Five month later…
2A: Bruce Point of View.
Working at the diner the last five months has been dull, Bruce felt that bootlegging was a far more stimulating occupation. At least his tasks are simple enough. Clear the table, wash dishes and refill drinks. Today the diner is filled with Police officers for the morning rush, it seemed that the entire force showed this morning. Shoveling as much grease, pancakes and coffee as they could muster.
With half the tables in the small dining room filled with officers every few minutes one of their radios loudly chime into the morning. Bruce walks over to Rita and he feigns a look of annoyance.
“Ma’am” Says Bruce.
He continues speaking but in a low voice that only she could hear.
“Can you get the officers to turn off their radios, the other customers are complaining.”
Rita looks over at the nearest table of Police Officers, at the same time one of their radios sounds off, the sound is loud enough that all the other diners look at them annoyed.
“I see what you mean” Mutters Rita.
She begins to walk in the direction of the table, she refills the officers coffee. She speaks to the men and being very respected in Oxford, Rita holds their full attention.
“Gentlemen, I need to ask y’all to turn them radios off when you enter my dining room, those things are driving me crazy, I can’t stand the sound of the static, if they go off again no more food or coffee on the house. Do y’all understand?”
The officers are putty in Rita’s hands, they issue a collective “Yes Ma’am”.
Rita tells the officers to spread the word through the ranks, as she finishes topping off their cups with coffee, Bruce observes all the men at the table turning the knobs on their radios switching them off.
Bruce takes a jug of water over to another table filled with officers, Bruce overhears their conversation, a skinny trooper sits with a group of sheriff deputies.
“You hear what that Carpetbagger in the White House thinks he can do?” Says one of the deputies with a balding head.
His face is red from overeating, he has syrup stains on his tie. With his mouth full of food, he continues speaking as he points a fork at the trooper.
“Talking about forcing Whites and Blacks to go to the same skhoools.”
There is a murmur around the table, from the tone they are all in agreement at the purposed slight. The young trooper with the shaved head joins the conversation.
“I heard worse, since that disaster in little rock they are supposedly thinking about integrating Ole Miss and Alabama next, and get this Ole Miss is gonna be integrated within the coming weeks.”
Several of the officers grumble their dissatisfaction of the statement. The red-faced officer even scoffs at the notion and voices his opinion.
“If that Carpetbagger Kennedy thinks the people of North Mississippi are gonna take this lying down, I’ll say this I ain’t gonna enforce no law that makes a skhoool take someone they don’t want, much less some colored fella.”
The skinny trooper speaks again allowing Bruce to hear one last tidbit before he returns to the kitchen.
“The hostility shown by Washington is unwarranted, they are using the same forceful tactics and tricks they did a hundred years ago, it is reconstruction all over again.”
Bruce turns away from the table with the empty jug of water. Taking off his apron he runs over to Rita.
“Ma’am I have to clock out, I got to get to class”
The woman nods her head as he runs past her to punch out.
Bruce puts the pedal to the floor, flying down the road like a bat out of hell, he parks on the Circle for his first class of the day. He cuts across grassy courtyard of the Circle, he hears noise coming from the Lyceum.
Two dozen men and women stand outside the building with signs shouting, since Bruce is sprinting towards his destination he can’t make out what they are carrying on about.
He passes the confederate statue on his left, cutting across the street Bruce keeps running, he stays away from the construction scaffolding, workers are nearing completion on what would be Shoemaker Hall.
Next to the shell of Shoemaker is Hume hall, Bruce had Math in Hume today, he takes the steep stairs to the second floor, he swears out loud when he finds a note on the door to the classroom in his teachers handwriting. Bruce’s class had been cancelled for the day.
Exiting Hume Hall Bruce thinks about what he should do. He had another class later and he didn’t want to lose his parking space. Bruce leaves Hume Hall and cuts across the street towards the flagpole at the center of the Circle. It was lunchtime and Callie Bee’s house would be serving lunch.
Making his way back across the Circle, Bruce finally can see the commotion coming from the direction of the Lyceum. The people are all in their thirties and forties, they shout at the building.
