The Boy from Castlebay Down

by James Matthews

Chapter 13

I Am Not Weak

After leaving Jerry's office my head felt clearer. What he'd said had had meaning. Without actually telling me what to do with my situation it felt like he'd almost solved my problems. It was now apparent, I was an over thinker.

Connecting with Jerry over how we both had suffered abuse at the hands of our father had bought us a kind of express closeness and I felt even after just a week or so, he could be a man I could go to when I needed help.

It felt like I had known him for years!

Another lesson I took from Jerry was that my life really wasn't complicated like I always made myself to believe it was. Ok, so my dad beat me, made me sad and feel worthless, but so did loads of other father's across the world. For the first time in a long long time I could finally say… and believe it, that I wasn't weak!

I now refused to be a victim. I was 17, fit, strong, tall and had muscles. I made a vow after my chat with jerry that never again would I cower in the shadow of my father, believing him to be superior to me. No, HE was weak… he was the one who could only manage life by hurting others.

"You're quiet?" Troy remarked as we leisurely walked alongside the wall to his home.

I looked at him. "Yeah sorry, I was just thinking."

"About what?" Try asked.

"I was thinking of asking you to teach me to box."

Troy chuckled. "Really?"

"Nah, I lied… well not really lied, I mean no, I wasn't thinking about that, but it did come into my head right at the part where you asked me what I was thinking about."

"Hmm, I think I got that… so what were you thinking about before?"

"I had a chat with your dad, he just made me realise a few things."

"Yeah, you were in there a while. My dad always knows how to give good advice, he's lived quite a life… you know, been through some tough periods. Hmm, like you I guess."

"And you," I responded, bumping into him gently with my shoulder.

I let the cool air fill my lungs as we walked against a mild breeze. The seagulls were whining their calls as clouds began to gather out to sea. I was glad we were almost at Troy's place.

Moments later I saw him cut across me to the other side of the road and I followed realising we were almost at his house. Troy stopped at his front lawn and started laughing.

"What is it?" I asked, grinning myself.

"Look up there," he said, pointing up to his window. I looked up and saw a very excited Husky dog slobbering all over the window looking at Troy.

"He's better?"

"Yep, vet said it was… well, you'll laugh."

"Go on?"

Troy cleared his throat. "Doggie constipation." He covered his eyes with his hand and shook his head.

"But I thought…"

"Yeah so did dad and I, but no. He was just backed up solid which was causing a loss of appetite and also why the x-ray showed something."

"You never said, wow that's great news."

"You never asked, but hey, you had more important things on your mind than the health of my mut in there… C'mon, let's go inside the weather is turning."

Troy led me up the sloped path to his house and we walked down the side, into the back yard.

"How comes you never use the front door?"

Troy shrugged. "Dunno, never have, why does that seem weird?"

"I guess not," I replied as Troy put his key in the sliding patio doors and walked in. I followed allowing him to shut out the cold air.

"I'll put the heating on, be right back… take a seat."

I didn't straight away; instead I looked around his lounge again admiring the art I now knew a little more about. Jerry was right, his wife did have talent and I got from what she painted that her mind must have been alive with creativity.

"I like that one," I declared as Troy came back through.

"Yeah my dad does too," he said looking at the picture I was pointing at. It was a dark forest that was lit up by a full moon. On the ground lay a deer of some sort, two arrows in its belly.

I sat down as Troy had offered and he sat on a sofa against the wall opposite. "Do I smell?" I asked, smirking.

"No, I just want to look at you."

"Don't do that," I said, becoming bashful. "I hate attention."

"Hey, I appreciate art too you know," Troy said, grinning.

"Oh that was such a cheap line!"

"Ha ha, plenty more where that came from… so, you want a drink?"

"No, I want to talk." I replied wearing a serious face.

"I thought you might, and I'm happy to listen."

"No, this time I want to talk about you."

"Me?" Troy asked, mildly shocked. "Hey, I think you'd benefit more if we talked about you."

"Na ah, I wanna know who Troy Winters is… and anyway, I'm getting bored of talking about my issues, let's say I want a change of scenery."

"Hmm, ok, so uh… what do ya wanna know, pick a topic," he said, light heartedly.

"Ok, tell me about Billy Saunders," I said, raising a brow.

Troy's smile faded as he heard the name. He then got up, put his hands in his pockets and paced over to the front window which looked out to sea. "Pick another," he said firmly, continuing to look out.

"Bit of history there?" I asked.

"I don't want to talk about it!"

