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The start of something good

Gabriel wasn't a fighter. He was quiet at school. He had a few friends, but none he called on the weekend. None he hung out with outside of school.

So you can only imagine our surprise when he came home with a black eye and a bloody lip.

My mother nearly screamed when she saw him.
She was the dramatic type.

I ran to get the First Aid kit from the bathroom. As my mother started to examine his face, I ran upstairs to my room which we shared. "It's nothing, its fine." I could hear my brother batting away her questions.

A few minutes later, I heard Gabriel run up the stairs. He was just outside the door to our room and I could hear him bracing himself for the millions of questions I would ask as soon as he opened the door. I heard the doorknob turn. "What happened?" He was standing in the doorway.
"Uh...." He looked like he was about to turn and bolt. I grabbed his arm, pulled him in, and then shut the door. "Sit," I pointed to his bed. He obeyed, and I felt like I was training a puppy. "Now, tell me, what happened?" He didn't look me in the eye as he spoke. "Today, Dani and Caleb came up to me. Dani said, "Hey Gabe," but he said it like GAY-buh. Then Caleb opened my locker and pulled out my math test. The one I got a 98 on. He ripped it up to shreds, and then threw them on the floor. I think he spit on it too." I nodded for him to continue. "I knew I couldn't beat Caleb. He's dumb, but big. Dani's all the brains he has. They've been doing crap like this to me all week. I got tired of it, Lynn, I've tried to tell people, but it only makes it worse. Caleb went to talk to some guy across the hall, and I slammed Dani's head against the locker, and told him to leave me alone. For good." Gabe tries to conceal his grin. "Caleb ran over like a giant angry bear, and he started going BALLISTIC!" My brother laughs. "He managed to give me this," he indicates his black eye, "but I still got in a few good hits and pulled his pants down before running off to class." I shook my head. We were twins, but it was times like this when Ii felt so much older. "Lynn, don't tell mom, please?" I agreed, because I was actually proud of him for solving his own matters. After hearing his tale, I knew he would be standing up for himself from now on.



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