The Lyceum is a large building at the back of the Circle, the front door of the Lyceum is in line with the flagpole, the Chancellor the man in charge of the campus works in this building. The protestors are shouting louder trying to get the Chancellor’s attention.
The Lyceum is a red brick building with six massive white columns, behind the Lyceum is the school’s Library. this building for all intents and purposes is the center of campus. The people stand in front of the steps, they shake their signs and continue to shout at the unresponsive building.
Bruce bumps into his fraternity brother at the flagpole. Carter is a senior like Bruce, Cater is six-feet-four inches and well built. He plays fullback on the football team. Carter has messy brown hair, he has a hawkish appearance with hands the size of dinner plates, defensive ends had a hard time getting to the quarterback with Carter blocking. Carter wears his usual khaki slacks with his school polo.
“Hey McKean!” Greets Carter from ten paces away.
Greeting his friend, Bruce smiles as he peels his eyes from the protestors. He crosses the distance and extends his hand for greetings, when their hands embrace they maneuver their hands in a series of coordinated shakes, with the fraternity grip exchanged the young men stop for conversation.
Bruce hears a series of louder shouts coming over Carters shoulder, both of them turn to look at the group of people at the foot of the Lyceum.
“Hey Carter? Do you know what the fuck is going on over there?”
Carter nods his head and answers Bruce’s question.
“They are from the towns surrounding Oxford, they are in an uproar since they announced that Ole Miss is gonna be integrated, by Monday we will be just like those Yankee schools in DC. Anyways where you headed I am on my way to Farley Hall for English?”
“My math class got cancelled; I am going over to the Tri Delta house for lunch to kill some time before my next lecture.”
Carter nods his head and they begin walking together.
“My next one is Farley Hall I’ll walk with you.” Behind Farley Hall is Sorority Row.
Bruce and his friend leave the Circle and soon pass Peabody and Fulton Chapel, as they near the Union, Bruce and Carter discuss the football team’s record.
The team is undefeated right now after one win and could have a shot at a great season, outside of the doom and gloom of integration, the football team’s record is the buzz of the campus. Everyone is excited about the game against Kentucky on Saturday, Bruce wouldn’t be traveling to Jackson to see the game.
He had plans to take Bee riding around Lake Sardis. That said it would be the second test of this championship caliber team. Carter would be starting in Saturday’s game and he spoke with assured confidence.
Bruce and Carter soon pass the Barnard observatory on the left. The Grove is across the street on the right. As per usual around lunchtime students lay about under the shade of the Magnolia, eating lunch and relaxing before the next class.
Carter follows Bruce all the way to Farley Hall, the road on which Farley Hall sits is also coincidentally the entrance to Sorority Row. When they take the left on the sidewalk, Bruce walks ahead as Carter breaks off taking the side basement entrance to the building.
“I’ll see you around” Bids Carter starting down the steps.
“Good luck on Saturday if I don’t see you by then!” Says Bruce.
Carter waves and disappears down the steps. Bruce heads towards the house. It is only another Hundred yards from Farley Hall, the Tri Delta house is the first house on the right off the row.
The house is also the largest Greek house to date on campus, the house has a large section of woods behind it, these woods have paths that lead to town. The house stands three stories tall and the portico is held up by four massive white columns that could give the pillars holding up the Lyceum a run for their money.
Bruce walks up the smooth slate steps and knocks on the polished wooden door with a brass handle. A girl hears Bruce knocking as she is coming down the stairs. When the door opens Bruce sees her blonde locks first, then her smile as if she recognizes him, he can’t remember who she is. She looked youthful and young but older than a college girl, on closer look her hair is more sliver than blonde.
“Hello, I am Bruce, Bee’s boyfriend I am here to see her for lunch.”
The girl stands aside and lets him enter the foyer of the house. The foyer is richly decorated, the wooden floor is polished to a shine, the grand staircase has a thick red carpet leading all the way to the upper floors.