"Why not, I've spilled my guts to you, now it's your turn."

Troy turned around and came back to his seat and fell into it sighing. "Ok, what do ya wanna know?"

"What happened?"

"Why? And why are you wanting to talk about him?"

"Because I'm guessing he was someone special to you and I wanna make sure you didn't bump him off just in case I suffer the same fate.

Troy smiled. "You're funny!

"Actually in all seriousness, it was something your dad mentioned to me while we were chatting. He said you went through a mystery low period about 6 months ago but he never knew what caused it. I just picked up on a few other things surrounding him and put the puzzle together."

"Uh huh." Troy said, not giving a proper response.

"So was Billy the cause of this recent low point?"

Troy looked down at a fixed point in his lap and heaved a sigh before looking back up into my eyes. "Corbin, have you ever been in love?"

I curled my lips down briefly. "Not sure, why, you?"

"At the time I wasn't sure either but looking back now… fuck yeah!"


Troy nodded. "Billy Saunders… he was…"

"Your Boyfriend?" I offered as Troy trailed off.

"Meeting him was like being wrapped up in love, like it was something you could pull over yourself. But he was the fastest direct route from heaven to hell I think you could ever get."

I opened my eyes wide. "Wow, that's quite a heavy description, Troy."

"Yeah, but when trying to explain it to someone… which I never have, it's the most accurate way of describing what happened in those short 5 months we were… whatever it was."

"This Billy, do you know where he is?"

"No," Troy replied, solemnly. "He's probably living in London now, or in the ground."

"Troy, what the hell happened?" I asked, feeling sad for him.

Troy sighed again. "Before I tell you I have confession to make. Do you remember when I first met you?"

I chuckled. "You mean when you almost took my sister out with your bike?"

"Yeah, well actually that was when you first met me. I'd actually met you… or rather seen you the previous day when you arrived with your family. I'd gone to meet my dad at the pub for lunch and was walking back. The thing I did on the bike was actually on purpose."

"Jesus Troy, you almost killed my sister."

Troy shook his head. "Nah, I knew what I was doing."

"So why did you do it on purpose… something so dangerous?"

"Because when I first saw you I had butterflies in my stomach that wouldn't quit and I wanted to find a way to talk to you. I thought by doing the stunt on my bike it would give me the perfect excuse to do just that, and it worked. That's probably why you didn't see me until the last second."

"Why?" I asked, curiously.

"Because far from just bumping into you, I was actually watching you walk with Zoe from the top of the hill road."

"How did you know we would be going out that night?"

"Well that part I didn't, It was only when I saw you leave your house I took the previous road up, rode along the one parallel to the sea road and waited at the top until you were close to the T junction."

"All that just so you could talk to me."

"Meh, it was a proven stunt that worked."

"A proven stunt?"

"Yeah, as in I'd done this before, which brings me on to Billy Saunders."

I shook my head, struggling to follow. "Ok, carry on."

"Well, as you know I box as an amateur up at the community hall on Hook Avenue. Like you have, Billy had just moved here and was also into boxing and had joined up as a member. It sounds strange, but usually if you really like someone you'll notice them immediately you know?"

"I guess."

"That's how it was with you I might add, but not with Billy strangely. Ya see, I'd seen him a few times at the ring but we'd never fought before… in fact we'd not even spoken apart from the odd hello. All the other guys there were in their early twenties and those were usually the ones I would fight. For some reason me and Billy never got in the ring together to start with and I think that was something to do with our height differences. See, he was really tall like you… in fact, despite him being only seventeen he was one of the tallest at the club.

"How old were you?"


"And you were in the ring with fully grown men?" I asked, surprised.

"Meh, I was compact, fast and light on my feet… I could handle them. But more to the point these older guys were more my size and height… well maybe I was a bit slimmer back then due to less muscle but I was more in their range than Billy let's put it that way."

"So what happened?"

"Oh right, yeah so one day he asks the question out loud to the club leader what I'd been asking for weeks in my head."

"Which was?"

"Why can't I fight Troy?"

"And in my head I was asking… Why can't I fight Billy?"

"So this leader? He let you?"

"Yep and by round 3 I was knocked off my feet, which in our club meant you had lost. We didn't do the whole thing where you would box until someone was knocked unconscious or hurt, it just wasn't allowed."

"He beat you?"

"Of course he did, he was solid as a rock, 8 inches taller than me and packed a mighty punch. I knew I was no match for him and he knew it too, but I guess curiosity got the better of both of us about what it would be like to have a go in the ring."

