The transparent heat waves transformed all the buildings that surrounded the melting asphalt into large quivering blobs. The vegemite sandwiches were a cover, a means of passing the time, for he was not hungry. The fear inside his stomach had left no room for food.
Looking out into the quadrangle made him even more uneasy, for although he saw a sea of faces around him, he was only reminded only of his own significance. They would not help him; they would go on with their ritualistic games and hypnotic chants. He was alone. Bitter resentment was all that he could feel for the mother whom earlier abandoned him with such ease.
His sticky sweat made him feel unnaturally cold. There he was, that boy, the bully, over with all the other grade six giants. He thought back to recess and could not exactly remember what he had done to offend this boy. Threats were made in front of the girls and he knew that the boy would have to fight him. It was all so unfair.
The boys around him giggled with anticipation as they pointed to the bully walking towards him over the black sea of sticky tar. His face was one of anger and rage.
Suddenly he realised the full extent of his vulnerability, he was cornered. The fear rose from his stomach to his throat as he desperately searched for that elusive teacher on yard duty. He felt like crying, but showing any kind of emotion like that meant he would be a sissy. Besides, he did not want to reveal any of his inner self to these outer people.
He lay helplessly on the ground, not because of any physical injury but because of the slow torturing humiliation that had followed. His sandwiches, which were strewn across the floor, the only evidence of the scuffle before. The bell had cleared spectators. He cried, not because of any pain but the injustice of it all. Didn’t every child hate injustice? He packed his bag and made his way toward home. As he did so, he wondered if the bully would always win.
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