"3 ARRESTED IN WATER
That was the headline that greeted Ken Thomas that morning, after Collin's grandmother almost single-handedly caused World War III.
"Wow! What do they say about that, Bro?" asked the sixteen year old, as he gave his Big Bro a morning hug.
"Says here you were right, 'lil Bro'" responded Ken Thomas.
"Wh, what? … How?" asked an incredulous Collin.
"Well, remember you telling me that you felt Brittany, or Hannah, had to be involved with what happened at the water park?" responded Collin's Bog Bro.
"Yeah … and…?" asked Collin.
"The newspaper article doesn't go on to name either of the two girls, but it does say that William Shappell and Raleigh Mitchell were arrested for the altercation, and that a minor high school female was also detained, for her involvement. It says that the two boys will be charged as adults and, pending a hearing, the female may also be so charged. It also says here that the two boys are 'persons of interest' in the beating of one Rodney Costa," explained Mr. Ken.
"That's GREAT, Bro! They not only charged those two Neanderthals with what they did to me and Ry, but they also used what they got from Shelley and me and others, I bet. They must have figured out Bill and Raleigh was also involved in Rodney's beating, too. I hope they give them the death penalty," finished a charged up Collin.
"Whoa there 'lil bro', people don't get the death penalty for beating someone up," clarified the teens Big Bro.
"Well … well, they should … especially for those two! What they did to Rodney and then Ry those guys shouldn't be allowed to walk on this earth, any more," a truly pissed-off Collin said, while giving his two-cents on it all.
Mr. Ken just raised his eyebrows to Collin's comment and then continued to read his paper.
As soon as Collin arrived at school, the next morning, his friends bombarded him with questions about the newspaper's early morning revelations about Ryan's and Rodney's beatings.
"Collin, Collin, have you heard? Not only were Bill and Raleigh arrested and aren't here. But guess what? So aren't Brittany and Hannah, at school, today. It looks like those two are in biiiggg trouble, too,' said Damon.
"Oh … their NOT here either, the newspaper said that only one female was detained, so I wonder why both Brittany and Hannah aren't here? Anybody have any ideas? Anybody hear any rumors?" inquired Collin.
Just then a few of Brittany and Hannah's cliquish girlfriends walked by and Ellen called out, "I sure hope your happy, NOW, Collin!" The girls then continued to walk along.
"Damn … what did I do, now?" asked Collin, out loud to no one in particular.
The whole day the rumor around the high school was that both Brittany and Hannah were both being held by the police and that whatever Collin had told them was the reason for that. No one ever asked Collin what he did, or didn't, tell the police, they all took the rumor as being true.
Later, after school, Collin walked into Mr. Ken's Study and plopped down into one of the plush leather chairs.
Ken heard the teenager come into the room, but he wanted to allow the boy some time to get his thoughts together before he'd ask his 'lil bro' any questions.
"Women! … NO … fucking bitches!" was all Collin had to say, as he sat there scratching Chief behind her ears.
"Collin … that IS NO WAY TO TALK … young man! I don't care what a female has or may have done to you ... but that … that, sort of language is not welcomed and I WILL NOT tolerate it in this house! Do you understand me, young man?" loudly scowled Ken Thomas, at his young charge.
Not getting a response, Ken Thomas followed up by loudly saying, "Collin … did YOU HEAR what I said? … Collin?"
"YES … Yes, I heard you!" … I'm sorry, Bro, but …"
"NO BUTS, Collin … if you use that type of language now, as a teen, it WILL follow you into adulthood, and ANY 'poor choice of words' could mean the difference between a 'done' deal or not! … Now … tell me what … NO … tell me who has you so riled up this time," chastised the lad's Big Bro, while at the same time moving the conversation along.
It took Collin a few moments to gather his thoughts and after a deep breath, and leaving it out, he began.
"I'm sorry for what I said a few moments ago … but, it was that Ellen, and, and Brittany's posse. They started a rumor … all over the school today, that … that, I was the one who had Brittany and Hannah arrested. I mean … HOW can they get away with that that type of BULLSH, err BULLCRAP? Huh? Tell me that, Bro! How can any one go … go and make such, such baseless claims, Bro? What did I do to them that, that they can make up these stories? …
"First, it was this so-called date I was supposed to have with Brittany, and now … it's that I had her arrested and … and, there is nothing else said but that! That I, and only ME, had Brittany and Hannah arrested. No reasons whatsoever! What can I do about this, Mr. Ken? … Women … why do they do that to us, Bro?" was Collin's final outburst, as he fell back into the plush chair.
Ken could tell his 'lil' bro was hurting, so he got up and went over and pulled a chair right up and next to the lad's. As soon as he sat down, to get settled, the sixteen year old jumped right into his lap and began to cry on his shoulder.
The two sat together, for quite some time, talking about everything that now bothered the teen. Mr. Ken, over time, found out what was totally bothering his 'lil' bro, and it was then he began to understand how it all came to a head.
Collin explained to his Big Bro, when he thinks about it, it all begins with everything that involves Rodney's beating; then it was his grandmother's attitude during and after his kidnapping; and it escalated with the supposed date with Brittany and what she and Hannah did to try to get money out of him coupled with the attack at the water park and now, the added false accusation of having someone arrested. That it all, everything, finally brought him to a realization he has never, ever, been able to 'fight back'
Ken began to realize that, internally, Collin felt like things never really changed for him, after he arrived at Three Finger Cove. Yes, the lad had friends, and his life had made a dramatic change for the better, but, overall, Collin still compared what his life was before and how it is now. Mr. Ken now comprehended that, in both lives, Collin feels he is still relegated to standing back and never getting the chance to fight his tormentors.
"Collin … 'Lil Bro' … today IS the day YOU BEGIN to fight back! After dinner … we're going to call Bill and Uncle Andy, and afterwards … let the shit hit the fan and have it fall on those who deserve it!"
All Collin could do was break a great big smile after he heard his Big Bro say 'shit'. He knew Mr. Ken said that to get him out of his funk, and it worked. He asked his Big Bro what he meant, but his mentor said 'all in due time, my boy' and told him to get washed up and ready for dinner.
That night, the three guys, Ken, Uncle Andy and Bill Jackson listened to Collin's plight and his desire to begin to 'fight back'. They all agreed he needed to 'learn' not only 'how' but 'when' to choose his 'fights'. Then, when Collin told the men, "I want to first go after those bit … ah, err … those young ladies that have treated me as a punching bag and the devil. Brittany and Hannah started all this back when they accused me of hitting her and pushing her down and they went to Hannah's lawyer dad and wanted all that money.
"We never did anything about that, and I never really understood why. But now … after what happened today … with Ellen and the 'posse' spreading all those lies, about me, I want to make some noise! I want people to think twice before they … well, before they EVER FU … err … mess with me again."
For the remainder of the evening, the four discussed who would be the first person Collin would go after, and for what reason, or reasons. Then, they did that for every other individual who caused Collin harm or other grief, since his kidnapping. In the end, there were a number of people who would eventually have to deal with Collin's wrath. When they finally hung up from their conference call, it was decided that Brittany and Hannah and their posse, along with Ellen, would be the 'first' to have to account for their actions.
Collin went to bed very happy and relieved that things looked like they could finally go his way. He fell into bed and slept so sound during the night that Mr. Ken had to actually go up to his room to get him up for school.