Chapter 6

School Year 1950-1951

by Michael Peterson

Be advised that in the following one will find graphic sexual depiction between minors and minors and adults. The story is fiction but based on real characters, events, places and situations. There is no relationship between the names used and that of any real person.

Other than a pair of changes, it was the same old gang in my fifth grade class, and the same old social arrangement. One of the two new students fit immediately into the athlete group with Tommy Atkins and Martin O'Malley. The other was a smart aleck that none of us liked very much from the first day. Over time, he also became my greatest competitor academically.

Cub Scouts was brought up by my mother in October but I said I didn't want them interfering with my weekends at her parents' home. It wasn't mentioned again.

Restriction to the property continued with no end in sight. Saturdays, there were chores but I was generally able to head for my grandparents' house by lunchtime. Freddy always beat me there.

My grandfather, then sixty-two years old, was a semi-retired insurance company executive. He'd been with the same company since its foundation and made a lot more money than his moderately ornate three story row home would indicate. Most of the people in his neighborhood were older, often retired, and owned their homes. My grandparent's had nearly hundred year old wood paneling in much of the first and second floor, the front and back stairways and a more recent variety in the basement. The cellar was set up as a homey studio, shop and den for my grandfather where he worked and painted. Often, when I arrived, I found him down there working with Freddy on a drawing or painting. Freddy had a better hand for line drawings than I and was continually trying to do recognizable representations of everyone he knew.

On Sundays, the four of us went to the zoo a few times or took drives out into the country. Sometimes my grandfather played ball with us on a playground two blocks away or helped us with small carpentry projects in his basement shop.

On the playground, there were occasional nasty looks from some teenagers and the word 'nigger' spoken loud enough for us to hear but my grandfather's presence seemed sufficient to prevent it from going beyond that. We never went there without him.

My grandparents were very Catholic, often attending Mass several times a week. We went with them on Sundays to the six AM Mass for which my grandfather, along with another older man, was an altar boy though neither wore the robes that fascinated me. Freddy's mother was more concerned that Freddy attend church than which denomination.

My tenth birthday came the day before a three-day weekend. Thursday afternoon, I was allowed to go straight from school to my grandparents' house. My mother called up at four to be sure I hadn't gone elsewhere first. We had a party Saturday that included a few neighborhood kids we had met on the playground. One mother seemed a bit surprised by Freddy's presence but tied the blindfold on him when we played Pin the Tail on the Donkey in the basement.

My insistence on spending the entire Christmas holidays with my grandparents upset my mother who wanted a family Christmas there at the house. A compromise was reached. My grandparents brought me to the house early Christmas morning. We all went to Mass and ate breakfast together, opened gifts and stayed for Christmas dinner at two. My father hardly spoke, read the newspaper as we opened gifts and left dinner before the pumpkin pie.

From there, we drove a long way around route to park by the path that led to Freddy's settlement where we exchanged gifts and had a second meal. I slept at Freddy's house Wednesday and Thursday nights returning Friday afternoon with Freddy to my grandparents.

Other than required answers to directives, I said nothing to my father through the end of the year. His only words to me were orders. Mother tried to discuss simple things like what I did with my grandparents or how things were going in school but something in me always kept those discourses brief. Afterward, I'd always be angry with myself, and I'd vow to look for an opportunity to speak like a son to his mother, but it never happened.

The doubts I had about my masculinity slipped into a rarely visited corner of my brain. Saturday nights in bed with Freddy kept my libido reasonably sated. When I jerked off in the tub at home it was to thoughts of Freddy's cock slipping in and out of me. Louis faded from my mind almost as rapidly as he'd disappeared from my life.

That life wasn't entirely what I would have preferred but was reasonably satisfying.

One mid January afternoon after school, sitting on the floor of my bedroom, I pulled out a square pack of bubblegum. Usually, I spent my daily five cents on a candy bar but that day I'd had a yen for gum and bought one along with four penny Tootsie Rolls. While I enjoyed the rush of flavor a fresh stick always provided, I read the baseball card that had come with it. The kids at school tossed them against a wall. The owner of the card that landed closest won the farthest card. If his card ended up leaning against the wall, called a 'leaner', he won all the tossed cards.

I turned and tossed the card at my door. It slid under and went into the hallway. 'Hmmph,' I thought, 'that would have stopped right at the door if the space below hadn't been there.' I retrieved the card and tried it again a bit softer. It slid across the floor, stopping halfway under the door.

Excited by the ease of something I'd always thought difficult, something only athletes could do well thereby ruling me out, I rushed outside looking for a place similar to our school playground wall. There was plenty of asphalt but there were hedges between it and the house except at the four concrete bottom porch steps. That would have to do. I tossed a few times at the front porch stair, stopping close each time, until I realized I was in my shirt sleeves and it was freezing. I hurried back inside and put on my coat. An hour of practice left the edges of my card flared but gave me confidence I could learn this game.

The next day, I bought five bubble gums and watched the others play, checking out their techniques. At home, chewing hard, I practiced again. Friday, and with a handful of baseball cards, I asked to play during recess. No one objected to my joining in, probably thinking they had a sucker.

By the time the bell rang, I was up twelve cards and had hit two leaners.

'Thinking you're pretty good, Lloyd,' commented Tommy Atkins on the way back to class, 'let's see how you do lunch time.'

His confidence was well placed. I lost ten cards but still finished the day seven up. Best of all was the fact that kids like Tommy Atkins were playing with me.

Freddy got right into tossing Saturday. After a while in my grandfather's basement, we went outside to the alley where there was concrete pavement running up to a stone wall, just like at school. Freddy was beating me before dark.

Monday, I held onto my five cents until lunch. I really missed candy bars but wasn't sure how I'd do at recess. I was taken more seriously but still gained three cards including one I was told had a medium value, whatever that meant. I bought a candy bar at lunchtime but should have saved it. Pat O'Riley, another of the athletic set, took us all to the cleaners. I went back to class with a total of three cards and without the medium value I'd won earlier.

By the end of the week, up nearly thirty cards plus ten more I bought, there were signs I was becoming better thought of by the more popular kids in the class, except possibly Martin O'Malley whom I cleaned out when I hit two leaners in a row when he was down to just two cards. Pat O'Riley actually lay his elbow on my shoulder during one game. I was probably just convenient but no one at school had ever done it before. It made me feel good all over.

Tommy Atkins kidded me about my prowess. Nicky Conners, the slim top swimmer in our class, told me I should have been tossing all year. No one chased me away or tried to avoid me hearing when they discussed supposed sexual adventures with a couple of the ten and eleven year olds in the girls's half of our school across the park. Bradley Burnham, our blond haired, blue eyed class fashion plate, claimed to have gotten his hand into the pants of Virginia Bailey. Another boy said he heard Victor Cibelli had gone a lot further. Everyone acted as though they thought it possible. Victor was playing basketball with some sixth graders but Bradley said he'd check and, if it were true, he guaranteed us he'd do the same.

It was January and very cold. I wondered where all this hanky panky was taking place, if it did.

Still, when I tried to join one of their conversations, which was, as usual, mostly about baseball and pro baseball players, my complete lack of knowledge earned me remarks about my stupidity. Mostly, I just watched and listened. I barely knew the rules of the game and they were talking about infield fly rules and balking.

That weekend, I asked my grandfather to explain the game to me. He went one further and bought me a rule book which we went over that night and Sunday at the zoo while we ate. Freddy knew less than me but was curious.

I was determined to learn the game well enough to join in the most sophisticated discussion. The rule book was hardly what I needed to know first. These kids watched games on television, went to the stadium weekends with their fathers, and studied statistics in the newspaper. It was a passion for them, a passion I found very difficult to pick up. Baseball to me just wasn't all that interesting.

In an effort to kindle something, I asked for permission to go to the downtown library and take out some books. The school library had lots of good stuff but Knute Rockne turned out to be the wrong sport. After days of rejection, mother agreed to take me. It was the first thing we had done together other than eat in over a year. She praised my interest in baseball and promised a glove if I wanted one. She eventually bought me a softball glove I didn't dare take to school.

I found a book on Babe Ruth and another on coaching the game. The Babe's childhood caught my interest but it was a struggle to read the rest. The coaching book was a mistake as it had nothing that would help me learn about the players. It did, however, clear up the meaning of a lot of words and rules that came up in discussions among my classmates. I read the sports pages for a few days but it wasn't baseball season and the pickings were sparse, and boring. Players trades with names unknown to me amounted to reading meaningless words.

