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Chapter One:

Megan’s Disgrace

I had brown hair that hung down just past my shoulders, green eyes that when they watered, they would melt people’s hearts, and I had a few little pickle-cute spots, as my mom called them, the freckles that appeared just around my nose and went out just a bit on to my cheeks. I was normally a very talkative and active child, and now, at twelve years old, I had so many friends, that it was hard to give them all attention all the time. I don’t even remember how I became popular. But it was November already, and we were all sitting in class, the dreaded Language Arts that was taught by Mr. Hate, himself, Mr. Hastings.

“Pop quiz!” he suddenly told us after we were settled into his third hour class. “And I hope you all did your reading for last night. With the recent lack of homework completion in this class, I decided that what you all needed to motivate you, is pop quizzes sprung on you until the end of the semester!”

Of course, we all groaned at his decided punishment.

Just the same, with the same heavy sigh that all my peers had given, I numbered a clean sheet a paper to twenty five like he had requested, and waited for the first question. Honestly, this was one of the worst, meaning least understanding and spiteful teachers of seventh grade. No one liked him that I knew.

“Number one…,” Mr. Hastings was starting to tell us through his walrus thick mustache covered mouth the questions for our twenty-five question pop quiz. I shook my head as I heard the question, and sighed. Yeah, I had not read the assignment that last night. I mean, all the teachers had homework for us, and it felt never-ending. Reading, we could normally just fake because we ended up reading it again in class, especially in Language Arts, and there were real homework assignments to complete, that had attached questions or papers to hand in.

I sighed as he was eventually on telling us the question for number three. I was starting to think that this pop quiz might take the whole period. That was not going to be any fun at all. No silent reading time that we could pass notes to each other during or even writing summary questions so we could doodle or zone out as we pretended to write.

Okay, I did hate Language Arts, not only because the teacher was a harassing hawk-eyed tyrant, but because I really didn’t enjoy anything to do with reading or with math these days. Simple addition wasn’t so bad, and simple picture books, when I was in elementary school was okay. But since starting middle school last year, everything had been stepped up by the power of ten!

I am not by any means a tall person. I think I am on the short side at my school, though there are definitely some much shorter girls around. I looked over to my right, and Stephanie was one example of one of the girls that was shorter than me, with silky raven black hair, brown eyes, and light brown skin. She was one of the nicer girls, maybe a little too nice for her own good.

“Eyes on your own paper,” Mr. Hastings called out his usual warning when eyes started to wonder, so I looked back at my paper as we approached number seven on the pop-quiz.

I sighed and shook my head. Why did he always assume we were looking at others’ papers just because we grew bored of looking a piece of paper in front of us? I tried to put that thought out of my head as the quiz went on. The hands overhead on the wall was ticking rather slowly, and the questions and time he gave us to answer them was even slower at getting added to the paper.

Looking at what answers I had already written to check any work was not worth it to me. You see, I had trouble when it came to seeing too many things on a paper at a time. One trick I had developed in like the fourth or fifth grade, was that I was taught to slip a wide piece of paper over most of the words on a page, so I could focus only on what mattered at the moment, but during our pop quiz, I wasn’t allowed to have my paper helper out, so I had to just try to keep the top part covered with my arm as I wrote.

I felt a little tension in my stomach, but I numbered the paper for the next question, number ten. I wanted the pop quiz to be over with, and the clock up on the wall mocked me, it’s hands probably a few minutes behind the questions now, so that maybe the pop quiz was not going to take the whole hour.

The tightening in my stomach grew a little more troublesome and I felt an embarrassing tension in my groin, but knew not to raise my hand. This was the worst teacher of all to ask, and even many of the other teachers told us that we needed to learn to control ourselves and to use wise judgment in taking care of ourselves. So I looked back down at the twelfth blank number, waiting to hear the question so I could try to scribble something there.

Yes, I called it scribbling, not writing, the same things I always heard when I eaves dropped on anyone that mentioned how I wrote something whether they be teachers, my own mother, or even my friends, sometimes. I definitely had neither good penmanship nor sensible spelling. It was a wonder anyone even understood my writing, but somehow, many of my teachers could guess it enough to help me.

I felt a stronger tug at my groin as I started to answer the fourteenth question. The clock on the wall was getting even slower than ever, and I knew that the pop quiz was not even going to take half of the lesson. I wished time would speed up though. I kind of wanted to use the toilet, but after what happened last year in a less tyrant’s class, I was kind of scared to raise my hand and draw attention, not to mention, there was no way he’d say yes while we were in the middle of a test.

I started to wonder why I suddenly had to go so much. I mean, yeah, I did skip going to the bathroom between the last two periods, and I often did go then, but I didn’t feel like I had to do anything so I just went to class. Besides, I hated the school bathrooms, so only really went in them when I felt like I really needed to. There were the dingy walls, the dirty toilets, the smell that always made me want to gag, some questionable people in them that I wasn’t sure if they were smoking or doing something else, and of course, there were the occasional bumps into Angela and Barbara. We had never gotten on since probably about the fifth grade, when they found out about my reading problems.

