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Forest, Jr. was standing behind the counter at his Daddy's store when I walked in. He gave me the signal: a clenched fist with his index finger sticking straight up. That sign meant we were going to the hide out and that he had a secret to share.
That's the way Forest, Jr. operated. He preferred to deal in secret signs and mystery. He was the thinker and the master mind of all our adventures. He was the absolute boss of our confederation. No one ever questioned his role of leadership. The grownups always said Forest, Jr. really had a head on his shoulders. Forest, Jr. was the brilliant architect-I drew pictures, made things, and executed his every scheme.
My cousin pocketed two candy bars when his daddy's back was turned and we quickly left the store for our hideout. As we walked into the woods I tried to get Forest, Jr. to tell me what was on his mind.
"Wait until we get to the hideout," he said cautiously.
When we reached our sanctuary, Forest, Jr. divulged his we would at last see "it"- the real thing.
"It" needed no further explanation, because "it" had slipped into our conversation and, like the proverbial drop of ink in a clear glass of water, our thoughts and conversation would be quickly saturated with the blue black ink of sexual curiousity.
It came up in everything we did or talked about, fishing, fort building, pranks, and games. We always somehow injected it. It was an enigma wrapped in two parts, the overall mystery that at this time in our lives totally eluded us. Forest, Jr. had theories, but admitted that he didn't understand what was whispered by the older boys. The female body part that we referred to as "it" had become our obsession.
Forest, Jr. then laid out the plan. I won't mention her name because someone might know Myrtle Jo Britt. She later grew to become a beautiful lady, but during our youth she was a ragtag tomboy that could hold her own with boys. She was a wonderful playmate and my cousin's scheme of how we were going to finally see "it" involved her. We would play her favorite game, "territory."
"Territory" was a game that involved trying to stick a knife into a rectangle drawn in the ground with a stick. If your knife stuck up you could carve out a piece of the rectangle and claim it. The one with the most pieces of territory won the game. Simple game, lots of fun, and an excuse to play with knives.
Forest, Jr.'s plan was very involved and he explained it all down to the last detail. We were accustomed to playing with a female companion, always protective and considerate of our "differences." When nature called, we would excuse ourselves and hide behind the bushes to relieve ourselves. The plan called for crossing a barrier that had never before been considered. It was uncharted waters with possible dire consequences.
Forest, Jr. placed his hand in a praying position which I always knew meant something shocking would follow. And shocking it was!
"We are going to pee in front of her. Or, actually, you will first."
"You mean pull it out where she can see it?"
"No," I said, "she will tell and they will beat the shit out of me."
"No, she won't. I'm sure of it."
"I'm not going to do it," I said resolutely. Then I wavered, "At least I won't go first."
"Yes, you will, and then we both will do it."
For the first time I didn't take the bait.
"I won't do that," I said.
"Then we'll draw straws to see who goes first."
Drawing straws was something you could not refuse. It was a matter of principle. With a little luck and lots of trepidation I won and Forest, Jr. would have to pull himself out and pee first in front of her. If she didn't threaten to tell, I would soon follow suit...that way we would share in any punishment. We clasped hands in our secret handshake and the pact was made and sealed. Forest, Jr. was absolutely convinced that if we started openly peeing in front of her and she didn't tell, that very soon she would do the same. At long last we would get a chance to see "it" or at least get a glimpse of it.
The next morning Myrtle Jo showed up early to play territory. After a short game, Forest, Jr. made his startling announcement, "I've got to pee," he said. Right in front of Myrtle Jo he did just that. She watched with extreme interest. In a matter of minutes my cousin nodded his head. I knew it was my turn and I pulled it out and did the same thing.
Again she watched in silence. Forest, Jr. was right. She never told.
We spent the rest of the summer drinking a lot of water, peeing every few minutes, and playing territiory.
Our practice became so common and such an irritant to her that she announced one day, "All ya'll do is drink water and piss all day, I'm going home." Never once did Myrtle Jo Britt ever pee in front of us, and even with Forest, Jr.'s well laid plan we never saw "it", at least, not Myrtle Jo Britt's.