the sun of summer is not just shining down on us; it is among us, following us from sandy bloomed beaches into air conditional church restrooms in seats of urban delight. it is in such places where a boy, barely sixteen, can take a holy bible into the toilet for comfort reading.
all goes well for awhile: no one dallies around the cramped boys' restroom in the basement - it may be chilled to a springtime cool, but the summer sewer water mixes with restroom defecation to produce a fertile fragrance. so, our hypothetical boy does not get caught - no one intrudes on the seasonal confluence of tissue, sunken trousers, a boy, and the holy book.
but after some time, say, a month or two from whence this make believe situation began, there happens to be an elder gentleman waiting outside the bathroom stalls with a red soap bucket. he is the neighbourhood cleaner/plumber - a member of the church. reports have trickled in that certain numbers are appearing in the boys' painted white bathroom stalls. satan's numbers, scribbled with a black sharpie.
zounds! our boy sees cream suds dripping, and trailing, closer. he can hear the iron walls flaking from the older man's grunts and wholesome sweat falling with the soap; the book trembles on his growing thighs whose young hairs are erecting; there are only six stalls, he's getting closer, ever closer, by the breath - no!
the boy opens to the end of the book on his lap and copies the number before cleaning up.