"So he knocked you down, then what happened?" I asked, really interested where Troy was taking this.

"I remember my head twanging on the bottom rope and the Ref called time on our match. Moments later I saw him walking over to me. I didn't know what he was going to do at this point."

"So… Jesus you're keeping me in suspense here, what happened?" I asked, now edging closer to the front of my seat.

Troy laughed, and then concentrated again. "He crouched down, smiled at me, gently touched my cheek with his glove and asked if I was alright… I can still see him doing it now; can still hear him saying it." Troy shrugged. "That was the first time I noticed him… like, really noticed him."

"Sounds like a sweet moment."

Troy nodded. "Sweet and brief! After he got out of the ring that evening I didn't see him for 2 days… 2 days of pining for him, wanting to talk to him so bad. So that's when I performed the motor bike stunt on him, just like I did with your sister."

"And that's what you meant by a proven stunt… because Billy was the first person you pretended to bump into using your bike?"

Troy smirked. "Pretty lame huh?"

"Well I gotta say you get top marks for originality!" I said, shaking my head.

"Yeah," troy said, dreamily. "Even the first time it worked too. He was walking and I had a feeling he was gonna cross the road and then that was it I just went for him and stopped at the last second. I remember thinking how cute it was when he jumped out of the way, the look in his eyes."

"Was he angry?"

"Hmm, no, and that's what surprised me, he just clocked on that it was me on the bike and smiled. In fact as I remember, just like your sister he apologised to ME!" Troy said starting to laugh.

"So tell me, this guy… that you obviously liked, what happened? You said earlier that he was the quickest route from heaven to hell."

Troy looked at me silently for a moment as if the sadness of whatever those days involved came back to him. "He was… I dunno, almost like a mystery."

I raised a brow. "I don't follow."

"It's hard to explain. With you I get you, I mean you're like an open book."

"Oh thanks!" I said, pulling a face.

"No, please don't take that as a bad thing, I think it's really nice Corbin, I know where I stand, but with him?" Troy looked at the ceiling and sighed. "With him it was like there was a wall there. I never really knew what he was thinking."

"Was this why it went sour?"

"Oh no, that came suddenly. After a few months we started using our Saturdays nights to get out of the village. At the time we were both in the closet, and being in a place like Castlebay Down trying to share something with someone that's not really conventional? Well it just doesn't work. So yeah we started to go into London and stay over in a cheap hotel and then come back on Sundays. I told my dad we were going to another boxing event which he easily brought but what we were really doing is getting in to clubs underage and drinking Alco pops."

"Sorry I don't see how this is so bad?" I said.

Troy scoffed. "Yeah sorry, I'm really going round the houses with this aren't I. In a nutshell Corbin I think he just used me as someone to parade around the clubs with. When we had… jeez this is embarrassing…"

"No go on, I won't judge you."

"When we started… well you know?"

"Sex you mean?" I guessed, grinning.

"Yeah… so when we started having sex it was awesome, gentle… he treated me gentle but then…"

Troy's demeanour took on a dark phase as he looked to be right back with this guy somewhere.

"Listen if this is too personal we can leave it," I offered, not wanting to upset him.

"Nah, it's ok. Talking about it helps actually."

"Did he abuse you or something?"

"Oh no, nothing like that, he just became this different person. Yeah I'll admit the sex became rougher and less intimate but that was just a small part. Corbin when I met him he treated me so well. I doted on him and God did I fall for him badly but by the end he'd crushed me. He started demanding I perform oral sex on him, or he would announce that he wanted a threesome, or… or he would just say horrible things to me when I told him I thought I loved him. He would like sometimes laugh in my face or mock me. Then he would change again and say he thought it was sweet. I didn't know whether I was coming or going. He said to me once… which was when I finally started to feel like I needed to escape this… he said, 'I treat you mean to keep you keen.' I told him he didn't have to, that I was for keeps, but he just laughed at me again."

I sat listening intently as Troy started to paint a picture of this evil guy. "Wow he sounds like a right pleb!"

"That was the most surprising thing. How can someone so loving… so gentle and kind turn into such the opposite?"

I pursed my lips. "Dunno mate, it takes all sorts to make a world. So what happened after?"

"Well by this point I'd lost all my self-confidence, I used to look in the mirror and think I was worthless… ugly and stupid. And it's funny, the worse he treated me the harder I worked for it until the day came where he just took off."

"Took off?"

