When Roy gets in school, Garrett tells him that Dana will be waiting for him after 7 th period and is going to snatch him before Roy can get on the bus. Now Roy has to think of something to avoid yet another confrontation. He has few options: if he eludes the bully, it will start all over again on Monday; if he reports it to the vice-principal, Dana will only receive a stern lecture that he’ll laugh off; if he tells his parents, that might withdraw him from Trace Middle School and send him to some private school he has no desire to attend; if he grovels and apologizes again, Dana will sense his weakness and continue to harass him; or he can stand and fight. Roy is also very aware of the effect his being in a fight can have on his mother. Being an only child is something he takes very seriously and has ever since his parents lost a baby girl in a miscarriage. However, his greatest weakness is his pride which makes him behave sometimes in ways he doesn’t understand.
At the end of history class, Roy sticks with his teacher, Mr. Ryan, because he’s a former football player. Eventually, though, he finds himself alone in the halls. Then, as he walks by a janitor’s closet, he is grabbed and pulled inside by Dana.
The scene changes to Curly and Chuck Muckle once more on the telephone. There has been mischief at the construction site again. Someone put poisonous snakes inside the chain-link fence and the dogs went beserk. Kalo, their trainer, is furious, because the dogs cost about $12,000 each and might have died from a snakebite. He pulls them from the job immediately. On top of the snakes, Kalo stepped into one of the owl burrows and sprained his ankle. Now Mother Paula’s will be responsible for that as well. Curly calls the same reptile wranglers that had removed the alligators, but when they arrive, the snakes are all gone. Muckle just orders him to get back to work on Monday morning.
Meanwhile, in the janitor’s closet, Roy is getting the tar beaten out of him. Dana gets him in a bear hug and is once again cutting off his air, when suddenly the bully is lifted off him. Roy is unsure in the dark of the closet who has saved him, but when he peeks out of the closet, the hallway is clear. So, Roy streaks for the nearest exit.
Roy’s review of his options in dealing with Dana shows mature and intelligent introspection. He understands his weaknesses and strengths and his concern for being an only child on his parents is admirable. Then, when he finally is another brawl with Dana, he fights as well as he can against the bigger boy and that makes him admirable as well. He’s a character the reader can’t help but cheer on.