*she held in the pained wails. Her tears continued to flow as she felt the pain. It was amazing how someone can have complete control over you by just yanking up your underwear. How she can become so helpless and weak unable to help herself. She mentally kicked herself but knew she had no choice*
Life: it feels like saws, liking its trying to split me in half. And I like it. It feels g-great.
*she chokes out the words and suddenly her face grew a look of terror. She began to cross her legs and bite her lip. Life always had a weak bladder even as a kid. And now was the worst time for this to happen. She prayed to be let go. She felt like she could puke, she felt absolutely terrible.*
"That's a lot better Life. Much better. The saws thing is a little cliché sure, but then again, it is apt."
Dean lowers the back of her underwear to the top of Life's pants. He keeps his grip on both the front and the back, but allows a certain amount of slack so the underwear is no longer as taut and tight up and against the back of her as it had been. The underwear was still a clump, an solid lump of animal covered cotton that filled her butt. She leaned backward as she felt the front of her underwear as it tore against her with greater strength. And it only took her a second to deduce that the front of her underwear wasn't being pulled harder, she was just able to appreciate the feeling of the underwear poking at the most intimate part of her body, now that the rest of the underwear wasn't contributing to the spearing pulses of pain that racked her nether regions with the intensity that only bullies like Stacy and Terrance, who did this for a living, could muster.
Dean yanked up on the front of her panties, making sure to keep the back loose. Life leapt to her tip-toes, her entire body curving backwards in the shape of a half-moon as she was forced to feel the underwear attack her. Her head leaned back toward Dean, and it bent so far that Dean could see Life's eyes as they stared up at him for a brief moment. Life closed them and her mouth opened, in a slow process one might see if an ancient door were opening for the first time in ages.
Dean hauled the front of her panties to het breasts, his fist clenched so hard on the underwear that his white knuckles were clearly visible to anyone who might have been looking. But no one was. It was still just the two of them. And Life had more important things to worry about then the color of Dean's knuckles.
Dean made sure to keep the underwear where it was for a few seconds, thinking at first that he could maybe count to ten but then thinking it would be better if he just did it all by feel.
He slowly lowered the front of her underwear so that the waistband was again at the top of her pants. Almost as it had been before the wedgie. But this pair of underwear wouldn't be the same, and Dean didn't think Life would ever be able to wear them again.
Without pausing he began to lift the back of the underwear so that the slack given on the front transferred to the part of the fabric that made up the rest of her panties and it began to slide from the front to the back, dragging itself across Life's assaulted body, rubbing on her life a towel being used to forcefully dry an area that had gotten too wet after a day at the beach.
Dean bet that Life wished she was at a beach right now.
He raised the back of her underwear up until the waistband touched her mid-back, he tugged it with his one hand until it passed her bra-strap. Life began to lean the other way, her body curling forward and her hands which had been feeling at her crotch, now moved to her butt-cheeks. She shook her butt from side to side and Dean could only laugh at this.
He listened to her wailing in pain and could only smile. At least he knew she was feeling the wedgies. She was still on her tip -toes and stayed there even when he lowered the back of her underwear again.
"If I had to guess this isn't your first time getting a squeaky-clean wedgie, is it? Don't lie, you can tell me."
He did not hesitate before beginning to pull the front of her underwear, he had not finished lowering the back all the way down so Life had less time to prepare herself for the change in the sensation that transposed suddenly from the feeling of sitting on the width of a wooden plank, to having that plank thrown with maximum force at the front of her body.
He reached her breasts again with the front of her underwear and instantly began lowering it back.down, and at the same time, began to pull from the back, he started to speed this up, lowering and raising the underwear like a never ending ferris-wheel that constantly spun without stopping giving Life the exact same experience as she reached any part of the wedgie. It was pain all the way around the ride. And the wheel wasn't stopping anytime to let anyone else on.
He moved his arms up and down, jerking her body forward and back as he felt like it, moving the underwear, which was a snake that slid back and forth, his muscles constantly flexing and relaxing, pumping up and down as he alternated which side he was pulling making sure he didn't stop, but knowing he wouldn't be able to keep this up for much longer. He wondered what Life was feeling right now.
Life: this is definitely not my first squeaky clean, I had a bully who kept one going for a solid hour straight, after a 2 hour hanging wedgie.
*she covers her mouth wondering why she told him that. Now she was screwed, the assault on her lower body was terrible, he was going to be a new Terrance, she knew it. She was prepared to spend full days with her body full of cotton. She could already feel the long hours of hanging wedgies, why did her dad have to buy her such stretchy panties, they took forever to rip usually. Also why did he have to write her name on the tag, he babied her and she hated it. It was because of him this was happening. Because he wouldn't let her wear mature underwear, or easily rippable pairs. But he didn't know what she went through, she had gotten a job to afford to replace all the missing panties. She was working at a fast food restaurant called the Chicken Shack, she was dressed like a chicken and handed out coupons. It was digrading but it was a paycheck. Besides she knew she this pair was toast, she just begged for the pain to end.*
Dean paused for the briefest moment. Why was she telling him all this. An hour long squeaky clean after a hanging wedgie. Underwear wouldn't last for two hours holding a persons weight, not unless they were incredibly durable. But if it was true then just imagine the sort of pain she must have felt.
