From a work in progress

Andre was fourteen when he and his mother moved them Brooklyn New York. He did not talk much nor, did not try to make any friends. He had a hard time adjusting to the big streets, the tall buildings, and the constant flow of traffic. Back on the island, he had started to act out, burning down Mr. Jones’ corn field, getting into fights at school, being bullied by older boys turned him into real terror.  One morning, an older boy was bullying him, all the other boys stood around and laughed as the instigator unloaded a barrage of insults at Andre. Andre turned to face the bully and the boy blasted him with an opened hand. Andre blacked out for a second and when he came to he was surprised he was still standing. He turned and walked to the classroom, hoping he was not stumbling. When he came back out of the classroom they were still talking and laughing, Andre did not stop, he walked right up to the older boy, the bully turned around in time to see Andre’s arm coming down, he raised his hand and screamed, He staggered back, his hand raised to eye level, the pointed end of a compass from a geometry set was through the palm and projecting out of the other side. That incident was the last stray for Andre’s mother. His mother thought that moving to America would change him, but he just disappeared into himself. The school he went to was huge, so many children and none of them friendly. He was picked on because of the way he talked, or the clothes he wore. He never told his mother, he knew that she thought that this was the best thing for him and he did not want to disappoint her.

            It was between classes and he was walking in the hallway when one of the older boys approached him,

            Ohhh, look at the nasty Jamaican,” the boy said and all the other kids laughed. Before Andre could get away, a crowd formed and he was caught in the middle of jeering teenagers.

            “I is not Jamaican,” Andre stuttered, “I is Grenadian,”

            “What is the difference nigger; you are all the same rat eating jungle animals.” Andre stood surprised that a black boy just called him nigger.

            “Me name is Bob Marley and me eat rats for dinner,” The boy rapped in a forced Jamaican accent. And the crowd of children laughed. Andre tried to push his way past the boy, but the boy grabbed him by the throat and pushed him to the ground,

            “Where do you think you are going dawg, I am just trying to be friends,” the bully said and offered his hand. Andre reluctantly took it and the boy started to pull him up but let go and Andre fell onto his butt.,

            “Man, are you stupid,” the kids roared with laughter. Andre lay on the ground looking up, his face red with a mixture of anger and embarrassment.  The boy looked at him,

            “Well, are you not going to fight back B?” he said, Andre just looked at him, not saying anything.

            ‘Forget you then, I don’t have time to deal with idiots like you,” the boy said then stepped over Andre, stomping him on his chest as he did. The crowd laughed. After the crowd had dissipated, one of the girls came over to Andre as he was picking up his books,

“My brother is a fool, don’t let him get to you,” she said then helped Andre pick up his books,

“Whats your name,” she asked, Andre did not respond, he just stood looking down at the ground. The girl smiled

“You have a nice day,” she said and walked away. Andre stood in the middle of the hallway as students brushed by him some snickering.

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