Shewayne Walker

I look around me as I enter the science class. Nobody is looking at me. Good, I think as I walk to my usual seat at the corner of the class.

I open the huge eighth-grade science book and bury my head in it. Science is all a bunch of nonsense made up by people who didn't have anything better to do with their time. And here we are, a class dedicated to the teachings of those utterly useless, jobless and stupid humans who called themselves scientists.

I feel someone's eyes on me. I turn to my right- a boy busy texting with his cell phone. To my left, two girls gossiping about the latest soap opera. Nobody looking at me. And yet...at the back of my mind, I get the feeling that someone, somewhere means to do me a lot of harm. Maybe, I think to myself, maybe it's not just someone. Maybe it's everyone!

It is not a new thought, it is something I think of everyday, so I try to brush the thought away. I'm starting to believe that maybe what the kids say behind my back is true. Maybe I really am paranoid.

If that was the case, I really didn't think I could be blamed for my condition. I was physically abused by my father for the first twelve years of my life.

"Come out here, Shewayne." My father would order. "It's time for a beating. Come on now. Quickly."

It was an everyday thing. My mother had died giving birth to me, leaving me to face the wrath of my father. I hated her for doing that.

Roger Walker actually enjoyed beating up his daughter. That's what hurt the most, I think. It wasn't the pain. I became use to that, and to the scars they caused. But it was the fact that he enjoyed hurting me.

It was a sport to him- something to take out the anger stored up inside him after a hard day's work at the construction site. Maybe someone called him stupid, or the boss shouted at him. Roger Walker would say nothing; he would simply stand there and take it like a man. And then, when he got home, he would show his real side.

"Come out of your room, Shewayne." He would say in his usual calm, steady voice. I still here that voice when I try to sleep at night.

This time, I'm not going out, I would think to myself in my room. If he wants me, he's going to have to come and get me. But I had done that once and had learnt my lesson- the huge scar on my shoulder is something I can always look at if I want to think of that night. After that night, my feet moved involuntarily whenever he called.

So I would go out of my room and face him. He would take his belt, or his shoe, or simply his bare hands, and do what he chose to do. I would try not to cry, but it was pointless. The ordeal wouldn't end until I did. My grief was what he lived on.

Then one day, when I was twelve, after my daily beating, as I cried my eyes out in my room, I thought about my father dying and leaving me in peace. What would be the most painful way of dying? Drowning, maybe? When I was a weak swimmer, I had nearly drowned in the pool at my school, but had been saved by a lifeguard. When the realization dawned upon me that I was drowning, I felt this strange and horrible combination of fear and panic that I have never felt since. It was the scariest thing that I have ever felt. Much worse than the beatings.

So I imagined my father drowning. I thought about it all night and then all morning at school the next day. When I came home, I found my father sitting in his favorite chair, struggling for breath, saying "Help! I'm....drowning...Help!" Those cries for help continued at regular intervals. I called the police. They came and took him away.

A day later, an uncle that I had never seen came and picked me up and said that I was living with him now. In the car, I asked him what had happened to my father, simply out of curiousity. I didn't really care whether he lived or died.

"He's..." The uncle started. "Um, well, he's sort of...not well right now...the doctors don't know if he'll ever be normal again. They have him at the Diamond Asylum. I'm sorry, kiddo." He patted my head.

I had driven Roger Walker to insanity. I no longer think of him as my father. Just Roger Walker- an unavoidable gloomy part of my past. By concentrating hard, I had made him believe that he was actually drowning. I smiled to myself as my uncle drove me to the airport, where a flight took us to where he lived.

My uncle is regularly transferred and we keep moving to new towns. At my old school, everyone used to pick on me. Now, no matter what city we move to and what school I attend, people stay away from me. Maybe it is some kind of a vibe I am giving out. A dangerous vibe.

But my horrific early years have taught me not to trust anyone and so I stay on my guard. The first person to pick on me will find himself with a room next to Roger Walker at the Diamond Asylum. It is a good thing for them that no one has. Yet.

Now, I keep my head buried inside my science book until the bell for recess rings. I rush to the lonely bench at the edge of the playground. I open up the sandwich and start to eat, when I see a shadow on the ground. I turn around quickly, my hands in front of me in a futile attempt of protection against harm. It is a tall boy with silver hair.

"I know what you are, Shawayne Walker." He says. "Come with me."

The End

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