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Out of the Cage
Wes Boyd
©2010, ©2016

Chapter 3

That really sucked, there were no two ways about it. It was bad enough that Larry turned his back on him, and now Matt was the next goddamn thing to it. He needed more than good wishes and no help, he needed a loyal buddy who was willing to help him out, especially considering the lengthening list of those who needed an ass kicking bad.

Gonna have to find someone else, Frenchy thought. But who?

Well, there was one possible idea, Rusty Frankovich. He’d sort of been a hanger-on, a wanna-be last summer and even before that, sort of on the fringes of the tight trio of Frenchy, Matt, and Larry. Then last summer, not long before the arrests, Rusty had turned his back on them for no good reason that Frenchy could figure out – some shit about trouble with his old man, something that didn’t make any sense. Someone had spiked the tires on the Eagle one night, and Frenchy pretty well figured at the time that it had to have been Frankovich who had done it, mostly because it was about the time he’d turned his back on them.

But hell, it might have been something legitimate too – Frenchy had never had the chance to find out for sure. He’d badmouthed Rusty around a bit to Matt and Larry, but had never done anything about it. Now, maybe Frankovich might really want to be part of the in-group, and at least he didn’t have a probation violation hanging over his head. Something to think about, anyway. But shit, to have to turn to Rusty after Matt and Larry turned their backs on him? It didn’t bear thinking about.

The hell with them all for now, he thought. There are other things to do. No beer, no buds, doesn’t that suck? And on the subject of sucking, there was Mary Lou. She ought to be home by now; maybe he ought to head to her house and see her before her folks got home. That would knock at least one item off the list, at least temporarily. He wouldn’t have time to do her up the way she needed to be done, but at least she could knock the edge off him a little.

The problem with that was that with no wheels, he was going to have to hoof it, about as far as he had come from the jail earlier. That would suck too, but at least now he had some decent clothes on, and he could wear a heavy jacket, not just a T-shirt and clamdiggers. A good session with Mary Lou could wipe out a lot of the bad taste that the last half day had left him with, and might get things back on the right track.

He had warmed up from his trip home from the jail pretty well now, so the cold outside didn’t seem quite so intimidating. He pulled on a heavy jacket, a stocking cap, and some brown jersey gloves – that ought to keep him halfway warm as he fucking walked over to Mary Lou’s house. This shit of being without wheels had to end as soon as possible! Where the fuck was the Eagle, anyway? Even beat up, it would be quicker to get around town than hoofing it.

It wasn’t a damn bit warmer when he went outside – colder, if anything – but this time he was more or less dressed for it, and heading over to Mary Lou’s put the wind at his back, which helped a little. Maybe, if he was lucky, Mary Lou could run him home, so he wouldn’t have to deal with the wind on the way back.

It was still a long damn walk over to her place, and he was thinking about her less than he was about the problem with his buddies. Rusty was kind of a dipshit, he thought, a wanna-be, but maybe he could be trusted to give him a little support where it counted. If so, maybe he could get started kicking the asses that needed to get kicked.

In spite of the way he was dressed, Frenchy was getting pretty chilly before Mary Lou’s house came into sight. It was either colder out there than he had been thinking, or he just hadn’t had time to get used to the season after spending several months inside. At least he could warm himself up at Mary Lou’s, warm himself up in more ways than one, he smiled to himself for the first time in a long time.

Up on the porch and out of the wind a little it felt warmer. He could see lights on in the house – the sun was getting pretty low, and it would be dark before long – so he knew that Mary Lou about had to be home. Good deal! He could just about imagine her going to work with her lips on him. A blow job would be nice to start out with, he thought, and maybe there would be time to tear off a piece. He rang the bell, and could hear it ringing inside. In a few seconds, Mary Lou opened the door, just a little way, with a chain latch not allowing it to be opened any more. “Frenchy!” she said in a voice that indicated she wasn’t totally happy about something. “What are you doing here? I didn’t know you were out of jail yet.”

“Just got out today,” he said in a casual voice. “I thought I’d better come over and see my girl.”

