Losing The Hate (6)

NEW BEGININGS (OLD FEARS)

Most of the other kids at my new school gave me a hard time because of the way I looked. I was forced by my year head to tone down the hairstyle and remove my earring, but the modified uniform I wore remained the same. And the earring and spikes did not remain gone for long. Months flew by with no reminders of the past except for the constant image of Ropeman still living in the darkest recesses of my mind. 11+ had removed the monster from my life; it was time to look to the future, to the fame and notoriety I’d become convinced was waiting for me.
The only thing of any interest to me was music; there was no desire within me to become a bank manager or traffic warden, although being a traffic warden would have guaranteed the notoriety. My ambitions were focused purely on the music industry. It became impossible for me to stop writing, putting together basic verses and turning them into songs. My mind conjured images of stretch limo’s, and television appearances, of a big house, and loads of money.
Along with three others, a school band was formed. We called ourselves “Society’s Rejects,” each
of us motivated by the same “starry eyed” fantasy. We were allowed to use the music room during the lunch break and it was during one of these sessions we gave birth to a song, an original song that I was proud to have written the lyrics to.

There’s no future,
In this world for me,
Or can’t you see.
I don’t want you,
You don’t want me,
I aint just a boy,
Or can’t you see.
I’m living in ******’ agony,
Tormented agony.
I’m living in ******’ solitary.
I don’t wanna,
I don’t wanna be me,
I don’t wanna,
Become a man,
I aint even happy as I am.
Are you so blind,
That you can’t see,
As long as I live,
I won’t ever be free.
I don’t wanna,
I don’t wanna be me.

I loved it, all four of us did. We asked if we could do a recording of the song being played, and to our complete astonishment, the music teacher said yes. She explained we’d have to speak to another teacher,
Mr. Caddy, who was in charge of all the school’s electrical equipment, pretty much a similar role to the one Ropeman was involved in.
His room was just off the building’s rear staircase on the first floor. We went to see him straight away, finding it hard to refrain from running along the empty corridor. After rapping violently on the door, we all burst into the room. Without warning, my stomach lurched, before my head started spinning and I immediately felt physically sick.
It was like the instant just before an accident, when you know what's about to happen, but are powerless to stop it. I felt as if the world had paused momentarily, when my eyes focused on his. It was Ropeman, sitting casually next to Mr. Caddy, his now even chubbier face lit up at the sight of me. “Hello Simon, how’s things?”
Chest pounding.
“I’m ok.”
Smiling.
“Enjoying the new school?”
Fear rising.
“Yeah.., it’s, it’s alright.”
Running.
“Sorry, sorry Mr. Caddy.., sir, I need the toilet.”
I left the room, and walked straight out of the school.



DREAMING, (WISHING)

How great it would be to fly. To soar up into the sky, higher and higher, not stopping until I reached a new world. A place where no one cried and where smiling was compulsory. Fields so full of bright and vibrant colours, it would be impossible to walk around without feeling joy in your heart. A land where even the slightest of pain is nonexistent and vast rivers flow with crystal clear waters. Where a gentle breeze would weave its way through the branches of trees, making them sing so loud it was almost deafening, but pleasing at the same time.
Such a place might be called Heaven.
Of a love so great it was almost visible. A feeling of such intensity I felt a compulsion to reach out and grab hold of it, to savour it and keep it as mine forever. Perhaps it would be possible for every soul inhabiting this special place to be linked together for all eternity, joined by this wondrous power, smiling and laughing, and just being happy.

Suddenly, reality returned me to the park bench I was sitting on, just outside the school gates. A tear trickled down my cheek, would I ever be free of Ropeman? Was it my destiny to be stalked and tormented by him forever? My mind could not comprehend what he was doing at my new school, and I felt overwhelmed with paranoia, convinced he was only there because he knew I was. It felt as though he was telling me that things were not yet finished, and I felt so alone.





THINGS COME TO A HEAD

The following morning at registration I bounded through the classroom door ten minutes late, spoiling for some sort of confrontation. Mr. Brooke, my form tutor, looked straight at me, his face turning a deep shade of red, “You’re late,” he bellowed. I said nothing but fixed one of my stares on him, my eyes not blinking or looking anywhere other than directly into his.
He dismissed the class to their first lesson and told me to sit down. “What’s going on Simon? Firstly, you walk out of school without so much as a bye or leave to anyone, and this morning you turn up late wearing a huge chip on your shoulder.”
I said nothing.
It was apparent from the expression on Brooke’s face that he could see something was troubling me, and it was manifesting itself in the form of bad behaviour. He sat down at his desk and spoke very softly, “C’mon, you’re a bright lad with a tremendous amount going for you, what’s it all about? Is there a problem at home?”

Here was my chance to speak out about Ropeman; he was giving me yet another green light to pour my heart out, but instead, I simply replied, “Bollocks.”
Within seconds Brooke was upon me, and I was frog marched to the head master's office and with the adrenaline pumping through my veins, I prepared for battle.

