The Puget Posse

Chapter 50-Birthdays

Welcome back. You’re just in time to help the Posse celebrate birthdays, both theirs and others.
 
 
 
 
CHAPTER 50
BIRTHDAYS
 

<Monday, April 22>

 
It would still be a couple of weeks before Operation Bullfrog would be set fully into motion. In the meantime, Ellis was using all of his acting skills to cozy up tighter to Jeremiah, Alden, followers like Tony and Conrad, and others who liked being associated with a winner. For his part, Jeremiah was using all of the salesmanship skills learned from his father to butter up his friends and others to remind them of how great he was.
 
“You act like you’re not scared of me anymore,” Jeremiah told Ellis during Monday’s lunch recess. “It’s like you really like me.”
 
“The twins and everybody are mad at me. They think I’m telling you about their plans,” Ellis said with a tinge of shyness. “I mean it’s true, I do tell you stuff and so they call me names and don’t talk to me much, even the guys on my team.”
 
“Well, you have been telling us some good shit,” Jeremiah said, checking to see if a supervisor was close enough to listen. “If Mark decides to run for president, I’m gonna use the way he’s been treating you and some other guys against him. I’ll let everybody know what kind of a bully he is.”
 
Ellis went into his silent mode and stood waiting for Jeremiah to complete his thought. Sensing someone behind him, he turned to see Alden standing to his left. He wondered how long Alden had been there.
 
Since Ellis didn’t show much emotion regarding Jeremiah’s plans to discredit Mark and the Posse, Jeremiah continued his thought. “You’re going to be the one to get them again, just like our first election. You can say how Mark and them ganged up on you because of what happened in the bathroom that time. Then you can say they ganged up on you because you kept voting the way I wanted you to.”
 
Ellis still didn’t say anything; Jeremiah had said it all for him.
 
“If you do the stuff we tell you, maybe at the end of the year we can give you the picture back,” Jeremiah said.
 
“You could give it back now,” Ellis said. “You know I’m on your side.”
 
Jeremiah flashed an evil grin and said, “I’ll make a deal with you. After I win the election, I’ll give you the picture if you do a favor for me.”
 
“What kind of favor?” Ellis asked, although he had a pretty good idea of what the favor would entail.
 
“I think you know exactly what it is,” Jeremiah smirked. He wasn’t entirely sure what the favor would be, except that it involved sex in some way.
 
Before Ellis could say anything, Alden stepped in. “I think you’re forgetting something, Jeremiah,” he said in a sinister tone of voice.
 
“What? What am I forgetting?”
 
Alden looked at Ellis, his cold stare exhibiting no warmth at all. “You’re forgetting to tell Ellis that if you lose the election, everybody is going to see that picture. Everybody.”
 
Ellis understood that Alden and Jeremiah had set up a lose-lose situation for him. He also understood that they didn’t have the power over him they thought they did—something he was sure they would learn in a couple of weeks.
 

<Tuesday, April 23>

 
The twins came barging into the kitchen just as Patrick, who was buck naked, dug into his breakfast of eggs, bacon, and toast. Maxine was busy cleaning her frying pan.
 
“Hey, Grannana,” Mark yelled as Matthew closed the door to the mudroom.
 
“What kind of greeting is hey?” Maxine asked, not for the first time.
 
“It’s like, hey, good morning Grannana,” Mark grinned. Maxine accepted his hug, admonishing him to not squeeze quite so hard.
 
“Yeah, good morning, Grannana,” Matthew said, as Maxine drew him in for a hug of his own.
 
“Knock knock,” Matthew said after Maxine released him.
 
“Oh, you boys and your jokes,” the old lady said, unsuccessfully fighting a smile.
 
“Serious, Grannana—knock knock.”
 
“Who’s there?” she asked, trying to sound disinterested.
 
“Ach.”
 
“Ach who?” she asked, then waited for the inevitable punchline.
 
“Geshundheit,” Matthew squeaked. He and Mark cackled with laughter, but stopped quickly when Maxine reached around the side of the counter and pulled out the broom that had been leaning against the refrigerator.
 
