[7] Nathan

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Is there anything we need to discuss,

Before I take you two to your group home?

The social worker stares down at you,

And,

Mark.

Mom is a few feet away,

With tears streaking her cheeks.

You tell her there is,

And know this is your last chance.

The last chance,

To tell the truth.

The last chance,

To be able to stay.

The last chance,

To make everything okay.

So you spill.

You tell everyone about being bullied,

Picked on,

Beat up.

Mom stares shocked,

Because she had no idea.

Mark looks at his feet,

Because he didn’t tell either.

The Social Worker crosses her arms,

Because she doesn’t believe you.

But this is your last chance.

It has to work,

Just like in the movies.

You get to stay,

To be a family.

It has to work!

Come on,

Let’s go.

She picks up your suitcases,

And heads towards the door.

You lose it.

You yell,

Ask her if she heard you.

I heard you perfectly fine.

You raise your eyebrows,

Confused,

Questioning,

Concerned.

But this isn’t my first job, Nathan.

I can see the trick you’re trying to pull.

Now let’s go.

She opens the door,

And heads outside.

You act on impulse.

You sprint towards the door,

And slam it shut.

You lock every lock,

And drag a chair under the doorknob.

The social worker bangs on the door,

Yelling at you.

Open this door right now!

I’ll call the police!

Mark high-fives you,

But Mom looks concerned.

She walks over to you,

And talks over the lady’s yelling.

You’re just going to get into more trouble, Nathan.
Especially when the police come.

You shake your head,

And a smile spreads across your lips.

The situation is horrible,

Dire,

Awful.

But you keep on smiling.

Because you have a plan.

What are you thinking?

Mom knows the look,

And so does Mark.

He jumps up,

Then down,

Then up again.

Nate’s got a plan!

You ruffle his hair,

And grab his suitcase.

Yours was already gone,

But you weren’t what mattered.

What’s going on?

You grin at her,

And listen to the social worker’s yelling.

You tell them,

The social worker can't take you away,

If,

You're,

Not,

Here.

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