Bruce knowing the lay out of the house thanks the girl and makes his way down a paneled corridor leading to the Tri Delta dining room.
The dining room contains forty polished wooden tables each sitting 12 girls, three quarters of the tables are filled with girls. There are also male students in the room, Bruce assumed they were the boyfriends of active members.
It is a well-known trade secret on campus that the sororities had better food than the fraternity houses and campus cafeterias. The Tri Delta house had better food than all the other sorority houses, it was Bruce’s opinion, that said he was a fair voice in the fight considering he tried every dining option on the campus.
At one full table an excitable girl jumps up and down upon seeing Bruce, her hand waves excitedly but then a blur of shiny black is suddenly in his face. Callie Bee comes sprinting over to Bruce excited by his surprise.
“What are you doing here?”
She wraps her arms around his waist in a tight hug, while standing on her tippy toes, Callie Bee places a kiss on his cheek. She wears a white cotton top and a pair of blue jeans with white converse shoes. In her dark and silky hair, she wore a blue ribbon.
“I thought you had Math right now?” Playfully Grills Callie Bee.
Bruce places his hand on her lower back and steers her back towards her table.
“I got to class barley with time to spare and found a note on the door saying Math was cancelled. I thought I would spend my extra hour with you.”
“That is so sweet of you, take a seat I’ll fix you a plate.”
She brought him a plate of two fried chicken legs, piece of cornbread and collard greens. This plate of southern cooking would not be complete without mash potatoes and gravy, to wash it down he had a refreshing glass of sweet tea. Bruce listened to Callie Bee speak with her friends while he ate.
“I still haven’t found anywhere that we can host our pancake eating contest. Nearly all the restaurants on the Square serve alcohol, the ones that don’t serve liquor aren’t large enough to handle the volume of people we are expecting.”
Bruce sets his fork down and swallows his mouth full of potatoes. He nudges Callie Bee to get her attention.
“I spoke with Rita this morning at the start of my shift, she says that you can use the Beacon. As long as you agree to make the food yourself and clean up than she will offer you a fair rate.”
Callie Bee’s face lights up.
“That would be perfect, the Beacon has a huge breakfast crowd and best of all they don’t serve liquor!”
Callie Bee is jubilant as she walks Bruce to the front door after lunch.
When they get to the door she begins to act slightly nervous. In a soft voice Callie Bee asks.
“Would you do me a favor tonight?”
Bruce stares into her sparking blue eyes captivated, why did this girl like him she was by and far a better person than he? His smile and eyes remain ever attentive and focused. Savoring the moment places his hand on her lower back drawing her closer to him.
“What is it?”
Callie Bee takes a hold of his right hand hanging down to his side and places his warm, firm hand on her cheek.
“I have to babysit for the MacArthur’s tonight, and I know we didn’t have plans, but could you possibly take me home from work? I will be done tonight at 10?”
Bruce knew that the MacArthur’s lived outside of the Northgate just after the Catholic Church. Normally Callie Bee always walked herself home at night. Something must be making her uncomfortable.
“What’s wrong you have never had an issue walking home before?”
“Bruce it is those protestors, I saw a few while walking home last night and one of them hooted at me. Then today as I was coming home from the library I saw dozens of them screaming at the building, there were some awfully scruffy men there. I would have some peace of mind knowing that you are with me?” He felt anger that someone would have to nerve to shout at her in the night.
Bruce agreed; he would never deny Callie Bee anything.
Over the next few day he saw that Callie Bee’s suspicions were warranted. Bruce notices these rough looking middle-aged men leading the protests and could tell there was nothing but malice under the surface. Over the next few days more and more men started to arrive in town.
Tonight, Bruce sits in a bar on the Square with his friend Chuck. The two of them have fresh draft beers in their hands. Bruce and Chuck had been watching the end of the afternoon Sunday NY Jets game, the fall games of his team were the only glimmers of Bruce’s home in Dixie.