“Noooo,” Mark screamed, holding his little bubble ass with both hands, “don’t broom us!” Then he and Matthew sent out gales of laughter as they both held their butt cheeks and awkwardly ran to Patrick’s bedroom.
 
Patrick was giggling as he carried his stuff to the sink. “You weren’t really going to broom them for telling a joke, were you?”
 
“Just set your stuff in the sink,” Maxine said, avoiding Patrick’s question.
 
Patrick did as he was told, and started out of the kitchen, then stopped. “Well, were you?”
 
“Knock-knock jokes deserve a good brooming. Now, go get dressed for school. I doubt they keep the rooms warm enough for what you’re wearing.”
 
“But, Grannana, I’m not wearing anything.”
 
“My point exactly. Now go, or the next brooming is yours.”
 
Patrick giggled, held his little bare ass, and shuffled out of the kitchen.
 
When Patrick entered his bedroom, he found Mark on his bed, leaning against the wall. His Puget Academy polo shirt was on the floor, his pants and underpants were down to his ankles, and he was busily masturbating.
 
“What are you doing?” Patrick asked.
 
“What does it look like?” Matthew answered. “He’s jerking off.”
 
“He must be horny.”
 
Mark concentrated on the task before him and said nothing. Once again Matthew answered for him. “We tried to get M and M to give us blow jobs last night, but they were stupid like they always are and wouldn’t do it. We even tried to tell them how good our cum tastes. We got all horny thinking about them sucking us off.”
 
“How come you didn’t just do each other?” Patrick asked. His little cocklet was now rock hard. He pulled on a shirt and then took a pair of briefs out of a dresser drawer.
 
“He did me and I was going to do him, but we fell asleep.”
 
“How can you fall asleep when you’re all horny?”
 
Mark piped up for the first time. “WE didn’t fall asleep, HE fell asleep right there with his fucking head on my belly. When I saw he was asleep, I started to move him so I could jerk off, and the next thing I knew I was asleep. Now, all of you shut up so I can cum. Being horny in school sucks big time.”
 
“Want me to help?” Patrick asked as he slipped his pants on.
 
“Yeah, except, fuck, I’m fucking cummmmmmmmmming,” Mark grunted as he shot three clear shots of cum over his taut, smooth belly. “Oh, wow, man, I needed that,” he said as his breathing returned to normal.
 
Patrick pulled some tissues out of his dispenser and handed them to Mark.
 
“Damn, dude, I don’t need those. Real men wear their cum to school.” Mark proudly rubbed his weak, immature cum around his belly and up to his nipples.
 
“Now me and Patrick are both horny,” Matthew announced.
 
“Tough titties,” Mark said to his brother as he pulled up his pants and undies. “You had your chance, and now you get to suffer in school.”
 
“I never had enough time to do anything,” Patrick protested.
 
“But you don’t get as horny as we do,” Matthew said.
 
“Which reminds me,” Mark told them as he pulled his shirt over his head. “This weekend is the weekend.”
 
“What weekend?” Patrick asked.
 
“Matthew is going to streak down our drive to the main road and do his dance. He’s paying off our bet on who will shoot cum first. You said you wanted to be there.”
 
“I’m going to have to ask my dad if I can go.”
 
“Just don’t tell him we’re going streaking,” Mark said.
 
“Yeah, and don’t forget you still have to moon a train,” Matthew put in.
 
“I promised I would before school ended,” Patrick reminded them.
 
“And we all know how good a Wombat promise is,” Mark said with a grin.
 
The boys headed for the living room. The bus was due in about five minutes. Maxine was sitting on the sofa reading the comics page of the morning newspaper.
 
Mark plopped himself next to the old lady, gave her his winning smile, and said. “Knock, knock.”
 
“No, sir, not again.”
 
“This is the last time, today, I promise,” Mark said.
 
“Of course you promise, your bus is due any moment.”
 
“That’s the best kind of promise,” Mark told the old lady sincerely, “the kind that can’t be broken.”
 
Maxine sighed and Mark started again. “Knock knock.”
 
“Who’s there?”
 
“Banana.”
 
“Banana who?”
 
“Knock knock”
 
“Wait, you didn’t…”
 
“Knock knock,” Mark repeated.
 
“Who’s there?”
 
“Banana who?”
 