“I’m not your girl,” she replied icily. “I haven’t been your girl since you blew me off after my jaw got broke. Did you stop by to visit me? No. Did you send me flowers? No. I wasn’t of any use to you, so you couldn’t be bothered to think about me.”

“Aw, come on, hon,” he said, trying to make peace. Obviously she had her panties in a wad about something. “I was in jail, you know that.”

“You weren’t in jail for a week after I broke my jaw,” she snarled, “and not one fucking thing did I hear from you. I learned one thing while you were gone, and that’s that I’m a hell of a lot better off without you. At least now I have a friend who cares about me, not someone who uses me when he wants to and throws me away whenever it doesn’t suit him. You’re out of my life, Frenchy, now just stay there.”

“But Babe . . .”

“Don’t ‘but babe’ me, you fucking jail rat. I know what you want, and it’s the only reason you’d come over to see me. You’re not going to get it, so just get the hell out of here and out of my life. I’ve learned that I don’t need you, and thank God!”

“That’s no fucking way to talk to me,” he snarled back. “After all I did for you . . .

“You mean after all you did to me,” she replied angrily. “I’m not going to put up with it any more. Get the fuck out of here, Frenchy. Nancy is already calling the cops.”

That sounded like a crock of bullshit to him. He was giving some thought to giving the fucking door a good hard kick, going in and tearing off a piece of what she owed him anyway, but then he looked past Mary Lou and deeper into the house – and saw a sight that chilled him colder than the weather. Nancy Halifax was back in the room a ways, holding the phone to her ear, obviously doing just what Mary Lou had said she was doing. Nancy fucking Halifax, the fucking school lesbian!

“All right,” he snarled. “The hell with the both of you. Just the next time you decide you need some cock, don’t come whining to me.”

“I wouldn’t touch you again if you were the last man on earth,” she snarled, and slammed the door in his face.

Well, piss, he thought. That didn’t exactly go the way I intended. So Mary Lou was friends with Nancy Halifax? That about had to mean that she’d turned carpet-muncher on him! Jesus H. fucking Christ, what a fucking revolting turn of events! Nancy wasn’t even that good-looking a girl, and it really revolted him to imagine Mary Lou with her head down between Nancy’s legs. To think that Mary Lou had blown him off for the sake of a fucking girl! It was just about the most disgusting damn thing he could imagine . . .

He was still standing there all but puking at the thought when he realized that Nancy had been on the phone, and if he didn’t get the fuck out of there the fucking town clowns could be showing up at any minute. If he left now, he probably wouldn’t be in any trouble, but if he broke into the house and kicked some lesbian ass like he really should have done he had little doubt that there would be more trouble than he wanted to consider.

“Fuck you, bitch!” he snarled to the wind, and turned to walk off the porch. It was going to be a long walk home into the teeth of that fucking wind, which now seemed a hell of a lot colder than it had a few minutes before. What the fuck else was going to go wrong today? Was that what Matt had been talking about when he said that he couldn’t even begin to tell him the other bad news that had happened while he was in jail?

Well, fuck, he thought as he trudged up the sidewalk. Another name on the list of people who needed their asses kicked when the time was right. Two names, in fact, Nancy’s for taking Mary Lou away from him. He didn’t know where she got off thinking that she could make it with his girl. Not only did she need her ass kicked, she needed cock and lots of it, just so she could know what a man was. All the fucking girls in the world didn’t add up to one good cock, and she needed to learn that, and by God, he had the cock to teach her with.

But again, not now, especially with the fucking town clowns maybe on the way. The last goddamn thing he needed was to be behind bars while there were things that needed to be taken care of on the outside. First fucking things first, he thought.

He was partway back home when it came to him that he was pretty close to Rusty Frankovich’s house. Maybe this trip wasn’t a total loss; maybe he could stop off, start getting friendly with Rusty, and maybe even warm up a little before he had to get back out into the fucking wind again. If nothing else, maybe Rusty would be able to run him home. At worst, going the block out of the way to his house would get the fucking wind out of his face for a few minutes.

It didn’t take long to get to Rusty’s house – it just seemed like it did. Somehow the way the wind blew between the houses meant that he had to take it in the face virtually all the way. At least it was out of the wind on the front porch when he knocked on the door.