Toward the end of February, I received some motivation. Victor Cibelli again appeared naked with a glorious long hardon in the corridor in front of the changing cubicles by the pool. He and Tommy Atkins flashed each other. It rekindled my desire to have that great long penis up my rear end.

For days, I plotted how I could start some kind of relationship with Victor. All he ever talked about was sports. He generally played ball of some kind in the morning before classes, during recess and lunchtime. He rarely seemed to have baseball cards and hardly participated in that activity at all. But he was frequently part of baseball discussion groups.

The sports pages became more interesting in March. There were stories about our city's team and opening day. The player names were familiar. I learned who our key players were and where on the field they played. I had to ask my grandfather what batting averages meant. They were a popular topic among my sporty classmates. It was drudgery, and basically never going to work with my negligible level of interest.

Freddy's birthday came the week before the Easter holidays. Since my parent's went off on a trip Friday afternoon, my grandfather let me spend Saturday night at Freddy's and go to church with him and his mother Sunday morning. It was an incredible experience that opened up a whole new world to me.

There was rarely music in my house. We sang patriotic and religious songs at school. The choirs at church sometimes were interesting but nothing prepared me for the musical assault of the African Methodist Evangelical Church. The choir started off with a soft selection with a lilt that everyone seemed to get into. I was actually a little embarrassed by Freddy's head wagging and slow side to side rocking. But then came the second hymn. The choir sang and danced. Everyone sang. Everyone virtually danced in place. I felt silly but couldn't hold still anymore than anyone else. It was infectious. Freddy put his arm over my shoulder so I'd move with him. I loved it. There was melody, rhythm and passion. When it stopped, it was like after Freddy's first orgasm. He settled down in his seat but I wanted to go on. Shortly, we did. The choir got right into it. We were seated but no one was just sitting. Everyone was moving, clapping hands, shouting, occasionally singing. Even the sermon seemed melodic. By the end of the over two hour service, I was exhausted but feeling light enough to nearly dance out of the church. Freddy thought I was hilarious. Many of the churchgoers smiled my way.

I'd never heard music so up close and personal as I did that day. The fervor overwhelmed my senses, left me wanting more. I convinced the bunch at Freddy's birthday party to sing some hymns and fumbled with the words in an attempt to sing along. I knew I had to get a record player or a radio and soon.

As usual, we had the entire week off but Freddy's holiday didn't start until midday Wednesday. My grandparent's had a huge floor model RCA radio. My grandfather helped me find black music. It wasn't religious, but popular. There was Muddy Waters, Fats Domino, Jimmy Reed and Dinah Washington who I immediately fell in love with. Until Freddy arrived Wednesday afternoon, I hardly left that radio. I also found Glenn Miller, Phil Harris, Spike Jones and Maybelle Carter. My grandfather did all he could to supply information on the artists and their music though he wasn't much into it himself.

With the exception of dinner, Freddy couldn't tear me away from the radio until bedtime. He did that by pushing my hand into his crotch where I felt his hardon.

It took begging on my knees but my grandparents let me spend Friday and Saturday night again at Freddy's so I could attend his church the next morning. Aunt Martha got a hymn book and had another woman who could read show me what hymn was coming up next. I sang along though some of the smiles around me should have been a clue how far off key I was.

Easter Sunday afternoon, my grandparents joined us in the Negro section of the city's largest park, an area we'd been to often enough that Freddy and I knew by name some of the other kids who played there.

     My grandfather sat, as usual, with a group of middle class older men who had their own businesses. One was one of his insurance customers. My grandmother sat with their wives, one of whom, she told us, owned a bakery with her husband and was planning to open a branch in another city. Her brand was well known in our city. She wondered how well her products would do if the general population were to find out that it was owned by Negroes.

Freddy told me one of the kids we'd gotten to know there in the park was always looking for a place to jerk off. He said the boy was concerned that if I were to see him, I'd tell his parents. Freddy thought that was hilarious. I was curious which boy but, in deference to Freddy, cooled myself and said nothing. I did watch to see who had secretive conversations but hoped I wouldn't because I knew that would lead to something. Control over my sexual impulses was very limited.

Monday afternoon, knowing my parents wouldn't be home until dinner time, I went to Freddy's. We spent some quality time in the sleeping bag along side the stream talking about music more than having sex.

That evening, my grandfather brought me a gift.

'Your son has discovered Glenn Miller,' he told my mother as I unpacked a Westinghouse table radio.

My grandfather and I went to my bedroom to plug it in and listen.

'It wouldn't be wise to play the Negro music very loud or at all when your father is home. In fact, keep it low all the time when either of your parents are home.'

The tuning dial was completely different from my grandfather's, straight across rather than a circle and only received local stations. We found three that played popular white music and a weak one that played what was then called hillbilly music.

In the morning, mother said, 'Your father doesn't want you listening to that radio until you've finished your homework.'

In school, the baseball card games continued to be my only positive contact with popular classmates. For the life of me, I couldn't get myself to learn enough about baseball to become involved in their sports discussions. I tried to get music into the conversations but other than a couple of kids who enjoyed Spike Jones, no one was particularly interested. When I mentioned Fats Domino and Muddy Waters, it was necessary to describe who they were.

'You listen to that nigger crap'' asked Tommy Atkins derisively.

'A little,' I answered like a whipped puppy.

He shook his head and the conversation moved off in another direction. I never brought it up again.

The rest of what they talked about had to do with things they'd done together at school and at each other's homes. It was just too depressing to listen to. I continued the tossing but avoided discussions. The only person I could talk to about personal experiences was Freddy and the Friday after Easter, it seemed I might be losing that.

My mother told me my grandparents couldn't have me that weekend.

'Why'' My stomach was in a knot.

'I don't know. Maybe they have to go somewhere.'

Her tone of voice rang out problem. Something had happened. The relative contentment I'd felt when I walked into the house was swept away by a storm of dread.

One of my parents was too near each of the telephones. And I worried about being overheard. The moment I was alone in the house, I would call. My stomach ached too much to eat dinner. I stayed in my room. If I slept at all, it was only for short spells. I knew the problem had nothing to do with the radio because it was still in my room. If my father knew I was seeing Freddy, there was sure to be a beating. Would I ever be allowed to see my grandparents again' How was I to see Freddy'

I watched the sky lighten in the morning. My parents were asleep. My grandparents would be too but they'd answer the phone beside their bed.

The back stairs always creaked but so did the front. I slid down the railing of the front stairs and rushed barefoot to the kitchen. I lifted the phone carefully, aware that sometime lifting it up caused one or other of the phones in the house to make a single 'ding'. My grandmother answered on the third ring.

'Granma, why can't I come today''

'Oh, dear, wait, you better speak with your grandfather.'

'I'm really very sorry, Malcolm. Someone must have seen all of us in the car together. But nothing's going to happen to you. I have your father's word.'

'When can I come over again''

He sighed. 'I don't know but it won't be soon. Your father's very angry at us.'

He assured me of his love and promised to do all he could to get us back together.

'But you're my grandfather.' I was crying. 'He's gotta let me see you.'

'Unfortunately, no, he doesn't.' He tried to explain parental rights to me but I wasn't listening. A terrible anger was building inside. When we hung up, I walked back and forth across the kitchen tile, faster and faster, hatred and fury taking control of me. The son-of-a-bitch had no right to take Freddy away from me! I looked for something to throw. I grabbed two of the pots hanging across from the stove and threw them into the pantry. Murder crept into my mind. I needed to be free of the son-of-a-bitch. I looked at the knives in their wood stand on the wall. I pulled out the largest and stared at it. I wanted to plunge it into him but knew if I did my freedom would be taken away from me by others, the same others who had given the son-of-a-bitch so much power over me. Frustration and rage took complete control of me. I ran through the downstairs to the back hall, up the stairs to my parents bedroom door, flung it open and screamed at my father, 'You son-of-a-bitch! You son-of-a-bitch! You shit son-of-a-bitch!'

By the third 'son-of-a-bitch, my father was up and headed around the back of the bed. Mother was sitting up, bleary eyed and confused.

'Malcolm. Stop that!'

I turned away from my oncoming father, then turned back to face him. Hatred overcame fear and became defiance. He stood in front of me, rage in his face.

I said, 'You're a shit son-of...'

His hand to my face cut me off and slammed me back against the door. My mother reached out to restrain him. He yanked his arm loose from hers and said, 'you stay out of this!'