But he didn't want to imagine her pain. His pain was what mattered. She was merely a means to deal with it, a tool to be used, not someone to be pitied or empathized with. Her dad was a jerk and Dean was going to do what he could to vent his frustrations.
He let go of the front of her underwear so he could grab the back with both hands. His feet slid along the linoleum as he readied himself to inflict more pain on this bratty girl who must have things so much better than he did.
He thought to himself as he flexed his fingers against Life's panties that were now far baggier and more stretched out than they had ever been before, that if Life's dad found her like this he would comfort her and console her. Tell her everything was all right and it wouldn't happen again. Deans father had walked in on his sister giving him a wedgie once. He remembered it with a searing pain as if the memory had a fist and was able to punch him right in the heart.
*It was then that Life heard the sound of heels hitting the hard floor. She gulped knowing exactly who was in those heels. It was then that a blonde girl with a volleyball uniform walked over to them*
Girl: well well well, looks like I finally found out why you missed our appointment dork.
Life: Stacy I'm sorry, I.... Ow, I tried to show up.
Stacy: I don't want to hear it dork, once you're done here it's time to visit the porcelain bath.
Life: no please! I'm sorry I was on my way, I promise I'll show up on time tomorrow.
Stacy: too late.
*she looks at Dean*
Stacy: hey you want help torturing this loser? I'd be glad to help.
Life: no he.....
*Life whimpered and cries out as Stacy knees her in the stomach*
Stacy: no one asked you geek!
Dean stared at the girl Life identified as Stacy. Attractive and tough, definitely appealing. But at the same time, she reminded him of his sister.
Despite that he was maybe willing to work with her. Wedgies were one of.those rare things where you could never have too many too many hands involved. Four hands would be better than two. And if he did end up getting caught he could put it all on Stacy. It seemed like the two were acquainted in some way; from the way they spoke it sounded like Stacy bullied Life regularly. Maybe she would know some good techniques to make the little nerd really suffer. And if someone did walk in on them when they were at the "porcelain bath" whatever that was, he could always say he had come to rescue life from a bully.
He didn't let up on the underwear, but shifted his hands so that they held the back of her panties near her left side, leaving the right part open, and causing Life to lean, almost as if she were falling through space, toward Dean.
Stacy knew what this guy was doing. He was offering her an invitation, and it would be rude to decline. She grabbed onto the side of the underwear that hung untouched, as if begging to be pulled. And Stacy gripped it with her long fingers which served her well in volleyball and served her even better as someone who gave wedgies.
She joisted the underwear up, wanting to prove to this other bully that she could hold her own when it came to picking on losers, and Lifes body slid the other way in the air, losing her balance, and her feet which scarab led for footing, dragged along as the two began to move forward in step toward wherever Stacy had in mind.
"I'm Dean, by the way. What do you usually do with this loser?"
Stacy: I love shoving her head in the toilet as I launch up her panties. She's passed out a few times from the swirlies because she's weak.
*Life was in complete misery and utter agony. Her legs were numb, he lower body killed and she trembled with fear. She didn't want another one of Stacy's swirlies. The girl was brutal, Life was always left gasping for air and had gone to the hospital once because of her. Her lungs grew worse the more she was forced in the gross toilets. Life whimpered and cried severely*
Dean wasn't a big fan of swirlies and he wasn't too sure what he thought about sending someone to the hospital; that sounded like the easiest and quickest way to get caught. How did Stacy even get away with bullying Life if she had needed medical attention? He could imagine the hospital visit.
"Well sir, your daughter had a lot of water in her lungs, her face was soaked when she came in. Her underwear was also lodged up her butt."
"Why thank you doctor, we'll be going now."
"But wait, hoe did it happen?"
"No idea doctor. Shall we just chalk it up to girls being girls? Maybe by daughter decided to go for a swim, would that be so outrageous?"
Well when you put it like...Dean laughed aloud, unable to hold in his amusement at the thought that something like that must have actually happened for Stacy yo not be in jail right now. She must have Life scared pretty bad.
They walked almost in step, forcing both sides of Life's stretched out panties up her butt as they walked to the nearest bathroom. The underwear slid back and forth depending on who was pulling harder at any given moment, the panties moving back and forth along her crack, the fabric lodging itself into her.
Dean wasn't too sure about what Stacy had planned. He had no interest in going into the girls bathroom. Stacy might be an incredibly lucky person but he couldn't be sure that if he went in there some other girl wouldn't walk in. Some girl who wasn't as...oddly quiet about what happened to her as Life was.
And then he came up with another idea that might please Stacy and would definitely embarrass Life in a way she would never forget. And when this public display was over her father would know what happened to his daughter and he might not think himself so great then.
"Hey Stacy, how about we don't give this nerd a swirly. She gets those pretty often. How about we take her to the flagpole. I bet she'd like that!"
*Lifes eyes grew as large as baseballs*
Life: no. Please don't do that I beg you. I'll do anything else but please not the flagpole.
*Her eyes streamed tears as she shook tremendously. She absolutely hated flagpole wedgies for many reasons. For one the pain was unreal it was an overwhelming constant pressure. Secondly it was almost impossible to get out of unless the panties rip or someone nice enough comes along and helps her down. It was also incredibly humiliating to be up there. But the worst part was she was scared of heights. Being up there always made her sick feeling.*
Stacy: that sounds absolutely perfect. And I think there's something else that might help embarrass her.