I felt my side with my left hand as I started to respond to question fifteen. The clock was slower still, now seeming like we may even have half an hour left of class by the time the quiz was over, maybe even more, at this rate.

I sighed and holding my side, proceeded to try to scribble down the answer. I was a bit surprised at the questions that the teacher was asking though. He warned us when we sat down that he hoped we read last night’s assignment, but the questions he was giving us had more to do with what we’d already gone over in class in the last week. I was glad he was orally telling the questions instead of making us read them. I knew from the way the others looked at him, sighed, and groaned, that they hated it when the questions were oral, and so he probably thought this made them harder. He was a tyrant like that, but with him trying to be a tyrant, he was actually accidentally helping people like me.

My side felt like it was tightening a little. My groin felt like it was pulling and pushing at the same time. My stomach hurt a little, but I gritted my teeth trying to get through question number seventeen. Only three questions left, and another thirty minutes of class. “Please, don’t do this to me. Please,” I whispered to myself, scared I was going to wet my pants before class was over. I had not done that, since well, I don’t want to remember the last time it happened. It certainly wasn’t in late elementary school, or last year, or this year….

I really had to use the wash room, and I was getting kind of nervous. My legs were starting to bounce and my knees to touch as I squeezed with just my muscles at the moment. I felt my face get a little heated, but I knew that raising my hand to ask was only asking for humiliation. This was a tyrant teacher, and I remember last year, there was a boy in science class, who raised his hand. He was made to sit there and pee himself in front of everyone, the teacher seeming as if she had no idea though he had told her, and had squirmed for over twenty minutes before I saw the spilling pee out of his chair hitting the floor. I’d have died if that were me.

Actually, I think he did die, at least, as far as being aware of things when he was around. He didn’t respond to anyone when they said hi to him after that. He always had his head down, and he had to avoid Angela and Barbara and the boy versions of them even more so than anyone else in the school. There was no place he could live his shame down, and I was scared to even be seen near him, afraid someone would call him my boyfriend or something.

It’s not easy to be twelve years old, not for anyone, but for someone that was loser enough to get caught pissing their pants, it was a lot worse!

Finally, the last question was asked, and I started to fill in the question when I felt my eyes startle and grow two sizes in my head. I felt my muscles tighten harder, and I felt a very light spray that immediately stopped, dampening my underwear. I looked up at the clock, and we still had twenty five minutes to go. How did I get in this mess? I was scared to raise my hand. I couldn’t get caught peeing my pants under any circumstance, and I just knew this tyrant would say “no,” and that would certainly draw everyone’s attention on me. There was no way they wouldn’t know I couldn’t wait if something leaked out if they were watching me.

I started banging my knees together as the teacher went to the front after collecting the papers, and then he told us to open our books. By now, he knew not to ask me to read. He had asked me to read in front of the class about a month ago, and after only a few slow starts at mixing up words, not pronouncing words right, and stumbling over everything, he had decided it was best not to pick me for the last month.

I probably should have been in a special class, but for one reason or another, no one bothered to care how I read. At that time, I just thought I was stupid when it came to reading and complex math, so I kept as quiet as I could about that shame, only telling my best friends.

The clock on the wall seemed to hesitate between each tick, and I could hear it mocking me as each slow tick seemed to echo in my head. It was like the clock face had a sudden mouth, and it was sticking its tongue out, and I could feel it inside me, acting like a little brother, taunting me.

“You’re gonna pee your pa...a...ants,” I could just somewhat see and hear the sing songy face of he clock trying to make me lose my self respect, what little I had. I mean, I already couldn’t read right, and I couldn’t keep my numbers straight. Wasn’t that enough shame for a twelve year old without making me piss myself, too?

I squeezed really tight as I felt a strong sudden wave trying to seize my body, and the sounds of other readers seemed to fade a bit as I concentrated harder and harder on my muscle. I was NOT going to let even a little more out, no matter how it bothered me, and it sort of gave me a dull ache. I didn’t care. There was no way I’d do that-- willingly.

The clock on the wall continued to grin at me as the minute hand vibrated with a click eight minutes until time to get out of class. People had been reading along, and I had not heard the last several people even, let alone, had the concentration to move my wide strip of paper to follow along! I was shaking. I hoped against hope. It was only eight minutes!

“Megan!” the teacher sounded a little irritated.

“Huh?” I asked a little confused at first why he would be addressing me.

“Do you even know where we are?” he asked his voice sounding lower rather an more excited, but I somehow knew that if I said no, I’d be in trouble. I glanced around the room to try to count the number of readers, and then I tried to count the paragraphs. He never called on me in more than a month. Why did he have to decide to do so now?

I found a paragraph that might have made sense, and it was fast enough, he didn’t say anything at first, as I started to try to stumble over the first couple of words.

“We’ve already read that,” he sounded annoyed.

“Sorry,” and I tried the paragraph under that.

“You need to see me after class,” he frowned at me making me feel scared, embarrassed, and my pee was still worrying me, and the clock was still laughing at me. I shook in my seat, but he ignored me and went on to the next person after me.

The time continued to tick slowly, and before the bell, I felt a little bit of drizzle before I suddenly realized it, and pulled myself out of my worries about what he was going to do to me long enough to get control. Shaking, I put my hand under my desk.