He reached down, grabbed me by the arm and dragged me with him toward his dressing room. He searched through his pants hanging in the closet and yanked off a belt. I knew what was coming but didn't fear it. My hatred for him overcame my other emotions. I continued to call him a son-of-a-bitch, over and over. I bit into his arm but he smacked me away before I could do any damage. I kicked but it just hurt my bare feet. In my bedroom, he slammed the door behind us. I stood there, making no attempt to avoid him. He ripped off my pajama bottoms and hit me twice. I hardly felt it.

'Fuck you, son-of-a-bitch!' I screamed.

He began swinging the belt, hitting me everywhere about the middle of my body and thighs. The pain grew as a single entity. I didn't feel any of the individual blows. I screamed loud as I could but no longer with words, just a long screeching wail. I fell to the floor, unaware of anything but the pain, not sure where I was or what had happened, completely detached. I remember the sound of him hitting me two or three more times. I think he kicked me once but I'm not sure.

Strangely enough, I don't remember crying. At some point, knowing I needed to do it, I somehow got myself to the bathroom, ran cold water into the tub and climbed in. It was really cold but that too, like the pain, was somehow unreal.

My mother stepped into the bathroom. I didn't look at her.

'Are you all right, dear?'' she asked timidly.

I said nothing.

'Would you like me to take off your pajama top''

'Go away.' I almost said fuck you to her but resisted.

She stood there for a moment, then left, quietly closing the door.

I lay in the tub for a long time. I began to tremble from the cold so added hot water, letting the overflow drain draw off the excess. That made the pain worse. I got out and lay on the small rug by the tub. Moving was just too painful. I would just wait there on the floor until I felt better. But I knew I could handle the beatings and began working on a new plan to get to Freddy. My son-of-a-bitch father would not defeat me. I'd always found a way. I would do so again. Then the son-of-a-bitch would find out, beat me, and I'd find another way.

Feeling cold again, I pulled both towels off their hooks and tugged them slowly over me. I eventually slept for a while. It was roughly midday when I crawled, because it hurt less than walking, back to my bedroom, took off my pajama top and lay face down on the bed.

Mother reappeared with a sandwich and milk. She put it on my desk and left without a word. I was completely naked. To look at me she had to look at the damage wreaked by my father's belt. I don't think she wanted to see that.

I tried to read to get my mind off the pain but forgot words nearly as fast as I read them. The one thing that could occupy my mind was plotting to thwart my son-of-a-bitch father. I realized that it had been wrong to blow my stack. All it got me was a worse beating than I might otherwise have received. I had to do a better job of controlling my anger.

What could free me from the house; get me away long enough that I could see Freddy' The one place I could always go was school. But Freddy was studying at the same time. And my parents would find out very quickly if I skipped classes. They wouldn't trust me going to some other boy's house for a while. As each successive plan proved impractical, my bravado began to wane. Running away slipped into my mind but I knew full well that wasn't a real option.

Mother brought up my dinner and put it beside the dried out sandwich. I was on my knees leaning onto the bed. It was the least painful position I could find.

Without looking directly at me, she said, 'Please eat something, dear. You'll get sick if you don't.'

She turned away from me and was gone. I was very hungry and ate.

I wasn't called for church in the morning. Mother brought me an extra large breakfast. She'd cleared the plates from my desk the night before after I went to sleep. I think she also pulled my bed spread over me because I didn't remembering doing it.

'Why don't you put on something, dear' You've got to be cold. I'll help you if you want.'

I refused to acknowledge her presence but ate the breakfast the moment she left.

I tried walking. My legs were black and blue nearly to the ankles and hurt like the devil. I put my pillow on the floor under my knees and got in the same least uncomfortable position from the day before. I found that the more I walked, the less painful it was. I wondered if a warm bath would help and tried it. It was nice.

I wanted to go to school the next day and speak with the fourth grade nun who said I could talk to her in confidence. I wanted to show her what my son-of-a-bitch father had done and ask for her help to see Freddy. I had no particular plan and doubted there was anything she could do but was ready to try anything.

After an hour in the warm tub, I tried lying on my bed but ended up back on my knees. Mother brought me chicken casserole, a favorite, for my midday meal. I knew she was trying to appease me but refused to show any appreciation. This time I felt no guilt about it.

I got in the tub again in the afternoon and shortly before bedtime. I was determined to go to school no matter how much it hurt.

Mother was surprised when I came down for breakfast at seven. I was in agony. Walking down the front stairs with the clothing pressing and rubbing had me crying for the first time since the beating. There was no way I was going to able to sit at the hard bench in the breakfast nook. The car seat was as soft as my bed. My school desk was an impossibility. All I had to do was manage to get to school where I could show the nun what had been done. That was my goal.

'Dear, I don't think you should try going to school today. Why not wait for a few days.'

'I'm okay.' I sat on the bench. The pain was excruciating but I held my face calm as I could. 'See''

'I better ask your father what he thinks.' He normally didn't come downstairs until after eight. I knew he wouldn't allow it.

'You don't wanna take me then I'll walk.' I put my book bag over my shoulder and headed for the pantry stairs, unsure how I was going to get down them.

'Dear, you've got to eat something first and I must speak to you father before you leave.'

I kept moving. Mother stood in the kitchen watching me. I forced myself to walk quickly down the stairs. It actually helped. As I went out the back door, I glanced back. She was turning toward the dining room, certainly to go call my father. I forced myself down the back porch stairs and moved quickly onto the lawn. There was more than a hundred yards to the street below. Every step hurt terribly. I wanted to cry but decided instead to get angry. Screw the son-of-a-bitch! I'd make it. Every second, I expected to hear him shouting for me to come back. I was at the stairs down to the street when he finally did.

'Malcolm, stop right there.' I barely heard him so pretended I hadn't. If I could just get to the intersection another hundred and fifty yards more ahead, he wouldn't be able to touch me without creating a scandal. There would be plenty of kids and parents on the way to the three schools in our area. I just wasn't sure I could take much more of the pain. Suddenly, beside me, was a piece of luck. A car with two girls from the girls' side of my school stopped and offered me a lift. I forced myself to step into the back seat and off we went. Minutes later, I was let off in front of my school. I managed to get out of the car then took a few steps to the wall along the drive and draped myself over it. For a while no one noticed. Then, Glenn from my class looked up from the plaza below and asked, 'You okay, Malcolm''

'No. Help me get inside.'

Frankie Stillings, my ex-car pool partner, got to me before Glen.

'What's wrong, Malcolm''

Before I could answer, Glen and two others arrived.

'Just help me get inside,' I begged.

Frankie put his arm around my chest and lifted me up. Someone else put his shoulder under mine and got me to the playground.

I answered Frankie's repeated question with, 'My father, and he's coming.'

Frankie muttered, 'shit,' and hurried us along.

Two nuns met us halfway across the plaza. Frankie looked back at the drive and said, 'Some guy just got out of a car. Is that your father''

I looked over my shoulder. It was him.

One of the nuns asked, 'Is that your father''

The thought that they might hand me over to him terrified me. 'Please, no. Please, I gotta go inside.'

The nuns stopped. Frankie hurried us around them.

They carried me down the two steps to the entry door and inside, straight to the principal's office ahead. One of the nuns chased us inside. Frankie asked, 'He beat you again''

I nodded.

'Sister, Sister,' said Frankie, 'Malcolm's hurt and his father did it. Don't let him in here!'

'Is that true, Malcolm'' asked the nun.

I nodded again. The tears pouring down my face convinced her. She sent Glen for the principal and closed and locked the office door.

'Please,' I begged her, 'let me take my pants off.'

'Oh dear, Malcolm, what happened''

Frankie answered, 'He beat him. I told you. Let him take his pants off.'

'Come in the other room.'

She led us into a conference room with a table, chairs and a sofa.

Frankie undid my belt, opened the buttons down my fly and asked. 'You want me to take them off or you''

I couldn't. I'd had to put them on lying of the floor of my room. 'Go slow.'

He was careful, lowering them by pulling down from the knees. It was an incredible relief feeling the air on my legs.

'Dear God!' said the nun when she saw my discolored legs.

Frankie pulled my pants down to below my knees then, seeing how loose my shoes were tied, asked me to raise one foot at a time while he took then off.

The principal walked in and made the sign of the cross.

'I think we should call the police,' she said.

'Please no,' I begged.

The other nun suggested Father Lindenhal. The principal called him.

He was there in five minutes. I was on my knees leaning onto the sofa, still the least painful position. Frankie had refused to leave and sat beside me holding on to my arm. He thought the police were my best option too. Father Lindenhal said the same thing.

'No, please, no,' I begged. 'They'll put me in a home. Just make him stop.'

