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TADPOLES



I walked into the mechanical drawing classroom at Landon Junior and Senior High School in Jacksonville, Florida for my last time. I sat at my high desk and had just finished a note I was going to hand to a girl I met several days before. As I was about to hand the note to her, this heavy bully-type kid grabbed the note from my hands, started unfolding it and said he was going to read it before the entire classroom.

I got down from my high stool and walked toward him. The entire classroom was totally silent, including the teacher. I stopped in front of him, looked him straight in the eye and said, "I am going to ask you one time and one time only to give me back that note."

He laughed and said, "I'm shaking all over."

I cold cocked that big bully right between the eyes and then landed a right punch directly in the middle of his large, fat, bully face knocking him down to the floor. Blood from his nose went everywhere, including the drawing tables and all over the students. I reached down, picked the note up off the floor, walked over to the girl and handed it to her.

"I am very sorry about this," I told her.

I immediately turned around and ran out the classroom door and down the stairs. When I reached the next landing, a teacher grabbed me by the arm, pulled me to a stop and said, "Slow down. What's the big hurry?"

"Nothing," I said.

Just then, the mechanical drawing teacher came running down the stairs and saw the teacher holding my arm. The teacher told him to hold on to me until the Principal came, and that he was going to call an ambulance as the mayor's son was laid out all bloody on the classroom floor. I was taken to the dean's office where I was given five swats with a large wooden paddle, before they even knew the circumstances of the matter. I was then directed to the Principal's office where he chewed my butt for 10 or 15 minutes.

I sat very quietly with him asking me repeatedly, "Do you realize whom you hit? That is the Mayor's son, Bill."

"I don't really care," I said defensively. "The fat creep is a big bully and he is no better than anybody else."

"You cannot go around hitting the kids of important people, he yelled.

I stood up and yelled back at him, "Then you tell me why that fat ass bully is any better than anyone else. I've been beaten on most of my life and that fat bastard is not going to beat on me or anyone else."

Before he could answer, I started to cry. I ran out of his office, down the large hallway and out of the school. I did not stop for what seemed to be miles and miles. I looked in my pocket and found that I only had 25 cents to my name. I knew that I could never return to the orphanage and that I had to get out of Jacksonville. Otherwise, I would be beaten to death by the orphanage or sent to prison by the courts for hitting the mayor's bully brat.

I kept walking for miles and miles with no idea what to do or where I could go. I had just turned 13 years old and had never really been very far away from the orphanage, even though I had run away many times. I always tried to stay in that same neighborhood because I knew my way around. When running away from the orphanage, I lived and slept in abandoned houses, and underneath the Spring Park Elementary School building.

I went out to the main highway leaving Jacksonville and stuck my thumb out hoping to catch a ride before the police found me. I walked and I walked and walked, but no one would stop or offer me a ride. Finally, I just gave up and sat down on the side the road. My legs were sore and my feet were killing me. It was getting colder and colder as the sun started to set behind the clouds. I sat there for about another hour and then a big, long, black car stopped in front of me.

"Where are you headed?" yelled this woman.

"I'm going to California, I yelled back.

She jumped out of the car and I ran to get in the front seat between her and the man who was driving.

"My name is Dave and this is Dee," he told me.

"My name is Roger and I am headed to California," I said to Dave.

"Well were not going that far, but we will give you a lift to Alabama," he said winking at Dee.

We talked and drove for several hours, and then Dave told me they were going to stop and get a bite to eat. I told them I was not hungry, but that I would sit with them in the restaurant. We entered the restaurant and sat at a booth where they ordered chicken and fish dinners. God! That smelled so good. My jaws actually hurt from smelling that food. It made the muscles in my mouth move around and my mouth watered. I had not eaten since that morning at the orphanage and then I only had one piece of toast because I was late.

Dave kept looking at me and asking me if I was hungry. I kept telling him that I was not. I did not have any money and I was not going to ask anybody for anything. Dave picked up his salad and shoved it toward me saying, "Eat this damn salad. I'm not going to eat it and it will just go to waste."

I ate the salad, two sandwiches, two desserts and a large drink they bought me. God! Was it good! After dinner, Dee and I walked out to the car and stood beside it, waiting on Dave to pay for the meal.

"How old are you?" she asked.

"How old are you? I asked back.

"I'm 29 and Dave is 30, and how old are you, young man?

I acted as if I did not hear her. I did not want them to know my age or they might call the cops and they would take me to prison or worse, take me back to the orphanage. A few minutes later, Dave came walking out of the restaurant. He told Dee that it was rather late and maybe they should get a motel room there by the restaurant. Then they would continue to Alabama in the morning. They asked me what I was going to do. I told them I would just keep hitchhiking to California.

"You can stay in the room with us, if you would like," Dave said.

It was really getting cold and I was starting to shiver, so I told him I would stay and ride with them to Alabama in the morning. When we got to the room, Dee sat on the end of one of the two beds and Dave sat down in the chair next to me.

"What do you think of my wife," Dave asked.

"She is very pretty," I said.

"That is not what I mean."

I did not know exactly what he meant, but I started to get a little scared and uneasy because the tone of his voice changed.

"I mean how you do like her breasts? he asked.

I did not know what to say. I had looked at her breasts when Dave went to the bathroom at the restaurant and they looked big in that tight, red sweater. But I did not say anything and I did not look at them very long, 'cause that just wouldn't be right.

Dave got up from his chair, walked over to his wife, raised her sweater and bra over her breasts, and up around her neck. I almost stop breathing I was so scared and could not believe that he had shown another man his wife's breasts. Dave walked over to me and grabbed me by the arm. He pulled me out of the chair toward Dee, who was still sitting on the end of the bed. As I was being dragged toward her, I looked up and she had a great big smile on her face. All I could see was her big white teeth and those great big red lips coming at me. Lips and teeth that kept getting bigger and bigger, the closer I got to her. When we got to the end of the bed, Dave took one of my hands and placed it on one of Dees large breasts. I just stood there like a statute not moving a muscle.

"How does that feel? he asked.

"It feels like that warm jar of tadpoles I had at the orphanage," I said.

"Who wants a drink?" hollered Dave.

"I DO! My mouth is really, really dry," I told him.

I just stood there with my hand on Dees big breast, afraid to move or let go of it.

"I'll get us some Coca Colas," Dave said as he dropped his change all over the floor.

"Can I go get the cokes?" I yelled seeing a chance to remove my hand from the large breast.

"Sure," said Dave as he handed me all the change.

I walked out of that motel room door and ran as fast and as far as I could. I hid in the bushes all night long so that Dave and Dee would not find me if they drove by going to Alabama.

I am not quite sure what that experience might have done to me later on in life. I did become rather sexually shy after this incident and I had always been very distrusting of adults. At that time in my life, I appeared to be caught, maybe trapped, somewhere between danger and raging hormones. Always having thought that sexual acts were rather a private thing, between a man and a woman, I might have thought that my life was just a little more important than the sex act itself.



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