A Courageous Battle (Chapter 1, page 1 of 4)

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Chapter 1

LACEY WILSON had given up trying to make friends. No one liked her, so she kept to herself. In the warm spring sunshine, in 1958, she was reading her book in a far corner of the schoolyard.

She had to pee; couldn't hold it much longer. But to get to the washroom she would have to walk near a group of the popular girls who were skipping near there. In the end, urgency overcame her fear.

She almost got by, but then the chants began.

"Ewe, there's the worm!"

"Get away, wormy worm!"

"Stinky stringbean! Stinky stringbean!"

They giggled, covering their mouths, and turned their backs on her, and other kids nearby joined in with more derisive catcalls.

Bob 'Big' Boscoe blocked her way, "Whatcha got, worm, dirty pants? Ya gotta go, worm?"

Tears forming, she tried to push past him as she felt the hot liquid trickle in her pants. She hung her head and forced her way into the toilet, where she stayed, sucking air, hiding in a stall, until the bell rang for the afternoon classes.

AFTER SCHOOL Lacey walked home, shoulders slumped, head hanging, dejected. She navigated the crooked pathway with broken tiles that led to her house and opened the door, listening.

The silence echoed in her ears. She must be sleeping already. It gets earlier and earlier. "Your mother's not well," her Daddy had said many times.

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