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Jack and Frank

Jack and Frank

by David Rae


Jack was what you might call soft. Mum told me not to be mean, but Dad says Jack needs to toughen up. Dad’s right, once Jack gets past third grade, he’ll learn all about life. I’m trying to teach him for his own good. He’s just so gullible. He makes it easy.

“What’s that behind you, Jack?” He turns around to look every single time. “Mum, Frank stole one of my chips.”

Mum would start on me. “That’s your brother; be kind.” But Dad would be laughing. I could see.

“Chip off the old block,” Dad would say. Mum would get mad, but it was Jack’s fault.

“Jack, there’s ten cents.” He bends over, just asking to be kicked. What did they teach him in kindergarten?

“You boys help Dad bring in the groceries,” Mum shouted.

“You heard your mother.” Dad laughed, nipping into the basement to watch the game. I wanted to watch the game too. Maybe Dad would let me sip his beer, but Dad shook his head.

“You help Jack,” he said and closed the basement door.

“Hey Jack,” I said. “Those boxes look heavy. I’ll sit in the trunk and hand you the groceries.”

“Ok,” agreed Jack. It was like taking candy from a baby. I sat in the trunk and handed Jack cans and bags and he carried it all to the house.

Finally, the little twerp had moved everything.

“Good job,” I told him. “That’s everything except those candy bars.”

“Candy bars?” Jack’s eyes lit up.

“Yeah,” I said. “Dad told me we could each have a candy bar after we moved all the stuff. Too bad they slipped into that hole in the trunk... I tried to reach, but my hands are too big.” Jack held up his hands with excitement. “I’ve got small hands,” he cried.