“It turns out, she did not tell just like I said, remember?” I nodded knowingly. He gave just the right amount of information.
“She did tell one other person besides me, though.”
I swallowed, “Was it a trustworthy person?”
“No, I’m afraid it was not. She told my cousin, Angel, and that’s bad.”
“Let’s scoot down to the end of the table,” I said.
We both picked up our trays and stuff and went to the end and sat. We settled in again, then he leaned in to me, talking softly, “Angel is not his name. It is sort of a joke, because he is no Angel, plus he has angel wings tattooed on his back. They arrested him for sexual assault about six months back, but they dropped the charges because the victim was underage and too scared to testify. I confronted Penny because she’s a dumbass.”
I laughed, “He’s using her, that’s plain.”
“You can see it and you barely know her! She doesn’t know Angel. He just keeps her around for sex. Penny is underage! He could go to jail for having sex with her! I tried to tell him and damn near got in a blade fight with him. I tried to tell her, that telling Angel about you, about your sex, put you in danger, and look what she did!”
“She blamed you for…what?”
“For…I’m not sure. She yelled out a whole string of things. Mind my own effing business was one. You don’t effing know Angel and me, was another. I was very surprised how strong she was. Angel always said don’t arm wrestle her. Look, I’m on Angel’s bad list now. He’s a big man, over six feet. I’m just fifteen. I’m not small for my age, I’m five-nine, but going up against him in a fight would be hard. I need to tell you what he looks like in case he comes around. He likes them young, so he could come for you.”
I shook my head. I whispered, “But if he knows I have a boy parts, wouldn’t he…?”
Billy lifted my chin with his finger and gently kissed my lips. I saw stars! “He likes anal sex,” he said softly and quietly, “He goes for young teen girls and young teen boys, always anal. He’s not gentle, either. He rapes them.”
“What does he look like?”
“We need to hurry with lunch and everything. You’ll be late for your speed reading. Well, he’s tall, wiry and muscular, and rides a Harley. He’s got brown hair that he slicks straight back from all sides into a short ponytail. His eyes are blue and they are thin and shifty, and he giggles when he talks. He’ll say something, then go he, he, he, after it. It’s annoying. If he’s shirtless and he turns his back, he’s got two huge angel wings tattooed on his back.”
I wrapped my arm around his neck and scooted close to his lips. He smiled. “What’s this about?”
“How did you know about my speed reading?” I whispered.
I knew it right then, at that second, that I was crazy in love with Billy Carnes.
I hopped off the school bus and trotted up the half-block to the house. I was anxious to get studying this weekend because I was going to take the mid-term make-up tests next week. I hitched up my backpack then came to a dead stop when I saw Angel, or the man I assumed was Angel, sitting on his motorcycle in the street in front of the house talking to Penny.
The street was concrete, cracked in places with grass trying to grow up, and the yards in front of the neighbors’ houses had more dirt than grass. Most every house had raggedy fences because