Skolnik Page 18
was so long ago but he could never forget her fiery temperament, she was a like a gypsy woman under the hot Southern sun, but she had married a doctor and they had gone north passing out of his life and he often remembered her and wondered what she looked like now. He'd never told his wife about her but she had told him about a man she loved and how he'd used her and how it had made her shy of men for many years until Dick came along and she knew he would be good to her because he was at heart a gentle man made hard by life and he had to admit that this was true, life had made him hard, it hadn't been fair to him, or to her.
     When Harry got the call from the probation officer at juvenile hall he couldn't believe what he was hearing. One of his boys and a friend had tried to rob a 7-Eleven store with a toy gun and had then run out with the hysterical store clerk right behind them and it wasn't long before the cops had them in cuffs with their faces in the gutter. The

first thing Harry wanted to do was strangle his wife whose mollycoddling had undone every lesson he'd ever taught them. The second thing he thought of doing was to tell her that the boy could rot in hell for all he cared. But at the hearing, after a titanic effort on the part of the lawyer his sister-in-law had found for them and a great show of contrition with many tears on the boy's part, he was released into their custody. Harry didn't talk to him for a month. The four boys and his wife would sit around the dining room table almost every night talking in whispers and he was excluded and felt put out and cursed them all when he was a little drunk and waved his hands around in the familiar threatening way but it didn't have any effect, they ignored him and waited for him to run out of steam and go away. Being together like that gave them courage. Harry would kick the furniture and knock things off the table and then have some more beer and fall asleep in his clothes and no one would bother waking him up and in the