No one seemed to notice.

I felt the front of my jeans, but I didn’t feel anything by the zipper.

No one noticed yet.

I lifted a little and slipped my hand under my bottom, wincing, scared of what I’d feel. My legs were white-tight pressed together, my knees nearly hurting from rubbing the ball round bones against one another, and my hand pushed at the fabric under my butt. It was a bit damp, but it wasn’t all over. Maybe no one noticed.

Fully aware that another leak would definitely get me noticed, I pulled my hand out from under me, and carefully kept looking at my book, as I wiped my smelly hand on the side of my pants to get the dampness off of it. I started to smell myself instantly. I knew I had leaked, and now, I was starting to worry that I smelled bad enough that everyone else knew it, too.

I scooted in my seat, my knees doing tiny bounces off of each other for fear of moving too wide and letting the flood out.

The clock mockingly bounced its minute hand, not obviously, but just enough, that through the echo the sound made in my head, I knew it was just making fun of me. My knees rubbed through my jeans, pressing and hurting. My privates pulsed and ached at me to release the water inside. The teacher was staring at the reader. An echoing voice that I didn’t hear the words of was making sounds from trying to read, but I can’t understand the words. A bead of sweat gathered at my brow. My face felt warmer, and then cool, and then warmer again. I could feel myself breathing, and I could almost hear the nervousness of the air escaping my mouth. I hoped, as I looked around, that no one else could tell how scared I was, and how close I was to peeing in my pants!

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Chapter Two

Sneaking Around Mom

I still don’t know how I did it. I felt it drizzle into my panties over the last five minutes of class, and just as the bell rang, I started to pour through my pants. I just sat there, frozen in fear that someone was going to see, but the other kids were gone in an instant, and then I was just staring at my wet lap, and the teacher was just approaching me.

“You are one of the kids that refuses to do homework,” he started to berate me. I sniffled. I didn’t refuse to do the work. I just had a hard time doing it, but I was scared to counter inform him. If he realized I was just stupid, they would probably send me to kindergarten or something. I had wet my pants like I belonged there.

“It is unacceptable that you choose not to follow along and read when you are asked to during class,” he continued without really giving me a chance to defend myself. I didn’t want to though. I wanted to just get out of his sight before his eyes found the seat of my chair.

“You can go,” he finally said. “The school will be contacting your parents though.”

“My mom!” I corrected him only in my head. I dared not say anything. He got up and walked away, and it seemed I was able to slip out without being noticed. I hated it. My pants were wet all over my butt and partly down my legs, but if I went into the nurse like that, and worse, if I had changed, everyone would know what I had done. I wasn’t sure what to do. I went into the bathroom and started to try dry myself with paper towels.

“What happened to you?” a blemish free blond with ice blue eyes walked in while I was trying to dry the wetness.

“Someone spilled water in my seat,” I lied. “I wasn’t watching when I sat down.”

“You should be more careful,” Angela sneered at me. “Someone might mistaken that for piss.”

I frowned and looked daggers at her, and my mouth tightened as I drew out an accusation that I knew to be false, but it may serve its purpose. “Did you have something to do with it?”

“What? No!” Angela frowned and narrowed her eyes at me. “What do you think I am? That’s just sick.”

I left the bathroom with her quivering her jaw at me. Normally, I never got away with outsmarting her, but today, she just had no comeback. I don’t know. Maybe she wasn’t as cruel of a person as I thought. She really seemed flabbergasted that someone would accuse her of that. I hoped she didn’t smell me.

No one said anything about my pants to me and I slipped by fourth period and then into lunch where I met my friends at a small round table. As I sat down, I sighed. If no one else cared, I doubted my friends knew either.

Hey, Megan,” Heidi the heaviest girl called to me. She had her hair done so that she had tails going down the back of her hair, two of them, but they were blended into her hair, more to keep her shiny gold light hair from covering the cheeks of her face. She smiled her teeth slightly crooked. “We’re over here!”

I looked over and saw the three of them sitting together; Heidi, Anna, and Nicole. I walked that way with my tray and once I was there, the gossip started right away.

“So, a girl from from my fourth class said that someone smelled kind of bad in your third period, Megan. Did you see who it was?”

I just shrugged and shook my head. No way I was letting on anything and have them realize it was me. But…. If the kid said someone smelled bad…. I blushed and looked down. I shook a little bit, wondering when my friends would eventually put two and two together, when they would realize I smelled like… like I had… had just…. I couldn’t think like that. I had to come up with something to talk about to distract them. What? Would make them ignore that I smelled?

Excuse me,” I stuttered and started to rush away from the table, my tray still on the table top. I couldn’t stand it if they realized…. I’d lose all my friends!

I headed out of the cafeteria in a hurry, but as I got around a corner to sit against the wall, a couple of moments after that, that is when I noticed that as I slid down the wall, and landed on my wet butt, that all three of my friends were right there, staring down at me.

Looking up, I waited for them to defame me. I could see Nicole or Heidi calling attention to the smelly baby, right here, starting to cry as tears started to slide out of my eyes and down my face as I looked up at them. I shook a little bit, the quiet sobs hard to hide.

