Excerpt from Slushballs
Jimmy Torbell laughed.
I glared at him while I used the dry end of the scarf to clean the icky slush off the side of my face and neck. “I hate you, Jimmy Torbell. You’re such a jerk.”
Jimmy stuck his tongue out, which was so very juvenile. I didn’t really expect any better from a nine-year-old boy. “I know you are, but what am I?” he replied.
I stomped my foot, but I knew better than to answer his taunts. His chappy red hands were reaching for more slush. I ran.
“You run like a girl,” he yelled.
I turned around to inform him that I was a girl and he hit me in the mouth with another slushball before I could speak. Gross. I spit the slushball out. My mother taught me that every girl is a princess and I should be a proper lady, but princesses and ladies don’t have to deal with slushballs. I ran and hit him in the chest with my head. He fell on the pile of snow between our driveways. I was cramming snow in his face when my brother, Matt, dragged me off and carried me inside, kicking and screaming.
My mother was disappointed, but I was tired of Jimmy’s slushballs. They were cold and filthy and my favorite scarf was too dirty to wear on the last day of school before Christmas break.
“Megan, what possessed you to tackle Jimmy and mash snow in his face?” Mom asked. It sounded like a bad thing, the way she put it.
“He hit me in the ear and in the mouth with a slushball,” I told my wet socks.
“Jimmy is having a rough time right now.”
I rolled my eyes. “I know. I know. His dad lost his job. They have to move. Blah, blah, blah. That doesn’t give him an excuse to be mean. Plus, he gets to move in with his grandparents which might as well be heaven.”
Mom closed her eyes. I could tell she was counting because her lips twitched. “You are older than Jimmy.”
“By a year. I was teaching him a life lesson,” I said. “If he doesn’t learn it from me, he’ll learn it from someone even older. And bigger.” I almost added meaner, but I didn’t want to push my luck.