*she adjusts her grip and with one hand quickly yanks down Lifes pants. She yelps and blushes deeper as her hands shoot to the front of her body to cover her crotch. Stacy laughs as she returns her grip. Life begins to whimper and cries out when Stacy roughly kicks the back of her leg. Life cried harder as she felt the pain of the forming bruise.*
*She knew resisting was useless it wouldn't stop them. She felt deep pain, she missed Arrow, her only friend had moved away, Life was completely alone. Part of her wished the man torturing her right now a weird way, but she didn't want to think about that. Right now she just slumped as her body was dragged nearer to the dreaded flagpole. She knew after this she'd never make any friends. She sighed sadly trying to fight off the endless stream of tears.*
Dean and Stacy quickly got a feel for the others movements, strength and endurance as they walked down the hall with Life hanging between them, her underwear completely visible now that Stacy had removed her skirt. Anyone coming out of a classroom now would have seen the underwear, a thin string that displayed her butt while digging into her. A lot of people would want their body showed off in such a way, Dean thought,. but they probably wouldn't want to have their underwear filling their butt, wedged tight and deep into them. Then again, some of the very vain might do it if you told then it would make them look good. They'd probably just remind themselves that there was no gain without any pain.
Dean didn't catch the irony in the fact that he was able to acknowledge that it was a twisted soul that would remain unsatisfied if it needed, (or at least thought (thought that it was necessary) pain to get any sort of lasting and fulfilling gain
They carried Life toward the doors that would lead the three of them outside. He could hear her heels clicking along the floor with every laboured step. She let Dean carry most of Life’s weight, giving the occasional tug which threatened to overbalance all three of them when Dean wasn’t ready for the surprise shift in weight.
Every step Stacy took seemed to be calculated for the specific purpose of seeming alluring. Her hips swayed, and she managed to look both dangerous and sexy. He wondered for a second how long it took for her to master that sort of walk. He could recall seeing Stacy walk down the halls, heads hadn’t turned to follow her, because they were always already focused on her. Dean k new her type and as he thought about it, she was a lot more like his sister then he maybe at first wanted to admit. The type of girl that needed people looking at her. And when they weren’t looking at her, Stacy wanted people thinking about her. She wanted to be the center of someone’s world. Maybe that why she bullied Life with such sadistic cruelty. Why she didn’t just give quick pulls to a person’s underwear but why, when she pulled, she pulled to rip the panties every time. Why she also wanted to give swirlies, something which was definitely far more dangerous than wedgies. She wanted the power.
It made sense then that she even planned Life’s daily schedule. She tells Life she has to meet her at certain times, for certain punishments. She wants to be in complete control and have people revolve around her as if she were the sun, possessed of such a strong orbit that the planets who were far less bright than she was, could only move around her and never deviate from their course.
Dean took one hand off Life’s underwear so he could push open one of the doors to the outside. With every step the three of them took, Dean could feel Life struggle harder in her underwear. She swung between Stacy and Dean, her hands flailing about. She went as far as to try to grab Stacy’s hands. Stacy kicked out, and her foot connected with the back of Life’s leg again. Stacy giggled, probably imagining how that bruise might look near the other one that was already forming. She checked her grip on Life’s underwear before pulling back on the fabric, wedging it even tighter, willing it to punish Life for what trying to touch her.
“That’s a bad nerd. Bad nerd. Losers like you need to be punished. And the entire school is going to see your punishment. Everyone will know just how big a loser you are, and you know what? They’ll all laugh at you. When they see the new flag, your stupid animal undies, waving in the wind with you attached to them then you can bet you’ll be getting a lot more wedgies. And that’s just what you deserve.”
The flagpole wasn’t far from the doors, they walked with Life, who hung limp between them, every step causing the underwear to jab at her, bunching up in her crotch and butt, bouncing against her skin. Life wasn’t walking so much as she was being lifted and dragged by Dean and Stacy who kept Life’s feet from touching the ground. As a result, her panties had no choice but to keep rising as gravity tried to force Life back to earth. The underwear was stretched to the bottom of her neck, but neither of the bullies were particularly worried about stretching it anymore. Now they were focused on the flagpole, and showing off their work to the entire school.
“This nerd hasn’t been to the flagpole in a long time,” Stacy said, “I bet she’s happy to be back here. Aren’t you dork? You want the whole world to see you hanging up there don’t you? Right at the top, your geeky panties being the only thing holding you up.”
Everything smelled of freshly cut grass as they walked to the pole which was now only a few feet away. Two metal carabiners dangled near the ground, attached to the rope that usually held the flag. But there had been a storm recently and rumour was it had gotten pretty wet. Dean didn’t believe that story so much as he believed the other rumour that someone had stolen it. But schools were supposed to hide stuff like that, keep the young adults oblivious to the evils of the world. Well they were about to be exposed to an act of evil right now, Dean thought. Maybe the principal would stop acting so self-important when he sees what happened to his daughter and what he had no chance to stop.
Dean bent down to get the carabiners, keeping a hand on Life’s underwear, but relying on Stacy to make sure Life didn’t run away. And after seeing how brutal Stacy was with Life, he really doubted Life would even try to run, but after all the work he had done he didn’t want to feel like his efforts had been wasted because she does escape and no one else gets to see what her butt cheeks look like when they’re savagely divided by her own underwear.