“What’s wrong?” Anna asked me as she squatted down, and then she covered her hand over her mouth and nose, frowning. She definitely knew now.

“What happened?” Nicole sounded concerned.

I started to cry, and they listened to me explain how it got to be so hard, and how I was in that class with the strictest teacher in school, and soon, they all understood how I couldn’t draw attention to myself.

“I know,” Nicole eventually whispered once I had finished telling them what happened. “He made me do it when school first started.

My eyes must have given my surprise away. I had not known that poor Nicole had been one of his victims nearly two months ago when school started. Of course, she wasn’t the only seventh grader, even an eighth grader had been forced to wait too long in his classes, not this year, but last year. He was seriously the worst. But Nicole hung her head and she stuttered trying to backtrack what she said.

“I mean…, he almost… um… I mean it… um….”

Anna put a hand on her back and whispered to her. “Nicole, just like we are all here for Megan, we are all here for you, too. Everyone knows that teacher is a barb in the hind-end, and I think it’s about time you trusted our other two friends with your problems. Don’t you?”

“I guess,” she sighed.

“You don’t have to do this, but we are supposed to be friends. Friends tell each other their secrets, and they support each other, right Megan? Right Heidi?”

“Right,” I bit my lip because I was very scared of telling them something else. I wasn’t sure I could ever tell them about that.

“Well, um…,” Nicole looked from Heidi to me, and then she looked up at Anna. “You can tell them, I guess.”

“Well, don’t you want to?” Anna asked.

“I… I do, but… I’m too… um…,” and she turned a darker shade of red. Her face seemed on fire.

“If it’s that embarrassing, you can tell us later,” I told her trying to help her. I started to realize that they were not even looking at my wet pants now, but were just talking, and acing like it was no different than whatever Nicole thought was scary to tell us. I didn’t think she had much to worry about. I mean, I did just pee my pants in third period in front of everyone, and thought I had gotten away with it.

Nicole looked at Anna. “Please, just tell them. I… I would, but…,” and she looked down tears in her eyes.

“Nicole has been suffering off and on with infections since fifth grade,” Anna told us. “I found out when she was playing at my house one day, and just like Megan, she was mortified and scared of losing me, but I didn’t even know it was an infection. I just accepted the fact that she wet herself in front of me and just kept playing with her since that first time, and eventually, she asked her mom to talk to my mom and me about it, and I learned about it last year.”

I looked up at her. I couldn’t really believe what they were saying, but Heidi just put a caring arm around her, and she whispered to her. “Well, we are all friends. No matter what, don’t worry about us,” she told her.

Of course, I nodded my head along with Heidi, but was too shy to speak up since I was sitting right there in front of them, being the one that was wet with no actual reason than stupidly thinking I could miss one day of going to the toilet between second and third period.

Nicole bent down though, and helped me up.

“Come on,” she whispered to me. “It’s not good for you to sit all day in wet pants. I’ll take you to the nurse. If people see us going together, they might think you are taking me. I’m surprised you haven’t heard any rumors about me going around.”

I looked down. I did hear the rumors, but I never thought they were talking about Nicole. Nicole was kind of popular, and a lot of people liked her. I never heard anyone say her name, and I don’t really know how she was able to stay popular despite having wet herself when school first started this year, but then, maybe she was really good at hiding it if she started having trouble in fifth grade.

We walked to the nurse’s room, and Nicole stayed with me until I came back out from changing into some school sweats and we walked towards our next class.

 

I didn’t understand something though, once I was cleaned up a little bit, and was sitting in fifth period social studies. I didn’t actually finish the deed until everyone was out of the room, and no one was paying attention to me in third class. How did they really know it was me? I might have smelled, but no one was teasing me or making fun of me. Why weren’t they, if they knew I had wet my pants? I didn’t want to think too much about it, and so I shook my head and chased the whole embarrassment away, but no one was calling me names or teasing me.

I had hoped that the worst of the day was behind me, now, and the next three lessons went on pretty standard, through I did go to the bathroom between sixth and seventh period as a matter of principle this time, though my body sent me no signals again. I was not going to take that chance again, even if my seventh period music teacher was a little more laid back than Mr. Hastings.

 

As the students gathered at their lockers to put away things and collect jackets, homework, and whatnot for going home, I met my friends who were all at my locker smiling, and we started to talk a little bit about our plans this week.

“My dad is so lame!” Nicole told us. “He wants to do some barbeque event this weekend to promote his goodwill to the city.”

“That’s harsh,” Anna frowned.

“What’s harsh?” I asked. I hadn’t been to one of their barbeques before, so I didn’t understand why it would not be fun.

“Her dad is the mayor of the city,” Anna reminded me.

“So?”

“Well, the barbeque is a lot of fun for people that are invited along, but Nicole has to work her fingers to the bone during those events.”

I frowned. “He can’t make her work, can he? Isn’t there something again child working laws or something?”

“Yeah, Child labor laws,” Nicole informed me of the correct term. “But what I’m doing isn’t really working in a way that would get anyone in trouble….”

