Tag Archives: Bill

Chapter 2 Sally’s Warning

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Background Sally is dealing with an alcoholic father, a young man’s unwanted attention and her senior year in highschool. She leans on her only true friend, Linda.

First day of school finally arrives. Sally was ready for the bus when it stops in front of her house at 7:30. Mr. Bowen was the driver and had been since she started to school at Stuart. When Sally’s foot hits the first step-up, Mr. Bowen speaks to her. “Good morning, young lady, how was your summer?”
“Fine, Mr. Bowen. Did you have the summer off?”
“Sure did, but I still had to work the farm. I’m ready to get back to driving so I can get a rest.” He chuckles and closes the door. The kids are excited and everyone is sitting next to someone talking ninety miles an hour. Sally finds an empty seat and sits next to the window. She likes looking out the window as they drive the five miles to Stuart School.
The Bus only makes one more stop before it gets to the school. They pick up the Wood and Kirkland kids. No one sits beside Sally. She pulls out her library book and begins to read. Whenever she wants to escape, she does it in books.  Withdrawing into her reading is Sally’s way to escape all the fighting and problems caused by her dad’s drinking, or anything else that might bother her. When the bus stops in front of the school all of the kids get off. Sally’s first class is Study Hall, so she has forty five minutes that she can read before she has to start her classes.
Linda is waiting inside the front door, grabbing Sally as soon as she enters the building. “Are you ready for this? I can’t believe we’re seniors. I’m excited, but I’m also wondering what’s going to happen.”
“Hi, Linda, you are wound up this morning. I can tell you’re excited. There’s no point in worrying about any of it. We’ve got everything handled. I’m just ready to get this year over with. Come on, let’s go get our seat in study-hall before everyone else gets there.
The two girls walk to study hall, which is actually the school library and pick out a couple of desks  next to the windows. Since the school is not air-conditioned, they want to feel the air coming in, if it does. The middle of August can be a killer when it comes to the heat. The temperature outside this morning is already eighty-two degrees, so they know the afternoon will be a scorcher.
Mr. Chambers, who usually teaches the sciences, is the homeroom teacher this morning. “Ok, everyone, welcome back for your last year at Stuart High.” A big round of applause and cheering erupts out of the class. “You’ve almost made it through. Since this is the only class where you’re together, this morning we are going to nominate for Homecoming King and Queen. I know basketball season hasn’t started but it will be easier if we do it now and get it out of the way.” Sally moans to herself because she knows what is about to happen.
“Let’s hear the nominations for Queen.” Mr. Chambers says.
Three hands go up in the air. Amanda nominates Brenda Jones, Ronald nominates Cassie Smith and Janice nominates Sally.
“All right will the three nominees leave the room and we’ll call you back when the voting is over.” Mr. Chambers waits while the girls leave the room.
I’ve been through this every year and I know my nomination is just meanness. I’m not going to give them the satisfaction this year. “Excuse me, Mr. Chambers.” Sally said, as she stood up by her desk.
“Yes, Sally, what is it?”
“Mr. Chambers, I’d like to respectfully decline the nomination for Home Coming Queen.”
“Thank you, Sally. Please be seated. Would the other two nominees please leave the room?” Mr. Chambers smiles at Sally when he sits down at his desk. He knows some aggrevating fun for the class snobs went the wrong direction.
Cassie Smith wins the nomination as she does every year. She is bright, beautiful and built very well. The boys call her, hot stuff.
Sally feels relief. That one act of standing up for herself was six years in the making. After study hall, Sally and Linda head to their next class. Linda pokes Sally with her elbow. “I can’t believe you did that.”
I’ve gone out to the hall every year knowing I was too fat and not liked enough to be Homecoming Queen. I decided this year I wasn’t going to let them do that to me again. I can’t help that I’m not built as good as the other girls, but they’re not going to rub it in anymore.”
***
The school day over Sally returns home on the bus. She goes in the house and immediately picks up the phone to call Linda. Neither of her parents are home, because the workday isn’t over for them. She or Linda  call as soon as they get in the house. This ritual has gone on since the first time they met.
“Hi, has Linda made it home yet?”
“Yes, Sally, she’s here. Hold on and I’ll call her to the phone. I don’t know how you girls can talk so much. You just left her after being with her all day.”
“I know but we didn’t have the chance to talk about some things.”
“Hold on.”
It took Linda a couple of minutes to get to the phone. “Hello”.
“What took you so long to get to the phone?”
“I have to go to the bathroom sometime, silly.”
“You can take care of that when you know I’m not going to be calling you.”
“Oh, dry up. There’s times that are forced on you. You should know that very well, Miss Run Over By Her Own car,” Linda said laughing.
“Okay, you made your point. What are you doing this evening?”
“Just all that home work that we got today. Oh, I want to ask you if you’ve heard from Bill.”
“Not since he took us to get those Coke’s. Maybe he’s decided he’s tired of me being rude to him. I sure hope so.
“I heard Floyd tell one of the guys that his brother was at Ft. Sill.”
“Bill is still in the Army. I don’t think he has much longer in his enlistment, maybe a month or so. He’s come home every weekend to his mom’s place since he has been in Lawton.”
“Maybe he will leave you alone. Time will tell.”
Dark Shadows will be on in about ten minutes. Give me a call after it goes off so we can talk about what we think is happening.”
“All right Sally, I’ll call you. Bye.”
“Bye”
Sally hangs the phone up and starts on her chores. I hate sprinkling those starched clothes. I don’t know why daddy want’s his pants so starched anyway. They will stand by themselves. At least I don’t have to iron the stupid things. Mine is bad enough without having to do his also.
The washtub is in front of the couch and the clothes are on the couch. Sally has the TV on channel 10 when the eerie music begins letting her know Dark Shadows is starting. She sits sprinkling the clothes, rolling them up, and completes the process by placing them in the tub. She’s through in fifteen minutes and then covers the tub with a couple of towels, to keep the clothes from drying out. Now she sits back and listens to Barnabas chide Angelique about causing trouble at Cottonwood. Before she knows it, the program is over and the phone rings.
“Hello Linda, what did you think? No, I think Angelique and that other ghost will do something with those two kids. Have you noticed how much their behavior has changed? I think it will get really interesting before it is over. Oh, ok, I’ll see you in the morning. Don’t let your dad work you too hard. Bye.”
Sally hangs up the phone and goes to the kitchen table to get her homework done. She keeps losing concentration thinking about her dad. Wondering what time he will get home and how drunk he’ll be.

