The Bully and The Bullied

We all hate bullies, don't we? But we have never given much thought to WHY exactly they like bullying. No one is born a bully - it's spite, anger, hatred and pain that creates one. *This is my entry for the new competition. I've written this from both the perspectives - the bully and the bullied. Hope you enjoy it.* ^_^

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6. Unexpected - Jimmy

Oh. My. God. I have never been more perplexed and utterly shocked before in my entire life! Who would have seen this coming, honestly? 

It happened after dispersal when I was walking out of those familiar school gates, feeling as relieved as I always did when it was time to leave school every day. I was supposed to wait for Mum to pick me up (didn't I mention this before? You know how lucky I am, don't you?) so I strolled over to my usual waiting spot which I had carefully chosen after considering it's safe and healthy distance from Matt's school bus stop. I was quietly relishing these moments of security when an iron-like hand clamped on my shoulder and it felt like my heart had exploded within me.

Matt. Oh no.

I turned slowly on the spot to face him, bracing myself for a smack on the head any minute. But something didn't seem quite right. The usual sneering and taunting was missing, and when I dared to open my eyes a fraction, I saw that Matt wasn't accompanied by his entourage as usual. Strange. 

"What's up?" I tried to sound brave. "Missing your posse today, huh?"

I don't know what got into me. I wouldn't have dared to say something like that to Matt normally, but somehow, his lowered head and dubious presence gave me a lot of confidence. Besides, after his queer behaviour last time, I felt like he had changed. Hah, crazy me. Of course he hadn't. Bullies don't change. But he certainly seemed to have gone through a blow or something because he didn't even react to my overconfidence, which was extremely unnatural. I was starting to get a weird feeling about this...was he planning to get me by surprise? Were his fellow bullies hiding out in the bushes around us? 

He cleared his throat awkwardly and kept glancing furtively over his shoulder, as though afraid that he would be caught communicating with an outcast like this. "Uh..." he began surreptitiously and suddenly reminded me so much of myself that I couldn't help but grin stupidly. "I wanted to say that - that -"

My eyebrows shot up "What?" The sole idea of the great bully Matt wanting to say something apart from insensitive insults to the social outcast Jimmy was so ludicrous that I had to keep pinching myself to make sure I wasn't daydreaming. 

"I - I don't think - I don't think you're a schmuck."

I blinked. If I ever had any shocking moments in my life before, this one outdid all of them. Standing there, staring at the big bully Matt who had just said something that, coming from him, was like "I love you!" I thought I would never move again. I watched, gobsmacked, as the big guy swaggered away to his bus stop where his cronies stood looking about as astounded as I felt. This was, to me, nothing less than a miracle.

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