Henry Bowers awoke feeling refreshed and cheerful. Despite sleeping rough in the park, it had been the best night’s sleep he’d had in a long, long time. The birds had woken him with a sweet song and Maine’s New England temperature just kept getting hotter. Screw summer school. I don’t want to go on a day like this!
All I want to do is curl up and listen to rock ‘n’ roll. But today I have work to do. He sighed, reaching into his jeans pocket and withdrawing his trademark switchblade. Metallic pink and blue hues glinted in the morning sunlight.
Footsteps pitter-pattered out of Henry’s field of vision, ‘Hey, Daddy-O.’
‘Yo, Patrick. You ready for today?’
‘You know it!’
Henry flashed his teeth, ‘Great! Let’s beat the living hell outta them!’
Half an hour later, the boys were crouched like American Indians in the bushes. Cramps snaked up Patrick’s legs but he didn’t bother complaining. All would be good when the Losers are dead!
Something in Patrick’s head had clicked into place over night. Despite being dangerously deluded, Patrick knew he had no choice; Henry and I were meant to kill the Losers! This ‘Pennywise’ whoever he is, could be our destiny. After all, I am the only real person in existence, so maybe this Pennywise is my real father-
‘I think they’re coming.’ Henry whispered silkily in Patrick’s ear. He turned to catch his eyes, ‘Don’t say a word.’
Smirking feverishly, Patrick bounced up and down in excitement. He could hardly wait!
‘W-wuh-want t-to go d-dow-n-n to t-the p-pier, guh-guys?’ Bill stammered, pivoting round to beam at his friends.
‘Sure. Why not.’ Ben offered, panting in the heat.
Beverly Marsh skipped eagerly behind Bill, ‘We could get ice cream and eat it listening to my new records. Anybody like Buddy Holly?’ Her red hair glistened radiantly in the sun.
‘Th-that’s gr-great, B-B-Bevvie.’ Bill smiled directly at her, making her blush with pleasure. Henry noticed Ben’s slightly hurt expression from the bushes and snickered.
Stanley Uris’s prim trouser cuff just skimmed the leaves of the bush Henry and Patrick were crouched in. The greaser’s heart thundered with anticipation. Now!
Eddie Kaspbrak squealed in bewilderment, his eyes wide with terror. All too suddenly, he was on the grass, sprawled out and pathetically defenceless with grass stains plastered to his pristine alabaster shirt.
The other five losers stood staring, too stunned to react. Cries of ‘Holy hell!’ and ‘Jesus Christ!’ were murmured, but Henry was too lost in his own world to notice.
Kill the Losers. Kill them all, Henry. Henry, kill them! We’ll all die! Kill them, please! For us, Henry.
‘Oi! Fags! What do ya think you’re doing!?’ Richie roared, interrupting Henry from slicing the little pansy. Henry froze, knife already poised above his head. All of a sudden, his demented eyes locked on Richie. Narrowed. Rolled away.
Please, Henry. I’m begging you! Kill them… Kill them all. It doesn’t matter how or when, just do it!! Please!
‘Cut it out!’ Beverly shrieked, shrilly, hands cupping her face in horror.
Eddie screamed and cried, tears dripping down his pasty face, collecting on his collar and Henry’s fingertips. His friends attempted to throw Henry off of the young boy, yet were failing miserably. Bowers was too strong. Patrick Hockstetter watched serenely from a distance… Waited, and Eddie could see out of the corner of his eye that Patrick was edging closer and closer, hands clasped together in front of his waist. As always, Patrick was looking sadistically delighted.
Patrick giggled childishly. Mike could practically see him shaking with adrenaline, ‘Kill him now, Henry! The clown's saying he will hurt us if we let them get away...’
‘H-hey! H-how d-d-do y-you know a-about-‘ Bill began, flinching in surprise.
‘Shut up! Little shit!’ Henry looked up at the moon, a pale ghost in the morning sky. His brow furrowed and he averted his eyes fearfully.
Eddie’s eyes grew wide as Henry’s blade came closer and closer to his quivering face. Ben looked as if he were about to be sick – there was nothing they could do. Henry Bowers was not only strong, but he was crazy… Juniper Hills material for sure! He was just bout to give up all hope – Eddie Kaspbrak was a goner…
Unexpectedly, pebbles and small rocks rained down on Henry. Ben let out a small laugh without any amusement. Of course! How could I forget? Henry hated that rock fight last week! We had him beat so bad!
‘Let him go, you bastard!!’ Beverly screeched between tears, her eyes wild with fury. It was her that had thrown those stones! Ben’s heart skipped a beat. Gathering rocks in the folds of his T-shirt, Ben gestured for his gang to do the same. Bowers’ smug smile turned instantly into a snarl as a jagged rock bounced off his side.
