands back in the shade of a distant tree to avoid getting blood on his clothes. It's quite hard to get out of your clothes, you know. Especially when it clots and forms black pudding on your shirt. My sarcastic comment comes forth from my 'silent' voicebox.

"Yeah, it was. What you gonna do about it, eh?"

I didn't say that. Who said that? Come on, own up. There's a ventriloquist in the house. I've been framed. My head turns to my mate in the shade whose face has turned an odd shade of pale. I wonder why that is. Maybe he's cold. He should come out into the sun; this scorching hot sun. My sweat reservoir cracks and spills everywhere. So does the bully's temper.

Oh, oh! Don't like the look of that fist. Ow! That hurt. So did that. And that. My shoes become unstuck from the floor and I fall backwards, or forwards, or to one side, diagonally maybe. The ground finally answers my call and swallows me with a big gulp. I'm in the darkness away from that sun at last.

Isn't it peaceful here? The semi-darkness is comforting. I'm alone. I swim, fly, dip and dive. It's quite fun here, isn't it? I want to stay here forever. My head feels cold. A light. The light expands and I can feel its pull. I swim the other way with everything I learnt for my bronze certificate. My head's cold. The light pulls. I spin round and round, my head whizzes above and below my ankles, then above again. Then I'm out.

The first thing I notice is the headache. The ice bag on my head doesn't help and, if anything, it seems to worsen it. I think I'm sitting in the hall leading to reception. Of all the six years I've been here I've never known the floor to spin like this. My "mate" says something to me. I can't understand a word of it. The world takes a 360 degree turn in no particular direction and my head pounds away like an overworked piston. My stomach aches and I can't tell the bruises from the indigestion. My head whirls around in search of my shirt. It creaks upward to one side. I'm unsure which way I'm facing. The ice bag slips slowly downward so I know I'm facing downward. Now I've got to find my shirt. The earth rotates faster than usual. If this continues the day will get immeasurably shorter and I'll probably collapse on the floor.

My eyes drift past the loosened red tie with diagonal white stripes to the white shirt below with bizarre polka dot red splashes. I know that's not the shirt I left the house with this morning. I could have sworn it was plain white. Oh no! What's dad going to say if I've lost my white shirt and come home with this one on? Still, it's not a bad colour. The world slows down its sickeingly fast pace but doesn't stop entirely. My neck creaks upward and my eyes focus on my 'friend' next to me. Then he says the legendary meaningless sentence.

"Are you airight?"

My temper boils. The world heats up and ice cubes start melting in the bag on my head. The world begins to stabilise as my eyes focus furiously in his general direction.

"Well of course rm not airight. I've just had my internal organs beaten out of me for throwing a chestnut over my shoulder, I've got more bruises than hair and Fm bleeding like a haemophiliac on Warfarin, after a fight with Jack the Ripper!"

"Oh", I hear him mutter, "Sorry I asked".

After three minutes painful silence (more for me than him obviously), we start talking again. The headache recedes into the distance for a while as fresh conversation settles in. I can't fully recall the entire conversation but I can imagine it had something to do with pain, fights and chestnuts.

Then the bell rings. The end of lunch and the beginning of solitude. The bell summons the headache back and my friend leaves with a slight wave. I can't stand to suffer in silence.

An uneventful half-hour passes. The world is stabilised and the ice bag is now a bag of warm water. My eyes can focus again. I hear footsteps coming down the stairs. It's probably just another teacher off to have a coffee in the staff room and give me a pitying glance in passing. I arch my back and look down, then give an audible sniff.

"Andrew" says a familiar female voice, I'd like to talk to you"

I look up and sniff again. The blood has cleared up and clotted all over my shirt to black pudding as anticipated. "Sure." My teacher sits on the seat vacated by my friend. "So, what happened?"

"Me and my mate were sitting on the grass, right, and we were minding our own business and then that bully fell over a chestnut and accused me of throwing it in his path. You can ask anyone you want. Then he beat me up."

"Thanks Andrew, I'd better talk to him and get his side of the story. " Then she left, just like that! Then I heard her angry voice upstairs. She'd obviously taken him out of the class. She had her say, then he attempted to squeak something. My ears tried hard to focus on the sound.

"... threw it in my face. He aimed it he did. You can ask anyone. Then, I didn't want him to endure the pain, as I'm one who doesn't bear grudges, so I kicked it the other way but it went backwards and hit him on the head. I didn't mean..."

Liar, what a liar! I hope she's not swallowing any of this. "... then he fell back into the goal and got jumped on by the goalie. So then everyone thought it was a bundle and jumped in." Lies! They're all lies! Lies I tell you". Then I realise that she's seen through them. Ha ha! I knew it. Honesty is the best policy. Ha! That should teach you. I won.

Then Miss arrives again and asks me if I'm fit for any more school. I say no politely and she explains that Dad will soon be here to pick me up. Whoopee!
A week passes. The bruises heal and scabs form. The bully avoids me like a rabid dog to water.

Then I'm called to the Headteacher's office. I walk in. The atmosphere feels like a slick movie. He's on a brown, fluffy swivel chair facing the other way. He turns round to face me and I notice the absence of the compulsory fat cigar that they have in the films. That doesn't surprise me, he's not a smoker.

"Take a seat."

I trudge with surprising confidence for one so scared. People have been known to go in here and never come out. I sit in the offered seat.

"You know what this is about, dont you?"

I'm innocent. I'm being accused of a crime I didn't commit. I nod knowingly.

"There's no need to be scared", he reassures me. Yeah, you could fool me! "We know of this bully's behaviour and this was the final straw. He's excluded as of tomorrow and his parents have been informed. I just thought you'd like to know." I close the door behind me and jump for joy. The news spreads like wildfire through the year like he had just announced it in assembly.

mischief 10FE
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