Saturday, August 13, 2011

Help Me Finish This Story

I need your help.
I've been working on this story (off and on) for a couple of weeks now. The trouble is, I can't seem to decide how to end it.
Let me clarify.
This story is called Jumprope Politics. As you read, you'll notice it's a rather obvious allegory for the polarization occurring in the United States political system. The trouble I'm having with ending it is that I am torn between the boys (gov't) being remorseful for their actions or being sly and snide, continuing to plot further antics. They seem shy at first, but that's because they've just been busted.  Are they really sorry or thieving punks just waiting for the adults to leave them to their plotting and selfish endeavors once more?
I'm torn between what I think is realistic and what I hope for.
So, finish my story!
Write your own ending! (Use the comment section)
I'll pick one, and maybe there can be a prize of some sort. A printed and bound version of it or something. Or coffee or beer or something. You know, whatever. :)
Tell your friends! Let's have fun with this!
Here is the story. Pick up where I end.

Despite recess ending over an hour before, two oversized 4th graders from Washington Elementary remained fixed at their game. Billy Clifton and Georgie Baum each pulled mightily from either end of a purple nylon jump rope that was showing extensive wear near its middle. Hidden behind the bushes, they had evaded their teacher, Mr. Samson, as he marched the remaining student body back into the classroom. As their peers sweated over fractions, beads of perspiration formed a crown round each boy’s head as he kept his feet firmly planted, angled his body near parallel to the ground, and insisted through clenched teeth that he would not surrender.
Finally the rope snapped in two, sending Billy and Georgie soaring through the air, each landing with a great thud on the ground.  Holding back tears, each boy slowly pushed himself up from the soil. Georgie’s knee oozed a small stream of blood, Billy’s elbow began to develop an instant bruise.
“You big dumb smelly ass, Billy! I’m telling Principal Burgher you made me bleed!”
“Oooh, I’m really scared!” Billy retorted. “Go ahead, Dumbo! If you weren’t so fat, you wouldn’ta broke the rope.”
At this, Georgie lunged and seized Billy by the shirtsleeve pulling him to the ground once more. Entwined, each boy did his best to bring his fist to his opponent’s torso as they writhed and flopped in the playground dust.
“That’s enough, boys!” boomed Mr. Samson’s voice as he pulled the still swinging boys from each other’s grasps.  Holding them at arm’s length, Mr. Samson escorted the duo to their awaiting principal a few feet away. She did not look pleased. He left them to her stare and made his way back into the school.
The boys stood at her feet, Georgie digging his foot into the dirt, Billy suddenly fascinated by his fingernails.
 Ms. Burgher spoke quietly, but sternly and with great authority. Georgie and Billy quickly took their place on the hard ground, eyes studying the soil beneath them. Dry and cracked, ants scrambled in and out of the crevasses and both boys felt just as small. Surely it was only a matter of time before Ms. Burgher would bring out a magnifying glass and let the sun do its work. They braced themselves for the scolding that was sure to come.
But Ms. Burgher did not speak.
She simply stood, one half of the rope dangling from each hand. Its once brilliant purple fibers now muddied and ruined. She laid each broken piece in front of each of them.  Billy and Georgie shifted uncomfortably, unsure what action to take. Should they speak? Should they continue to wait? The longer Ms. Burgher’s eyes bored into them, the more impossible to stay still.
It was then that Mr. Samson re-emerged from the school; a small girl clutched his hand as he led her toward them. Her face was smudged with dirt and grime, clean streaks present only from the tears that had cleansed away the filth. Her dress had at one time been lavender, soft and lovely, but was now a dull sort of grey. The dingy lace collar clung on by a few scarce threads here and there. Her knees showed dried scabs and mosquito bites. Her toes were evident through shoes too small. Her hair hung stringy and greasy in her eyes as she stared at the dirt below.
“I believe the two of you have something that belongs to Susie, is that true?” Ms. Burgher asked.
Georgie and Billy nodded their heads.
“And how did the two of you come to be in possession of Susie’s new jumprope?”
Several moments passed before Billy finally managed to squeak out the words, “We took it from her.”
“I see,” said Ms. Burgher. “And what reason do you have for taking this little girl’s toy? This is the only toy she has, and she brought it to share with her schoolmates. You, boys, have now not only robbed Susie of her brand new jump rope, but have ruined the opportunity for others to play as well. What have you to say for yourselves?"

1 comment:

  1. Billie says without looking up. Ms. Burgher will you take me and Susie to see her Dad. I have something I want to say to him. And that is I want to tell him how awful I feel. while Georgie ran off and out of sight and was never seen again in that school. And since I'm Billie and the auther of this story I know it is true as of now 20 years later I have married Susie and we are living happily EVEN NOW!!!!