It wasn't what he expected, just soft and juicy. An odd taste, mostly dirt. He was used to it by now. Every day at recess Jack ate a worm, and every day his friends would laugh.
The worm was gross, but it was well worth the laughter. It was worth having friends. This was a new town and a fresh start, and he was going to do it right this time. Jack was seven, and he had never been to a birthday party. He had never had one of his own. His parents ignored him for the most part. He had never had friends before.
It was a bright day. Blue sky. The kids were gathered round, cheering, when they heard a whistle and the mob parted, Jack dangling the long nightcrawler above his mouth. The teacher shouted and knocked the worm to the ground. The principal explained that it was against the rules. He tried to tell him that the kids weren't his friends. But Jack knew the truth, and he hated the man for lying. If worms were out, he would find something else. He needed the laughter. And he knew they couldn't stop him.