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Ants and Elephants
A Story about Overcoming Bullying
A 'Kids I Grew Up With Collection'
Copyright © 2013 by Bob Jordan
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are the products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locals, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Dealing with a bully can sometimes be serious business. This book in not intended to be an instructional guide, nor was it written as such. It is a fictional account written from the imagination of the author and intended as a work of enjoyment only. If you encounter a bully please seek professional advice.
Wil stared at his nine year old son as he climbed the mighty Buckeye tree in their back yard. With the agility of a ninja, Jack left the ground climbing the ten, two-by-four steps leading to the tree house.
Three weeks ago the father and son project began as a what-if-idea over a morning bowl of cornflakes. Now, after a mere two day’s work, the last nail was driven. Jack, anxious to inspect his new playhouse in the sky, reached the top rung and jumped inside.
Stretched out on a lounge chair in the tall summer grass below, Wil yelled up to his son.
“Well, what do you think?”
“She’s awesome Dad, how high up am I?”
“Oh I’d say about fifteen feet.”
“Cool! You know what I’m thinking?”
“I think we should give her a name.” Jack thought for a moment. “How about Bortas?”
“What’s a Bortas?”
“It’s a Klingon ship.” He answered in matter-of-fact fashion.
His Father looked lost.
“Hello…you know, Star Trek…Captain Picard.”
Wil rolled his eyes, “Oh...sure...great idea, why didn’t I think of that?” He couldn’t help but chuckle under his breath. “Bortas it is.”
“I can see the whole world from up here Dad. If those Romulan’s come anywhere near I’ll shoot them down with my laser beam.”
“Good idea son, or at least throw buckeye’s at them rascals.”
Tired from the manual labor of the day, Wil decided this would be as good a time as any to catch a quick nap. Pulling his baseball cap over his face he thought back to his pre-teen days and the set of circumstances that led to the construction of his first tree house.
“My Father died in Afghanistan.” Twelve year old Wil Robinson choked out the words as he stood in front of his sixth grade class during show-and-tell.
“This is the Purple Heart the military awarded us.” Wil reverently held the medal high enough for all of his classmates to observe.
Miss Overbeck watched from her desk. “I’m sure you’re very proud of your Father.”
“He was a hero. My Dad fell on a grenade and sacrificed his life so others could live.” The young boy fought back tears as he concluded his presentation. Chloey Ferguson, a petite dark haired brunette with freckles and braces, smiled with approval as Wil took his seat.
“You made me cry.” She spoke slightly above a whisper.
Wil placed the medal in his backpack.
“Yeah…well I think you invented the whole story!” The harsh words came from Mike, the school bully. His desk sat off to one side of Wil’s. He followed the cutting remark with a sneer. It wasn’t so much that he didn’t believe Wil’s story, he was more jealous than anything.
“I’ll bet you bought that medal at an Army surplus store.”
Mike’s accusations made him furious. He wanted to jump up and beat his face in, but he shook instead. Wil was the quintessential ninety eight pound weakling. A lack of courage was a character trait he wasn’t particularly proud of. On the other hand he felt like he should say something.
“You…you take that back or I’ll…”
“Or you’ll what?” Mike interrupted. “Stomp your feet?”
Sensing a confrontation brewing, Miss Overbeck spoke up in an attempt to diffuse the situation. “I don’t know what’s going on back there but I suggest it end now, unless you both want to make a special trip to the principal’s office.”
The boys were quick to sit down and spoke in near unison. “We’re sorry Mam.”
Mike smacked the back of Wil’s head then gave him a warning. “This isn’t over!”
Wil felt sick to his stomach. He didn’t like confrontation. On the other hand it appeared to him that Mike did. Wil had a hard time understanding what made Mike tick.