Writing A New Book

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I have begun a new YA book called Sally’s Warning (Temporary). I’ve decided to post the chapters here as I finish them. I would like to have your feedback. If you find something that you think needs changed please let me know. I can always use help with editing. I hope you have a great weekend and I will post chapter 2 on Monday.

 

 Chapter 1

 

 

It’s a beautiful summer evening as Sally walks down the dirt road behind her home. The katydids are singing in the trees. She can hear the deep croaking of the bullfrogs talking to one another in the pond. The aroma of fresh cut hay fills the air. This would be a perfect life if it weren’t for my father. I’ll be glad when school starts. I can’t believe I’m a senior. I didn’t think I’d make it to my senior year, but here I am. I have another week to wait.

When the road turns towards home, Sally spots Bill Grundy’s car sitting in front of her house. Bill’s sitting under the portico talking to Mona, Sally’s mother. Oh, God, he’s here is again. I can’t get rid of him.

Bill shows up two weeks ago, and she’s been unable to get rid of him. Three years ago, he marries her best friend Jackie, and the three of them spent a lot of time together before he goes into the Army. Jackie leaves with someone else, and they divorce. Why he’s shown up on her doorstep, she doesn’t know.

When she gets close enough, Bills face lights up, with a big smile. “Hello, how are you this fine day?”

“Hi” Sally says, as she sits down on the bench. “I’m doing okay, just been too hot. We need rain terribly bad to cool things down.

“Guess what? Your mom says you can go to the show with me tonight.”

“She did, that’s great. Did you think about asking me first? I already have plans with Linda. We’re going to the Attic.”

“What’s the Attic?” Bill asks, with a sad look in his eyes.

“It’s a dance place for teenagers. I’m picking her up at seven and heading to McAlester.” Since he is six years older than Sally, she knows he won’t be able to get into the place.

“Mom, I’m going to take my shower and get ready.”

“Ok, honey.” Sally barely hears her. Sally gets up from the bench and goes into the house, leaving Bill sitting and talking with her mother.

Sally knows she has to hurry, so she can leave before her dad comes home. I know he’ll be drinking, and I won’t argue with him today. I don’t know why he has to pick fights with me.

Bill remains in front of the house and Sally can’t understand why. She’s has done everything to get rid of him. It’s as if he’s oblivious to all of it. She kisses her mom bye and doesn’t speak to Bill as she walks past to go to her car. She climbs in the black, 1954 Ford and heads to her girlfriend’s house.

 ***

  After the dance is over, Sally and Linda walk outside. Linda sucks in her breath and says, “Sally, isn’t that Bill’s car sitting there beside that red Chevy?”

Sally turns her head and looks, catching Bill’s eye when she does. She walks to the car and asks, “Bill, what are you doing here?”

“I thought I would take you two girls to the A&W.” Bill said

Sally turns around and yells for Linda to join them. When Linda gets to the car, Sally asks, “Bill wants to take us to A&W to get a drink. Do you want to go?”

“It’s still hot out here so a cold drink would be good.” Linda said. Sally has her back to Bill when she asks, and the whole time is mouthing “no”. Linda ignores her. She is stuck. Sally climbs in the front seat, and Linda gets in the back. Sally sits so close to the door, if it opens she’ll be on the ground.