“Knock knock.”
 
“I’m almost afraid to ask. Who’s there?”
 
“Knock knock.”
 
“Where is that bus?” Maxine said looking out the window.
 
“That’s the wrong question.”
 
“Who’s there?”
 
“Banana.”
 
“Banana who?” Maxine sighed.
 
“Knock knock.”
 
“Who’s there and if you don’t tell me you’re going to get the brooming of your life, young man.”
 
“Orange.”
 
“Orange who?”
 
“Orange you glad I didn’t say banana?”
 
That had all three boys howling with laughter. Maxine let them know they had better be ready for a good brooming the next morning, which had the boys laughing even louder.
 
“Matthew, knock knock,” Patrick said.
 
“Who’s there?” Matthew asked.
 
“Doris.”
 
“Doris who?”
 
“Doris is locked, that’s why I’m knocking.” That brought on even more gales of laughter as the bus pulled up in front of the house.
 
“Bye Grannana,” the three boys yelled in unison as they laughed their way out of the door. Maxine shook her head, wondering how the twins’ mother survived the two spirited boys on a daily basis.
 
The boys were still giggling as the three piled onto the bus. “Knock, knock.” Mark said as Mrs. Deaver closed the door.
 
“Young man, you are already on the bus,” the driver said, “therefore you have no need to knock.”
 
“It’s a joke, Mrs. D. They’re called knock-knock jokes,” Mark explained patiently, wondering if the bus driver lived under a rock.
 
“All I know is you need to sit down and not distract the driver.”
 
Mark sat next to his brother. “She’s no fun at all.”
 
“I know,” Matthew agreed. “We were going to give her and Mr. J the best ones.”
 
“Let me hear the best ones,” Patrick pleaded.
 
“We’ll tell them after Will gets on,” Mark said, which was exactly what happened, which was why the boys broke into laughter, which brought a smile to Mrs. Deaver’s face—something she successfully hid from her favorite boys on the bus route.
 
“Maybe we should tell them the jokes,” Will said when Jeremiah and Tony boarded the bus.
 
“That would be a waste of a joke—they’re both too stupid to understand a good knock-knock joke,” Patrick deadpanned. Nobody disagreed.
 
After the bus arrived at the Academy, Mark and Matthew took Patrick aside. “Mattie’s still horny,” Mark said. “What about you.”
 
“Not so much now,” Patrick admitted.
 
“You’ve got time to use the lounge to get off if you want,” Mark suggested.
 
“That’s hard to do unless you’re an eighth grader and can get into the back room,” Patrick told him.
 
“We could find Paul to get the key,” Matthew said.
 
“You could get Misha in there, too,” Mark said. He looked at Patrick. “You and Misha mess around, right? I mean you’re like best buddies and everything.”
 
Patrick’s deep red face answered the question.
 
“Have you guys sucked?” Mark whispered.
 
“That is rude,” Matthew snapped at Mark. “It’s none of your business.”
 
“Why? He knows we do it?”
 
“Yeah, because we told him, not because he asked us.”
 
Mark thought for a moment, then said, “Yeah, you’re right. Sorry, Patrick. I was being real stupid.”
 
“You think?” Matthew asked.
 
“Shut up or you’ll end up in class with a bloody nose.”
 
“Not if I give you one first,”
 
“The answer is no,” Patrick said. “No to everything. Now, let’s just go to class.”
 
“Patrick is right,” Matthew said.
 
“Yeah, he is. But that doesn’t mean you’re going to be safe after school.”
 
“We have baseball practice after school.”
 
“Just keep your blood off of the ball,” Mark said. Patrick was about to tell the two brothers to shut up when they started giggling and he knew the crisis was over. He understood that sometimes they knew when to stop, and sometimes they just needed to fight things out. He just never knew what was going to happen, when.
 
“So, what about you and Misha messing around?” Mark asked Patrick again.
 
“I don’t think so. Not today.”
 
“You’ve done sex stuff in school before.”
 
“Not today,” Patrick repeated.
 
“Invite Misha to the big Saturday streak, then,” Matthew said.
 
Patrick smiled. “That works.”
 
When they arrived at their lockers, Mr. Jackson was standing guard in the hall. “Hey, Mr. J,” Mark said.
 
