I’ve found a place to hide. A safe place
|Image: All Rights Reserved|
|Pymble, N.S.W. : Angus & Robertson|
Panic. The sun streams through my window. Samantha’s singing in the shower. Mom is making breakfast. Rob has already gone to work. Monday morning. My karate magazine slides off the bed. I can’t go to school. My head hurts, hurts, hurts.
Mom is not interested in my headache. “Nonnegotiable,”she says. “School’s on.”
It starts on the school bus. “Butt Head. Butt Head. Butt Head,” echoes along the aisle as boys walk past. There are a few thumps on the way. George Hamel isn’t even on the bus. Anna isn’t either. She’s probably helping in the Napoli’s Super Delicioso Fruitologist Market. Samantha’s frightened and I force her to sit in the back. She doesn’t want to. I make a mental note that I’ll get up early tomorrow and walk to school. How do I get off the bus when it stops? I can’t stand up now because I’ll get sandwiched between the guys in the aisle. That’s dangerous. Maybe I’ll finger jab one of them in the kidneys. Ohhh, my head really hurts. The bus jerks to a stop. I make a dash for the door, shoving as hard as I can. Suddenly, there’s a big surge forward. I lose balance. I stumble down the bus steps trying to grab onto the sides. I half make it and land on my knees ripping a hole in my pants. It stings, but I’m out and I run.
There is no way I’m going through the school gates today. Then I see her. The librarian walking to the side gate. I race towards her and offer to carry her books. “That’s nice of you, Jack.” She chats about good books to read, while my heart’s throbbing like an enormous blind pimple. The library is open every recess, every lunchtime. “There’s always someone here to help you find a book. A librarian and an assistant.” I stand close to her as she unlocks the library door. It’s like a revelation. Sunlight floods the big room with its shelves of books alphabetically ordered. Tables and chairs are neatly placed in the center of the room. There’s an alcove with computers and another alcove with the photocopier and audiovisual tapes. Paper ducks flap from the ceiling and posters hang between shelves. A safe house. The throbbing subsides. I’ve found a place to hide. A safe place.
Extract from the book I am Jack
by Susanne Gervay
All Rights Reserved.
Pymble, N.S.W. : Angus & Robertson, 2000.
Call Number: J English GER
Extract contributed by Chen Luojia
Title: Don’t sit on my lunch
By Abby Klein
Call Number: JS English KLE
By James Preller
Call Number: J English PRE
By Mark Shulman
Call Number: Y English SHU
Where is your safe place? What will you do if you are targeted by a bully?