As the school year progressed I was getting more and more disgusted with cousin Emma. It seemed when ever she got close to LV she turned into a completely different person. She would laugh at all his chants he invented about me and try to chant them too. She tried making up some of her own mean things but she was the only one that ever said them. She would try to talk to LV when ever she got a chance never really realizing how he tried to avoid her at all costs too, infact he treated her with as much contempt as me but she was still thinking he could do no wrong.
At recess time the boys were digging a large cave in a snowdrift beside the schoolhouse. They didn't want any girls messing it up so most of them were sliding on the steep hill behind the schoolhouse. Emma and I stayed inside and were watching as the cave got deeper and deeper until it was big enough to hold most of the boys.
They all stood outside and admired it and then told cousin Marvin to go get one of the flying saucers and they would use that as the door. He hurriedly ran to do as they asked. He was constantly seeking their approval and bragged a lot which backfired on him and actually drove the very friends away he was hoping to gain. When he got back with the flying saucer they fitted it into the doorway. It worked. They rolled it back and asked Marvin to have the honors and be the first person to enjoy their cozy cave. He beamed with pleasure and asked if anyone else wants to join him. But they were all in agreeance that he should get to do it by himself.
I was happy for Marvin, because I felt sorry for him for not having any friends and now finally they were being nice to him. I watched as he crawled inside and they rolled the flying saucer back in front of the opening and then watched with consternation as they hurriedly heaped a big pile of snow in front of it. And then turned and walked away.
Teacher Hannah was at her desk checking books so Emma told her to come see what they did to Marvin. She came to the window just in time to see Norman, Vernon, and LV come running and then jumping on top of the cave smashing the roof down. Hannah grabbed her coat and ran outside and helped dig Marvin out of the snow. She told him to stand on the register to warm up and went to ring the bell.
As everyone went to their seats there was an uneasy feeling in the air. The boys who had been involved in the burying of Marvin all still looked smug enough. But the rest of us could feel something bad was about to happen.
School dismissed early and as we were walking home I was sure that Emma would finally see now that LV really was a horrible boy. But to my dismay she was upset at Norman and Vernon but thought LV was still perfect. That was the last straw. After all I had been through since meeting LV and how mean he was to Marvin I had all I could handle hearing her go on about the greatness of him, and before thinking twice I hit her hard. She started crying and I was so upset I started crying too. We came to the place where they had to turn off to go home and we choked out a tearful good by.
John and I got home and walked into the shop. Mom and Daddy were working at assembling chairs and immediately saw something was wrong. They pulled out a little chair and I sat down and told them everything that had happened that day. They were quiet for a little while and then Daddy said, "Go wash your face, and I'll take you to Alvin's to apologize to Emma."
I was sorry I had hit her, but not sorry enough that I felt like making a special trip to go tell her so. But I didn't have any choice. Emma was happy to see me and assured me that everything is okay which made me feel much better.
The next day in school teacher Hannah told me to go out to the mudroom that someone has something to say to me. I went outside and the only person there was LV I was ready to go back inside when he mumbled "I'm sorry I used to be so mean to you. I won't tease you any more," and then turned and ran out the door. I went back into the schoolhouse wondering how life would seem without being harrassed.
It was great. We didn't like each other any better but now there seemed to be a mutual agreement to ignore each other. Emma however was not in the agreement and she still adored everything LV did and said. I couldn't understand her point and just listened patiently whenever she gushed about him.