“Hay is for horses,” Mr. Jackson quipped.
 
“Very funny.”
 
“Knock knock,” Matthew said.
 
“And why should I fall for a juvenile joke?’ Mr. Jackson asked.
 
“Maybe because you teach juveniles?” Patrick asked.
 
“Yeah,” Mark agreed. “It’s not like you don’t tell juvenile jokes.” Mr. Jackson sent them off to get ready for class.
 
The trio finished with their locker business and Mr. Jackson told them to take their seats. When they walked into the room they saw Neville and Misha sitting in the Posse area.
 
“Nobody has any kind of sense of humor here today,” Mark complained. “You can’t even tell anybody a good knock-knock joke.”
 
“You can tell me,” Misha said. Mark wanted to save his best two, so he told the achoo joke, eliciting a chuckle from Neville and a confused look from Misha, who was still trying to comprehend American humor. Plus he hadn’t had much experience with knock, knock jokes.
 
“I give up,” Mark said. “No more jokes from me, today.”
 
Lunch was all but routine that day. The Posse had pegged some of the sixth graders on the student senate to be lobbied regarding Mark’s constitutional amendment. The sixth graders listened patiently to the points the younger boys had to make, although the Posse members weren’t sure they were getting through.
 
Jeremiah, Alden, and Ellis watched the Posse at work. “What are they talking about?” Jeremiah asked Ellis.
 
“The amendment,” Ellis said. “They’re trying to get the sixth graders to vote for it.”
 
“That’s dumb. No way will the sixth graders vote for it.” Jeremiah said. “Go over to there and tell the sixth graders it’s dumb for them to vote for it,” he told Ellis.
 
“Why?”
 
“Because I told you to, dumb shit. Maybe you don’t really want that picture back after the election.”
 
Ellis shrugged. As much as he didn’t want to say anything, he had a role to play. He hoped that the Posse members would understand. He walked to the table where Mark and Misha were talking with two sixth graders. “Voting for the amendment is dumb,” he said. “You don’t get anything out of it.” He turned and walked away, not waiting for a reply.
 
“What was that about?” Kiernan, one of the sixth graders asked.
 
“I think those two put him up to it,” Mark said, pointing to Jeremiah and Alden.
 
“Why would he do what they told him? He could just tell them to fu…um…to stuff it where the sun don’t shine.”
 
“It is known as bullying,” Misha said. “Ellis is our friend, but those two bully him a lot.” Misha knew why Ellis followed Jeremiah’s instructions, and he wanted to make sure the two sixth graders at least somewhat understood that Ellis wasn’t acting on his own.
 
“Somebody needs to do something about that,” Skyler, the other sixth grader, said.
 
“We’re working on it,” Mark said, making it clear he wasn’t going to elaborate. “Now, back to why voting yes will help the school, and why what helps the school will help everybody. The student council liked it, so…,” he went on, trying not to put the two student senate members to sleep.  
 
<Saturday, April 27>
 
It turned out that Patrick couldn’t get permission to go to the twins’ house on Saturday. He’d forgotten that this was a weekend full of birthdays, but was quickly reminded of it.
 
“That’s okay, we can wait until the next Saturday,” Mark said.
 
“That weekend is my birthday,” Patrick told him as he handed him and Matthew birthday invitations. 
 
“Well, shitfuckski,” Mark said. “Then, we’ll wait for the next Saturday. The longer we wait, the warmer it will be.”
 
“Yeah, and dad will have the pool ready by then, too,” Matthew said. He looked at his brother. “Where did you get shitfuckski from?”
 
“I dunno. I thought it sounded kind of cool.”
 
“I guess. I wouldn’t use it.”
 
“That because you didn’t invent it, so you’re jealous.”
 
Matthew shook his head. “No, it’s because I’m not dumb enough to say ‘shitfuckski’”.
 
Patrick waited for one of the twins to keep the inane argument going, but it stopped on its own when the bus arrived at school.
 
