All-Boys - 004
A dark figure stood in the doorway. Anthony scooched up on his elbows. His feet were chilled from having left the window open. The figure came into the room and walked over to Anthony’s bed.
Anthony held his hand up over his head, ready to be hit or smothered. “What? What?” he yelped. A week before three boys had come into his room after lights-out and dragged Anthony into the bathroom, pulled his pants down, stuck pictures from Playgirl in his face, and tried to masturbate him with a tennis ball can full of peanut butter. The Homo Test was something regularly administered to the smaller or more fey boys. Anthony didn’t fail (or pass depending on how you looked at it) because the boys stopped when they realized he had no pubic hair. He was now called the Bald Eagle by the half of the school not calling him Pansy Ass.
“Downstairs in one minute,” the dark figure said. Anthony recognized the voice as Father Ted, a priest that didn’t look much older than some of the seniors. He was rumored to share butts with kids. Anthony’s hands dropped.
“Get dressed and be in the common room in one minute.”
“Yeah, OK.” His head swam from lack of sleep, his mind scampered to remember what he might have done. He was sure he hadn’t drunk or smoked anything. Oddly, the girl didn’t occur to him.
Downstairs, Jerome Dean, Marty Silas, and Patrick Pennyfeather were standing against the wall looking straight ahead. On seeing Jerome, realized what this was concerning. He joined the other boys and Father Ted led them all out of the dorm.
Outside dawn was just breaking and a cool thin blanket of fog hovered a few feet above the Holy Lawn. Everything was still except a large dark barge that moved across the bay below the school like an iceberg.
In the administration hall, Father Philip, two police, and a tired-looking man watched the boys and Father Ted head up the walkway. The two police were almost exactly the same height. They looked the same age. They were heavy and with large faces and cheeks like hams. They could have been brothers. Their winter coats looked new and too big for them. The only discernible difference between them was that one held his Billy Club and was slowly keeping time with it by smacking it into the palm of his hand.
“Who wants to tell us what happened?” One of them asked when the boys got there.
“Which one of you little assholes is Jerome?” the man said.
Cop 1 turned to his partner. Cop 2 turned to the man, “Let’s take a walk, sir.”
“Which one is he?” the man insisted.
“I’m going to fucking rip the rich little bastard’s throat out. I’ll kill them all.” It seemed to Anthony that the man was speaking directly to him. The man looked at the second cop, “That was my daughter, he did this to. My daughter.”
“Sir.” The cop put his hand on the man’s shoulder and held his arm out leading him away.
When they were gone, Cop 1 asked who was Jerome.
Anthony had been lying awake having imaginary conversations with girls from the dance---Do you like Depeche Mode? I’m thinking of getting a Eurorail pass this summer. No, my eyes really are this blue, why?---when he heard footsteps and low weeping in the hall. He lifted himself from the bed. Through the peephole he saw a girl leaning her forehead against Jerome’s door. She didn’t seem to have a shirt on. Her arms were banded over her chest. The closest Anthony had been to real breasts was at the Dead Show. He opened the door a crack. She wasn’t wearing shoes.
“Are you ok?” he whispered. If there was one way of being with a girl in a dorm room after hours, it would be by helping this weeping chick. That she was shirtless, almost seemed like God’s way of telling him that this was ok.
He’d been drunk around girls. He’d been on tripping his head off around girls. He’d watched kids make out until their faces with raw. He knew Dave Metcaf had had sex with the Lombardi sisters using the same piece of cellophane wrap for a condom. Sex was this thing that the rest of the world would do, but he wouldn’t. Even when he jerked-off, he didn’t conjure up images of actual fucking. He could imagine a breasts or an ass floating around like a ghost part, and then he’d quickly blip out a tiny orgasm, but he couldn’t actually see himself having sex, talking to a girl, putting a part of himself in her.
“Hey, you ok?” he asked again.
The girl twisted her neck, her forehead still against the wall, and looked down at Anthony. “Yeah, I’m fine,” she said. “Just fucking fine. Do you have a screwdriver?”
“You’re not supposed to be here,” he said. “They’ll freak if they catch you.”
“Do you have a screwdriver or not?”
Anthony had the Leatherman he’d gotten as a stocking stuffer years ago.
In his room, she wasn’t pretty. Her face was tired and red from crying. Her hair was in between perms, kind of flat on the top and tightly curled at the ends. She was definitely a townie. He gave her a sweatshirt he’d gotten the first week from the bookstore. She lifted it over her head and her breasts pulled up and disappeared under the starchy blue sweatshirt. She poked her head through the neck. “I’m the wife and you’re the man,” she whispered.
“We’re married, and we’ve just finished dinner.”
“If they find you in here, I’ll get expelled,” he said.
“Do you think you could beat Jerome Dean up?”
“Are you his girlfriend?”
“He’s got neck acne. He’s an idiot. Ughh. Do you know anyone who could beat him up? Do you know karate?”
“He could kill me with one hand. He could beat me up with his nose.”
“Do you have any vodka?”
“Seriously, you need to get out of here. I’ve got change if you want to go call someone.”
“Vodka? I’m thirsty as hell.”
Jerome had snuck her into the dorm after the dance. After fooling around, she got up to pee. When she came back, the door was locked and he was either passed out or being a complete dick, and wouldn’t open it.
She sat down on his bed, tucking her shoeless feet underneath her and putting her hands in the sweatshirt pouch. She closed her eyes.
“I’m so fucking sick of this shit,” she said, and sighed.
“Seriously, please. I’ll get expelled.”
She opened her eyes.
“Come sit with me.”
“Why?” “Just come over here.”
He walked halfway over and then stopped and turned around.
“Just come here. Why are you such a freak?”
“You’ll get me expelled and Jerome will beat me up. Please, please leave.”
“What’s you’re name?”
“Are you richer than Jerome?”
“His dad own hotels.”
“Do you like it here?”
She held out her hand. “Come over here.”
“No, seriously. Get out.”
“Just come here. You’re a lot cuter than you look at first.” She was twittling the fingers of her out-stretched hand.