Face From The Past

Child­hood friends are re­united in this cap­ti­vat­ing short story by Val Bon­sall.

The People's Friend Special - - NATURE -

and back. But that short jour­ney was where most of their taunt­ing took place.

Never me, though. They never ever both­ered me.

The rea­son, al­most cer­tainly, was my grand­mother. I was go­ing to use the word “fierce”, to de­scribe her, but “a strong woman” is bet­ter. One who stood up for her­self and those she cared about.

She played a prom­i­nent part in sev­eral com­mu­nity im­prove­ment schemes, bat­tling with coun­cil plan­ning de­part­ments and win­ning.

The gang knew that if I went home dis­tressed there’d be Big Trou­ble!

One morn­ing I was get­ting ready for school when Gran spoke.

“Lau­ren, love, you know Janet and Kev in num­ber seven? Their grand­son Craig and his mum have moved in with them.”

“Yeah, he’s started at our school.”

“That’s the thing. They’re hav­ing trou­ble get­ting him to go in the morn­ing.”

“Oh.”

I guessed it was be­cause of the gang pick­ing on him, the new kid, but I didn’t say any­thing. Maybe I should have, but to this day I’m not half as brave as my gran.

“He’s prob­a­bly just feel­ing a bit strange here, so I said you’d pick him up of a morn­ing from their house and you can walk along to­gether, then back again in the af­ter­noon.”

“You want me to take him to school, Gran? A boy?” I was aghast.

“He just needs a bit of a help­ing hand at the mo­ment. His par­ents . . .”

She didn’t fin­ish what she was say­ing.

So Craig and I started walk­ing to and from school to­gether, and be­cause he was with me, he

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