An excerpt from a story by Samuel Clayton
The Lamb With Horns
John was a tall fit young man who had black hair and piercing hazel eyes. In the right light however, you might say that they were a menacing blood red. His countenance had always seemed a tad bit creepy. He was very good at eavesdropping on every conversation within thirty yards and had the memory of an elephant. He also had a habit to stare at people around the room as if he were looking into one’s soul. All this may have helped him make friends in the short term but, he was both shy and a little bit of a loner. Most people who were friends with him quickly dropped him because he seemed emotionless and without any empathy, why was he supposed to care, he wasn’t effected. This caused him to lose many friends after mere days.
During his junior year of high-school, his parents moved to a new location. They had started to worry about their son. He could never hold any real friends and those he did have, he hadn’t opened up in the slightest to. He, however, didn’t care about the move given that he thought that everyone in the older school he was at, he thought were blubbering idiots. Even if he was desperate for human interaction, he could never drive himself to be social. An invisible force would always keep him away. For this reason and others he took the move with ambivalence. He didn’t care one way or the other.
On the first day of his senior year of high-school John was on his way to class when he came across a girl that had tripped and needed some help picking up her things. He didn’t know what possessed him. This school had been just as much of a disappointment as the other three however, he decided to say hello and help her pick up her books. He would have normally passed her over but something about her was different. The conversation was short. He never even got to hear her name nor her his. The bell for the next class had rung and he was almost late!
John rushed off to his first class but from that point onwards his thoughts and actions were consumed with the girl. He couldn’t get the girl out of his head. This chance encounter was, to John, love at first sight. For the next couple of months John followed her at a good distance taking a slower route to school. He got to know her, her friends, and their habits in the process. She lived down the street from him and walked to school with her group of three friends. Their names were Jessica, Erica, and Samuel. Hers, as he found out, was the beautiful name of Rose. He would write poems in his room often of his rose, which only intensified his desire.
Jessica was a sporty young woman that looked older then she appeared. She was a member of the cheer team. She had green eyes and brown hair and was taller then usual in the school. Erica was an attractive and fit girl that was short for her age. She had brown eyes and dirty blond hair. Among some other details John found that she liked to write short stories. Samuel was a taller than average young man. He usually didn’t shave normally except for every three days. He had brown hair and was fit but not the strongest guy in the school. John could see as soon as he started his spying on her friends that Sam had eyes for Jessica.
Rose, however, was the most important out of all of them. She was well endowed with long curly brown hair. She had beautiful blue eyes that seemed endlessly deep when John looked into them and tanned skin. She wore modest clothing consisting of either a blue, purple, or pink blouse and a long skirt on most days. Her teeth were always shiny white and her face was perfectly smooth only drawing more attention to her endless sky blue eyes. Even her hobbies were perfect in John’s eyes. She loved to talk about and read books that John loved already! He found out that here favorite books at the time were dystopian fiction written by people like Huxley and Orwell. She liked the Greek epics, western movies, and so far as he had learned, wanted no car but a 1966 Mustang. From her choice of class, John had figured that she had a minor interest in philosophy and literature, upon looking her up on the internet he seemed to find several works she had written also. He loved all of the writings that she did, no matter how sappy and generic they were, because his rose wrote them. This couldn’t be any more perfect for him. She was the one person that he could think about aside from his studies. If not for how shy he was, he would have asked her out the second time he saw her.
Eventually, John decided to stop dwelling in the shadows, just out of view and formally become friends. It took some effort on John’s part but he finally went up and formally introduced himself to her and her friends. However her friends found him suspicious because he knew just a bit too much about all of them and their habits. As one of the many things John knew, even though nobody else but the effected parties, that Jessica was currently in a relationship. And in a similar manner, that Erica had some interesting internet habits. It took some effort on John’s part but despite the best efforts of her friends John wormed his way into her circle of friends. He eventually convinced her friends to accept him accept for Sam who was still suspicious of the guy.
David and Goliath
John, over the next couple of weeks had formed a routine. In the morning he would follow Rose to school. He would then go to to his classes, five of which were shared with her. At lunch he had prepared too much to eat on his own and thus would willingly share his food with Rose, and grudgingly with her friends. Sam still suspected at this point but had been quickly silenced by Jessica. John would then hit his remaining classes then follow Rose on her way home to protect his love. After heading home and finishing his homework, John would stalk her and her friends over social media until he fell asleep. Waking up in the morning he would repeat this every school day so long as he could.
