There was a boy, with greasy dark brown hair poorly cut and worried hazel eyes, who stood in uncertainty as he took in his surroundings that was full of talkative tots and strangers. He was heavy, his cheeks full and his stomach slightly bloated as he wore clothes that were far too large and baggy for someone so young and small as he was—his fingers flinching while he forced down a thick swallow when he sat down at his assigned seat. It was first grade. His first day.
It was his first day being away from his mom and dad. His first day being around so many new people. His heart pounded, in fear and excitement. Would he meet somebody who'd play with him? Would his teacher be nice?
And what of the new things he'd learn? Would he meet some nice people? He didn't know, but he was eager to find out. His seat was next to a smart looking girl with long blonde hair braided down the back of her head.
"Hi, I'm Marten," the boy waved nervously, his gestures somewhat forced and a little too wild. She was pretty—with a clean face that seemed to shine with cleverness.
The girl looked at him sharply, stuck out her tongue, and curtly snapped, "Shut up, fatty."
Those words surprised him, and he couldn't help but pull his head back as though the words had struck him. He looked down at his desk and noticed his fingers were shaking a little more. Even though it was a hot day, his mom made him wear a long sleeved shirt to cover the new ugly blue bruises on his wrists…
"Good morning," the teacher rang a bell to calm the class around as she began, "My name's Mrs. Temple. Before we start introductions I just have a few things to hand out for everyone to take home and have signed by your parents."
A throbbing in his lower stomach rushed through him, so Marten eagerly threw his hand up in the air. He had to use the bathroom. And fast. Mrs. Temple didn't seem to notice, so Marten waved his hand to and fro, hoping she'd see his gestures in the corner of her eye. The teacher was knelt over her desk, separating piles of paper while this happened.
After no reaction, Marten proceeded to make little noises; grunts and hushed sounds of a growing impatience. Yet it seemed that the atmosphere muffled out any sound from him as classmates all whispered around him and to each other. A few threw him questioning expressions, raised eyebrows, even snickers here and there.
Soon, he felt the tingling and pain increase dramatically. He couldn't hold it any longer.
Mrs. Temple wouldn't even look. She didn't hear him. She wouldn't even look up from her desk. Marten's eyes watered slightly, and he felt everything rise and prepare to burst.
And then, he exploded. A warmth spread all across his body; the splatter of liquid sloshing on the floor under and around his desk caused everyone to silence any conversation and turn directly at him.
"EEEW, did he just PEE?" The girl next to him let out a loud shriek as she pointed at him and began to laugh loudly. She put her hand over her mouth in contempt. "GROSS!"
"That's enough, Suzy," Mrs. Temple snapped angrily as she began to stride over to Marten's desk.
An orchestra of laughter erupted and surrounded Marten's face darkened in an ugly shade of red. Everyone pointed, laughed, made noises of disgust, and continued their jeered. It felt like an eternity until the teacher finally walked up to Marten, grabbed him by the arm roughly and wrenched him out of his seat. His shoulder hurt and his fresh bruises stung at Mrs. Temple's grip.
Letting out a cry, Marten slipped in his own urine, falling onto the soaked floor. His already drenched pants smeared the yellowed liquid and the smell of ammonia rose up in a powerful stench. He felt itchy and bitterly cold all over.
"Get. Up." The teacher hissed, pulling him and practically dragging him angrily out of the classroom. "Why didn't you just ask to go to the bathroom? You're a student—not a dog." More laughter followed at this statement and some of the students would make barking noises whenever he passed their desks.
Marten's eyes began to water and he sniffed back some mucus that began to drip down his nose. It was all a nightmare. The sound of the laughter and the throb in his arm continued to haunt him for the rest of that day. The humiliation would never die.