"Yep, just went! Must have been early one morning. My dad got a visit from his parents asking him if he'd turned up for work as he'd not come home that night. Of course my dad then asked me if I'd seen him because we were always together working out on the boats. But yeah, one day he just vanished, not a word said, no goodbyes, no apologies and no explanations. I got a feeling in the latter stages that he was meeting up with another person and maybe they… well whatever."

"Wow, I guess that made it worse for you, right?"

"It did because in a way I was dealt a triple blow. He was a guy I adored… loved if you like. Then he turns into a complete ass towards me and the finally he takes off leaving me stuck in this kind of ball just going round and round because there is no closure. I never knew if we'd have worked out… I never knew if he would have changed… I just never knew, and that killed!"


It was all I could say.

Troy sat forward and rested his elbows on his knees and rubbed his hands together, looking at the floor. "I think at one point I loved him more than life itself! And as much as I hate to believe it, I really think he knew and used that to his advantage, because I would have done anything for him I was so wrapped up under his spell. The way he was, his personality never giving too much away, keeping you wanting to know more. He was the bait edging you closer and closer to that cliff. You know you can see the cliff edge but you convince yourself you'll never go over because you think despite being head over hills in love that you're still in control. I get now that people like Billy Saunders know fully well that they're the ones in control and you're just a passenger in a train heading for that cliff at full speed. And then, just when you think you can't stop and you're about to go over the edge you see them there… standing there, hoping they have just enough moral standard left to save you."

"But they don't?"

Troy shook his head. "No, right at the very last second they just step to the side and over you go."

"Can I say something that could either make you feel better or worse?"

Troy looked up at me. "Sure."

"This feels totally alien for me to say but the more I look at you…" I stopped, shaking my head.

"What?" Troy asked, grinning.

"Man you are cute!"

Troy chuckled before going a pale shade of red. "Oh shuddup!"

"Sorry, I just had to say that and the worst part is I don't know why."

Troy's face became serious and he proceeded to stare at me. "C-c-can… can I kiss you?" he asked before biting his bottom lip.

I formed a gentle smile, before replying softly, "I'd like that very much,"

He got up and came towards me and immediately butterflies started to invade my stomach as the newness and innocence of what was to come… came!

Troy sat next to me and slowly he moved his lips towards mine. I closed my eyes as I felt them connect with mine. They were warm, plump and soft. Our embrace was slow at first… just lips, but quickly we found we were unable to keep our hands off each other as he collected my head in his rough palms and I put mine on his shoulders, feeling the tight muscles that formed his upper torso.

With my tongue searching for every crevice in his mouth I sighed, loving how sweet his pure saliva tasted. My heart was racing as I started to tremble from the contact of this plethora of new sensations that I'd never experienced before.

For the first time in my life I wanted someone.

"You're shaking," he whispered as we broke the kiss.

"I know, this is so new to me, and I'm scared. Scared and excited all at once."

"Me too," he said running his thumb down my cheek that was a little wet. "Sorry have I upset you?"

"No… I got a little overwhelmed just then that's all. It was like this big valve had been released in my body."

Troy drew back and looked at me thoughtfully. "Is that good?"

I sniffed. "Maybe, I mean I feel like I connect to you. I've never felt that before with anyone. Not friends or Leah. You just did something to me as we kissed, it… it just kinda blew my emotional fuse. And yeah, as I said, I'm scared because… because I don't know how I'm supposed to feel."

"Can I be honest with you now?" Troy asked, moving slightly away from me?"

"Sure," I replied, putting my hand on his leg. Strangely he looked at it and moved it off. "What's up?"

"Corbin, listen, this is gonna sound bad, I can see that before I've even said it but I…"

"Take your time, what is it?"

Troy shook his head and it seemed in mild frustration with himself. "Look, I am so into you, you wouldn't believe, but I need you to think about stuff here."

"Stuff? Sorry I don't follow." I replied, scratching the back of my neck.

He got up and paced the lounge a couple of times. I allowed him to do so without interruption knowing he was trying to put his words together on whatever it was he wanted to say.

"I don't wanna get hurt ok, and right now, last time I checked you were still with someone and my conscience is begging me to be cautious because as much as I like you I'm scared this is gonna go wrong. And I know there isn't a THIS right now, but I want there to be and… and maybe I'm assuming too much… I mean maybe I'm expecting too much, hell maybe I'm just reading this all wrong and you just wanna be good friends and I'm just leading myself off down some road that you ain't following, erm…"


"Sorry, I just totally went off on one there didn't I?"

I sat back in my seat and sighed. "No… no its fine, I know what you are trying to say. You mean Leah right?"