A plate of chicken wings sits in front of Chuck, he had picked every morsel of meat from the bones, a Lucky Strike hangs from his mouth. The end of the game changes to local news coverage, the footage shows the black and white images, the images feature a Blackman in a pressed suit walking between a pair of suited US Marshals. The new coverage shows him walking into the Lyceum earlier in the day, hundreds of protestors yell at him.
“So tomorrow he is gonna be in school with us… I don’t know how I feel about that.” Says Chuck.
Chuck points to the TV. The image of James Meredith changes to the Kentucky, Ole Miss game from the night before.
Instead of the highlights from the game, the Hitlerish image of Mississippi Governor Ross Barnett has appeared. The screen shows screenshots of his speech, the captions are shown on the bottom of the screen, Bruce willingly takes his eyes away from the screen.
“I have told you before Chuck, I don’t give a shit about integration, that said these protestors are unbearable and thanks that moron, every man with a bone to pick is descending on this town.” Illustrates Bruce.
He looks back to the screen, Barnett ratchets up the crowd. Bruce gulps down his last sips of beer. While he burps for a moment, Bruce looks down at his watch to see if he has time to order another beer.
“Shit” Bruce swears under his breath as he looks away from his watch. He had gotten so caught up in the football game that he lost track of time, he wanted to leave the bar at 6:55 and it is 7:15!
“I got to go and get Callie Bee from work!” For the past couple of nights Bruce had driven his girlfriend home to ease her concerns.
“You are better off walking, they closed campus to vehicles starting at 6:00 pm.” Bruce slides his keys across the bar to Chuck.
“Please take my car home, come pick me up later once the road blocks let up, stay by the phone and I’ll call you from the Tri Delta house.”
“You got it man; you better get going the sun will set by the time you get to campus.”
Bruce walks down the wooden stairs from the bar and steps out onto the Square, the weather is still as he sprints down the sidewalk. There is a covered alleyway between two buildings, nicknamed Faulkner’s Alley it is a narrow alleyway that always reeks of piss.
All his efforts and sprinting down University Avenue are a success. He gets to the front door of the MacArthur’s just as the red glow of the suns last minutes of light strain against the coming darkness. Callie Bee walks out of the house as he approaches the door.
The sun sinks below the horizon as Bruce passes the Catholic Church on University Avenue, they are nearing the bridge close to the Northgate of campus. Callie Bee holds Bruce’s hand and chatters on as usual filling Bruce in on the details of her day.
Tonight, Callie Bee wears jeans, a wool sweater and her white converse shoes. Bruce wears brown boots, blue jeans and a light blue button up short sleeve shirt, he also has a white undershirt on underneath. Due to the newcomers and tension felt around town Bruce decided to take no chances. He has a Smith & Wesson 38. Special revolver holstered on his lower back. In addition to the firearm he also carries a switchblade in the back pocket of his jeans.
Once over the bridge they can see the campus ahead, the Grove looks slightly ominous on the backdrop of the now dark night. At the end of the sidewalk a street separates them from the Grove, there is a sidewalk that continues towards the right, the path loops around the outside of the Grove, a large group of men in their mid-thirties appear twenty yards down the sidewalk. To avoid them Bruce steers Callie Bee into the middle of the street keeping twenty feet between them and the men.
The men shout something at them, but Bruce continues walking, he places his hand on Callie Bee’s lower back and steers her into the Grove. There is a sidewalk that snakes through the Grove, the branches carry the shouts from the Lyceum, the noise is unsettling.
Even spookier groups of men stand around in the Grove, some of them are as close as fifteen yards away, the groups of men are all staring in the direction of the Lyceum as if waiting for something, Callie Bee clings closer to Bruce. They quicken their pace through the Grove. The noise from the Lyceum becomes louder as he nears the Union.
Bruce and Callie Bee walk out of the Grove ending up in front of the Union, they are about to turn right and head towards the Observatory continuing onto Sorority Row, Bruce can see the police barrier at the entrance to Sorority Row.
Suddenly Callie Bee pulls on his hand, the noise from the Lyceum is deafening now.