Bill drive Main Street a couple of times. That’s the thing to do before going to the A&W. Bill and Linda talk the entire time. Sally only spoke with a direct question. I’m going to kill Linda when I get her back to my car.

They get their drinks. Linda and Bill are yammering away. Bill turns to Sally and asks. “Sally, are you mad at me?”

“No I’m not mad. I just don’t have much to talk about. I’m tired after dancing so much. Would you mind taking us back to my car?”

“No I don’t mind. Thanks for letting me take you to get a cold drink.”

Linda speaks up, “Oh, you’re welcome. It’s always hot in there with so many bodies.”

“I’ll be glad to get home and get these shoes off. My feet are killing me. I’ve gone through the summer without wearing shoes most of the time. When I have to put them on, they kill my feet. I wish I could go barefooted to school,” Sally says.

They arrive back at Sally’s car. Sally jumps out first. Turning to Bill she says, “Thank you again. See you later.” By that time, Linda is out of the car. Sally digs her keys out of her pocket and gets in the car. Bill sits and watches them until Sally pulls out of the parking lot.

She wasn’t on the road a minute and a half before she confronts Linda. “Okay, do you want to tell me why you made me go with Bill? You of all people know how I feel.”

“Look, we’re both thirsty, and you know it. Besides that, it didn’t cost us anything. Since neither of us has a dime, I thought it was a good opportunity.” Sally accepts her answer and drops the subject of Bill. They’ve been friends since Sally began school at Stuart. Both of them are the outcasts of the class and don’t fit in with the elite. They stick together like glue. They  can always  find something to talk about.

The drive home is uneventful until Sally receives an extremely loud call from Mother Nature. “Crap, I have to stop and go to the bathroom. My bladder is about to bust. We’re almost to Arpelar (pronounced Are pay lar). I’ll pull off and go.”

She quickly pulls onto a dark road, jumps out of the car, runs around to the front, and squats. Sally feels the car bump her down and is amazed it rolls over the top of her. The 1954 Ford that Sally drives is a standard shift. If you don’t put it in gear, it rolls.

Sally is face down in the dirt as the car slowly stops, leaving her underneath. She crawls out from under the car, with Linda asking if she is okay. Just as soon as she determines Sally isn’t hurt she begins to laugh, hysterically. “Wait until I tell the kids you got run over by your own car.”

“Dang you, Linda, why didn’t you put on the brake?”

“When I realized it was rolling, I couldn’t get to it in time. You’re certainly looking good now”, as she continues to laugh.

Between the dirt and mud, Sally’s clothes are a mess. She climbs back into the car and tells Linda, “You’d better not mention this to a soul or I’ll never speak to you again.”

“All right, I won’t.”

“Do you promise?”

“Yes, I promise.”

Sally takes Linda home  before her midnight curfew. Since it is a Friday night, her mom and dad will be up. When she pulls into the drive, she can see the kitchen light on. She knows her dad will be drinking. Seeing her dad drunk has gone on for as long as she can remember. She’s conditioned to all of the stages he goes through. I hope he doesn’t try to pick a fight.

Sally walks through the front door and calls out, “I’m home.” She is hoping she can go to her room without talking, but that’s not the case.

“Come here, Sally and tell me about the dance”, her dad calls out. She gets the sick feeling in her stomach, as always, when he wants to talk to her. She walks into the kitchen, and her dad is sitting at the table with a bottle of Crown Royal sitting in front of him and empty Coke cans.

“Hi, Daddy, has mom gone to bed? I’m really tired. I’ll see you in the morning.”

“Oh no, you’re not going to bed yet. Tell me about the dance.”

“We had a good time. A lot of the kids from school were there.”

“How much have you had to drink?”

“Daddy, I only drank Coke.”

“Sure you have. Look at your clothes. I know what you been up to. Don’t bother telling me any lies.”

Her dad’s voice is getting louder and louder with every word. “You lie to me, and I’ll make you wish you hadn’t.”

“Daddy, I swear, I haven’t been drinking. Call Linda and ask her. I want to go to bed.”

“I ain’t calling Linda for something I can see with my own eyes.” About that time, Mona walks into the kitchen.

“What’s going on here? John you woke me up with your yelling.”

“This damn girl came home drinking, and I’m not going to put up with it.”

Sally had tears in her eyes. “Mama, I haven’t had anything but Coke to drink, I swear.”

“What happened to your clothes?” Mona asked.

“I fell down. I’ll tell you about it tomorrow. I just want to take my shower and go to bed.”

“All right, go to bed. We’ll talk tomorrow.”

“Night, mama.”

Sally takes off for her room without another word. Relief is the only emotion she’s feeling. She can hear her mother trying to go back to bed, but as usual, her dad wants to talk.

Why does he do this? As many times, as I have come home drinking he’s never said a word and suddenly tonight, he decides to make an issue of it. I haven’t had a drop. He’s crazy. I can’t wait to finish school and get out of here.