They called my mother but no one answered. She'd been on her way, arriving as they hung up. They kept her in the outer office. When asked if I wanted to see her, I said no. The Mother Superior of the institution came into the room with a flurry of robes leading a nurse who was followed shortly by a young doctor who requested a pair of sheets and convinced me to lie on one and under the other. He cut off my underpants, which helped.

They kept trying to get Frankie out but he kept refusing. I wasn't about to let go of his arm. He stayed.

About forty-five minutes after I'd entered the school building, a woman with a notebook showed up and asked everyone to leave the room. She was more pliable about Frankie, insisting he stay when the nuns tried again to remove him.

She identified herself as Mrs. Magruder, a psychologist with a program run by the nuns. That made her official, not the type I wanted to talk to.

'I just want to talk to Sister Mary Margaret. Just her,' I told her repeatedly while she tried to convince me she was my friend, that I could trust her, that she was there to help me. In the end, Sister Margaret was brought in.

I was feeling better, more relaxed though still in considerable pain, just not so much that I couldn't think or speak.

'You promised anything I told you was just for us.'

'I won't tell anyone anything you say not to but we have to tell them some things, Malcolm.'

 I told her everything. Halfway through, Father Lindenhal knocked on the door and asked if he could join us. I said okay since he already knew a lot.

Every once in a while, I felt Frankie grip my arm a little tighter. Freddy would have been better, but Frankie's presence made it all easier.

When I finished, Father Lindenhal said, 'Malcolm, what your father did is a crime. And now you're telling us he's done this before. We can't allow him to be anywhere near you.'

'No, just make him stop beating me, that's all. And make him let me be with Freddy.'

'Malcolm. I'm afraid that just isn't possible.'

There was a knock at the door. The principal wanted to speak with the priest. Then Sister Margaret was called out too.

Frankie asked, 'Why don't you want them to call the cops' You ought put him in jail for the rest of his life.'

'Then what happens to me and Freddy' They'll put me in a home and I'll never see him.' 

I wondered what Frankie thought about the idea of me being so attached to a Negro. Before I could ask him, we were brought our lunch boxes and a candy bar each.

As we ate, Frankie brought up that issue. 'How come you like that nigger kid so much''

It hurt that he asked it that way. 'He's not a nigger. He's a Negro and he's the best friend anybody could have. He saved my life.'

'I'm sorry, I didn't mean anything bad and I heard what he did but, I don't know, I just don't understand why you don't play with white kids, your own kind.'

'That's what my son-of-a-bitch father says, Frankie, and it's stupid. Freddy's just like us except he's got darker skin. Look at your eyes, they're not like mine but you're still my kind.' I was tired of no one understanding why I could care so much about another boy who happened to be a Negro.

Frankie didn't say anything. I asked, 'Do you know any Negroes''

'Our maid, and she talks a lot different from us and smells different too. And she can hardly read anything.'

'That's 'cause she didn't go to school. Freddy goes to school and he can read good. And I like the way they talk.'

Our discussion was interrupted by another older doctor who came in and checked me.

'Don't worry, son, it looks a lot worse than it is. There's no serious damage. Just take it easy and you'll be fine in a few days.' He ruffled my hair. For some reason, I didn't like him.

After the doctor left, Frankie said, 'He's crazy. You look bad to me. You probably ought to be in a hospital.

The door opened. Father Lindenhal, the principal, the Mother Superior and a man in a suit came to speak to me. The man introduced himself as Mr. Belstone, an attorney who wanted to help resolve the problem between me and my father. The all pulled up chairs near the sofa.

Frankie was ordered out by the principal. Father Lindenhal nodded that he should go. I was left alone with the adults. It was situations like this, a child in trouble surrounded by powerful adults, that I thought was adultery. It was a long time before I learned different.

I looked apprehensively from the lawyer to the priest. 'He works for your father. You only talk to him if you want to. You say the word and I'll have the police here is a few minutes and your father will be locked up where he can't ever touch you again.'

He was very angry.

So was the Mother Superior. She glared at Father Lindenhal and called him out of the room. Moments later, she came back without him.

'Malcolm,' said the lawyer with a smile, 'let's talk about what happened the other morning. Why do you think your father beat you''

''Cause I was with Freddy.'

'Freddy's the Negro boy''


'That was the only reason''


'Didn't you go to your father's bedroom when he was still in bed and call him a name''

'Yes, but he...'

'Just a minute, son. Let's get this straight. You went to your parents' bedroom at six in the morning where your mother and father were in bed asleep and called your father a name, it that correct''

'I just said yes.'

'What name was that''


'Did you just say it once or more than once''


'How many times more, two, five, ten''


'Why did you do that''

'Because he wouldn't let me go to my grandfather's house.'

'And why do you think he wouldn't let you go to your grandfather's house''

''Cause Freddy was there.'

'Why was Freddy at your grandfather's house.'

I knew where he was going and didn't know how to stop him. 'So he could play with me.'

'Did your mother and father know Freddy was there''


'Did your grandfather tell you not to tell your parents that Freddy was there''

'No,' I lied, 'I just didn't.'

'But he knew that you were forbidden to be with Freddy, didn't he''

'I don't know.'

'Was there anybody else your father told you not to play with''

'I hardly know anybody else.'

'What about that boy who just left here, and the rest of your classmates''

'Most of them don't want to play with me.'

'Why don't they want to play with you, Malcolm''

'How should I know''

The lawyer stood up and turned to the Mother Superior. 'I think that should make things clear enough, don't you''

The three of them left me alone for a while. The principal returned and sat facing me.

'Malcolm, why didn't you obey your father's order not to play with that Negro boy''

'Because he's my best friend. He's my only friend. He even saved my life once.'

'That was when the two of you went down by the railroad tracks.'

I nodded.

'But didn't you know that the people down there would be angry if they saw you together''

'We went up the tracks away from the houses. We didn't know those boys were there.'

'But you were near where they lived, Malcolm. Do you think they would have attacked you if your friend had been white''

I felt myself losing. The tears were impossible to hold back. 'I don't know.'

'Malcolm, all these things have happened because you wouldn't listen to the one thing your father has asked you not to do. He is only looking out for your best interests and safety.'

She gave me the speech about adults knowing better than children and how parents who loved their children as mine did sometimes had to insist on things children didn't understand. I wanted to kick her.

By lunchtime, I was in my mother's car, wrapped in sheets, on my way home. I considered jumping out in front of another car but was sure I'd fail at that too.

Except for trips to the bathroom including twice daily baths taken out of boredom, I spent the next five days in my room. With the radio playing softly by my ear, I re-read three books, worked on drawings with material my grandfather had given me, ignored my mother's entreaties to talk to her, and plotted how I could get to Freddy. I vowed that my father would have to kill me to keep me away from the boy that I loved and who loved me.

The only idea that seemed possible was to sneak out after my parents had gone to bed. I figured if we slept after school before dinner or went to bed right after dinner and woke up with an alarm clock, it might work. I felt sure Freddy's mother would allow it.

By Friday, I still ached but was fully mobile. I checked my Cub Scout flashlight. It was dull but worked. With a towel over the clock to deaden the sound, I set the alarm for eleven thirty and went to bed right after dinner. My parents were generally in bed by ten thirty. Going to sleep proved difficult. I wasn't very sleepy and my mind was racing over how I was going to get out of the house undiscovered.

The alarm woke me, but gradually. I almost knocked the clock over trying to push in the button through the doubled over towel. I listened. The only sound I heard was my own breathing. I waited for ten minutes then, hearing nothing, dressed myself, put on my coat, stuck the flashlight in my front pants pocket, picked up my shoes and walked slowly and carefully down the hall, staying close to the wall where the wood floor was less likely to creak. At the stairs, I climbed slowly on the railing and slid down to the bottom. There I walked across the built-in bench to avoid the creaky floor and climbed down into the front hall. The back porch door stuck but, when pulled up, opened fairly easily. I almost forgot to unlock it on the inside before closing the door. 

I put on my shoes and ran down the back yard to the street, up the hill and onto the path to the settlement. There I needed the flashlight. The dogs started barking and raced up the path, going silent when they realized it was me. I knocked on Freddy's door. Aunt Martha asked from inside, 'Who's theah''

'Me, Malcolm.'

The door came opened. 'Maacum! What happened' Whatta you doin' out in the middle of the night''

'I wanted to see Freddy and this was the only time.'

'You two ah crazy. Go ahead.'

I lay beside him. It took him several seconds to realize it was me. We hugged. I told Freddy and Aunt Martha all that had happened and the predicament I was in. 'Even the nuns are racists. Father Lindenhal was the only one on my side. He wanted to put my father in jail.'