“Bruce look over there! What is that birdbrain doing?” Cries Callie Bee, the tone in her voice is worried and urgent.
He strains his eyes looking in the direction that she is pointing, in the darkness near the Champion Tree, the tree is thick and large, the ancient oak features large weeping branches. The tree stands sentry between the Union and Bryant Hall.
Following Mary’s finger Bruce recognizes Callie Bee’s friend Alice. Alice looks oblivious to the noise she’s walking towards.
Alice walks behind Bryant Hall out of view. Callie Bee sprints towards her friend, Bruce races after her and snatches Callie Bee by her forearm.
“Bee! What the fuck are you doing? If you go over there that mob might tear you both to pieces!”
“Bruce she is all alone and the idiot doesn’t know she is walking towards trouble, we have to help her!” Pleads Callie Bee.
He turns around and points to the police barrier, the blue lights from the patrol car sparkle like a lighthouse in the fog.
“Get over to the barrier and wait at the house, I will get her. Stay in the house and I’ll be there soon!”
Without another word Bruce takes off running in the direction of Alice.
2B, Alice: Point of View.
Alice walks along the sidewalk, the Champion Tree is on her left, continuing along the sidewalk the noise up ahead has become deafening. Ignoring it she presses on for the library to type her essay, her typewriter broke over the weekend and she procrastinated until the last day.
Alice has had a strange feeling tonight; a sense of unease had been with her since she had walked by the Union. When she is in between Fulton Chapel and Bryant Hall she can see the commotion in front of the Lyceum.
Hundreds of men shout at the line of steel helmeted US Marshals. The Marshals hold shields, blocking the projectiles sent their way. Rocks and glass bottles shatter on their shields. A row of Marshals behind the Marshals with the shields launch canisters of tear gas into the mob to disperse the crowd.
Sensing that there is no way passed the mob Alice turns around to head back to the sorority house. As Alice turns around she bumps into someone.
Four college aged men block her path. three of them are lanky, wearing jeans and work boots. The last one is short and fat, with a white tee-shirt. On closer inspection Alice notices that these men are older than college kids, they are in their late twenties. Alice backs up, her back is turned to the Circle.
“Where are you going doll? The party is over there?” Says one of the boys with a bad haircut.
Alice keeps backing up until the fat boy grabs her wrist!
“If you don’t want to join the fun over there you should stay with us, we will show you a romantic time.” The fat boy spits the bourbon-soaked proposal onto her face.
Alice kicks the fat boy in his unprotected scrotum, the boy hunches over and Alice sprints from the group of men. The only path open to her is the Circle. Passing the large white statue on her left she bounds from the Circle, passing the construction of Shoemaker Hall, her destination is Hume Hall, the building is almost always open, Alice hopes she could find a janitor or someone to help her!
She makes it to the door only to find that the building is locked! Her pursuers are on her before she can try and run again, Six hands lift her from the ground, one covers her mouth to muffle her cries for help. Alice is carried behind Shoemaker Hall and tossed down near the construction scaffolding.
The fat boy she kicked pounces on top of her. His friends hold her down as Alice’s blouse is torn open, the buttons flying in different directions. The breeze of the night cools her exposed stomach, as the fat boy licks the side of her face, Alice turns her head and catches his earlobe between her teeth. Alice bites down as hard as she can. Tearing away the flesh the boy howls in pain.
Eyes full of lust and rage the fat boy balls up his fist and strikes Alice in the forehead, the back of her head slams into the pole of the scaffolding.
Alice’s vision blurs and she blinks once, sinking into the darkness the last thing she hears is the sound of further commotion nearby…
2C, Bruce: Point of View
Holding a brick in his hand, Bruce moves quietly behind the building. Bruce had seen the men drag Alice this way. The noise from the Lyceum is even louder, over the noise of the mob Bruce hears the sounds of someone struggling nearby.
Bruce zeroes in on his targets. Huddled around in a group, two men stand and watch as another two men lay on the ground groping Alice and tearing at the buttons of her jeans. With their attention focused on the rape Bruce had snuck up unnoticed.