The door opened, and there stood Rusty’s sister Misty. She was a cute little redhead, and he remembered seeing her on the beach in a bikini one day last summer. That jogged his memory a little – she’d gotten into a yelling match with him, and then with no good reason her boyfriend, Jack Erikson’s younger brother Howie, butted in where he had no business being. That had degenerated into a fight, and Howie had kicked the crap out of his knee. Frenchy had gotten a couple good punches in to reply, and Matt had been coming around the car to hold onto the kid so he could get the punching out he deserved when some people had started heading their way to bust up the fight. The Erikson kid still needed to have his ass kicked over that – there was no way that the little shit should be able to think that he could get away with kicking his knee. It had fucking hurt!

Then Frenchy remembered that the yelling match had been about Rusty, with him bitching to Misty that Rusty had to have been the one that fucked up his car. She probably blabbed to him about it too, so if he was going to turn Rusty into a bud he was going to have more to do than he thought. Fucking blabbermouth little bitch! “Hi,” he said after a few seconds as the thoughts churned through his mind. “Is Rusty around?”

“No, he’s over hanging out with Mike and Steve,” the little redhead replied cautiously. “Some church thing, I don’t know what.”

Church thing? Somehow that didn’t sound like Rusty . . . “Mike and Steve who?” he asked.

“Mike Kovacs and Steve Sarmeinto,” she said. “They’re usually hanging out together these days.”

Shit, that really didn’t sound like Rusty. Kovacs and Sarmeinto were God-boxers from the word go, always had been. Frenchy had always figured they were gay too, but didn’t show it much. “I didn’t know Rusty was into that church stuff,” he said.

“He never used to be until he got to hanging around Mike and Steve during football season last fall,” Misty replied. “He gave himself to Jesus and all that happy stuff. Let me tell you, he was a pain in the ass before but he’s really a pain in the ass now.”

“Yeah, well, thanks,” Frenchy replied, totally at a loss for words now. “Tell him I’ll try to catch him around, will ya?”

There was nothing to do but to get back out in the freezing wind and head for home. If Misty had been anything like right, that probably blew up the chances for any help from Rusty, or any chance at turning him into a sort-of-bud. Well, Misty had it right – Rusty was an asshole anyway, and that just proved it. He’d be better off not depending on a guy like that, anyway.

Fuck, he thought as he turned back into the wind to trudge farther up the sidewalk. Did that mean that Rusty had turned gay too? Hell, he wouldn’t put it past Kovacs and Sarmeinto! Jesus, what was this world coming to? They’re fucking everywhere! The thought of the three of them in an all-guy threesome came to mind and just about made him want to puke again. Worse, he couldn’t get the thought out of his mind the rest of the way home, even though he tried to by trying to think of other guys he could turn to for help.

There were two or three other seniors he had played football with, even more wannabes than Frankovich had been, guys like Don Johansen and Lanny Mundhenk. Both of them were kind of pussies in comparison to guys like Matt and Larry, who had played up in the line with him where the men were. On the other hand, at least Mundhenk owed him a little for the blocking he had done, saving him from being sacked a few times. Of course, there were a few times that Mundhenk had mouthed off to him when he had no right to, and Frenchy hadn’t blocked a few sacks in reply . . . well, maybe not. Get much further than that and I’m getting into the list of people who need their asses kicked.

Damn near as cold as he had been when he came home earlier, Frenchy finally went into the back door of his house, to be greeted by a “Where the hell have you been?” from his father.

“Out,” Frenchy snarled. “Trying to catch up with a few friends. Where were you when I had to walk home in just shorts and a T-shirt this morning?”

“I don’t have the time off coming to take off to give a jail rat like you a ride home,” his father said angrily. “What got into you, anyway? You just couldn’t leave well enough alone, could you? All I’ve heard about for months is how you deserved to be in jail. Walking home by yourself is the least you could have done after all the trouble you caused us. I’m telling you right now, that shit is going to cease and it’s going to cease right now.”

Oh, shit, Frenchy thought. He’d had a hint that all wasn’t exactly sweetness and light around home when he’d gotten his one jail visit back around Christmas but he thought his dad just had his tail in a knot over something and that it would blow over. “I was just doing what I had to do,” he protested.