He got took hold of both the carabiners in one hand and released Life’s underwear. The side of the fabric that Dean had been holding wilted back toward the top of her pants. They didn’t return back to her pants, or even snapped against her, so much as started to hang where they were because they had already been so stretched. They would never fit the same again, and if Life kept them, she wouldn’t be able to wear them. Wear? She wouldn’t even be able to look at them again after this Dean thought. Stacy adjusted her hands so that she had access to all of Life’s underwear and she jumped up, hauling Life right off the ground, ensuring the underwear was properly buried in the alcoves of her body where underwear was never meant to go.
Dean waited to make sure Stacy wasn’t going to jump again, and that he wasn’t going to interrupt her fun. They had some time and the best things in life couldn’t be rushed. That was how you knew they were worth doing after all. He had a moment to think of the exact purpose of underwear. Whoever made it must have been into getting wedgies, why else would they make something that seemed to serve no other real purpose. You didn’t need to wear underwear, Dean thought, you could go without them and it wouldn’t matter. It was probably something the creator had made just so they could pull it up and get others to do it. Dean also had the briefest flash of wonder at what the creator of underwear did to get satisfaction before underwear was made. How did they get pleasure?
“Hurry up and hook up the loser. I’m getting bored holding her loser panties. I’m a little worried her nerdyness is going to rub off on me.”
Dean didn’t say anything. He brought the carabiners toward the leg holes of Life’s underwear. He used his thumb to open up the clamp and slipped it through the leghole, gesturing for Stacy to let go of the one side of the underwear. She did, and Dean took the one side of Life’s underwear and scrunched it up so he could attach the cold metal of the carabiner to a large portion of the underwear, instead of just poking a hole into the middle of the fabric. He did the same with the other side, making sure that the leghole and the rest of the underwear that must have been a few sizes bigger than it was earlier in the day, were secured. Dean imagined having hooked her underwear up in such a way, it would take longer for her panties to rip, and as a result, the pain she would feel would, of course, increase.
Dean and Stacy stepped away from life, whose feet were once again firmly on the ground.
But they all knew her reprieve would be brief. But now she wasn’t just going to get lifted off her feet for a few seconds, now the underwear would be hoisted up multiple feet off the ground, a terrible paradox would begin where her underwear would become something she hated more than anything because it was about to inflict an insane amount of pain on her, but at the same time, if it did break, releasing her to the ground, while she dangled helplessly from even a few feet up, she could seriously hurt herself when she fell and hit the ground. It wasn’t about not getting hurt anymore, it was about wondering what option of the two would hurt less and hoping you got that one.
Dean and Stacy moved to the nearby rope that was used to lift the flag up. Four hands gripped it and Stacy didn’t wait before starting to count down.
“Three…” their hands tightened on the rope, an old ragged thing. Dean thought of how if he knew they were going to be doing this he might have worn gloves. The last thing he wanted was to get rope burn. He wondered if what Life was feeling, and what she was about to feel, was anything like rope burn, except it was on the parts of her body not designed to handle such sensations.
“Two…” Dean gave the slightest pull, mostly checking to see if the rope would actually move when they pulled, and the whole world seemed to slow down for a second as he watched his action reverberate through the rope until the force he exerted on it echoed back in the place where Life’s underwear was attached, lifting the waiting fabric almost delicately up. From where he stood, a few feet away, he could clearly see her whole body tense. It was like waiting for something to jump out at you during a scary movie. You know it’s going to happen. It has too. But you don’t know when. And the fact that it is going to happen no matter what, sooner or later, is what is really scary. Compared to that something popping out is nothing. It’s the knowing that can give you nightmares later on.
“One…” But maybe that’s exactly what this was, Dean thought. Something was going to jump. Except you would never see underwear jump out at you during a scary movie. Despite that Dean realized that this was Life’s own scary movie come to life. He could hardly even imagine how embarrassing it would be to have his underwear displayed to all the many students as he hung from the pole that would soon serve as a beacon for all the students of the school, drawing them out as the tense rope they now held would draw out Life’s underwear. In the final moment before they pulled, a moment that seemed to stretch out for no discernible reason, Dean questioned for the first time what they were doing.
Were they actually going to lift her up the flagpole by her underwear? That was something that went beyond expulsion if he was caught. All it would take was one word to bust him. All she had to do was say his name.
He felt a flash of anger as he thought how she could bust him even if he never touched her. One day she’s feeling like a nerdy brat and wants to get someone in trouble all she has to do is tell her daddy that I touched her. I might not even know who she is, but that won’t stop her dad from expelling me. That’s the sort of power this brat has, just because she has things easy, and I got in trouble a few times. This wedgie was the least she deserved.
Was it really?
He didn’t want to have to think about it. He just wanted to pull the rope and let her hang far above. Then he could join in laughing at the nerd when others showed up. It would be awesome.
But not for her, he thought.
So? Who cares? You think she wouldn’t do the same to you if she was a bully? Imagine if she was a bit taller and stronger, she’d wedgie you just like your sister would. She’d hang you up leave you there.
She’s not a bully though. She’s not my sister.