"Corbin what do you want from me?"

"I don't know, this has all just caught up on me, like fast!"

"See… see I knew it, I don't think you know what you want and-"

"No! Troy come here, sit down,"

Troy shook his head, he almost looked mildly panicked. "Corbin, I ain't gonna be your little experiment ok, I can't put myself through someone hurting me like that again. And I sure as hell ain't gonna be your dirty little secret… you know, like the straight guy who meets up with his gay friend when he wants to try the other side of the fence once a week."

"Troy, Jesus, sit down and be rational will you." He did as I asked and sat next to me. I looked into his big brown eyes. "Is that how you see me? Is that who you think I am?"

Troy let out a sigh. "I just… I mean you've been with Leah for 2 years and then suddenly you move here, meet me, and all of a sudden we're kissing and I wonder what's going through your mind? Is this real for you, is it a phase, am I making a fool of myself? I just don't know! It's because I like you so much I forget about your current life and then BAM it hits me… that you are in a heterosexual relationship which is still going on I might add."

"Fine, I'll leave her!" I blurted out.

"What?!" Troy asked incredulously. "Just like that?"

"No not just like that, but somehow."

Troy seemed to give me an over the glasses look. "You're gonna leave a girl, you've been with, for 2 years, and say what?"

I grinned. "That I've started to fall for the most amazing person who is the last missing piece of my long searched for puzzle."

Troy punched me on the arm. "Be serious here, I'm talking abo… hang on what did you say?"

"Ouch maybe?"

"No you said-"

"That I was falling for you?"

"Yeah that bit," he replied nodding slowly.

I shrugged. "Hands up, you got me… I am."

"Wow, you really mean it don't you?"

I looked away from him, serious again. "I know this sounds really corny but I'll say it again. You complete me. You are what I have been missing I just know it. Remember that gap I was talking about? It's always been there no matter what I have done. Over the years I've tried to fill it with something else but then it just opens up somewhere else, so I try and fill the new gap with something different and another opens. That's what I feel my whole life has been like and then you… YOU! It's like it just went… I don't feel that vulnerability anymore. I don't feel like I am searching for this fucking thing that keeps eluding me."

Troy stroked my hair. "I get it, and thanks for being so honest."

"I get the feeling you want me to give you some foundation to build on but if I stay on the honest track with you, I'm not sure I can right now."

"It's as much about you as it is me, Corbin. It's easier for me, I know what I want. At the same time I can't ask you to leave your girlfriend, I have absolutely no right to do that. But I also know that I can't be the affair or the bit on the side for you."

"I wouldn't do that to you Troy!" I said, passionately.

Troy pursed his lips. "But you already are aren't you."

I put my head in my hands. "I'm gonna do it, I've made up my mind, I can't be with someone who doesn't make me happy… Troy, YOU make me happy, surely that's a no brainer, right?"

"Are you asking me or telling me?"

I shrugged. "Both?"

It was getting late and Troy was trying to get hold of his father on his cell. Me? Well I'd had no calls simply because I'd turned my phone off not wanting to deal with a number of matters while I was talking with Troy.

From day one of meeting Troy I realised I'd been edging closer to him without realising it, but today that all changed when I seemed to take a big leap, fully clear in my head this was what I wanted… what I'd been waiting for. The thing about this person I'd met, he wasn't just an ordinary boy, he was something amazing on all levels. He was the sort of guy in normal circumstances you'd be scared of getting close because of the fact he was so attractive… you know those sorts of people, the ones who can have anyone they want and usually do because they can. I guess I sort of felt like that when me and Leah got together. All the boys at school wanted her and I knew if she desired it she could have had any of them.

Because of how attractive she was I was always on edge, which is why I guess nature tries to balance out which people get with who. Like the fact it's rare you find a stunning person with an ugly person… unless there's money involved. But looking at Troy I didn't feel that because I was now starting to realise his personality didn't allow him to think in those terms. I knew somehow that no matter how attractive he was to other people, or how attractive he knew he was himself, he would be loyal.

"Anything?" I asked, seeing him pull the phone from his ear and look at the screen.

"No, it just goes to voicemail. I might take a wander down to the yard. All I can think of is he might have gone for a drink to give us some space."

"Want some company?"


We'd walked past the boat yard which was in darkness, all the workmen either gone home or to the pub. Troy remarked that his dad rarely drunk so it really must have been because he knew we were at home.

We soon approached the pub and Troy pulled open the door and walked in with me right behind. Inside I watched as he scanned the room then all of a sudden he tapped me on the shoulder and pointed.