“He’s always trying to show that he’s like all the other families out there, just trying to get through things like everyone else to build empathy. It’s a nice trick, really,” Heidi said. “My mom talks about it all the time. It makes him look genuine, but really, my mom thinks he’s just a big fake.”

“He’s not though,” Nicole defended her dad. “He has been on his office phone at home calling up people and trying to get them to invest in our town. Sometimes, he spends hours on the phone trying to persuade some one to open a warehouse here or to ask people to move dangerous things away from us. I’ve seen it.”

I sighed. I didn’t really get politics that much, so had no idea if what her dad was doing was different from others. I just tried to listen out of politeness for my friend.

“Well,” Anna tried to cut the conversation short before someone was offended. “We can’t go to the movies this Saturday. Maybe we can all go to the barbeque. Nicole might be a little busy there, but at least we could be there to support her.”

Heidi nodded. “Yeah, I’ll go to support Nicole.”

I nodded. “But I have to ask my mom.”

The other girls rolled their eyes. Of course they asked their parents for every plan we made, but somehow, even they seemed to think my mom was a little too controlling of me, and I shouldn’t have to say I have to ask on every little detail.

I smiled at them though. I knew they understood and of course, I would never go against my mom. It was just not something I thought about at this time.

As we walked out of the building, I noticed that Anna put her hand on Nicole’s back momentarily, and then seemed to pat her but I didn’t see a reason for it. I raised my eye towards her, but she just shook her head and adjusted something in the shoulder bag that dangled at her side. There was a frown on her face though, and I was pretty sure I had missed something.

“I know,” Heidi suddenly drew my attention away from whatever Anna was hiding. “We could get permission to have a slumber party at Nicole’s on Friday night. That way, we could help her set up he next morning and maybe give her more time to spend with us during the barbeque.”

“That’s no guarantee,” Nicole informed us sadly. “The reason it’s not against labor laws, is I am not so busy with labor, but I have to meet with daddy’s guests and talk to them all the time,” she looked down.

“Yeah. Like I said, my mom thinks he is a fake. She says why include your children in a campaign unless you are exploiting something?” Heidi suddenly remembered. “Still, you do have to set up some before the barbeque?”

“Yeah, the whole family pitches in and helps set up and clean up.”

“We can still all go and try to support her though,” Anna smiled at us. “I mean, unless anyone here is afraid of unfolding a chair or carrying a dish out to the party?”

I shrugged. “I wouldn’t mind. I just have to….”

And all my friends joined me as I said “ask my mom,” to which we all laughed. I guess I did say that phrase a lot. But then, I guess you had to understand my mom to realize why everything was like it was. I’m not saying I did understand my mom. I just said you had to understand her.

 

A while later, I knew that mom would notice that I had changed my pants, so I really didn’t want her to catch me until I had gone to my room so that I could put on something that was mind, and not have to face her accusing stare. Of course, she probably didn’t know what happened in third period, but I was still worried that somehow, she would guess if she saw me in school sweats that I didn’t actually own.

I opened the door as quietly as I could, and waited a moment to make sure that the sound of me unlocking the door didn’t draw a sound from her asking if I was home. I didn’t heart anything, and no one came to the door to open it, so after a minute, I tiptoed through the door and shut it as lightly as I could, turning the handle to make sure there was no “snap” to the closing of the door.

I could feel my forehead sweating.

I turned and saw that my path to the steps going up still clear. I just had to get up those stairs, and then I’d be able to get something of mine on….

I set my bags by the door so that I wouldn’t be weighted down. I looked again at both archways on either side of the short run to the stairs. One one said, there was the living room with the sofa facing the television, and the other side, was the dining room table. The kitchen was around a corner from that.

I didn’t see my mom who was a towering adult with auburn brown hair and brown eyes, her shoulder area was level with the top of my juvenile head. I ran on my tiptoes when I confirmed that I saw her neither in the living room where she would be more likely to see me, nor even in the dining room where she could have been wiping the table down. It was my lucky day?

I got to the bottom step and started to put my left foot on it, the purple and white striped shoe not making a sound as I pushed myself upward ready for the next step.

“Megan!” I suddenly heard my name called from behind. Where had she come from? I froze but shivered at the same time. “Would you come to the living room, please?” she asked me pretty sharply.

I frowned and stepped back down from the stairs and turned to face my mom, my head down, but looking out the top of my head through the bangs of my hair.

“We need to talk,” I could see a very disappointed frown on her face.

“Oh, okay,” I shivered again as I took a step towards her.

“She doesn’t know what happened at school though,” I tried to tell myself. “Whatever she was disappointed about, it is probably something else. I probably missed a dish last night when I loaded the dishwasher. Maybe I forgot to make my bed this morning. I was in a hurry.”

“Sit,” my mom looked sternly at me for a few moments until I sat down, nervously swaying my legs back and forth so the knees touched, and then they didn’t. “I got a call from your school,” my mom continued to lay out what she was upset about. “It seems you were disrespectful during class?”

I shuddered. “No?” I pleaded though I really had no idea of how I was disrespectful in class. I didn’t yell at any teachers or say anything bad.