“WEDGIE!” Stacy screamed and pulled the rope toward her. She was standing in front of Dean and hadn’t yet noticed that he hadn’t made a single movement to pull. He had to decide now what to do. But he couldn’t. After he did this there would be no turning back. The principal might be a jerk but he gave Dean a second chance. How many people did that? Not even his own father.
Maybe there was more to Life than just being the principal’s daughter. Maybe she had this whole life he had let his anger make him blind to. Maybe the part of her that he knew wasn’t even…life sized. Maybe her name wasn’t that bad either. You could play around with, use it in clever ways.
He was trying to distract himself, but all he could see was the rope growing tauter in this terrible slow motion as if all of the world had begun to happen at a quarter of the speed it usually would.
The underwear was coalescing into Life’s butt as if the fabric was a snail moving along her, slipping off her cheeks and moving into her.
If he did this there would be no going back. He didn’t know how he knew that, or what exactly it meant, but he couldn’t stop thinking it. That thought stuck in his head, pounding at his resolve like his underwear did when his sister kept pulling at.
Stacy would realize he wasn’t pulling soon. He had to decide.
*Life felt at rock bottom, as she felt the panties rise higher, soon the entire school would laugh at her. She had already transferred from two other schools because of bullies, she wouldn't be able to transfer away this time. The tears endlessly pour from her eyes as she tightly squeezes her wrist trying not to think about the pain. She squeezes so hard that a cut on her arm begins to bleed. She was visibly shaking, she took only a second to look at Dean, this was the first time she was really seeing his face. She felt her tear filled eyes meet his eyes and she quickly looked away in fear. She had never done anything to him, she never understood why people always hurt her, maybe this is why she has no friends. She barely ever talks to anyone even her family as she fears being hurt again. She's been beaten up far too many times and lives in constant fear of people bullying her. She knew her fate and she knew soon she'd have zero chance of ever making a friend, she'd be alone forever.
Stacy: Dean are you going to pull or not? It would go a lot smoother with your help.
*Stacy continued to pull on the rope and Life begins to slowly lift off the ground. Her body begins to squirm and she whimpers. Life just wanted this nightmare to end. She knew if her dad saw her like this he'd want to know who did it. She couldn't tell him the truth but she didn't know how to lie. Either way it would become a nightmare. She wished she could just wake up and have everything be fine but that wasn't the case. She heard Stacy but figured that he was just waiting to give a huge tug that would send her rocketing up. She was scared, she didn't want him to pull. She just wanted to be let go so she could hide for the rest of the day.*
Stacy: come on Dean. Why aren't you pulling?
Stacy was speaking but he couldn’t hear her.
There was the sudden sickening sound of the bell ringing. Usually that bel meant freedom, escape, but now it meant imprisonment in whatever future he chose. He watched as people began to stream out the entrance of the school. A few walked by without noticing Stacy, Dean and Life. But then, as more people began to file out of the school Dean knew it would only take one observant person to point out what they were doing.
And just as he thought that, he could see a few people who were standing near the doors, pointing and laughing. Their laughter drifted over to him, and the world, which moved at a pace that was, for Dean, excruciatingly slow.
He watched as a few people drifted toward them, and as is always the way, once a few started over, others followed.
At first there was undercurrent of uncertainty and confusion over what was happening, but when they saw the rope and followed it to where it clamped down on Life’s underwear it became clear.
“They’re going to hang her up from the flagpole!”
“That’s crazy! There’s no way!”
“That’s so hot. I wish that was me.”
“Shouldn’t someone try to stop them?”
Dean stared at the rope, and at his hands that held it tight. He could feel its grains against his palms. But it wasn’t just a rope that he held, it was Life’s reputation and his own. Life’s emotions, and his own. Life’s life. And his own. He realized for the first time how truly united they were. It started with the principal. Putting one of them on a pedestal just so one could be placed lower. And it ended now with the wedgie, where once again, in both a literal and metaphorical sense this time, someone would rise up and another would fall.
What had Life ever really done to him though? Did she really deserve this wedgie? Did anyone ever really deserve to get hurt? It was her father he was mad at, he shook his head, that wasn’t even accurate anymore. It was her father who he had been mad at. That anger had abandoned him just when he thought he needed it most. If he was still angry he easily could have pulled Life up the flagpole, laughing with everyone else as her panties rose up her butt, her body falling forward as she tried to keep her balance while also trying to deal with the constantly growing pain of her underwear. He could have watched and maybe even saluted the new school flag. As she hung there she would be a symbol of how he wasn’t going to let anyone push him around, bully him or make him feel like less than he was.
His own family had done too much of that already. And before he could stop himself he remembered what happened after his father had walked in on his sister giving him a wedgie. It was probably one of the worst memories he had. Despite efforts to forget it, it still held a prominent place in his mind. It seemed like the harder he tried to repress the memory or just try not to think about it, it came back twice as strong.
He was still pushing his underwear back into his pants after his sister had already left a few seconds ago.
Dean stood from his bed where he had been lying and turned toward his window. He saw his father out by a pile of wood they kept for the wood burning fireplace they had in the basement. He was swinging an axe and splitting pieces of wood on a stump that had long ago been chosen for that very purpose.
He left his room, being careful how we walked for the first few steps, not wanting the underwear to shift up by accident. He still had to put his hand down the back of his pants and make sure the tighty-whities stayed out of any place they shouldn’t be by picking them out.