“Yeah, right, shit,” his father snarled. “You just had to beat up people for the fun of it, right? Well, let me tell you mister, I meant what I said when I said this shit is going to cease right now. You’re not going to get a free ride out of us any longer, and I’m not going to stand for you leeching on us. Like I said, that shit ends now. You’d better be figuring on getting a job and paying us fifty bucks a week for room and board or you can head right straight back out that door.”

“From what I’ve heard, jobs are a little hard to find,” Frenchy protested, seeing that now even his home base was going away from him. He hadn’t gotten along very well with his parents for years, but he sure hadn’t been expecting this.

“Then you can have your ass in school,” his father raged. “That is, if they’ll still have you. You’d better not be expecting to get a free ride there any more, either. I’ll tell you this, I’m not going to have you sitting around here on your dead ass while your mother and I work our butts off to feed you and put up with your crap.”

“I’ll go see about school in the morning,” Frenchy conceded, hoping this would blow over, like it usually did. In a day or two everything would probably be forgotten about. “And I’ll see what I can do about finding a job, but like I said, from what I heard there aren’t a lot to be had.”

“There’s work to do,” his father snorted. “You just have to do it. There are walks that need shoveling around this town, and before too long there are going to be yards that need raking and lawns that need to be mowed. I was not shitting you about the fifty bucks a week. I need that fifty next Friday night or you can just find one of your buddies to live with. You’re going to have to carry your share of the load around this place or you can just walk out. Either one is fine with me, but your mother and I are not going to put up with things the way they used to be.”

“Like I said, I’ll go see about school in the morning,” Frenchy replied weakly. “It’s going to be hard to deal with a job if I don’t have wheels. What happened to my car?”

“It’s in the junk yard. Maybe it’s gone through the car crusher by now; it wasn’t worth anything more than that. It was nothing more than a pile of trash, and I had to pay a hundred bucks to have it towed in from somewhere out in the middle of nowhere where you wrecked it. You owe me that hundred too. It was that or you getting fined even worse for littering.”

Well, that wasn’t exactly a surprise, although the hundred bucks was. There was no way he was going to be able to come up with that kind of money anytime soon, especially without wheels. “Well, crap,” he said. “I didn’t think it was that bad.”

“Not that bad? Hell, they had to bring it in on a truck since it couldn’t even be towed on its wheels. And to top it off, it was full of empty beer cans, and that’s another thing. I don’t want to see you with any beer around this house. I don’t even want to hear you thinking about beer. After you went to jail your mother and I had a long talk, and we decided that we’d set a bad example for you, so we both quit drinking. We had to go all through the house and find the beer that you’d stashed here and there. We didn’t even drink it, we just shit-canned it. If I catch you with a beer, your ass is out the door, even if you’ve paid your rent. You’d better be thinking about finding someplace else to stay if you even think about having a beer, because we’re not going to put up with that shit any more, either.”

There was more of the same, but it all added up to the fact that his folks weren’t going to cut him any slack. What’s more, they seemed pissed enough about it that it didn’t look like they were going to let it blow over anytime soon, and it seemed pretty clear that he didn’t dare say much of anything or he was going to be out the door. And finding a place to stay? Well, at one time Matt or Larry might have taken him in for a short period over something like that, but those days were pretty much over with. It would be goddamn cold to have to find some quiet place out of the wind to spend the night, because if he got thrown out it was pretty clear that he was going to be totally homeless. Maybe he could find an unoccupied hunting cabin, some place that had some food and some wood or something, and he might be able to stay warm for a few days. It would take a car, or better a snowmobile to do it, and where was he going to find one of those unless he stole it? Maybe when the weather got warmer, maybe if he could find a friend to lean on – but after today those seemed rather few and far between.

The only other thing he could think of to do if that happened was to hunt up someone like Jack Erikson who really needed his ass kicked and who had a PPO on him. Kicking the shit out of him would get him thrown back into jail, and after this afternoon three hots and a cot in the warmth of the slammer didn’t sound as bad as they had a few hours ago.

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To be continued . . .

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