The Posse, along with Will, Vic, Hank, Paul, and Curt spent the week lobbying for the amendment. They saw no need to push the proposal for eighth grade greeters to meet the fifth graders on the first day of school in the fall. To them, passing that was a no brainer—besides, it only needed a simple majority instead of a two-thirds majority since it wasn’t an amendment. A lot of their academic time was spent on their individual science reports. When they hit sixth grade they would be expected to do a project for the school science fair.
 
Patrick’s birthday celebrations started on Friday, which was Maxine’s 77th birthday. The family held a big party in a private room at Lorenzo’s, considered one of the best Italian restaurants in the northern suburbs of Seattle. Brian, Tim, Roy, Roy’s parents, Patrick, Maxine’s sister, who was her last living sibling, plus Maxine’s other two children, along with their children and grandchildren made for a large family affair. Patrick loaded himself with spaghetti and meatballs as well as the restaurant’s signature garlic toast. A large dish of ice cream topped it off.
 
The birthday celebration was also, in part, for Roy, who would turn eighteen the next day. The food seemed endless and the presents were plentiful.
 
After the dinner, Patrick spent the night at Roy’s. Because Roy’s parents were home, the sex wasn’t as wide open as it had been on Patrick’s last overnight visit when Roy taught him firsthand about masturbation and fellatio. That didn’t mean the two were celibate, however.
 
“Why on earth are you sleeping in the same bed as your uncle?” Roy’s mother asked Patrick.
 
“Because it’s big and we can do stuff all night long,” Patrick said without guile. Roy had to work hard not to burst out laughing at his young nephew’s answer.
 
“Well, Roy, don’t forget he has to be home early in the afternoon for another birthday.” Patrick’s friend Ian was celebrating his tenth birthday the next day.
 
“I’ll make sure he gets plenty of sleep,” Roy assured his mother.
 
Roy led Patrick into his bedroom where the two quickly stripped. Patrick looked at his teen uncle’s big cock, the glans wet with precum, and he knew he was going to be putting it into his mouth.
 
“I guess we’re sleeping naked,” Patrick said.
 
“That was the plan, if you don’t mind the threat of mom and dad being in the house.”
 
“Are you afraid they’re going to come in and lift the blankets to make sure we’re not sleeping naked together?”
 
“No, I’m just saying...,” then Roy grinned and continued, “Look at you…you’re getting to be a sassy little dude. I almost died when you talked about being in bed and doing stuff.”
 
“It was true,” Patrick giggled.
 
“Well, I think it went right over mom and dad’s heads. I mean I kinda talk like that, too, when I have friends over, and they don’t have a clue about what’s going to happen.”
 
“You look all ready for something to happen,” Patrick observed as he touched his uncle’s hard-on.
 
Roy looked at his nephew’s hairless little spike sticking proudly from Patrick’s groin and said. “You look ready for action, too.” Patrick grinned and hopped into the bed while Roy turned off the lights. “I want mom and dad to think we’re trying to get to sleep.”
 
“You just don’t want to see my giant weenie because you’re scared of it,” Patrick boasted.
 
“Fuck, you are one snarky boy all of a sudden.”
 
“I’m going to be ten next week,” Patrick told him seriously.
 
“I guess that makes you all grown up.” Before he could say anything else, he felt the head of his uncut cock being enveloped in moist warmth as Patrick put his lips around it. The little boy could get no more than an inch or so of the long, thick cock. “Oh, shit, little boy, that feels real good.”
 
Patrick let go for a moment. “It’s bigger than last time.”
 
“Nah, you’ve just made me hornier.”
 
“And don’t call me little boy.”
 
Patrick didn’t give Roy a chance for a retort as he returned to his uncle’s dick, sucking one end of it while his small hand jerked off the base. He liked the feel of Roy’s thick pubic hair on his hand as he suckled the big erection. Roy rubbed his nephew’s back and smooth little bubble butt as the preteen boy unselfishly took care of his teen uncle.
 
Roy liked to think he had learned sexual self-control, but the thought of his little brown-haired nephew eagerly sucking his cock was too much and he felt the inevitable approaching. He thought about asking Patrick to stop, to give him a chance to recover, then he decided to just go with the flow and let it blow.
 
While Patrick loved sucking his uncle’s big cock, he couldn’t help but think of Misha’s boner and how perfect it was. That was what he really wanted in his mouth—the erection of his best friend.
 