When he got outside his father did not turn to look at him, and even when Dean stood a few feet away, which was a safe distance for someone wielding an axe, but probably, he thought, not far enough, when that person was drunk.
He had noticed the stagger when his dad left his room, but he hadn’t been close enough, and Dean had been a little distracted by the underwear attacking his lower body to really pay much attention to his father.
But Dean could smell the cheap alcohol which came off his father with such intensity that it was like he had showered in it. And knowing his father, he just might have.
“What was that in their son?” His words were only slurred a bit which was probably the worst of all the conditions for him to be in for conversation. Dean knew from experience that he would still be able to talk and understand what was being said, but because his inhibitions were lowered his father wouldn’t be filtering any of what he said. What he thought would just come out. In some ways this was good, and Dean wouldn’t mind if people were honest with each other, but when people had a mean streak like Dean’s father did then they could end up saying some things that hurt more than they ever realized. And it always hurt more because for the people saying the things, it wasn’t just an insult, it was their truth.
“We were just playing around.”
“You think I don’t know what a wedgie is, stupid? I know exactly what was going on in there but I wanted to see if you had the guts to tell me yourself.”
He shuffled to his right where he picked up a small log, the axe swung freely from one hand while he moved back toward the stump and place the log down. He lined up the blade of the axe with the middle of the log, lifted his arms above his head, shaking only slightly as he did so. He brought the axe down and the sound t made when it hit the log, the sound of tearing threads in his underwear, and the palpable sound of his father’s disappointment, made him jump.
The axe was stuck about halfway through the log. He would have to lift it up, with the axe still in it, and hit it against the stump a few times to finish breaking it.
“Boy, I got to ask you something. I want you to think about this, ‘cause when I was young, guys didn’t let their sisters touch their underwear and sit on top of them while they let them pull it. So you think hard about this.”
He brought the log down and the axe made visible progress through the wood. But it still stayed stuck in the middle, and the wood was still unbroken.
“Are you a sissy?”
It wasn’t what Dean had expected, and he instantly knew he didn’t understand the question, he was ready to ask his father what he meant, but then realized he didn’t have to. He knew what it meant, even if his father might have meant it in a different way. His dad had chosen such an ambiguous and vague term for the simple reason that it could mean so many things. It held enough negative connotations that Dean had to understand his father thought he was at least some of them. Weak, babyish, he could list them off for hours and he imagined his father might have already done that whenever he thought about his son.
“Don’t waste my time son. Your mother and I were happy ‘till you came along. She left cause of you. You know that don’t you? You were always whining as a baby, crying and so fussy. All the time. And she couldn’t take it. We were so happy, we loved each other. But what you put her through. So many sleepless nights because you wouldn’t stop crying. I had the patience though. I put up with it. But when you didn’t change, when years later I see you standing in front of me and I see you’re still the same whiny baby… I don’t know what to do. I just don’t.”
He had heard all of this before, but it said something of them both, that his father would repeat himself, and that Dean was still deeply affected by it.
“I’m not a sissy.”
“Oh sure you aint,” his father said, bringing the log back down onto the stump, splitting it a little bit deeper.
“Just leave me alone. You know, I heard lots of guys tell me they wish their kids had never been born. But I don’t wish that.” His father lifted the axe above his head, the piece of wood hung on tight, maybe hoping it wouldn’t be broken in half. Thinking that being cut in two and having an axe stuck in the middle of you, was better than being broken into two different pieces. Maybe a bit of pain was a fiar price to pay for still being together.
“Thing is Dean, you’re a disappointment. I don’t wish you’d never been born because that would mean I cared enough about you to care if you were here or not. And I don’t. You aint a man. You’re just some kind of sissy. You always will be. Now go away. Go get some more wedgies you disappointment. Go be a sissy somewhere else. I don’t want to see you right now. I can’t even look at you. Every time I do I’m reminded of how happy I was. It was the three of us before you had to ruin it all. What did I even do to deserve such a sissy as a son?” He brought the axe down and the wood broke apart into two equal halves that fell on either side of the stump.
Dean stood where he was for another moment, afraid his father might cut off his leg or something as he tried to chop more wood. Wishing and hoping at the same time, that he actually did. As he walked away he could hear his father still talking about him, calling him a sissy, blaming him for all his problems, and saying over and over how great a disappointment he was. Even when Dean was back in his room, far away from his dad he could still hear the insults, echoing in his mind like a broken record just going over the same words again and again.
Like the pain of a wedgie it stuck with you until you pick out the fabric. But what if you couldn’t pick out the fabric? Well then, maybe you tried to spread the pain around. Maybe that would distract you form how much you hurt if you could manage to make someone else hurt more. That was what his father did wasn’t it?
If every person is a garden then the seeds of hate, anger and fear had been planted in Dean long ago. His father watered them regularly and as a result, they continued to grow.
His hands were on the rope and there was a crowd gathering around the three of them. Stacy continued to pull by herself and Life’s feet were starting to leave the ground, slowly rushing up, the soles of her shoes rising up, her underwear beginning to cover more of her back as the fabric of her animal panties stretched once more over her back and condensing into a thin line of rope that emulated the rope that was attached to the flagpole, which was ready to hoist her off the ground.