'Maacum,' said Aunt Martha, 'mebbe you bettah jus' do what they says, honey. It gone be a whole lot easier fo' you. That man is dangerous. He might jus' kill you one day.'

'I don't care. I wanna see Freddy.' I told her my plan. She was sure I'd be caught and we'd all be in trouble.

'They never come to my room after dinner. And I don't leave until they've been in bed for an hour. They'll never know.'

'But they wasn't s'posed ta know 'bout yo' granddaddy neither but they did.'

'Please, Aunt Martha, just once a week.'

Freddy pleaded with her too, finally breaking down her resistance. Freddy and I went outside wrapped in his blanket and sat with the dogs all over us, talking about what had happened at my house and at school.

'I wish I could live with you,' I told Freddy.

'Me too but that ain' nevah gonna happen with that son-bitch fatha a yo's.'

'I know we can't do anything here but let me hug you for a while.'

It was awkward. I ended up with my head on Freddy's chest and my arms around his waist. Freddy gradually wrapped his arms around my head. He said something but I couldn't hear him clearly. I lifted my head.

'What'd you say''

'I said we can't talk like this 'cause we can't heah each'n othah.'

Pulling blankets with us, I dragged him down until we were flat on the ground with me half on top of him, my head on his shoulder, my lips by his chin. 'How's this''

'Don't go kissin' me an' all. We ain't doin' sex.'

'You want to''

'You crazy. Mah mama's inside.'

'And sound asleep by now.'

He giggled. 'Shit, Maacum, git yo' pants down.'

It was another struggle to push our pants down to our knees and not come out of the blanket. Freddy had to lube himself then poked right inside me.

'Maacum, I really missed this,' he said with a strained voice as he pumped into me.

'I missed it too, but you more.'

He snuggled his head into my back. I think he kissed my back but never knew for sure. When he climaxed the first time he didn't stop, just slowed down. He started masturbating me in time with his fucking, speeding up as he upped the rate of his thrusts. I felt tapping on the blanket. So did Freddy. We froze. There was someone rapping on the side of us.

'Mama' That you''

Then Freddy figured it out and took a look. It was two of the dogs who somehow knew what we were doing inside. They were all excited. One was humping into us. Freddy smacked them both. 'Git away, git away!' he whispered loudly.

We finished in peace. I was happy it happened because it then took both of us longer to reach our climaxes. Still connected at my rear, we discussed how we might get together more often. Summer vacation was still two months off.

'We can do this twice a week but it oughta be nights before my father has got to go to work, like Sundays and Wednesdays or Thursdays.' The decision was Sundays and Wednesdays.

'Maybe when school gets out we can figure out something. If I can get us in the barn, we can be together in there. He has to go to work every day and goes to some gym on Saturdays. I'll probably have to go to camp again but that's only a few weeks.'

We planned my next visit for the following Wednesday. We would both go to sleep after dinner and I'd wake him when I arrived.

The flashlight batteries died halfway up the hill on the way back. The half moon provided just enough illumination to get me back to the street.

The problem in the house was getting back upstairs. I chose the back stairs since they were farther from my parents' bedroom. No one awakened but the noise I made concerned me. I decided the next time I'd hide my clothes and shoes in the pantry and wear my pajamas up and down the stairs so I could say I was just going to the kitchen for something to eat. I felt very clever. Sleep came quickly.

Saturday afternoon, I stole two dollars out of my father's wallet while he was working in the barn. Sunday, I stole fifty cents from my mother's purse. I needed new batteries for the flashlight and thought it might be a good idea to start building a cash stash in case it was needed one day.

I went back to school Monday. Everyone wanted to know what had happened. Only Frankie knew any details but he was an eighth grader, not available to lowly fifth graders. I said I'd been beaten by my father but refused additional details. There were stories going around that I'd been covered in blood, that both my legs were broken, and that my father was in jail and I was to testify against him in court. There were constant requests to see my rear end and legs. Sister Margaret rescued me and took me inside. The principal wanted to speak with me.

For the good of the school, my family and myself, I was to 'refrain' from any discussions about the 'incident' the previous week.

My feelings about nuns had gone up and down over the years, taking a deep dive the previous week when they backed my father. The principal's remarks dropped them from distrust and dislike to downright disdain. A nearly overwhelming desire to tell her how I felt was only overcome when she strutted back into her office, leaving me alone in the hallway. When I looked back, there were half a dozen faces pressed against the glass panes in the entry doors. Frankie was among them, urging me with his hands to calm down.

I pushed both doors open and walked out on the playground.

'Leave me alone, will you,' was all I would say to my classmates. Frankie then Tommy Atkins, of all people, joined in to push them away, leaving me alone with Frankie. Before we could talk, the bell rang.

At recess, they was less of a crowd, but even kids from the sixth grade tried to pry information out of me. Frankie took me to a group of eighth graders he'd been standing with.

'Stay with us for a couple of days. Nobody'll bother you. I told them your father was drunk when he did it and it's all over now.'

'My father doesn't drink that much.'

'So what. A couple of the fathers in our class are real sloshes. They understand that. Just don't say anything about you and that Negro kid friend of yours.'

The discussion was, as usual about baseball and girls. The stories of sexual adventures by these boys with changing voices did seem more believable than those of my classmates. At lunch Tuesday, one nearly fourteen year old with pimples claimed to have fucked a 'nigger', the fifteen year old daughter of the next door neighbor's maid who came often to wash windows at several of the area homes.

'She was so hot. She wanted me to keep fucking her but I was worn out. You guys really gotta try a nigger.'

I squirmed. Frankie gave me a warning look.

Another of the eighth graders, Mitchell Saunders, a suave thirteen year old with big eyes and longish light brown hair who spoke slowly and precisely, asked me with a grin, 'You ever fucked a girl, Malcolm''

I smiled but was laughing to myself. Not only had I but she'd been a Negro. I knew the pimple faced boy may have been right about Negro lust.

Frankie interrupted. 'C'mon, guys. He's just ten.'

'I had my first fuck when I was seven,' countered Saunders. 'So, how about it, Malcolm, have you ever fucked a girl''

'Not yet,' I lied while beaming with pride inside that I had and most of these older boys hadn't.

Mitchell Saunders continued to stare at me with those big round eyes. I looked away at the others.

The interrogation continued. 'How about a boy' Ever fucked a boy''

Everyone laughed. I smirked and shook my head but worried he might know something though I couldn't imagine how.

Wednesday at recess, I tried being with my own classmates and joined a group tossing baseball cards. The game stopped when one asked me to tell them about the beating. I rejoined Frankie.

They were discussing Communism. One boy voiced the opinion that if the Americans weren't careful, the Commies, as he called them, would take over the world in a few years. They had agents everywhere and probably had troops in hiding too. Another felt the Red Menace was 'bullshit', that nobody was stupid enough to believe what they were saying. The American army would wipe them out in a week if a war came to pass.

Mitchell Saunders said they were far cleverer than his classmate thought. 'They are telling all the poor people of the world that with them in charge, everybody gets the same everything. No more rich, no more maids. And there are a lot more poor people than us.'

He turned to me, a mock serious look on his face, 'What do you think, Malcolm''

All I knew about Communists was from the nuns' statements about their being 'godless' and turning everyone into slaves and my father's statements at the dinner table about how they were against freedom and business people.

'I don't know.'

'I mean, do you think they are going to be attacking us soon''

I shrugged my shoulders.

'Let's ask our resident Russian though I think he's really a Chinese infiltrator,' said Saunders with an exaggerated fearful glance at Frankie. 'Well, Comrade Stillings, when do you attack''

Frankie held back a smile and said 'Next Monday, Yankee dogs.'

Everyone laughed again. I wasn't sure how much had been in jest and what might have been the truth. Was Frankie a Communist'

Mitchell Saunders was watching me. 'Frank, I think your little friend believes you, don't you, Malcolm''

I smirked again.

Saunders pressed on. 'C'mon, Malcolm, what do you know about Communists, other than Frankie is one''

Frankie said to me, 'No, I'm not. He's kidding. Leave him alone, Mitch.'

Saunders ignored his friend. 'Seriously, Malcolm, what do you know about Communists''

I stalled with a deep breath hoping someone else would say something. Half a dozen adolescent faces were looking at me, waiting to hear me make a fool of myself.

'Just that they hate God and, uh, want to take over the world.'

'What do you think they'd do to us if they took over the world, Malcolm''

'Make us work all the time, I think. I don't know.'