“It seems you didn’t want to read in English class,” she frowned at me.

I nodded. I didn’t want to read. That was true.

“So…. You were not following along while people were reading,” she started in on me. “And then, it turns out you have not done your homework all week…,” and she looked at me for several moments. I thought it was a rhetorical telling off, but when she had keep looking at me, I realized I had to confirm it.

“No…, I… um… I didn’t do it,” I answered.

“And then, because the teacher wanted to talk to you about it after class, you disrespected him.”

I frowned trying to see how he thought I had yelled at him, but that was not what the disrespect was….

“You pissed your pants instead of telling him you needed a wash room? You did it right in front of him while he was telling you what you did wrong?” she asked me her face heating up, and a look in her eye that was actually a bit scary.

“Um… no?” I was scared and wasn’t thinking when I said no. “I mean… I… I mean, I was already wetting before that,” I admitted tears in my eyes.

“Well? You didn’t tell him you even had to go. You just sat there and peed in front of him!”

“I… I… I….” I didn’t have an answer. I was scared of him. I didn’t expect him to have let me go. I was sure that he wouldn’t. And I actually thought he had no idea I had wet myself. He let me go without a word. But would mama believe that?

I couldn’t tell her anything. I didn’t want her to think I was lying or that… I was trying to do something weird, so I just stood there, unable to think how to tell her that I couldn’t have asked him.

I know that middle school can be scary sometimes,” My mom sighed. “But sweetheart, you can’t just go around peeing your pants because you are afraid of your teachers. They have to let you go if you ask.”

I frowned. Maybe mom didn’t understand what they wrote in my student booklet! Of course, I couldn’t really read it cover to cover either. It was too hard for me, but I knew from spending a year and two months at school, what was expected, and I wasn’t ever in trouble because I knew what I was supposed to do.

“Megan?” she looked at me until I looked her in the eye. “You need to ask the teacher next time.”

I nodded. It was no use telling mom that’s not how it works. But I knew that was not the main reason I was even in trouble.

“So…? You didn’t do your homework for a week?” she had finally gotten to the meat of why I was really in trouble.

“It… um… I couldn’t,” I sighed. “It… it’s too hard.”

“Too hard?” my mom shook her head. She had been denying that reading was that hard, and she had been just thinking me lazy since about the third grade. “Look, Megan, if you think it’s hard now, you are really going to get behind in high school. You need to stop being lazy about it, and just start doing your homework, or you are not going to have much of a life after high school.”

I sighed and felt tears running out of my eyes.

“Sweetheart, I’m not telling you this to discipline or punish you. It’s the truth. The world is really hard when you don’t read. You need to stop making excuses and just start trying to get your homework done.”

I stood there, waiting for my mom to finish her telling off. I knew that not reading well was no fun. Little did she know, some people already made my life hell at school because I couldn’t read sometimes. I wanted to shout that I wished I could read like everyone else, but I knew that would just irk her more.

“Alright,” my mom wasn’t one to drag a telling off out too long like some adults did. She prided herself on the fact that she was able to get her point across to me within a couple of minutes most of the time, where other parents had to go on and on and on about the same thing. “Go to your room, change your clothes, and then I want to see you reading your homework books when I check on you next.”

I nodded, and I went back to the door to collect my bag.

“And put your dirty laundry in the laundry room before you go upstairs,” mom told me. “I shouldn’t have to be touching your messy clothes because you can’t act your age when you are twelve years old.”

I nodded.

After I had put my wet things from earlier in the washing basket in the laundry room, I made my up to my room, and with a great sigh, I changed and then pulled out my Literature homework. It was going to be a very long night. I knew that now was not the time to ask about going to Nicole’s barbeque this weekend or to ask to go to a sleep over.

 

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This is very interesting, especially with the tags.  I know you get into the psychology of the abused, so I'm looking forward where you are taking this

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there will be more.  I'm just not feeling well and have a lot going on.  I'm trying to finish my chapter 10 on the father and 2 new adopted girls, then I'll come back to this one.

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14 minutes ago, Ishigreensa said:

there will be more.  I'm just not feeling well and have a lot going on.  I'm trying to finish my chapter 10 on the father and 2 new adopted girls, then I'll come back to this one.

Take as much time as you nee for find your voice.  I hope you do because it's an interesting premise.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Chapter Three

What’s Wrong With Me?
part 1

The rest of the day felt surreal, and I just sort of went through the motions of trying to read and do my homework. I hated that it took forever all the time, and that I couldn’t make sense of half of the words. Still, I wanted mom to not be mad at me anymore, so I tried. I eventually had dinner, took a bath, and went to bed.

 

The next day, when we met at school before classes started, we sat at our usual table, and the girls started to excitedly talk about Friday night and Saturday. Tomorrow was Friday, and I still hadn’t been able to ask my mom.

 

“My mom said I could bring over some homemade salsa,” Anna told the group. “You know, for the sleep over.”

“Oh, I’ve always wanted to try that,” Heidi smiled excitedly. “Nicole has been talking about your mom’s salsa for ages.”

“I know, right?” Anna smiled.