"Looks like they're having a few words," Troy said as I stood there mouth open seeing Jerry talking to my dad. Jerry looked quite animated, using his hands as he talked, while my dad just stood there looking rather on the back foot.

"Shall we go?" I asked. "I really don't want to even look at that fucker."

"Or you can know that I am here supporting you and confront him, it might be your only chance."

"Why would I do that?" I asked looking at him. "Actually, you're right, he's bullied me enough, now it's my turn."

I walked over quickly to my dad with no intention of doing anything other than to give him a piece of my mind. But with Troy behind me and Jerry for extra confidence I built a rage inside me before unleashing it at him as I smacked him square in the nose with my fist. He fell backwards on to his ass as a combination of beer from the glass he was holding and blood from his nose splattered all over his shirt. He couldn't have seen me coming as I looked at him sitting there stunned on the pub carpet. The chatter in the bar instantly died and I became aware of people looking over at us. With a fizz of confidence rushing through me and a satisfaction not felt since kissing Troy I stepped back almost statesmen like and felt the need to address everyone in the building.

I pointed at my father who had yet to get up. "Before you all rush to this man's defense you should all know something," I called out. "He is a bully who has made me suffer, has done unspeakable things to me and has tried to kill me. He is also the person who cares nothing for this community. You'll find no person in this village as cold, manipulative, selfish and disgusting as much as this evil man that I am ashamed to call my father."

Troy came up behind me, put his hand on my shoulder and tried to pull me gently away from my dad who was starting to get up.

Dad wiped his nose on his sleeve and then looked at me coldly. "So, you finally grown a pair of balls, huh? Think you're a big boy now do you… why don't we take this outside, see how big you are then you little fuck!"

Jerry moved to flank him. "Don, these words you use, this behaviour… this is your son!" he said.

"Listen Pal, I've been pretty patient with you while you have tried to dictate to me how I should run my family but really, just shut the fuck up yeah?"

People who heard my dad started to gather around Jerry for support. No one was making any quick moves which would flare up the situation but about 10 to 12 men had placed down their glasses and moved inwards.

"Don, I think you should leave," Jerry said quietly.

"Nope, I think I should get another beer and once again tell you to get out of my face."

Jerry picked up his beer, took a sip and placed it back down on the bar. "No Don, I mean I think you should leave Castlebay Down."

My dad took his stare from Jerry and placed it on me. "See what you've done you little cunt, see the mess you've caused?" he spat.

"You tried to kill me; do you think you were going to just pick up your day where it left off?" I asked, as calm as I could. I felt Troy move to my side.

"Mr Waite, I saw everything that day… what you did. No one should have to suffer that abuse, especially at the hands of their father."

Dad looked Troy up and down with a look of contempt upon his face. "Who the fuck do you think you are kid, stay the fuck out of my business and stay the fuck away from my son!"

"I'm not your Son!" I spat.

"I think my dad asked you to leave," Troy said calmly.

"And I SAID I was gonna get another beer. BARMAN, Lager please!" dad called looking past everyone.

I turned round and saw the barman shake his head. "I don't think you are welcome here anymore. Take my advice, I think you better leave we don't want your kind of people in our community."

"Here here!" came a random voice from the group.

"Game is up dad, you better go," I said, forcing a satisfied look on my face to taunt him. For once I was in control. Then out of nowhere he moved towards me quickly. I took a step back and before I could blink Troy moved in without any help from anyone, knocking my dad to the floor with a series of controlled punches with the final one landing under his chin."

On the floor dad was semi-conscious not anticipating the speed Troy had attacked him nor how disciplined he was with his actions. Jerry pulled on Troy's arm taking him backwards before looking his knuckles.

"It's ok, I had him," I heard him remark.

I stepped over to my flailing father on the floor and looked down at the sorry mess he was. I was just about to spout off some more home truths to him but instead I thought I'd save my breath and just opted for a few choice words.

"Leave town, and don't come back, DAD!"

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[For those who use webmail, or whose regular email client opens when they want to use webmail instead: Please right click the author's name. A menu will open in which you can copy the email address (it goes directly to your clipboard without having the courtesy of mentioning that to you) to paste into your webmail system (Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo etc). Each browser is subtly different, each Webmail system is different, or we'd give fuller instructions here. We trust you to know how to use your own system. Note: If the email address pastes or arrives with %40 in the middle, replace that weird set of characters with an @ sign.]

* Some browsers may require a right click instead