He lifts the brick in his right hand and sprints forward! He slams the brick onto the man’s skull, he buckles forward under the force of the attack! The brick splits apart in Bruce’s hand, the man slumps to his front, once down, his legs twitch, the two men on the ground are still oblivious to Bruce’s arrival. Unaware of their downed comrade the two men continue sexually assaulting Alice. The rapist who was standing did see his friend drop and he turns to face Bruce knife in hand.
Bruce steps back as the man slashes at him, he dances around avoiding being impaled on the blade. Reaching for his back-pocket Bruce grips his switchblade and with a press of the button, his seven-inch blade joins the fray. Hearing the fight another boy joins, also blade in hand. Outnumbered Bruce does all he can to keep away from their blades.
The first rapist to engage Bruce, strikes with the knife in an undisciplined manner. Bruce holds still waiting for the overreach, dodging at the last second, Bruce lets the blade sail into open space near his head. Capitalizing on his position, Bruce viciously strikes at the man’s outstretched arm, cutting him open at three points, the man drops his blade, blood pours from his arm, the same arm falls limb and useless to his side. The man uses his other hand, to slow the bleeding. Gripping his thrice cut arm proves to be useless, the wounds are too deep.
Bruce isn’t finished in the same motion, Keeping knife held in his right hand, Bruce connects his reinforced fist onto the man’s temple, aimed for left side of his opponents head! He is sent to the payment hard!
There is no time for reprieve as Bruce is tackled, he loses his knife and narrowly avoids being gutted by rolling to his back, looking up at the night sky Bruce sees a heel driving down at his face. Rolling on his front Bruce gets to one knee.
The third fighter pulls his heel back from the kick and charges forward two steps and brings the knife down in a stabbing motion, the moon of the night pokes through the clouds illuminating the man’s face, Bruce saw this guy around town all time, he is older than he is, the townie has nothing but murderous intent in his eyes as he brings his knife down.
Bruce was in the process of drawing his pistol from the holster when sees the knife is in motion, he grips his pistol with his left hand, doing the only thing he can do to protect his vitals, Bruce blocks the path of the blade with his right forearm!
The pain nearly drives a scream from the depths of his lungs, the surge of adrenaline and shock are the only reasons he holds back his cries.
Blood seeps down his arm, the dark atrial blood drenches the ground. In the same motion that he blocked the strike his firearm has cleared his holster and is aimed inches from the mans face.
It is so easy to squeeze the trigger Bruce didn’t hear the sound as the round discharges from the chamber!
The round imbeds itself into the forehead of the would-be rapist and sends him sprawling to his back! A single trickle of blood oozes down his forehead, a larger stream of blood leaks out the exit wound. The man’s legs twitch for a moment then he is still.
Bruce has the hammer of his revolver cocked and aimed at the fat boy who is now standing from the sound of the gunshot, the one he sent to the pavement earlier has gotten to his feet, all the ones with the head injuries remain on the ground.
At the sight of Bruce’s pistol, the two remaining run! The one skinny townie holds his bloody arm as he runs from the fight tail between his legs.
Speaking of bloody arms his is on fire with pain, Bruce's fingertips throb and he can see the blood dripping down.
Behind him Bruce hears gunshots coming from the Lyceum, he hoped that his gunshot hadn’t triggered a chain reaction, regardless he needed to get out of here, with the campus full of uncertainty he would have to take the tunnels.
Putting his gun back in his holster he moves towards Alice, the pain of his arm is excruciating, he does his best to force the pain from his mind. Stepping over the bodies of the two downed men, Bruce kneels and checks on Alice. She is out cold, there is a red mark on her forehead, and the back of her head is caked in dry blood.
Lifting Alice in his arms causes him extreme pain, the girl herself weighs almost nothing, but with his fresh wound he has to shift her to his shoulder in a fireman’s carry.
He only has to walk a few feet from where the fight took place, looking along the ground he finds a metal grate, it is 1, ½ feet wide and five feet long, the metal grate has hinges and to Bruce’s luck the grate has not been padlocked.