HEADMASTER: Do you want to tell me what this is all about then sonny?

SIMON: There aint nothin’ going on.

HEADMASTER: Simon, firstly you waltz out yesterday, secondly, after arriving late, obviously with issues on your mind, you swear at one of my staff. It really is unacceptable, now what’s troubling you?

SIMON; **** OFF.

I gave the Head no choice but to suspend me; and for the second time in as many days I left school early. Lighting a cigarette, I headed down the road with a spring in my step. There would be no more chance meetings with Ropeman, not for a week at least. Flicking my *** butt away, I looked to the blue sky above me and breathed a sigh of relief. I wanted to be alone, away from the adult world of manipulation and complexities; I wanted to be a child again.





A STATE OF EUPHORIA

My school suspension was lifted exactly one week later and things carried on much the same as usual. I continued to be the mixed up problem child who no one had any time for (except for the love that my family continued to offer), swearing and cursing my way through life. When my form tutor told me the lunchtime music practice had been revoked, I saw a green light for truancy.
Accompanied by the drummer of my band, Sean Watson, most of our days were spent reeking havoc on the infamous Ferrier estate in Kidbrooke. When we tired of throwing stones at people’s windows, we’d steal large quantities of milk off the milkman and hide ourselves high up on the balconies, pouring it on unsuspecting passers-by as they walked through the many rabbit warren type pathways. We would often collapse in uncontrollable fits of hysteria as our victims tried in vain to apprehend us.

One particular afternoon saw us both have a crack at shoplifting, our target being a local hardware store, hoping if nothing else, we’d get chased by the manager.
Sean created a distraction by talking to the man about a Saturday job, while I committed the actual theft.
I grabbed the first thing that my trembling hand rested on and slipped the object into my blazer before silently walking out of the shop to the freedom that eagerly awaited me. I was about to cross the road when the sound of heavy footfalls boomed behind me. Spinning on my heels, I expected to come face to face with an irate shop manager, but to my relief it was Sean, “What is it? What did ya nick?”
“**** knows.” I put my hand into my pocket and pulled the mystery object out; it was a large tube of Evostick.
A short time later, we were crawling through the tiniest of gaps behind a low-level car park, and very oblivious to the world that surrounded us; we introduced ourselves to the fine art of glue sniffing.
I cannot speak for Sean, but for me it was the most awesome thing I’d ever done. It completely transformed the way I thought; there was no pain or fear, and I felt no sadness whatsoever. The make-believe world I had so often dreamt about began to flourish, enfolding me within all its glory.

Crisp blue skies,
A sun so bright,
Sweet smelling flowers,
Birds taking flight.
An ocean of colour,
The horizon so bright,
A feeling of hope,
And nothing to fear.
Beautiful hills,
And fields full of corn
Chairs in the garden,
Swings on the lawn.
The howling of wolves,
Death and decay,
A dread in the heart,
At the start of the day.
Scared of the shadows,
And what they contain,
Contorted illusions,
Of a brain that’s insane.

I began to sniff glue on a regular basis; enthralled by the way it made me feel. Every opportunity I got was spent with a carrier bag at my mouth, escaping the hell that had become my world.
During the periods when I wasn’t high, and the way the come down left me feeling, a new kind of anger started to emerge, giving me a compulsion to inflict harm on myself, as well as becoming more physically violent towards others.
I soon started picking on the local kids, demanding that they give me their pocket money, threatening to beat them up if they told their parents, (and sometimes beating them up anyway). Every time a cat or dog came near me, I would lash out as hard as my strength would allow.
At times they appeared to have his grotesque smile, and this could send me over the edge. Sometimes I’d sit for hours within the confines of my room, stabbing my arm with a sewing needle. I’d stab harder and harder, enjoying the burning pain. It took my mind off the memories, images that now tormented my brain on a daily basis, except for the occasions when the glue took me away



PART TWO


A DIFFERENT KIND OF TERROR



A NEW DISEASE (EARLY 1982)

Over the following year, my behaviour steadily worsened (if that was at all possible). My parents would say one thing and I’d go out of my way to create as much bad feeling as I possibly could by doing the complete opposite. I wanted to make everyone else pay for the way I was feeling inside, no matter what it cost me. My stomach felt as though it had been wrenched from my body with a butcher’s knife, like it was trailing behind me wherever I went. The pain throbbing inside my skull was getting close to some sort of explosion and it felt like there was nothing that I could do to stop it.
And then it came…
Something to push me over the edge...

For the past month or so I’d been trying to wear my parents down by constantly whining, telling them my ways would change if they bought me a C.B radio. All of my mates had one perched nicely beside their beds, and I aimed to get one too, by any means possible. From what I can remember, a basic model was around £100 and after several rows with Mum and Dad, I eventually got my own way.

And then it came

Something to push me over the edge.

Instead of making a completely new world of friends, I was confronted with two of the most evil creatures ever to walk on God’s Earth.

SyeP SyeP
41-45, M
Jan 9, 2013