'Another boy piped in, 'Bet they wouldn't let Walsh fuck any more niggers.'

That brought the loudest laughter yet, and got me off the hook.

When I asked Frankie why Saunders called him a Russian and a communist, he said, 'Don't worry. Mitch is my best friend. He just likes to joke too much. He doesn't mean anything.'

After school, I hid a set of clothes, shoes and a coat behind boxes of food in the large pantry closet and did my homework. I went to bed at seven with the alarm clock under the covers with me and pulled them over my head. As usual, no one came to my room all evening. The alarm went off at eleven thirty. I thought I awakened with the first ring but wasn't sure. Again, I waited ten minutes to be sure no one heard anything and got up to investigate. To avoid risking noise in the front hall in front of my parents' bedroom, I climbed over the gate to the rear stairs rather than opening it. I was dressed and at Freddy's house in less than fifteen minutes. He was waiting with his blanket and our sleeping bag.

We went to a place he'd prepared about sixty yards from the houses, climbed in, stripped naked and made love for an hour. We were both worried we'd fall asleep so left the top open to let the cool air in.

Freddy said, 'If'n you can git me in yo barn jes' once, I bet I can fix that little doh by the pig sty so's we can open it from outside.'

I promised to work on a plan to do just that.

Despite the occasional uncomfortable positions Saunders kept putting me in, it was easier to deal with the conversations of thirteen year olds than the questions about my beating from fifth graders. I spent the rest of the week with Frankie and his classmates.

Saturday, I had to rake leaves all day. I tried to think of how to get my father to let me have the barn keys long enough to get them to Freddy to make a duplicate at the hardware store. I wondered if perhaps my father already had a duplicate in his dresser with the rest of the keys he kept there. The problem was, I'd only had the key in my hand once and had no recollection what it looked like. The only way was to take them all to the barn and try each until one worked. It was too late in the day when I thought that up. My father was due home at any time. Monday was my next chance.

Sunday night, I was back with Freddy in the sleeping bag down the path from his house. I told him about my idea to get a duplicate key to the barn.

'You one smart white boy, Maacum. Then we can go in any time he ain't theah.'

Monday, as I walked out for recess, Frankie and Mitchell Saunders were having an animated discussion near the drive end of the school building. Mitchell waved at me to come over. Frankie was grinning and shaking his head.

Saunders invited me to join them on a walk to the parklike grounds behind the school. Once we were out of sight of the others, Mitchell said, 'Frankie doesn't think you know anything about sex but I told him you jerk off as much as we do. I know I did when I was your age. Right''

My spirits and dick arose. I assumed they were going to jerk off and I was being invited to join them. I looked at Frankie who shrugged his shoulders.

'Malcolm, am I right' You do, don't you''


'You see, Frank, I told you. And you did too and you know it.'

'I never said I didn't,' retorted Frankie.

'I'll show you where we do it,' said Mitchell and led us into a thicket of tall bushes in the base of the hill at the far end of the back side of the school building. My cock was trying to pop out of my pants. There was an open space of bare dirt where the ground rose steeply. Mitchell produced three sheets of folded up lined paper from his back pocket and handed one to each of us. I watched the two of them, anxious to see what they had between their legs. Mitchell opened his pants and pushed them down to his knees exposing a soft pubescent cock not much smaller than Douglas but with less pubic hair. His skin was the light colored type that tanned immediately in summer. What little I could see of his abdomen was soft and smooth.

'C'mon, you two, let's wank our wongs,' he said with a smile and sat on his sheet of paper.

Frankie opened up his pants and let them drop to his ankles. Even though he was as tall if not taller than his friend, Frankie had a smaller though seemingly rounder cock with just a trace of black pubic hair at the base. I sat and undid my belt, not really wanting to show off my little pecker in such large company. Mitchell's was a hard five inches by the time my pants were down to my thighs. I was stiff as a stick but hid it with my hand.

The two lay back against the hill and started masturbating. I sat beside Frankie and joined the action. The only sound was occasional passing cars on the road fifty yards away and the soft whack, whack, whack of three boys beating off. Frankie's cock was hard to see with his hand going up and down it so fast but I knew I wanted it up my ass.

Mitchell broke the silence. 'This isn't working very well. I wish you know who was here to give me a blow job.'

Frankie frowned but said nothing.

Moments later, Mitchell said, 'Shit, Frank, I really need some lips on my cock. We should've had her come with us. Damn!'

Then it was just whack, whack, whack for a while. I wondered which girl had been sucking on Saunder's cock and what would happen if I volunteered to do it in her place. Mitchell's dick wasn't that attractive but I'd have happily gone down on Frankie's four inches though, of course, would have preferred it in my rear.

Mitchell broke into my reverie, 'Malcolm, jerk me off. Maybe that'll work. I'll do yours.'

Frankie shrugged his shoulders again and made space for me to sit between them. Mitchell's penis was a nice handful, very pleasant to the touch. He put the tips of his fingers over mine and started slowly going up and down. I had to use my left hand, not the one I was used to.

'Hold it tighter and go faster,' said Mitchell.

I tried but couldn't maintain it. My eyes were on Frankie's prettier peter. It was impossible to resist. I reached over and displaced his hand around it. He let go and watched mine.

'C'mon, Malcolm, faster, harder,' urged on Mitchell.

I struggled to work both cocks at the same rate. Saunders kept time with mine then leaned over and asked softly, 'Why don't you put your mouth on mine instead.'

With hardly a thought, I got on my knees in front of him and went right down on his penis. It was large, thicker than it had looked, but felt good between my lips and on my tongue. I revolved my head a few times then started up and down, taking over half each time.

Mitchell caressed my hair and said, 'Don't forget Frank.'

My first thought was that I should suck on him too but then realized that I was no longer masturbating him. I found him out of the corner of my eye and took hold of his cock, which felt harder than it had. Frank moved closer to his friend.

I sucked hard on the circumcised head then slid down Mitchell's pole as far as possible without gagging. I put my free hand between his legs and felt his soft balls. There were scraggly hairs coming out of them. He opened his legs making it easier to run my fingers up and down his hairless perineum and over his testicles. His hands gripped my shoulders. He came, firing squirt after squirt of his boy juice into the back of my mouth. I swallowed involuntarily then held it in my mouth to savor the bitter sweet flavor. As Saunder's cock slowly shrunk, I let my mouth descend to his pubic hairs and dribbled some of his cum there.

Neither of the boys said a word. I slowly let go of Mitchell's nearly limp cock and crawled sideways over to the Frankie's lap, with some of Saunder's cum still in my mouth. I sucked in Frankie's cock. I really wanted it in my rear end but was afraid Saunders would insist on equal treatment. Frankie's cock was the perfect size; Mitchell's would hurt.

If I stretched my lips forward, I could feel Frankie's little patch of black hairs. His cock head was no broader than his shaft. It was perfect for sucking. Rather than move around and suck particularly on the head, I just went up and down, enjoying the feel of the perfect roundness, the slickness of the flesh, the solidity of what was inside. Frankie worked his hips in time with me. The taste of Saunder's cum enhanced the eroticism of the moment. I found and pulled Mitchell's hand back to my cock. He got on his knees beside me, put one hand over me to balance himself and got to it.

I took hold of the base of Frankie's cock with my right hand and massaged the soft flesh of his crotch and tummy. My cock was drawing electricity from my entire middle. I jerked violently as I came. Mitchell held on to me, feeling the strong throbs of my orgasm.

I moved my hand to Frankie's ass to urge him to speed up with me. After a couple of ill timed moves, we were again working together with him thrusting in time to my mouth running up and down his bloating cock. I watched his gut harden and felt his thighs tense under me. He filled my mouth with a series of streams of boycum, slightly sweeter than Saunder's.

I had to find a way for him to do that inside my rectum.

Frankie's cock hardly softened at all.

Mitchell said, 'We better get back, the bell's gonna ring.'

I'd have appreciated giving and receiving a hug but it wasn't in the offing.

As we walked back with me in the center, I caught some motion over my head and looked up quickly. Frankie was handing a dollar bill to Mitchell. They both seemed embarrassed that I saw it. I looked at each suspiciously, unsure what to think. The truth didn't occur to me. Frankie blurted it out, probably thinking I'd figured it.

'It was just a little bet. Don't worry, we're not going to tell anybody.'

I stopped, an ugly thought sprouting in my brain. 'That was just for a bet' You just, shit!'

Frankie looked even more embarrassed; Saunders, amused.

Frankie said apologetically, 'Stupid, Mitch. Shit! I didn't want to do it. It was your idea, Mitch, you tell him.'