Lifting on the metal grate Bruce pushes it over, it is an awkward descent underground with Alice on his shoulder but by taking it one step at a time he eventually finds even ground. Bruce has to keep his knees bent, by doing so he is able to walk her through the damp passage.
Well inside the shaft, Bruce makes his way down the narrow passageway, after a minute he comes to an area with a fork leading to three different locations. Oxford and Ole Miss have an elaborate tunnel system, Bruce knew the tunnels well, in the past he used them to smuggle liquor onto campus.
Choosing the tunnel passage furthest on the right he passes under the Circle and moves towards the Observatory, even underground he can hear the violence on the surface, shouts and gunshots are heard throughout the journey to the Observatory.
Bruce worms his way through the passage, eventually he nears the Observatory, he sees a small set of six stairs. After the stairs the passage opening is only up to his waist. Setting Alice down Bruce gets on his knees and drags Alice by her shoulders.
Moving through the crawlspace backwards after fifty feet his foot meets the resistance of something hard. He kicks with his foot and the hinges of the cabinet door open. Bruce slides through, next he slides Alice out of the shaft and sets her down on the floor, his arm drips blood onto the wood floor of the classroom, they had come out of the tunnel near a cabinet by the fireplace.
Alice begins to stir; Bruce gently taps the side of her face trying to get her awake.
“Alice, Alice please wake up”
The girl slowly opens her eyes, she blinks staring at the ceiling of the building, she looks around confused. She squints her eyes getting a better look at Bruce.
“It’s Bruce, Callie Bee’s boyfriend. I got you away from those men.”
Suddenly Alice feels her bare stomach and the trauma of her experience comes flooding back to her. Tears spill out of her face as she sobs into Bruce’s shirt.
“I was so scared; I don’t remember anything after them grabbing me” Cries Alice.
After a long moment she pulls her face out of Bruce’s shirt. Bruce unbuttons his shirt and gives it to Alice.
“Where are we?” Asks Alice.
“We are inside of the Barnard Observatory, I had to take the tunnels, campus is total anarchy right now.”
Bruce wraps up his bleeding arm with the torn remnants of Alice’s shirt, he had started to feel light headed from the loss of blood. The stab wound is deep, and the blood soon soaks through the girls shirt.
He keeps Alice’s arm around his shoulder to steady her and they walk out of the building. As he leads Alice out of the Observatory, Bruce meets a new world.
The sounds of gunshots and smoke fill the air! It sounded like they were on a battlefield not a college campus. From the steps of the Observatory Bruce sees hundreds of people running from and towards the Lyceum, a pickup truck drives through the Grove, it avoids hitting a person and slams into a tree. Tearing his eyes from the chaos he helps Alice towards the police barrier.
They only have fifty yards until they reach the entrance of Sorority Row. He is challenged by the police at the barrier.
“Where are y’all headed?” Demands a Trooper.
The Police Officer asking the question, Bruce recognizes as the skinny Trooper from the Beacon.
There are a dozen other Troopers and a few Sheriff deputies keeping post at the barrier. Most of the officers hold pump shotguns. A few hold tear gas launchers.
“I am trying to get her home to the Tri Delta house.”
More gunshots go off around campus. The officer looks at Bruce’s arm, blood drips on the sidewalk, Alice’s shirt had become completely soaked through.
“Boy what happened to your arm?”
“We were attacked by the mob!”
A large group of men walk on the sidewalk behind him, all of them hold blunt objects. Another burst of nearby gunfire causes everyone at the barrier to duck and wince.
“Why are you guys doing nothing to stop this!”
The Trooper lets them through the barrier.
“Governor Barnett ordered us to stand down, we aren’t to leave the barriers until further notice!”
Just as Bruce is about to chastise the Trooper Alice becomes light headed and pukes on the ground. He had to get her back to the house!
When Bruce gets to the slate steps of the sorority house he turns around. Staring in the direction of the Grove he can see a score of men walking in a cluster with torches and he wonders while he enters the house what more was to come?