Bullies at the bus-stop

This story, set in a contemporary Secondary School, deals with the choices we all face when we witness bullying behaviour. The author is twelve-year old Omnia Osman.

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1. 11.05am

 “Hey guys,” said Kimberley, or Kim to her friends. Kay and I turned round.

“Oh, hey Kim, how’re you doing?” said Kay. Kim shrugged,

“Alright, just tired. Have you seen Melissa?”

“Melissa, err no. You still like her?” I said. Kim shrugged again,

“She’s alright I suppose. You don’t like her, do you?” I had shaken my head. Kim made a face before walking away.

“Err, Omnia,” started Kay,

“Yes,”

“Why do you not like Melissa?” asked Kay. I stared at her for a minute, astonished, before answering,

“She’s a bully,” I said, firmly. Kay gasped.

“Oh, come on, don’t pretend Kay; she has bullied you before,” I said. Kay bit her lip,

“Don’t remind me,” she whispered. I fell quiet. Silence divided us as we walked up the stairs to registration. When we got there we were greeted joyfully by Beth and Becca.

“Oh look who’s there!” exclaimed Beth. We all burst out laughing.

“The official TP,” giggled Becca.

“Teacher’s pet!” laughed Kay. Nobody really liked Jake and most people thought it was better to leave him alone, so it ended up that every day he was pretty much alone. No-one hung around with him; no-one wanted him in their group if we were doing group work, so most of the time he asked the teacher to be with him, which our class found a standing joke - especially Melissa, Sam and the rest of their gang.

4.00pm.

At last, school was finished. As Jake was walking to the bus stop, he got caught up with a gang of boys and girls. Their leader, Sam knew Jake very well. Jake bit his lip, dreading what would happen if the gang caught up with him.

“Does Jake actually have friends then?” I asked. Kay shrugged. Suddenly I gasped.

“What is it, Omnia?” asked Beth.

“Melissa…”

“What?!”

“Melissa is over there, with the rest of that gang.” I said, in disbelief. Kay and Beth gazed and suddenly Kay said,

“Oh you’re right, she’s over there.” We all fell silent before Beth broke it by asking:

“You think she’s… she’s, you know, a proper, like, bully, you know…?” I nodded at once, stubbornly.

“I never thought she was right in the mind. Crazy.” Silence hugged us once more. Eventually, the gang had caught up with Jake.

“Hey, Tini,” said Sam, grabbing Jake.

“Go away, Sam,” Jake mumbled.

“What was that, Tini?” shouted Sam.

“Nothing, just let me go,” replied Jake, this time clearly.

“Oh no, why do I have to let you go? Melissa, do you think we should let Tini go?” asked Sam. Melissa gave a tinkling laugh,

“Oh no, please Sam, don’t leave him, I’m actually quite enjoying this little scene, even though it’s just started,”

“Oh course, Melissa. What is it, Bob?”

“Can a take him down?”

“No, Bob, not today, when the day comes I’ll let you do it,” replied Sam. Bob retired back, looking slightly disappointed. Jake looked at them both, his face ghostly with terror.

“I don’t like watching this, guys, let’s move away,” said Kay. So we went away from the bus stop, silently agreeing that we would walk home.

As time went on after that incident, Jake looked even worse than before.

“It might be just me but Jake looks worse than before. I mean like dirtier and pretty miserable really,” I said. Kay murmured in agreement and Beth nodded,

“You’re right, he actually does. Do you really think that Sam and rest of that lot actually beat him up?” asked Kay. I shrugged,

“It looks like it; I mean he’s dirtier than ever.” Suddenly the bell rang for home time. We cheered and went out.

“Bob, I’ve decided,” said Sam, whose hair was being stroked by Melissa. Bob’s face lit up,

“I can?” he asked, his face suddenly looked bloodthirsty for violence.

“Yes,” replied Sam, softly, “You can…”

3.20pm.

Kay, Beth and I were standing at the bus stop and Jake was standing, as usual, alone a few metres away from us.

“Look there’s the… the gang again. Wonder what they’re going to do to Jake now,” said Beth. Kay and I turned round to see the exact gang approaching Jake. Jake, of course, had noticed Sam and the rest approaching him but pretended he hadn’t.  Sam, who predicted Jake’s pretending, having known him for a long time, shouted,

“No need to pretend that you’ve not noticed us, I know you.”

Jake gulped, but still said nothing.

“Are you not gonna say anything, Tini?” demanded Sam.

“What is it you want?” mumbled Jake.

“What was that?” shouted Sam, putting his massive ear in front of Jake’s face. Everyone in the bus stop was watching this drama by now, either with fright or with tension. Jake kept quiet.

“Excuse me, can you not hear me?” shouted Sam in Jake’s ear. Jake winced but still kept quiet. “Is he deaf?”  Sam asked the rest of the gang as they sniggered, then laughed maliciously.

“Wow, some people really hate Jake!” whispered Kay and I smiled nervously.

“Can I do it now, Sam?” asked Bob, his eyes looking hungry.

“Wait til he responds,” replied Sam.

“What are they talking about?” I whispered. Beth shrugged. Jake, bravely, but nervously, turned to face Sam.

“Now that’s a start,” bellowed Sam. Jake opened his mouth to speak but no words came out.

“He’s scared of you, Sam!” piped up Melissa with a giggle.

“Are you, Tini?” said Sam. Jake mumbled something which seemed like, “Leave me alone”

“Mumble that again,” said Sam. The rest of the gang snorted with laughter.

“Go away,” said Jake, clearly. Everyone gasped. 

Sam growled, “Don’t you dare.”

Bob clenched his fists, angrily as he took a step forward.

“Sam right, Tini,” he growled, grabbing Jake and lifting him from the ground, “Don’t you insult us, or else, I’ll do it now.”

“No! Not now. I want to do something first…” exclaimed  Sam, with a twisted smile gradually appearing on his face as he pushed Bob out of the way and faced Jake once more. This time, Sam looked so menacing that Jake gave a slightest bit of a whimper.

“Why don’t we make a deal, Tini? Let my muscly friend do his work and I’ll leave you alone from now on, or if you say no, then…”

“You… you mean you’re going to… to do it here?!” stammered Jake. Melissa gave another tinkling laugh and said,

“Well what do you think? We want an audience even if you don’t,” Jake shivered. I gasped, too appalled to say anything. I glanced at Beth and Kay, whose faces were both full of horror and dread. I wondered what the gang was going to do. To be honest, I kind of wanted to stop it but at the same time I didn’t want to get involved.

Thunderous silence enveloped us all.

“Can you take any longer to decide, Tini?” bellowed Sam, instantly breaking the silence. Suddenly I had a flash of desperation for a bus to come and take me away from this. But still none came. Why? The word screamed in my head. Then a voice in my head said, “Go home, get away!” My legs started to get awfully numb from standing still for so long. I closed my eyes.

“NOW!” screamed Sam. Thump!

“Ouch!” screamed Jake, struggling. I opened my eyes before instantly closing them again. Jake was on the ground and Bob was doing it… beating him up. I couldn’t bear to watch it. I silently started calling for a bus to come and take me away. Away from this…Jake was bleeding and… and…

“Help me!” cried Jake, “Help me! AAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!”  

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