Chapter 2 – The Reveal
High School started out as a kinda blur to me. I used ta turn up, sit in class, eat my sour cream and salami bagel, sit in a few more classes and go home ta Pa. I‘d say at the start I wasn’t athletic or books smart. But this one time we had ta do some of those gymnastics on a thing called a horse. Not a real horse, a big old wooden box that looked nothing like a horse. It looked more like a lumpa wood rather than a horse. You don’t get many horses in Brooklyn I can tell ya. Anyways, I had ta jump over this horse and I jumped it real good.
I just pretty much liked getting home ta see my Pa. We’d hang out all the time and he’d tell me stories about Ma, an we’d go on adventures ta the zoo, parks and even once ta the wrestling. Pa’d chat ta me about how having a good plan and friends are important. He knew all kinds of stuff my Pa. He didn’t know why it was called a horse though.
I stuck at the Gymnastics thing and I got pretty good. Uncle Manuel and Wilbur used ta show me how to do roll offs and how ta break a fall. Uncle Wilbur was surprisingly good at showing me how ta elevate yourself higher than you should be. My antics at gymnastics are actually how I met my first friends, Lori and Huey. Pa always said you need good friends and I was lacking in that department.
Huey was a big guy. He was in the Rings team an wasn’t too bright, but was incredibly loyal. A lotta the guys took advantage of this but he was strong and could lift that freakin horse.
Lori was kinda an outcast in the rhythmic gymnastics team. I suppose braces and acne was an attractor ta isolation, given her strawberry coloured hair ta boot. Kids used ta say she had braces on account of her gingivitis. But me, I liked the way she smiled. And between me and Huey, any gal who would chat ta us was A-OK.
The three of us now had lunch regularly together. Those sour cream and salami bagels were even more enjoyable now I had some pals to share with. I used ta tell em all about my Pa, how he was this great Engineer and inventor. I didn’t tell em about the Dime he spent. I didn’t think they’d understand.
After many classes and sour cream an salami bagels, our high school days was coming ta an end. Lori even asked me to take her to Prom and made a big thing of it (I kinda figured the three of us would be going together any ways). Huey in all his infinite wisdom explained that the invite was a table for two not three?
It was the night of Prom and Pa took me into his workshop. I remember it as though it was yesterday. I was never allowed to go in there, only he and my Uncles ever went inta there. But this time Pa brought me in. I was so nervous and excited, I just didn’t know what to expect. We entered the workshop and then he showed me.
Pa showed me ‘the Suit’. And it was Fabulous.
We sat there until the sun came up. He regaled all the tales and adventures he’d had all those times he was gone. The good, the bad, dances with the devil, Uncle Wilbur’s tall misadventures and the Emissaries. It was like a curtain had been raised. I now knew what I could do to make Pa proud. I had ta wear ‘the Suit’.
I woke later the next afternoon. What a night. I was so pumped. I wanted ta shout from the roof tops, but I knew one thing better. I had ta speak to the guys. I raced across town to Lori’s place ta tell her all about Pa. But when I got ta her place it was cleaned out.
Lori’s place wasn’t no Brownstone in Brooklyn I can tell ya. She was from good people. I heard some noises like someone was crying within, so I let myself inta the empty place ta see what was up. It was Lori’s Ma. I asked what was wrong and she told me Lori’s Pa had given her up. Last night was her last night as our Lori. Her father had promised her to wed Dodson .That promise was ta be collected the day after her Prom. The Prom. Jeepers I missed the whole thing listening ta Pa.
I left Lori’s and darted back closer ta home to catch up with Huey. He’d wanna hear about Pa. When Huey came to the door he socked me well and good. He was quite upset himself; an explained that when I didn’t show last night at Lori’s she was distraught, and he tried to console her. I had no idea what that meant or the weird stuff going on with her family but hey, I’d just found out some pretty radical stuff about Pa and no one was spoiling this mood. Huey or no Huey, my mind was made up and it was probably best the fewer people knew the better.
When I got home I raced straight into Pa’s workshop. I shouted around but he musta gone out. Facing in front of me was the Suit. It sang to me. I had to do it. I had to try it on. I had to know if this was it. As I slid into the Suit I could feel it. This was it. This was my destiny.