Flash piece based on a childhood memory.

It was a hot summer. There had been a downpour, and we had taken off our clothes. We played on the wet grass, then went into the garden to eat raspberries. Some of the berries had little white worms in them - you had to be careful not to eat them, but we probably did all the same without knowing. The raspberry bushes had lots of thorns, tearing white and red welts in our arms and legs. Once the sun came out, we climbed the roof of the chicken shed and warmed on the asphalt blackness of the hot roof. Later, Grandmother called us in and gave us hot tea, and bread with jam and butter. Then Aunt Alice took us into her attic room to give us candy. There was always candy, and cakes, and canned fruit and preserves. I spent lots of time at Grandmother's then, and lots of time with Nick. He lived down the street in his parents‘ villa - his father owned a store, which meant he was rich. Nick's next door neighbor was Marlena, whom I did not like much. Sometimes we all played together anyway, but more often than not, it was just Nick and I.

We were in the garden when Oldboy caught us. Let's go have a talk, he said to Nick. I went inside and waited, but Nick didn‘t come. Oldboy had walked him home and told him he couldn't play with me any more. When Father found out, he said Oldboy was nuts. Soon after I learned that they were all nuts in their own way... Oldboy, Aunt Alice, and even Grandmother. Father had said so, and soon I could see for myself, and learned to trust my own better judgment. They all listened to Father, and most of the time they'd listen to me too.

Nick and I entered first grade that fall, but by then I‘d stopped talking to boys.

The End

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