“… And I got it set up with my dad,” Nicole told us. “We’re going to move my bed out of my room tonight so we can put sleeping bags around on the floor, that way we have lots of space.”

“You’re not talking,” Anna suddenly looked at me. “What’s wrong?”

“I don’t think I’ll be able to come,” I looked down. I felt like I was letting them down.

“Look, we know your mom can be a bit strict,” Anna told me. It’s not your fault if….

“But, it is my fault,” I had tears in my eyes. “The teacher told my mom what happened yesterday, only he told her about my missing homework, too, and that I was disrespectful, so I never got a chance to even ask yesterday because I felt like bringing it up wasn’t even worth it.”

The girls all looked around at each other and then at me.

“You’re still having trouble reading?” Heidi asked me.

I could only nod.

“She’s been having trouble with reading since around the third grade,” Heidi told the others. “She has always tried to pretend she just wasn’t paying attention, and she has been able to fake it enough to make it look like she just struggles a little bit, but her reading is really messed up.”

I frown and look at my lap. The other two were going to find out sometime. It might as well be now.

“Well, if you’re having so much trouble, just tell your mom how hard it is?” Nicole advised me.

“I… I keep telling her it’s hard, but she thinks I’m just being lazy.”

Nicole frowned and looked over at Heidi who nodded.

“I’m not sure what your trouble is,” Anna told me, “But when I first started third grade, they had to give me some support because English was my second language, and they helped me read and speak better.”

“But I’m not like you,” I frowned. “I am just a normal white girl that’s too stupid to read.”

Anna shook her head. “Not being able to read is not normal, and it doesn’t make you stupid,” she told me. “There is something going on, and someone needs to tell your mom that something isn’t right.”

Heidi nodded with Anna.

“Well, I don’t know what to do about it,” I told them. “I mean, my mom just expects me to do it, and I can get the words right, if I just look at them and concentrate a little more than most people.”

“Well, how about this?” Heidi offered. “How about we all come to yours today, and tell your mom we are wanting to do our homework together? She can send us away if she wants, but maybe if she knows the purpose of our visit is to do your homework, and if we do the reading, purposefully in front of her, she will see how differently you read than us?”

I looked down. “I don’t know if I want her to know I’m THAT stupid.”

“You’re not stupid, though,” Anna frowned. “You are having trouble with reading, and it won’t go away until they figure out what that problem is, and work with you on it. In my case, it was a language problem, but in your case, it has to be something. People don’t choose to be bad at reading.”

“Look,” Nicole said. “After we do our homework with you, today, I’ll ask your mom to come to my house tomorrow. She can talk to my mom. Then we’ll bring up the sleepover, and we’ll bring up how much trouble you are having at school. My parents know that sometimes people get missed when everyone focuses on “special groups,” and they forget that sometimes less discriminated people have troubles too.”

“I don’t see how that will change my mom’s mind,” I told them. “She’ll just think I’m even more stupid.”

The girls sighed. Looking down at their laps for a few minutes, they seemed to try to figure out either how to help me, or how to convince me. I think they wanted to convince me more than anything, but I really didn’t want my mom to know how stupid I was.

 

I went off to my first class not really knowing what to do with this. My friends seemed supportive even if I was a bit too stupid to read, but I had no idea what my mom would do when she found out I couldn’t read.

I got through the morning, this time not making the mistake I did the day before, and got to lunch without a problem. But I still felt guilty when I knew that my homework was garbage when the teachers asked for it because even though I tried to do it like mom told me to, I knew it wasn’t as good as even some of the special ed kids sometimes turned in. Okay, I’ve never actually read their homework, but I was sure mine had to be worse.

 

I found my friends sitting at the table waiting for me again at lunch, and I sat next to them and sighed.

“Do you have any homework for the afternoon?” Heidi asked me.

“Huh?”

“I mean, do you have papers to turn in?” she asked me.

I nodded.

“How about after we eat, we compare our papers in the library, and then we help Megan,” she asked the others. “We shouldn’t correct her spelling or the teacher will think she didn’t do the homework, but at least we could see how much she understood the reading to do her homework.”

“Good idea,” Nicole said. “I was actually going to see if Anna needed some help with hers.”

“Does Anna usually need help?”

“No,” Nicole said happily. “But I like to check anyway because there is a really biased teacher she has for History that will be kind of mean to her sometimes, but he can’t say anything if her answers are close to what mine are, but are worded her way.”

Heidi smiled. “Gotcha.”

 

At the end of the day, I went to my locker to start getting my stuff to go home, and Heidi, Nicole, and Anna were all there. I smiled seeing them as I got my stuff.

“What about your stuff?” I asked them.

“We got our stuff together before the last class. We wanted to make sure not to miss you so you’d know that we were coming to your house.”

“I didn’t even get a chance to ask my mom yet,” I told them.

“Well, she can send us away if she wants,” Heidi told me. “But we really think it’s important that she sees you trying to do your homework, and hears all of us read so she can see how hard this is for you.”

I frowned. “Okay.”

 

We walked towards my house, and I was so excited that my friends were coming over, I tried to put off thinking about my mom telling me I was grounded or any other reasons she might try to send them away.