He had been asking himself a lot of question but the most important one came to his mind as people drew closer, making a tight circle around them, and a few were even cheering for him to pull the rope. A few were calling for him not to, but their voices were drowned out.
He wondered what his father would think when he heard his son hung a girl up by her underwear on the school’s flagpole. He had tried many other things to make his father proud of him, or at least not so disgusted by him, but nothing ever worked. He still looked at Dean with a unique mix of disappointment and distaste. But maybe this would be what changed his father’s mind.
And for a brief second he could see it happening. There he was, at home, next to his father who handed the axe over to Dean.
“Here you go son,” he would say, and he would be smiling at him. They would talk, and they would laugh. And they would smile.
“You made me proud son.” And Dean would know that that was true because he would feel like it was true. And his father would nod as Dean chopped the wood. And once all the work was done and the two of them had built up a sweat working together his father would look at him, their eyes would meet and he would still be grinning.
“I love you son,” he would say, and Dean would cry and so would his dad; because neither of them could remember the last time either of them had ever said that to the other, or if they ever really had.
He could hear his father’s words of acceptance, of approval, one of the most important declarations a person can make to another, one that had lost some of its meaning since it was first used but was still necessary for people to truly understand what they meant to someone else. And what that person meant to them. The words lingered in his mind, a fog of peace that was already starting to lift.
He could have that, a part of his mind told him with the utmost confidence. He could have what he deserved. What everyone deserved. What he wanted. What he needed.
But at what cost?
To get his happiness he would have to take it away from Life. If he gave her this wedgie her life here at the school would be over. She might have to move in order to deal with the harassment and bullying that would start, or more likely increase as a result of this. And even if she did leave the school Dean thought it more than likely that someone could take out there phone and film the action. By the end of the day the video would be everywhere, and even if people worked hard to get it removed from everywhere it was, someone somewhere would save it. And then it would spread. He was sentencing her to a life where she would have to live with that hanging over her like her underwear would be when he pulled her up the pole.
The crowd of bodies around his was a viscous blob of colour that moved around, jumping up and down, pumping their fists, yelling and shouting. Impatience was a force Dean could feel pulsing off of them. Coming off of them like sweat from their pores, seeping out and coating everyone else in it.
And what if giving this girl a wedgie didn’t impress his dad? He had no real idea that it would, no evidence that said he could do that. And a part of him, the more logical part that worked tirelessly and thanklessly in the back of his mind, pointed out that his father had some serious problems. It might be impossible to ever get acceptance from him.
But he needed it.
And what about what Life needed?
She wasn’t a bad person, she didn’t deserve this. No one did.
So it came down to whether or not he was a bad person. He thought with more than a little irony that maybe that was what it always came down to.
“Dean, hurry up and pull, this nerd isn’t going to lift herself up!”
His fingers curled around the rope again, and he actually did give a little pull, it was quick and surprised Stacy who almost lost hold of the rope, Life jumped slightly as the underwear hopped up her butt. He wanted to see what it felt like, if it felt good and felt like the right thig to do. But things were never that easy, and he felt nothing but a taut rope that could either be pulled or let go with equal simplicity.
“Give her a wedgie!”
“Hang her up! HANG HER UP!”
“Hang me up too!”
“What a loser!”
“WEDGIE! WEDGIE! WEDGIE!”
Dean looked at the crowd, then the rope, Stacy, and finally his eyes ended up on Life again. She was looking at him, waiting for him. Their eyes met. He couldn’t count the number of times he had heard that the eyes were the window to the soul. But now looking at Life’s eyes they didn’t seem so much like a window then they did a mirror. Because looking at her eyes he saw himself reflected back, and in the reflection of himself he thought he could also see Life reflected in that.
He noticed for the first time her cut arms and a bit of blood that was drying there. He saw the lines on her face where tears had run down, outlining her grief better than any words ever could.
She didn’t say anything, but she didn’t have to. She seemed to have the rare gift of making her emotions visible without having to do anything. That might be part of the reason so many people picked on her, they saw her goodness which she couldn’t hide, her innate perfection that she might not even recognize and it upset people. Why else was he so quick to start bullying her, barely hesitating before grabbing onto her underwear and yanking up. It was because he was jealous of her. And giving her this wedgie won’t change anything, just like the wedgies he already gave her wouldn’t change anything.
The more he looked at her the more he realized how Life wasn’t an unattractive girl. She was far more beautiful than Stacy, and probably half the people who were hanging around in the crowd cheering him on to give her a wedgie. Couldn’t they see that this wasn’t just something someone did? He didn’t just act, he thought about things, maybe that also made him a sissy.
There were people standing basically right beside him, jostling and pushing at each other. Stacy moved her hands along the rope and tried to lift Life up by herself, but she was struggling just to keep Life where she was, her feet scraping the floor, and her underwear rising up her butt but not yet hurting her as badly as it could.
He knew for certain though that she was a more attractive person that he was. And even if people never understood what he meant by that if he ever said it out loud no one would be able to argue that she was a better person than he was.
And he was jealous of that. He saw that that was what this was all about. He wanted to try to break her as his father and sister had broken him. He wasn’t just himself in that memory of his father chopping wood, he was also the log, and the stump. He just wanted to be the axe. To be useful, important, valued.