'Yeh, you. Tell him the truth.'

'Well, Malcolm, you know do act a little, you know, ...'

'What'' I demanded.

'Like you might be a little, a little queer and I knew you'd blow me if I asked but Frankie said no you wouldn't. So we bet. That's all. Nobody's going to say anything so don't worry.'

There it was again. Why did so many people think I was homosexual' I probably was but didn't see myself as acting any different from any other boy.

And, to bet on whether I'd suck a pretty cock was stupid. I said, 'You coulda just asked.'

'Sorry,' they said almost in unison.

Then another thought struck me. 'You oughta give that dollar to me. I did all the work.'

Mitchell stopped and looked at Frankie. 'He's partially right.' He went through his pocket, came up with a handful of change and counted out fifty cents in coins. 'I jerked you off, don't forget.'

I accepted the money. We returned to the plaza in front of the school just as the bell rang.

I hoped they were telling the truth, that they weren't going to say anything. But, I didn't regret what I'd done and hoped to do it some more, especially with Frankie up my backside.

Thoughts of how to get Frankie alone and his dick up my rear caused me to forget about trying the keys in my father's dresser in the barn door lock.

I didn't forget Tuesday but mother was in the living room all afternoon near the picture window, which looked out onto the rear lawn and the barn. Since I had to do my homework in the afternoon on Wednesday, that made my next opportunity Thursday.

Wednesday night, I made it safely back and forth to Freddy's. I told him of my difficulty with the barn key and promised to stay on it.

'Why couldn't you do it Monday''

I'd only mentioned Tuesday and Wednesday's problems. Admitting I'd forgotten wouldn't sound good but, in the end, I just couldn't lie to Freddy. I told him about Frankie and Mitchell.

'You getting' fucked right theah at yo' school' You gonna git caught theah, Maacum.'

'I didn't get fucked. I just sucked them.'

'Same diff'rence.'

'And they've got a place the nuns never go so we're not going to get caught.'

'And no other kids in the school know 'bout that place''

I was sure others did. The ground inside the bushes appeared well used. 'I suppose so but we'd hear them coming and could just be jerking off like everybody else.'

Freddy wasn't convinced but had finished his between orgasm rest and was moving inside me.

Even getting the extra two hours in bed didn't keep me from being sleepy by mid morning in school. The nun asked what time I'd gone to bed the night before. I told her at nine, same as always.

'Then, maybe you should go to bed earlier,' she said.

The problem was I never fell asleep much before eight. I was out of bed from eleven thirty until nearly two thirty. That made a total of eight hours of actual sleep, less than the ten I was used to. I decided to go to bed early every night and see if that helped.

Thursday at recess, Mitchell Saunders suggested we take our lunches down to the bushy hideaway behind the school so, 'you can have some sperm for desert.'

Sounded good to me.

As we dropped our pants, I asked, 'Other kids come here too''

Mitchell answered, 'Mmm hmm but we'd hear them before they got inside and they'd just find us jerking off like they were going to do, unless, of course, they've got one of the girls with them.' It was almost a dead ringer for what I'd told Freddy. I felt vindicated.

The only jerking off that took place was Mitchell doing me.

As we returned, he asked, 'That's not going to cost me another fifty cents, is it''

I just frowned and pushed him.

Mother dropped me off at the house to take the other two boys to their home on the other side of the big bridge over the stream and railroad tracks. Whenever she let me off first, I knew she wouldn't be home until later. The maid was cleaning my father's den. I went for the keys in his dresser. There were three bunches.

I was becoming nervous when I found the right one halfway through the last ring. I had to use a pair of pliers in the basement shop to get the clip opened and remove the key. After memorizing which ring the key had been on, I replaced them all in their drawer.

Friday morning before class, I explained to Frankie what I'd done and my need for the key. He agreed to have a duplicate made and bring it to my house the next day, Saturday. He asked when my father wouldn't be around.

'He leaves around nine thirty and comes back after three. My mother's almost never home on Saturdays but you can see her car if she's there. I think she knows you stayed with me in the office that day so you better not let her see you.'

I gave him fifty cents and a quick hug which seemed to surprise him.

In the morning, my father told me to wash down the front porch floor and railings. He handed me a bucket with a scrub brush and got the hose out of the barn. It was easily a two day job. He smiled at my dirty look.

Mother left before him, carrying a box of cookies she'd had our maid prepare the day before. Frankie appeared in the drive a little after eleven.

'They gone'' he asked in a near whisper.

'Just the maid's here.'

He handed me the keys.

'Wanna come in''

'Won't your maid say anything''

'I don't think so but, if she does, I'll just say you were from my school. If she asks, tell her your name's Pat.'

The maid was in the back hall vacuuming. I guided Frankie through the dining room and kitchen and up the back stairs to my room, my dick already hard from my thoughts on how to get him undressed and up my ass.

I showed him my radio and turned it on. 'Go ahead, get a station you like.' He found one playing a jitterbug song by the Andrews sisters.

I was too horny to beat around the bush and grabbed his crotch. 'Wanna''

'No! Your maid's right downstairs.'

'She never comes here when I'm in the room. Anyway, she'll be downstairs all day. C'mon. I wanna show you something.'


'You'll see. Take your clothes off.' I started to untie my shoes.

'Malcolm, you gotta tell me what you want to do first.'

'It's better than me sucking you. Just take off your clothes.' I pulled off my shoes as I spoke and started on my shirt.

'Can you lock your door''

'No, my father took the key but don't worry, nobody's coming into my room.' I took off my shirt and pulled off my undershirt.

He sighed and undid his belt.

'C'mon, Frankie, get naked. It's much more fun that way. Nobody's coming in here. Don't worry.'

'Just tell me what we're gonna do.'

I pushed off my pants and underpants together and got on my knees in front of him to untie his shoe laces. He didn't stop me and let me pull off his shoes. I put my hand on his crotch and felt his hard on. 'See, you want to. Take off your clothes, all of them.

It was the first time seeing him completely naked. He had a long, slim, tan colored body with a beautifully contoured belly that invited touch. His penis stuck almost straight out.

'Lay down on the bed,' I instructed him.

I crawled along side and ran my hands up and down his torso. One of his nipples protruded out like a newly pubescing girl's. I kissed it and sucked gently then straddled him and licked across his chest to the other. He put his hands behind his head then brought one back to my shoulder. I licked my way down his flat belly to the small growing brush of pubic hair. Frankie pushed my head further down to get me to his cock. I resisted and licked along side of it and sucked in his still hairless balls. I was debating with myself on the need for some of my mother's Vaseline rather than trying to get his four plus inches inside me with saliva. Vaseline won. I gave him a taste of what was to come by dropping my mouth full over his cock and going up and down a few times. I had to force myself to stop.

'I'll be right back,' I said as I got up and kissed him on the cheek.

I swung the door open, rushed down the hall into my parents' bathroom, grabbed the little jar and ran back, closing the door softly behind me.

'What's that for'' asked Frankie with his eyes on the Vaseline. 

'Wait,' I said quickly climbing back on the bed and sucking his cock back into my mouth. His legs tensed as I went down on him.

I struggled open the jar and put a finger tip full of the lubricant on my asshole. I was following a script I dreamed up over the past week. With his cock still in my mouth, I put the open jar and lid on the floor. After depositing all the saliva I could, I lifted off and slid forward until my ass was directly over his crotch.

Frankie figured out what I was going to do and asked, 'Gees, Malcolm. Isn't that gonna hurt''

'Unh uh.'

I sat down on the circumcised head, guiding it to my hole with my greased finger. Eyes closed to focus my concentration and pleasure, I dropped down. The head pushed inside with only slight discomfort. At the same time, a great feeling went all the way out to my cock head. I straightened my body and continued down. His cock pressed against my prostate on the way toward my colon, setting loose those delightful fireflies. I felt his pubic hairs tickle my ass cheeks briefly until they were pressed flat. I placed my hand on my abdomen as though I'd be able to feel that wonderful presence inside me. I opened my eyes to see Frankie's. They were shut like he was sleeping.

Slowly, I began moving forward and back, savoring the fullness of his cock as it moved around inside my rectum. Frankie pushed upward. His hands took hold of my hips. He pulled back slipping his cock past my prostate then thrust up past it. I imagined him right behind my bladder. He continued to fuck then said, 'Let's do it lying down.'

'Wait,' I said and turned around on his cock until my back was to his face. I lay back. 'Do it like this for a while.'