Roy’s instinct told him to start fucking Patrick’s mouth, but what little rational thought he had left said to take it easy and let his nephew set the pace. “I’m ready to shoot.” Patrick kept sucking, his tongue working on the tip of Roy’s head, just like his uncle had taught him. “It’s gonna fill your mouth.” Patrick didn’t slow down, in fact he picked up the pace with his masturbating hand.
 
“Oh, fuck, shit, ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…” Roy lifted his hips, pulling Patrick’s head with him, and felt his teen seed gush through his cock as he fired shot after shot into the mouth of his nephew. Patrick handled the first two shots, but the flow ended up being too much for his inexperienced mouth as he swallowed some of the teen’s semen, but let more dribble down his chin. Roy’s thick cream fell back down his cock and into his pubic hair. Some of it stuck to Patrick’s chin as he continued to try to swallow what he could. He kept sucking until Roy tapped his head and told him to let go.
 
“Did I do good?” Patrick asked. Even in the dim light Roy could see his cum on the boy’s face and thought it looked sexy.
 
“You did great, bro. I had an awesome cum. It was so great I’m going to return the favor.”
 
“How come we didn’t do a 69?”
 
“You jumped right on me; what was I going to do?”
 
“Cum?”
 
Roy laughed and said, “Now it’s your turn, sport.”
 
“It can wait until my birthday if you want.”
 
Roy’s reply was to put his mouth around all of Patrick’s penis. Patrick was very horny. He wondered if he was so horny because he was so close to being ten. All of his friends got hornier and hornier as they got older and older, especially Misha and the twins, who were eleven now. The thought flew out of his head as his brain became more concerned with the feelings in his groin than in the relationship between age and horniness.
 
He shivered when Roy stepped things up a notch by running his finger along his hairless crack, tickling his little grommet. “Oh, Uncle Roy, what are you doing?” he whispered.
 
“Shhh, this will feel really good.”
 
“It already feels good.” Roy slowly slid his left index finger into Patrick’s tight, hot hole as he continued to suck on his smooth little boy cocklet.
 
“You’re my favorite uncle,” Patrick purred.
 
Roy stopped sucking. “Even more than Uncle Tim?”
 
“He’s a perv. He wants to mess around with me.”
 
“Well, so do I,” Roy said, laughing. “In fact I AM messing around with you.”
 
“But you’re still like a kid because you’re in high school, so you’re not a perv.”
 
“Not for long. And after I graduate that ends our messing around.”
 
“For real?”
 
“Yep, so I better get what I can right now,” Roy said as he went back down on the almost ten-year-old boy, who squirmed with delight at the feelings coming from his groin and from his bottom. Roy’s finger found his nephew’s little prostate at the same time his tongue swirled around the boy’s little pink cockhead. Patrick fought a squeak, then squeaked anyway, as his uncle’s actions overwhelmed his mind and body and sent him into shaking, quaking orgasm.
 
As his body stopped quivering, Patrick cuddled up to his uncle. “That was awesome, Uncle Roy,” he whispered quietly, before falling asleep in his uncle’s strong arms.
 
When the boys got out of bed the next morning, Roy suggested they shower together. Patrick was worried about what Roy’s parents would think, but Roy assured him that his father would be more than happy with the water and electricity savings. Roy washed every surface and crevice on his young nephew’s body and Patrick returned the favor. After washing, Roy humped Patrick’s little bubble butt, shooting his teen cum over the young boy’s back and ass at the same time he jerked the little preteen to a quivering dry orgasm. Patrick learned a lot about having pleasure in a shower that morning.
 
Roy was amused when they returned to his bedroom; he had a text message from his buddy Howie. “did u fuck the little shit yet?”
 
“im saving him 4 u, since u want him so bad,” Roy texted back.
 
“perv :-)”
 
“u would know.”
 
“That was a fun shower, Uncle Roy,” Patrick grinned as the two boys dressed.
 
“I thought so, too.”
 
“What were you reading?”
 
“A text from Howie. He wants your body really bad.”
 
“Mine?”
 
“Yeah, he thinks you’re sexy, just like I do.”
 
“Can we all do it together once?”
 