But what of wood, wasn’t it valued? Like underwear it might be forgotten about until it protected you from being naked, or got pulled up your butt, but it served an important purpose. Without wood how you could start a fire, how could you be warm when the nights were cold? And the stump, it might be the same as so many others but it was still needed to chop the wood. Without it, the process of getting the wood ready for a fire would be unsafe. And isn’t that what everyone wants, to be someone who keeps someone else safe. And to be someone who keeps someone else warm?
“Life!” Dean called out, but his voice was a hoarse croak.
He didn’t think anyone heard him, but the way she looked at him made him think that maybe she was the only one who could have.
He wanted to give her a wedgie so badly. But at the same
time he didn’t want to.
He had come so far, he might as well finish this. But what if this was his last chance to change?
Now where did that thought come from, he wondered. It jarred him so much that he pulled the rope toward himself in a quick motion which tightened the rope and rose it along the pole, the carabiners gripped the legholes and the fabric like two eager hands, biting into the underwear before shooting up. Life left the ground for a moment and squeaked. The crowd screamed, a mass shout of unsure excitement. There must have been some ancient primal need to see someone publicly humiliated that was seeking to everyone there.
Life put her hands to her butt and now that her feet were off the ground Dean saw how easy it was to just keep going.
But what about redemption?
When he was younger he had an interest in the meaning of names. His father had talked him out of that, using guilt like his sister used wedgies, not cutting so much as deboning him, eviscerating him in the truest sense of the word. Sissy’s cared about names, he shouldn’t be spending times researching stupid stuff like that. He should be outside playing sports. He tried to tell his dad he didn’t like sports, but that hadn’t gone over well.
Something about the name Stacy called to him from the abandoned depths of his mind, the places he had been too scared to visit, but also too scared to cave in forever.
Stacy…why was he so interested in that all of a sudden? Here he was with a rope in his hands that led not just into a nerds pants, but maybe also into a better life. Maybe only a minute has passed since the bell first rang but it sounded off in his mind as if it had never stopped.
This was more than about just giving a wedgie. The people in the crowd couldn’t understand that. Stacy couldn’t either. The only person who maybe could might be Life. Someone who had suffered but not let it break her, not let it turn her mean as it had so many others. As it had him.
Or had it?
Stacy. It came back to him in a flash, as if someone had taken a picture and blinded him temporarily with the sudden change in light. It was Greek her name. Short for Eustace, or maybe Anastasia. And it meant…resurrection!
That’s right, resurrection. But what did that matter? Why did he think of that now? After years of not caring what another person’s name met, why should that fragment of memory come to him?
It all came together, and he had to smile at the irony of it all. As if some higher power had planned it all from the beginning.
A resurrection meant a new beginning, a second chance. A new life. The coincidences were too great to ignore. One person named Life, and one whose name meant resurrection. This really was his chance to start again.
Stacy was a part of that, but so was Life. His own life became a clear path in front of him. And he knew what he had to do. Maybe he would be a sissy and maybe that was OK. Maybe being a sissy wasn’t about giving wedgies and not getting them, but about how you could get them and not have to give them to others. Maybe being unable to be better than others made you a sissy.
He let go of the rope, and Stacy, not prepared to handle the weight by herself ended up falling backwards, losing her grip on the rope which burned her hands as it ran through them. Life’s feet landed on the ground and Dean was already behind, unclipping the underwear.
He moved in front of her once her underwear wasn’t attached to the rope anymore. And they were face to face. Just like when he first started to give her the wedgie. But now he felt only peace, an overwhelming sense of rightness about what he just did. Most people had gone silent but a few were screaming for him to wedgie her. Maybe that was why Life never really told anyone about what the bullies did, It wasn’t that she was scared, it wasn’t that she had fear so much as she had hope. Hope that people would change, and be better. Sometimes that didn’t work out, like with Stacy and probably with whoever else bullied her. Those people were far gone.
But maybe, if they spent enough time with Life they would be able to change. As Dean did.
He didn’t know what to do. Life looked up at him, Dean didn’t expect her to forgive him. He had hurt her and even though he was letting her go she would be still be scared of him for a while. And he couldn’t blame her for that. He grinned as he realized he couldn’t really blame her for anything other than giving him another life.
He didn’t know what to say to her. He wanted to tell her that he would do whatever it took to make things up to her, that he was ineffably sorry for what he did to her, and for what others did to her. He wanted to tell her that she was the most beautiful person he had ever seen. And that because of her he felt that he was going to be all right.
But he didn’t know how to say any of that, and just like earlier, he felt like, with her he maybe didn’t even have to. Because she understood.
He walked away, the crowd parted before, most were already walking away, bored by the anti-climactic turn of events, but that was life, and many of them would have to get used to it. A few laughed at Stacy who had fallen down and Dean wasn’t worried about leaving Life alone there, she was a smart girl who could get away from trouble if anyone tried to finish what he started. And most people didn’t care enough to even try. Stacy stalked away, not wanting to get laughed at any more. But not before shooting angry glances at both Life and Dean.
But Dean didn’t care. He would have to do what he could for Life. Apologize regularly, help her out with whatever she needed it would be a slow process but maybe she would even accept him as a friend. He didn’t think he deserved a person as good as her as a friend. But he was going to do what he could to make himself worthy of being a part of her life.
He had planned to end his pain by giving a wedgie but he got another chance because of Life.