Everything was going perfectly until a legend of the sophomore year came back. Jimmy Dawson, otherwise known as The Titan, had returned from his year long expulsion under the terms that, for the next six months, he would do nothing wrong. For the most part, that is what he did. Jimmy was very much a changed man. Although, he still had his reputation as the terror of the sophomore year. John had no problems with this figure except for the fact that Jimmy, the 6’ 4”, muscle bound young man, was making moves and getting a little bit too close to Rose.
Things got worse when John found out that, while following rose back home, that Rose had been tutoring Jimmy at her house. This would not do, not one bit. John watched the two for the next few nights and found out that they were doing a little bit more then just studying. Jimmy was far too close and far too intimate. Seeing this rankled John to no end. Every kiss made him want to use a knife to carve off his face, every hug made him want to cut off his arms. Every touch made him want to burn off his hands. He wouldn’t stand for it! John decided that Jimmy had to go, he wouldn’t be allowed near Rose ever again.
John knew he couldn’t just say that Jimmy had to go because then, Samuels suspicions towards John would be proven correct. John decided to make a plan. John, having studied Jimmy for a little while, put together a personality chart for the guy, knew exactly what to do. Because of the fact that Jimmy was on his probationary period he would have to only do one thing, get him in trouble. John’s plan would come in three parts. In the first he would become his friend and gain his trust, in the second he would get him expelled, then he would use his trust to intoxicate the guy and cause him to make a serious mistake. When he is inevitably brought in to answer for his crimes, John would testify against him and try to make sure he got as long a sentence as possible. In the end he thought he would have convinced everyone that Jimmy was a terrible person. Jimmy would never see rose again.
It took about a week but John eventually gained the interlopers trust. Jimmy was even under the impression that John was his friend. This didn’t stop him from his routine though. John in fact increased what he did during the week. John had started that week throwing late night parties where he would invite much of the school. This had a two fold impact. It kept Jimmy away from rose at night and started to make Jimmy legitimately like John as a friend. The only disappointment to John was that his beloved Rose never came, no matter how many times he invited her. This wasn’t the biggest deal as these parties allowed him to spy on the entire senior class all at once which was highly useful. Not only that but it gave him a degree of control of the people as well. John could, for example, spike the punch and cause everyone but him to get drunk. He could do any manner of manipulation through drugging the food or drinks.
One day John decided to put his plan into action. He slipped a pack of cigarettes into Jimmy’s pack at the party and, Just as planned, upon the inspection of Jimmy’s bag, the cigarettes were found and he was yelled at by the principal. At the next party John hosted Jimmy went to John for help. John gave him some emotional support, telling him it would all work out. Although this gave Jimmy some hope, rules were rules, and Jimmy was expelled from school anyway. With John as almost the only friend that Jimmy had, and the closest one too, Jimmy was in the palm of John’s hand.
The next weekend the next part of John’s plan took place and he invited all the class but rats and teachers. It was a huge party with dancing, a disk jockey, and all sorts of expensive foods and drinks. John had spent quite a bit of his savings on this event. He, near the end of the party, spiked the punch with the vodka his parents kept in the alcohol cabinet. Jimmy, who was already stressed from arguments with his parents had gone to John’s party to relax. He drank and drank and soon enough he was more drunk then anyone else around in the party. John suggested that he make advances on Jessica and Jimmy, like John’s puppet, did.
In his attempt though Jimmy irritated Samuel and made Jessica uncomfortable. Already being an irritable man an argument started between the two and Jimmy was the first to escalate the conflict hitting Samuel in the jaw and flooring him before, inappropriately making advances on Jessica again. Jimmy only got so far to pin Jessica to the wall and put his hand on her side before the party was called off, but it was too late. Jimmy’s fate was sealed.
Only a week after the fight and the party being called off, Jessica’s parents leveled a serious lawsuit against Jimmy. They sued him for sexual assault, emotional distress, and aggravated assault and battery. This mistake had also gotten Jimmy kicked out by his parents. The actions at John’s party had been the last straw. John during the trial still pretended to be Jimmy’s friend. He pushed him to not accept the plea bargain, and gave him hope that he could get off scot free. He knew that Jimmy’s fate was sealed though. John would make sure of it.
