The sanitized version goes something like this: a 6th grade boy exposed himself to a 5th grade girl, a scene my 5th grade boy stumbled upon. Upon seeing my 5th grade boy, the 6th grade boy pulled up his pants a bit and punched my 5th grade boy in the neck. My 5th grade boy hightailed it out of the hallway, found a friend's mother within all of seven seconds, and, hyperventilating, told her his saga.
Later on in the evening, my 5th grade boy and that 5th grade girl, accompanied by a pack of many, found that 6th grade boy and sought to get themselves some vigilante justice. They were thwarted in their efforts before it went too far.
And that about sums it up, at least from the standpoint of what I "know" to have happened. "Know" because that's what my kid says and "know" because it's corroborated by enough people. So that's all I "know."
There are loads of other side stories. I could, quite possibly, write about this from at least a dozen kids' points of view. And I could throw in a few adults' points of view, too.
None of them have the vantage of looking at it all as it developed throughout the evening. Everyone just has a little piece: what supposedly precipitated that hallway encounter, what has and hasn't happened with the other cast of characters over the course of years, and what occurred in between the hallway encounter and the posse finding the villain.
It doesn't help that the witnesses, perpetrators and victims are all 10 or 11 or 12 years old. Or that they are spread out over four different schools. Or that I did yard duty long enough at the school to know of other events and to sense other issues. Or that the police are involved. Or that the school district is doing its own investigation. Or that families intersect in ways you wish they didn't.
In the end, who knows? Will it come to a conclusion that satisfies us? I don't think it will come to a conclusion, really, at least not for a very long time. Oh, there will be a resolution in the moment. There has to be. But beyond the moment, down the line, what will happen?
Que sera, sera.
[Photo pilfered from nostalgic-radio.com, and you so know they can't possibly own the write. Que sera, sera.]