Don’t worry about yesterday,” the girls told me again on the walk home. “Everyone knows that teacher is a horse’s rear. I don’t think the rumors have even really caught on because I didn’t hear anything today,” Heidi was talking.

I looked down.

Nicole put an arm around me. “It’s embarrassing, Heidi. Just drop it. Okay?”

Heidi nodded. “I was just trying to help her not worry.”

“I know,” Nicole smiled at her. “It’s just harder when it is brought up again when you’ve tried to move on from thinking about it.”

Heidi nodded.

“So…, what do you have for homework?” Anna asked me.

“I, um, have a lot of make up work for Language Arts, some Social Studies, and some Science. I don’t think we’ll finish it all in one night even if you help me.”

“Well,” Nicole rubbed my shoulders. “We can at least finish the assignments due tomorrow and then work on some of your make up work, right?”

I looked down. “You guys really want to spend your free time doing homework?”

Anna pulled me around by the arms to look at her straight on. “Do you think Nicole wanted to spend all her free time helping me when we first met? But she did. Friends help each other, and if we didn’t want to help, we wouldn’t be walking you home, okay?”

I looked down.

Nicole rubbed my back. “I promise, it’s okay,” she whispered in my ear. “Besides, you are actually helping us.”

I looked at her very puzzled at what she had said. How can them helping me with my homework be helpful to them?

“When you help someone do homework that they didn’t do on time, you get a second look at stuff that could be on a test or something,” Nicole smiled at me.

“Yeah, that’s right!” Heidi agreed though I couldn’t miss the tone in her voice of surprise as though she hadn’t even thought of that.

 

We came to my door, and as I opened it, and looked around inside, my mom walked up on us, from the kitchen, and she started shaking her head. “I told you last night, you are grounded until you get caught up with your homework.”

“Well, um… if I may?” Anna looked up at her. “I mean, you can watch us, of course, but we aren’t here to play. We heard she was really behind and came to do some homework with her.”

“You did?” she looked around at all the girls frowning. “So no playing and talking about boys or whatever?” she asked us her eyes narrowed.

“I promise,” Nicole stepped forward. “You can even tell my mom on me if you catch us playing. My parents would be super mad if I lied to an adult about doing homework just to play with a friend.”

My mom thought about it for a while, and then she nodded. “Well, I guess you girls can do the homework in the kitchen, that way I can keep an eye on you.”

I looked down. That was the plan, for my mom to hear the difference in our reading.

 

As we settled and started to take our Language Arts books out, my mother brought over some cookies, chips, and drinks for us. We weren’t rich, so this was the best we had for entertaining our guests, and I think she recognized Nicole right away. After all, as was told to me the day before, Nicole’s dad was always parading her around when he did his parties so that he could show that he was the same as everyone else, struggling with the same family issues.

As we all started to sit, and the other girls had their books out, my mom took me by the hand.

“I need to see you for a minute before you start. I’d rather do it in private, but if fight me, this will embarrass you.”

I looked down. I wasn’t going to fight her anyway, but now, I really didn’t want to. I stood up and walked with her and she took me up to my room where she made me pull down my pants and show her my panties.

“Why?” I asked her.

“Because you wet yourself yesterday,” she reminded me. “I just wanted to make sure you didn’t go a little bit again in your pants.”

I frowned. “I didn’t.”

She made me show her anyway, and then she nodded and let me pull my pants back up. “I’m sorry, but you did try to sneak up to your room yesterday, so I know you aren’t telling me if you are wet.”

I frowned. “It was really only one day. Honest.”

“I don’t care if it was one day or a hundred days, when you don’t tell me something like this, and I had to find out from a teacher, then I need to start checking you. If you don’t want that, then you will start telling me if you make these kinds of mistakes.”

I looked down. “I’m sorry.”

“You can go back down with your friends.”

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, parkintochter said:

thanks for the chapter!

 

You're welcome, but the chapter isn't finished.  It's just what I had done so far on it.  I knew it had been a while since I had something to give my readers, so I posted what I had. I'll probably working on this chapter for at least another week or two before I go back to the Father and foster girls.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...
On 11/28/2023 at 11:05 PM, Ishigreensa said:

You're welcome, but the chapter isn't finished.  It's just what I had done so far on it.  I knew it had been a while since I had something to give my readers, so I posted what I had. I'll probably working on this chapter for at least another week or two before I go back to the Father and foster girls.

please go on. I need more

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  • 1 month later...

I am really sorry, but I feel I can do some more with what is already done.  It feels like it is not really the best story I can tell with these characters and their situation, so I'm going to be trying this again soon.  

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Megan obviously has dyslexia or something. The school has failed her and her mom. How can parents not notice these things is beyond me. Schools these days would recognize a kid is struggling, even if they are pretending to be dumb or not interested. Then they would talk to the parent about their child saying they want them in a reading group so they can approve or even say they want to do some testing for a possible IEP. 

 

Must be some shitty school district Megan attends. 

But based on the tags, I get a feeling Megan's mother will be like Sarah's mother in All My Mother's Rules. 

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This is the new version of my story here.  I think it gives some better context, and also maybe we can see a more natural development into what caused that first... episode.

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