“Remember, after I graduate that’s the end of the sex between us.”
 
Patrick gave Roy a pouty look. “If you think I’m so sexy, why don’t you want to do it anymore?”
 
“Because that’s just the way it is.”
 
“Now you’re sounding just like my dad.”
 
“I take that as a compliment.”
 
When the two boys entered the kitchen for breakfast, Roy’s father chided them for taking such a long shower when the idea of showering together was to save money.
 
“We lost track of time,” Roy said.
 
“Yep, it was hard to go any faster,” Patrick added with a look of total innocence. Once again, it was all Roy could do not to fall off his chair with laughter.
 
Patrick had fun at Ian’s birthday party that afternoon. He liked Ian and considered him a good friend. He knew some of the other boys at the party from sports. But, he was beginning to realize that his closest friends were his school friends from the Posse. As much as he enjoyed the party and the boys at the party, it seemed incomplete without Misha there.
 

<Monday, April 29>

 
The Posse was ready for Wednesday’s vote on the amendment Mark proposed, but they still did some last minute lobbying. They knew Jeremiah was against it because they were for it, but it was now all out of his hands. This wasn’t their real test against their rival, however. That would come when the fifth grade student council met the next Tuesday.
 
Politics wasn’t the only concern of the Posse, however. They were all active boys, taking part in many activities. Mark, Matthew, Misha, and Patrick were all playing baseball, even if it wasn’t on the same team. Neville and Patrick were preparing for the spring choral concert. Once again Neville and Patrick were competing for solo roles. Neville was also in the chorus of the eighth grade musical “The King and I”, which cast students from the Puget Academy and the Annie Fuller School.
 
“I can’t wait to see Neville playing an Asian kid,” Matthew said when Neville was given the part of one of the kids in Anna’s classroom.
 
“We don’t really act Asian,” Neville said. “You have to imagine it.”
 
“”That is not an easy thing to imagine. Do you have to hide your English accent?” Mark asked.
 
“I don’t have an accent,” Neville said, for what seemed like the billionth time. “And besides, all I do is sing.”
 
“Nobody would have to imagine me being Asian,” said Vic, who was Korean.
 
“Yeah, but they’d have to imagine that you can sing,” Matthew said, which broke up the group.
 
Misha was playing as much chess as he could to prepare for the big area chess tournament. All of the boys were playing in the afternoon intramural softball league, which would be taking up an afternoon or two a week.
 
“The website said that they played baseball in the spring,” Matthew groused at dinner the week before. “Softball isn’t the same thing as baseball.”
 
“Yeah, isn’t that like false advertising or something?” Mark asked his parents.
 
“You read the letter about the changes in the sports program,” Scott reminded them.
 
“Well, it still isn’t fair,” Mark whined.
 
“Maybe, but as we all know…”
 
“…life is unfair,” the twins chimed in together.
 
Another big event was slated for the next Monday; it was the first day for those interested in running for a student body office to sign up. The Posse was hoping Jeremiah would throw his hat in the ring early. While his doing that wasn’t absolutely necessary, it would make the execution of Operation Bullfrog somewhat easier.
 
As far as Patrick was concerned, the big event of the next two weeks was his birthday. For a little bit more than a month he would be the correct age for fifth grade. He would no longer be the only nine-year-old attending the Puget Academy, and that thought gave him a warm glow. His birthday party would be on Saturday, although his actual birthday wasn’t until the following Wednesday. His party would be at Montezuma’s Mexican restaurant; all of the invitations had been sent out and accepted. There would be a small, family party on Patrick’s actual birthday.
 

<Wednesday, May 1>

 
It was Wednesday, the day of the last full student senate business meeting.  The entire school, from the staff, the faculty, the administration, and especially the students, was eager to see how the vote would come out. It was the first amendment to come up for a vote in front of the full senate in four years, which made it a focus of interest.
 
“Those fifth graders in your class worked their ass off,” Mr. Vargas told Mr. Jackson in the staff room as many of the teachers gathered to get their pre-school coffee and catch up on the morning gossip.
 
“The Posse is quite a group. I was leery of putting the twins together in the same table group,” Mr. Jackson said. “After spending a lot of time trying to prove I made the wrong choice, they’ve become a positive force.”
 
