I don't own anything :(

"It's not your fault, Tom. Tommy. Come here, Tommy. It's not your fault."

"Don't call me that." Tommy Rogan pushed away from his mother's outstretched hands. He didn't care. "Mommy, I hate you." The words spilled out of his mouth, he couldn't stop them. He thought that if she saw the hardness that his innocent face had become ...

She did nothing. "I know. But I can fix it, Tom. Tommy. Come here, Tommy. You're too weak to do it yourself." He saw the vicious glint in her eyes, it meant

(death! hate! fear!)

that the belt was coming.

"Don't call me that!" The fumes of the cigar that protruded from his mother's mouth like a mocking tongue twisted and roiled in his nose. He coughed, sneezed. He couldn't breathe. "I don't like you! I hate the belt! I hate this house! I hate Daddy! I hate you! Why did he have to die?" Tommy suddenly wanted to grab his mother's blouse and hold on tight and not let go. He needed her. Why did he need her? But the smoke was too dense there. Coughing, he ran out of the house. She'd see. She'd see, someday. He'd show her. He could be tough. He would be strong. He didn't need anybody. He was a Rogan, he was Tom.

Someday, he'd be at the other end of that belt. Someday, it would be Tom who conjured up the cries of pain, the red welts, the fear. Someday, he would be feared.

Oh, she was perfect.


Talented. Look at her sketches. Eyes away from the cigarette.

But she smokes she smokes she smokesmokesmokes

He loved her? Did he love her?

"My name's Beverly Marsh. Why do you ask?"

Beverly Marsh - Beverly Rogan.

She loved him. She liked him. She loved him. How about him?

"Do you love me? Do you love me, Tom?"

No! Yes. No? You smoke! You smoke!

The belt was in his hands. His hands. She was on the floor. "No smoking," he growled.

She was afraid. "You need a whuppin', you been a bad girl. You need a whuppin'."

"I love you, Tommy!"

"Don't call me that!" And the belt came down.