Damaged
Ron wasn't always like this, he started life as any other person does; a happy little kid just having fun and learning about the world around him, and playing with his younger sister. Who would have known that the seemingly perfect parents hid dark secrets that would forever change and mold Ron's fragile mind into something dark and twisted as he grew up.

Ron was born in the 1950's. His father worked for a large aerospace company as a technical illustrator and often brought home work that would occupy most of his time. He never seemed to have any time for Ron. There were always tight schedules to meet. Ron's mother was the queen of the neighborhood, always needing to be the center of attention wherever she went. She rarely had time for Ron too, since she liked to entertain and visit her neighbors. Ron was pretty much left to play by himself, or with friends. The only condition was that it had to be outside the house, so Ron's favorite pastime was to ride his bicycle around the block with a couple close friends. In those days kids didn't have to worry much about being kidnapped or anything like that. As long as you came home before the streetlights came on, everything was fine. Besides, the neighbors were quick to rat you out if you got into any trouble.

Being the 50's, it was common for Ron's parents to invite over either his Dad's co-workers or his Mom's friends for cocktails in the evenings. Whenever that happened it was the house rule that children should be seen, not heard...and if at all possible, not even seen. This meant that Ron and his sister had to stay in their room and not make any noise. Woe be to any kid that stuck their head out the bedroom door, and don't even think about going to the bathroom! Dad would beat them both if that happened, of course he would wait for guests to leave first so no one would know what went on in the house. Ron and his sister quickly learned to control their bathroom urges until after everyone left, which led to having a bladder the size of a keg when they grew up. Neither of the kids wanted dad to get angry because he would really let his temper fly. It usually ended up with him grabbing whatever was nearby and using it on Ron or his sister. Sometimes it was a belt, sometimes it was one of those paddle-ball paddles with the ball ripped off, but most of the time it was one of those wire coathangers. those were the worst. Dad was careful to make sure the welts didn't show, so he mostly concentrated on the upper thighs. It wasn't long before Ron and his sister learned to cover for each other if anything went wrong during the day. They also learned to hide out when Dad first came home to find out if he was in a good mood or not. If he was in a good mood, then it was ok to come out, say hello, and go off somewhere so he wouldn't be bothered. If he was in a bad mood though, it didn't pay to come out of the bedroom until dinner time.

One day Dad came home in a particularly bad mood. Something didn't go right at work and someone was going to have to bear the brunt of it. As luck would have it, Ron and his sister had been playing in the back yard and had picked the lemons off of the lemon tree. There weren't any paper sacks around, so they had put the lemons in a pile and were going to ask Mom for a sack when she came home. Unfortunately, Dad came home first.

He went into the back yard because he heard the kids playing. When he saw the pile of lemons, he flew into a rage. "How come you kids are making all this mess? I work hard to keep this yard clean," he said as he kicked hard at the pile sending lemons every which way. Now, not only were there lemons all over the place, which fueled his anger, but when he kicked the pile, some of them burst and the juice was on his dress shoes. Now all hell broke out and Ron and his sister were scrambling to try and find a safe place to hide. Ron was close to the lemon tree, so he thought he could climb up into it. Too bad the tree wasn't very large, and even worse luck was that his Dad got scratched by the thorns as he dragged Ron out of the tree. Into the house they went, Dad dragging Ron by the arm, kicking and screaming, trying to get away. Over to the closet where Dad grabbed a coathanger and proceded to wail on poor Ron for several minutes. At least his sister got away, hiding in the garage behind some boxes as the screams from her brother echoed in her ears.

This went on for many years. There was always something simple or trivial that would send their Dad into a frenzy. Once, Ron had gotten into trouble in third grade. Corporal punishment was allowed in schools at that time and kids would usually get a swat or two from the Principal's paddle if warranted. This time the Principal told Ron that he was sending him home and would call his parents. Ron's eyes got big with horror as he begged the Principal to give him some swats instead of sending him to his Dad. Too bad, Ron. that wasn't going to happen. Ron was taken home by a teacher because he refused to leave the school grounds. Ron wasn't able to move for a couple days after Dad got home that night.

When Ron was 15, his parents finally got divorced, but it came too late to do any good. The damage had already been done, and there were very few days of Ron's childhood that he could actually remember. Ron prayed that the memories would never return.

Continued...