A worthless boy


The woman could post for a Victoria Secrets ad, she is so pretty, moving into the restaurant from the street just as Billy Brett told me she would.

Billy Brett told me this place is hot with whores and all I need is the right amount of money to get me one.

Iím not good with girls, and the popular girls at school make fun of me because of it.

Sometimes I think I have a sign pinned on my back telling them to kick me.

Maybe they can tell from the way I stare what Iím thinking, and how I am unable to keep my gaze off their pointed breasts or long legs poking from under very short skirts.

Sometimes, I lose my breath and forget where I am only to have my teacher yell at me to pay attention to the lesson.

So how much is enough money, I ask Billy?

He canít say, though he suggests $100.

A hundred?

With my part time job at the grocery store, I could reach the moon more easily than raise that kind of cash.

But I know I ache so much that I have to get the money somehow or die trying.

So in the middle of the night I sneak into my uncleís bedroom. He and my aunt breathe heavily as they sleep; each of my careful steps seeming to change the pattern of their snoring so I think one or both might wake up at any moment and catch me.

Of course, the key chain jangles the moment I lift the pair of pants from the back of the chair, ringing as loud as the store alarm in that small quiet bedroom.

My heart nearly stopped the moment their snoring did, and for a long second I thought I would collapse with fright until the snoring resumed and my breath Ė held for the duration Ė started again as well

I ease back into the hall and down the stairs to the dinning room where I can more easily remove the wallet.

My uncle always has a wad of wrinkled, grease-stained bills in there, the fingerprint of his job as mechanic marking each one as his.

I remove five twenties, although all seem too dirty for any quality woman to accept.

Fully funded, I make my way into the night to come here, to the restaurant on the highway where Billy says the whores hang out.

And then she walks in.

I am as dumb struck by her as I am by any girl at school, though I never stood so straight or felt such a powerful pounding in my body as I feel now.

I stagger to the coffee counter where she Ė like a butterfly Ė has settled, stuttering as I repeating the rehearsed lines Billy gave me to say.

Nothing happens for a second.

The woman just looks at me, studying me from under thick lashes.

Finally, in a very low voice she says, ďListen kid, Iím a police officer. Go away before you get in serious trouble.Ē

I blink, then blink again, he words rippling through me like no insult at high school had ever, my whole body trembling as if from a slap.

And in the lonely dark streets outside, I wander with the five dirty twenty dollar bills warm against my thigh.

I think: I will never grow up.

I think: I will never find a woman to make love to.

I think: Iíll die from the throb between my legs.

I think: Iím so worthless a boy even the whores donít want me.


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