He fucked, pushing my hips down to achieve greater depth. Soon, he asked, 'Let's roll over with me on top.'

His cock stayed buried inside me as we rolled over on the bed. Once on top, he pulled his body up on me and grabbed my shoulders from behind. His thrusting started out gentle and slow but quickly picked up speed and intensity. He jammed in hard and throbbed as he pumped me full of his young sperm.

'Jerk me off, quick,' I begged and raised my hips. 'Just don't take it out.'

He reached under me and masturbated my two and a half inches.

'Go in and out a few times,' I requested.

He complied. I came. He started to pull out.

'No, not yet. Stay in for a while. The second time's better.'

He relaxed on top of me. 'I don't think I can, Malcolm.'

'Just wait, you'll see. Stay in.'

I reached back and hugged his head. A few minutes later, I felt his cock softening, slipping out. 'Go in and out a little.'

He obeyed. I felt him grow inside me. He continued slowly. 'Yeah, I think I can. Gees.'

It took him a lot longer making me very happy. He pulled out completely though never taking his head off my hole. Then he pushed completely back in, past my sweet spot into my gut. I held onto his soft buns and went with the action. My cock stayed on the verge of orgasm for much of the last few minutes before Frankie, breathing like a weight lifter, climaxed, squirting more juice up inside me. It wasn't necessary for him to pump any further to get me to my peak. A couple of moves by his hand and I fired.

He lay on top of me until his cock shriveled and popped out.

'That was incredible. You think Mitch can do it too''

'He's too big. That's why I wanted to do it with you alone. Don't ever tell him or he might get mad he can't do it.'

Frankie promised.

We took a quick bath and went to the barn. The maid was in the dining room where she couldn't see us. The key fit perfectly. We went to examine the pig sty door. Frankie agreed it would be safer than using the key.

'Someone might see you open the door but they'll never see you coming in from here.'

The square wood door was nailed shut by four square cut iron nails. It took us half an hour, a crowbar and a big pair of pliers to get them all out. After pulling back the slide bolt, we had to kick on it to get the door to open. The hinges squealed. The cool outside air rushed in.

Frankie figured out how to make the door look the same as before but still open from the outside. The type of nails that had been in the door didn't bend very far before breaking. He broke all four then pushed them back into their holes. I had to go to the basement shop to get a screwdriver to take off the bolt. We took that back to the basement through the rear basement door I opened from the inside and sawed it off with a hacksaw.

Once back on and the door closed, it looked nailed and bolted. A screwdriver was needed from the outside to pry it open. I wanted to oil the hinges.

'Unh uh,' he said. 'You make it too easy to open and it might open by accident. We really oughta stick something in from the outside so it can't open.'

We found an old rusty nail and pounded it in at an angle from the outside. After pulling it out and putting it back in a few times, it was possible for me to get it out with pliers. Freddy was going to like the arrangement.

I told Frankie that I needed to get back to the porch since I'd lost nearly two hours work on it. He volunteered to help.

'The maid's gotta see you.'

'Just tell her I'm Pat like you said.'

She fed us both lunch.

When she asked, I told mother it had been a boy from sixth grade who I was helping with a report he was making on a book I'd read.

'You mean you did his homework for him.'

'No, I just helped. He helped me with fractions.'

The lie seemed to work.

I did my homework that night and tried to avoid church the next morning in order to finish the porch. I didn't want to worry about it on Monday. There was a lot more to do. My request was denied. Father Lindenhal said the Mass. Stewart was one of the altar boys. My father, as he did every time Father Lindenhal said our Mass, made sure I stayed with him out to the car.

I finished all but the two staircases before dark, ate a quick dinner and went off to bed. At eleven thirty, my alarm went off under the covers. Freddy was waiting outside his house with the sleeping bag. As we walked to our new sex place, I told him how the barn door was rigged.

'We can't do it tomorrow, I mean today, 'cause I gotta finish the porch but you can come on Tuesday.

Monday at recess, Mitchell Saunders asked me to come with him to the jerk off hideout. It didn't take long to figure out Frankie had told him everything.

'You're too big, Mitchell. It'll hurt.'

'How do you know until you try''

''Cause a boy like you tried and it really hurt,' I lied.

He sighed, 'Okay, just give me a really great blowjob so I don't feel so bad.'

While I sucked him, he pushed his finger, wet with saliva, into my hole.

'That doesn't feel so tight. We can just do it slowly.'

I shook my head without letting his cock out of my mouth. He had gotten himself hot and came faster than ever before.' He didn't offer to masturbate me and I didn't ask.

Frankie apologized at lunchtime. 'He knew I wasn't telling him something when I told him about the key and the door. I shouldn't have told him anything but he wanted to know why I couldn't come to his house Saturday. He knows me like a book.'

I sympathized. It was the same between Freddy and me.

Monday afternoon, before starting on the porch, I put the original duplicate key back on its ring in my father's dresser. Mother was in the living room with two friends.

The porch stairs were done in time for me to bathe before dinner.

'The porch is all done,' I told my father at dinner.

'More or less,' he said between forks full of peas and mashed potatoes.

I stared angrily at him for not saying more.

'What's your problem,' he asked with a blank look.

'It's not more or less. It's clean. I worked for two days and an afternoon. It's not more or less.' I was a bit worried but proud I'd stood up to his lack of appreciation.

'There are some places you missed under the railings. That's why it's more or less,' he said while cutting a piece of roast beef and not looking at me.

'Where' I checked and it was all done.'

'I'll show you after dinner and you can finish tomorrow, smartass.'

'I wanna see them now before it's dark.'

My father glared at me. 'Now, you can just do the railing all over again. Open your yap again and it'll be the whole porch!'

I felt the cauldron starting to boil inside. I had to stop it before things got out of hand. I picked up my plate and headed for the kitchen.

'Where do you think you're going'' he insisted.

'I don't want to get in a fight with you.' I kept walking.

'Get your butt back in your chair or I'll warm it with my belt.'

'Dear,' said my mother, 'this time I think he's right. He did work very hard and now he's trying to avoid, uh, a problem. Let him go.'

I looked back at my mother, quite surprised at her risky stance. It was the first time she'd ever stood up to him for my sake.

'Then you make sure he does those railings tomorrow!'

I went into the kitchen, sure I'd escaped a beating. There was no way I'd have obeyed his order to return to the table.

I owed my mother a profound thank you. I hoped my stupid pride would allow it. She stayed close to my father the rest of the evening so there was no chance.

In the morning at breakfast, I forced out, 'Thanks for last night.'

'That's all right dear, but be careful how you speak to your father. And just make sure everything's clean this afternoon.'

Neither of us went any further.

The next afternoon, I worked first on the railing at the back end of the porch so Freddy could see me. My mother was in the living room but away from the picture window. I waved to Freddy and mouthed 'tomorrow' several times. He nodded and ran off. The leaves were growing on the tall bushes and I could hardly see him leave through the property next door.

Wednesday after school, I was taken home by the mother of two third graders we and a first grade girl's mother were car pooling with. My mother was not at home. Freddy waited for me at the pig sty. I took a pair of pliers from my father's shop and joined him. We were inside in seconds. I took him with the sleeping bag to the second floor. There was an old tongue in groove wood bar like piece of furniture in the smaller room. I figured to hide the sleeping bag behind some boxes under it. They had been up there since shortly after we moved in three and a half years before so it was unlikely my father would be moving or even looking at them.

We had some lazy sex and talked about how clever we'd been in setting this up and what might have been in those upstairs rooms decades before. Then I dressed and went up to the house for a drink of water though mainly to show myself to the maid so no one would think I'd gone off somewhere.

Freddy left at around five. I went to my room and listened to the radio.

We kept Freddy's visits to afternoons when my mother wouldn't be at home and midday on Saturdays. There were two Sundays when my parents went off for the day and left me locked inside. Escape was easy through a ground level basement window, which was held shut by a pair of small sliding bolts. We spent those days playing and screwing at the stream.

Mitchell Saunders kept pressing me to let him in my back door but I kept refusing. Frankie so enjoyed fucking me, he became more and more daring with where we did it. Naturally, we used the jerk off place behind the school but we also did it in a storage room in the school basement he had managed to get the key to by volunteering to supervise morning plaza cleanup. One afternoon after lunch, he had me meet him in the boys' room where we did it with him sitting on a toilet and me sitting face to face on his cock with my legs around him, my feet on either side of the flush valve. We both enjoyed that so much it became a weekly adventure. He was great about masturbating me and even allowed a few lip to lip kisses.

All of us looked forward to more opportunities during the coming school vacation.

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