Due to Jimmy not accepting the plea bargain the trial was long and hard. it went on for two days. The public defender tried his best to reduce the sentence once it became obvious to him that he couldn’t get off from what he had done. It was a terrible scene. Jessica was crying in the defendant stand, supported emotionally by her parents. Jimmy was going to lose the case, but John didn’t merely want Jimmy to lose, he however also wanted crush his hopes.
The final part of John’s plans then came to fruition when he was brought up to provide testimony for his friend. John started at first to support Jimmy. when questioned by the prosecutors however, he used this moment to throw Jimmy under the bus and guarantee a long sentence. Obviously John claimed that the catering company that had provided the drinks had given them spiked punch instead of what John ordered. Jimmy who had relied on John for emotional support and, who was counting on John to help his friend out, was broken by this. His only remaining friend had betrayed him. Jimmy at the end of the suit, was merely silent, hopeless, and looking down, a blank expression in his eyes. Jimmy was given 20 years in prison then told he could never get within 100 feet of anyone he had known before, nor could he get any good jobs.
Jimmy was taken way a broken and miserable young man. His last and only friend had thrown him under the bus, his parents had disowned him, even when he got out of prison, he couldn’t get any good jobs. There was no more hope left in him. John found out years later that Jimmy had hung himself on his belt, after only a couple weeks of entering the penitentiary. John hoped no other challengers would rise.
The Sacrificial Lamb
John’s labors were not over however because, after only a week of having no challengers for Rose’s heart, one seemed to show up out of nowhere. His name was Timothy Right. He was a thin and short kid who, although he was a junior in high school but looked as if he was a freshman. He had light brown hair and hazel eyes that appeared at least twice as big under his thick glasses. He joined the group a week after Jessica’s family moved out of town, after meeting Samuel. There were two problems that John had with the kid, first of all he liked Rose, and second of all he was completely clean. He had committed no crimes, done nothing wrong. On the surface there was nothing John could use to control him.
At first, John was only suspicious of the kid and, so far, the kid hadn’t done anything to enact John’s wrath. John was patient but, over a few weeks, Timothy had been getting closer and closer to Rose. John finally hit his breaking point when the new guy had become a core member of Rose’s inner circle. John wasn’t going to take any chances this time, Timothy would have to go. John wasn’t going to be taking chances this time.
To this end John acted on what he did know about the kid. First of all he was weak, not only physically but mentally. Secondly the kids family babied him. With this information in hand John concocted his plan. John’s plan would work in two parts. First he would become Timothy’s friend, supporting his hobbies and interests. Then, have the remainder of Jimmy’s old gang of bullies bully him physically while John did so over the internet until Timothy had been good and broken down. John predicted that, if John acted like a good friend at that point, then he would become the cornerstone of the kids sanity. Then as he did to Jimmy he would drop him, throw him under the bus and, his family would soon after move, their poor son having been hurt by the school. After that, John would finally have his love all to himself.
To this end John both supported the creation of, and joined Timothy’s one hobby, computers. John pushed the kid to make a computer club and in support, Rose and the others joined also. John also convinced several other people to join the club to make Timothy feel better. That way his confidence would rise because there seemed to be people interested in the same things he was.
He started the bullying campaign soon after the founding of the computer club. Using a variety of methods and different social media platforms and accounts. At first he didn’t see many results but after a week of his online bullying as well as the bullying from Jimmies gang John started to see results. He watched Timmy’s head droop further and further down, the only thing keeping him sane being the club and his friends, which consisted of mostly John, some of Rose, and not much of the others.
John learned that Timothy had been hiding this from his parents and others really well because, on this occasion he seemed to suddenly become sullen and depressed. Rose, to John’s chagrin tried to help but, it failed. The rest of John’s plan took place when, at the appointed moment all of the members John had promoted the club too left. With that the last thing that Timothy had been using as a coping mechanism dissipated and he was now in shambles. John’s plan had worked well better then he had expected. The next morning Timothy didn’t come to school. His parents had moved away because their poor Timmy had been hurt by this town. With this John hoped to have his Rose all to himself for once.
TO BE CONTINUED…