High School Hero - a Short Story
Wayne and Kelly
Kelly Ebbit sat behind Wayne Earl Durban in every class from seventh grade through high school. Wayne didn't mind at all. Kelly was cute enough, if a bit on the thin side, and tall, though not as tall as Wayne. She was a cheerleader but not stuck-up about it. If it weren't for one thing, Wayne would have really liked Kelly.
The problem was, Kelly didn't like him. Kelly didn't actively dislike Wayne. The truth was, she just never paid him much mind. Other than an occasional "Good Morning" or "Can I borrow a pencil?" they'd not said much to each other over the years.
Cheerleaders don't dig Track Stars
Wayne Earl ran cross country in the fall and track in the spring. He was tall, thin, all gristle and bone.
Cheerleaders didn't cheer at track meets. Kelly had nothing against track stars - Wayne Earl was number one in the county in the 800 meter - she was just more interested in football and basketball players.
Then came the day when Wayne Earl did something that caught Kelly's attention.
Billy Gets a Lesson in NO
Billy Edwards - football star - was upset about Kelly breaking up with him after he tried to get to third base the night of the Homecoming Dance and she'd told him she wasn't ready to go that far yet. When Billy hadn't taken no for an answer, Kelly kneed him where it would hurt most.
Maybe if no one had heard his scream of agony and come running, it might have ended there. But Mr. Shultz, the assistant principal, and his fiancé, Miss Carlyle, the life science teacher, had snuck off for a private moment in the chorus room next door. They’d heard Billy's screech and came running.
When Mr. Shultz flung open the door to the band room, Billy was curled up on the floor whimpering through clenched teeth with both hands grasping his crotch. Kelly was standing over him staring daggers at his back.
"What's going on here?" Mr. Shultz asked though he had a pretty good idea.
"I told him to stop, but he wouldn't stop," Kelly snarled. "So I made him stop."
Miss Carlyle looked at Billy's crumpled form and grimaced. "How did you stop him?"
"I kicked him where it counts," Kelly hissed. "He tried to make me touch him there, so I did." She glared at Billy writhing on the floor. "I told you I didn't want to go that far. Why'd you have to be such a jerk?"
Mr. Shultz turned to Miss Carlyle and said, "Maybe you should get Kelly out of here. I'll look after Billy."
Miss Carlyle nodded. To the girl, she said, "C'mon Kelly. Why don't we visit the lady's room?" She gently grasped Kelly's elbow and guided her towards the door.
Two gawking girls blocked the doorway, Emma Clark and Jordan Burton, friends of Kelly from the cheerleading squad. "What happened?" Emma asked.
Kelly snorted. "Billy didn't understand NO, so I taught him."
Jordan shook her head and reached her arms out to Kelly. "Billy's such a pig. Thinks every girl wants him. Are you all right Kel?"
"He tore my dress trying to grab my...grab my..." A sob escaped Kelly's throat as Jordan and Emma wrapped their arms around her and led her to the girl's bathroom. Miss Carlyle followed.
"What were you girls doing back here?" Miss Carlyle's directed her question to either Jordan or Emma.
Emma answered. "Uh, we wanted to use the bathroom. Uh, yeah, the line was too long at the other bathroom."
Emma's explanation rang false, but Miss Carlyle decided not to pursue it.
Back in the band room, Billy had recovered enough to get up on his hands and knees.
"I'll kill that bitch," Billy said through clenched teeth. "The little tease won't get away with this."
Mr. Shultz bit back his first impulse, which was to tell Billy he'd better watch his mouth. Instead, he said, "I'd be cautious what you say, Billy. You're in enough trouble as it is."
"Screw you, man," Billy said as he struggled to his feet. "She kicked me in the balls. She's gonna pay for that."
Mr. Shultz took a step toward Billy and looked hard into his eyes. "How many times do you have to be told no means no and stop means stop? You'll be lucky if Kelly doesn’t call the cops. One look at her torn dress and you're on your way downtown. And didn't you just turn 18?" He shook his head in disgust. "Either way, you’re playing days are over."
Billy's head snapped up at the mention of playing ball. "What?! No way! I'll lose my ride. You can't do that." Billy was the South Hanover football team's star wide receiver, and some major college teams were recruiting him.
Mr. Shultz shook his head slowly, his lips pressed in a tight line. "You should have thought of that when Kelly told you to stop. You let the wrong head do your thinking."
"Yeah, well, if I lose my ride she'll lose a lot more than that. And so will you."
Taking a step back, Mr. Shultz put his hands on his hips and said, "Don't threaten me, Billy."
Billy Gets a Different Free Ride
Billy's retort died on his lips when the school security officer stepped into the room. Corporal Rollings was a New Hanover County Deputy assigned to South Hanover High School. The look he gave Billy made the teen's blood run cold.
Rollings pointed at Billy. "You, come with me."
"Where are we going?" Billy asked. The defiant tone he'd used toward Mr. Shultz was gone.
The deputy rested his hand on the handgrip of his Glock. "I suggest you keep your mouth shut and come with me. Be glad I'm not cuffing you."
Defiance flared in Billy's eyes. "Am I under arrest? You can't make me do anything if I'm not under arrest."
"Fine," said Rollings. "I hoped you wouldn't make a scene. Turn around and put your hands on top of your head."
Billy's eyes popped open wide as the deputy reached for his cuffs. "You're serious!"
"As a heart attack," Rollings replied.
Billy looked at Mr. Shultz. "Can he do this? Can't you do something?"
Mr. Shultz shook his head. "Better do as he says, Billy."
Billy put his hands on his head and slowly turned around. A sob escaped his lips as the cold steel of the handcuffs closed around his wrists. The deputy informed Billy that he was under arrest for assault and attempted rape.
As Corporal Rollings led him out a side door to the waiting patrol car, Billy was thinking; I'll teach that bitch a lesson. She'll be sorry.
Billy spent the rest of that night in the New Hanover County Jail. His father refused to come to bail him out when Billy called. He told Billy's mother that a night in jail might teach the boy a lesson.
Billy laid awake all night staring at the ceiling plotting his revenge.
Kelly convinced her parents not to press charges. Billy was given a ten-day suspension from school and kicked off the football team. Colleges stopped calling and his dream of a scholarship to play ball evaporated.
His father took away his cell phone, his Xbox, his laptop, and the keys to his Mustang. The car sat in the front yard wearing a For Sale sign. Billy stood looking out the window of his parents' room the morning of his return to school, the means of his revenge clutched in his hand, thinking, Today she pays.
Wayne Finally Gets Kelly's Attention
Kelly had just taken her seat behind Wayne Earl when Billy strode into her homeroom and headed straight for her; his face twisted into a frightening scowl.
"Good morning, sweetheart! Didja miss me?" Billy said. He pulled the pistol he'd taken from his father's nightstand and pointed it at Kelly. "Cause I'm not gonna miss you."
Wayne Earl looked up and saw the gun at the same instant Kelly screamed. He didn't stop to think; he just stood up between the weapon and Kelly and grabbed for the barrel.
The report of 165 grains of gunpowder going off in the close confines of a classroom deafened Wayne Earl to the screams of his classmates.
High School Heartaches
How many breakups did you suffer through in high school?
© 2015 DW Davis