“So, they’re the leaders I take it,” Mr. Nash, one of the other two fifth grade teachers said.
 
“On the surface, yes they are. But the five boys on that team are all headstrong boys and they make their presence felt, even the youngest of them, who has shown tremendous leadership skills.” Mr. Jackson was referring to Patrick.
 
“I’ve never seen that kind of lobbying going on regarding a vote,” Mr. Vargas said.
 
“They even convinced Tyler Mitchell to go to bat for them, and that was huge,” Coach Williams said.
 
Mr. Vargas agreed, but didn’t share his theory that Tyler was convinced by more than just words. He was convinced that the sex in the student lounge between Tyler and Paul had been an incentive offered by Paul, the student guide for the Posse. He felt that Paul, who was openly gay, had used his wiles to win over Tyler’s help. He had no problem with sex being used as an incentive.
 
“I’m rooting for the amendment to pass. I always thought that section of the constitution was a farce,” Mr. Nichols, the chess coach and upper grade math teacher said. “I had to wonder what they were thinking back in the day.”
 
“It was obvious the upperclassmen used their influence,” Mr. Jackson said. “And that the faculty of that time let them do it.”
 
The staff was rooting for the amendment to pass, many of them wishing they were allowed to lobby for it, although they doubted they could have done as good of a job as the Posse and their helpers. While the faculty was rooting for passage, they were convinced that the various classes would look at their own self-interest rather than at what would benefit the entire school, and the amendment would go down to defeat.
 
“The eighth graders will vote for it, because they’re out the door. The fifth graders are the ones pushing it. The sixth and seventh graders don’t want to lose their advantage next year. No way it passes,” Mr. Nichols said.
 
The senate meeting started on time at lunch. Derek Lewis, the student body vice president brought the meeting to order. After going through the usual agenda business, the meeting came to old business. The amendment resided there because it had been brought up at the April meeting. It was the only item of old business on the agenda.
 
The meeting room was packed with students and faculty. It was standing room only. The members of the senate, who were generally ignored when compared to the officers, knew they were the centers of attention and reveled in it. All 30 senate members were present and everybody had done the math. The amendment needed 18 votes to pass.
 
Vic, following the plan laid out by the Posse members, made a motion that the vote be by secret ballot. This would remove the peer pressure that would influence a show of hands. Mr. Vargas had subtly suggested the tactic to Matthew, who saw the logic in it and took it from there. The motion only needed a simple majority to win. The vote was close, 17-13, which didn’t bode well for the amendment.
 
Jake Clauson, the sergeant-at-arms, passed out ballots and pencils to the senate members, and the senators quickly voted. Roland Park, who was the eighth grade president, Nick Fuller, the seventh grade president, Jimmy Cole, the sixth grade president, and Jeremiah, the fifth grade president, were appointed to count the ballots. They took the ballots across the hall to the student council lounge under the supervision of Mr. Vargas. All business came to a stop as the crammed room awaited the results.
 
It only took a couple of minutes for Roland to return with the ballots and hand the result to Derek Lewis. He looked at the final tally and grinned. He hammered his gavel on the podium for quiet. “The final vote is 20 for the amendment and 10 against. The amendment passes.” The announcement brought a lot of loud cheers since almost everybody in the audience were those who cared about or had worked for the amendment.
 
Matthew and Patrick both gave Mark a big hug. Before he could recover from the double hug, Misha and Neville hugged him. Mr. Vargas, Mr. Jackson, as well as Dean Cutler and Dean Blowers shook his hand. The boy who had been humiliated in the fifth grade election was now the unquestioned leader of his class. Jeremiah glared at Mark with pure hatred in his eyes.
 
He was ready to bring his rival down for a third time. He’d gotten the twins kicked off of the baseball team the year before, he’d snatched victory away from Mark in the fifth-grade election, and now he was ready to knock him off his temporary pedestal. He and Alden had a plan, with Ellis and Randy, the fifth grade nerds, at the center of it. The way Jeremiah planned their defeat was that, even though Mark and Matthew didn’t know it, the twins were about to bully Ellis and Randy to the point where they would not only lose the election but could get expelled from school.
 
Next: Learning Curves