Ignoring the rock, Henry began to cut into Eddie’s poor wrists. Wheezing and sobbing, Eddie squirmed desperately under Henry’s body. Unfortunately for Eddie, the older boy just wouldn’t budge. Being muscular, Henry had to weigh at least twice Eddie’s weight. More rocks were propelled through the air, at both Henry and Patrick – many of them being successful.
Please, please let me go! Eddie mentally begged. Blood was now spurting out at an alarmingly fast rate and Eddie’s asthma was worse than ever before.
Richie attempted to throw Henry off of Eddie a second time, and would have succeeded if it weren’t for that damn Patrick Hockstetter, Henry’s stupid lapdog. Placing his hands firmly against Eddie’s shoulder blades, Patrick held him down at one end, peering down tenderly into the boy’s face. He looked almost like a nurse, holding down a sick person for further tests; firm yet gentle. Rocks bounced off Patrick’s head and face, leaving small bloody wells. Emotionlessly, Patrick continued to look into Eddie’s eyes. He was savouring the moment… A stone hit the boy square between the eyes and he didn’t even flinch! It was at that moment that Bill Denbrough realised something; Patrick Hockstetter was screwy! Even more so than Henry Bowers… If that was even possible!
Ripping Eddie’s shirt open, Henry placed his blade against his neck. Eddie could feel the cool against his skin. Begging wasn’t an option - Henry’s going to kill me now. I wish I could’ve at least said goodbye to my mother. Hesitating, Henry looked across at Patrick and offered a false smile. ‘Patrick, don’t you want a go? I can’t have all the fun!’
It was at that moment that Eddie seized his opportunity. Rolling sideways, he escaped Henry and Patrick’s grasp. Patrick swiftly grabbed his ankle and pulled him back across the grass, leaving a thin trail of blood behind. Bugs and dirt rubbed against his shirt and crawled into his hair. Eddie cried even harder and attempted to kick out at his tormentors.
‘Hey, rock man. Think ya could get away? Too bad, baby. We're going to kill you, and your pathetic friends.' Henry snarled, pinning him back down again. Out of nowhere, before Henry could even think about cutting into the loser’s skin, Patrick was knocked sideways in a surprise attack.
Hockstetter’s face didn’t even register a single mark of surprise as blood seeped rapidly out his nose.
Releasing Eddie, Henry furiously peered around to see who the attacker was. Denbrough. Eddie didn’t even matter anymore. It was Bill Denbrough’s turn now!
‘Fucker, you really shouldn't have done that.' Henry laughed dryly, grabbed Bill forcefully by the shoulder and pulled him closer to his face. 'Would you like a turn now, fuck face? Sure! Shit!'
Bill bravely glowered back into Henry’s eyes as Eddie crawled slowly away to Beverly’s comforting arms, sobbing as he went. He pressed his switch blade slowly into the boy’s neck. Bill squirmed and writhed desperately in the older boy's grasp. Thankfully for Bill, a car with a young married couple passed by. The woman hopped delicately out the car, poodle skirt and petticoat billowing as she ran. Her husband slammed the car door and joined her side, frowning worriedly.
'Are you boys okay?' She asked cautiously as she caught sight of Eddie covered in blood and crying, and Patrick's spouting nose.
'Yes ma'am we're just okey-dokey. Thank you for asking.' Patrick smiles coldly. His eyes were dull and full of black emptiness. The lady glanced at Patrick doubtfully and turned to go back to her car – after all, it was none of her business! Just some stupid little kids fighting!
'NO!' Beverly screamed, 'He's got a knife! They're going to kill us!' She pointed at Henry whose face quickly turned from a handsome smile into a furious snarl.
‘You BITCH!’ Henry hollered, lunging at her and revealing his knife. The man gasped, his face displaying pure fear.
‘You just leave those children alone now, boy!’
‘Please just go home,’ his wife pleaded, realising she was dealing with someone not quite in his right mind, ‘Or we’ll call the cops!’
‘You leave.’ Patrick says coolly, joining Henry’s side and linking his arm through his.
Henry fumed silently to himself as he came to a decision, ‘C’mon, Pat. Let’s go.’
Patrick nodded once and walked pessimistically next to his older friend, head bowed. Everyone watched them leave, 'Psychopaths... Someone should inform their parents and send them to a home.' The wife whispered softly to her husband when the boys were a safe distance away.
‘Are you kids alright?’
Upon reaching Patrick’s road, Henry crashed to the pavement, head in his hands. 'SHIT! SHIT! SHIT! SHIT! We almost had them. If those old biddies hadn't stuck their fucking noses in, we could have killed them!'
Patrick knelt on the ground beside him and ran his hands through Henry's hair, placing his cheek next to his. 'Pennywise won't be happy.' He agreed sombrely, his eyes deeply saddened for once in his life. Henry sighed worriedly and rested his pounding head against Patrick’s lap, lying down. Patrick stroked his hair comfortingly.
‘If we don’t kill them next time, we’re gonna be murdered, Patrick.’