Ponyboy sat in the back of the police car, his breath caught in his throat and his heart was beating a hundred miles per hour. He couldn't believe what had just happened, he tried not to think about it but he had to. Ponyboy remained in his numb state until they reached the cooler.
The officer got out and opened the door.
"Come on out kid," the officer said.
Pony obeyed and slowly came out of the car. He was scared out of his mind, he knew he was dead. Pony could only imagine how Darry would react when he found out.
Another cop came over and patted Pony down, searching for drugs and weapons.
"Move it," the officer said grabbing his arm and leading him in.
Out in the rooms there were a lot of other officers. There were kids lined up down the hall being read their rights and being handcuffed. Down towards the end of the hall he recognized the soc he fought with that was also arrested.
Ponyboy was then led into an empty room and into a chair.
"Sit here and stay." The officer instructed. Pony took a deep breath and closed his eyes, resting the back of his head against the wall.
Pony started thinking about all the horrible stories that Dally had told him about jail and only got more nervous, he didn't want to spend one minute in a jail cell. Sweat started coming down his forehead as he thought…
"If only Sandy hadn't got up to go the bathroom. If only Soda hadn't lost his temper. If only those damn socs hadn't acted like assholes."
"Hey!" said a voice.
Ponyboy jumped and looked up to see the cop that arrested him standing at the door.
"Get up son," he said. Ponyboy stood up and was led into another room. There was another officer at a desk, Pony sat down across from him and he started taking down information.
"What's your name?" The officer asked gruffly.
"Ponyboy Curtis," he said. The officer laughed and shook his head.
As he took down more info, the officer who brought him here stuck his head in the door.
"Hey Joe, the kid's brother is here. Would you like to bring in now?"
"Let him in." said the officer. The other officer walked out of the room and returned a few minutes later. Ponyboy was scared to look at Darry.
"I'm Officer Mitchell. Please have a seat." Darry sat down next to Ponyboy, and Pony looked over a little to see Darry's eyes were full of anger. He could tell it was going to take everything to keep him from going off in here.
"Ponyboy Curtis has been charged with fighting in a public place with a deadly weapon,"
Pony's head instantly snapped up. Deadly weapon? There was no deadly weapon. But he knew better then to say anything and kept his mouth shut.
"I understand your his legal guardian am I correct?" asked Officer Mitchell.
"Yes sir," Darry said.
"Very well then. I personally decided not to draw any charges on Ponyboy. Since he has a clean record and we are way to full now to book him. But this is his only warning. So I'll let him off easy but next time it won't happen."
"Thank you sir. It won't happen again. I'll make sure of it." Darry said glaring at Pony. Now he was getting more nervous.
Officer Mitchell came over to Ponyboy and undid his handcuffs.
Ponyboy sighed in relief to have them off, as they were really starting to hurt. Darry led him out of the station with a strong grip on his shoulder.
The ride home went by in silence, Darry staring straight ahead at the road as the windshield wipers wiped away the rain that was now coming lightly down.
Ponyboy looked slightly over at him, noticing his still angry expression.
"This wasn't my fault," Pony finally spoke, ending the uncomfortable silence, frustration clear in his voice. "This soc grabbed Sandy-"
"I know Pony, Sodapop told me everything." Darry said.
"You know? Then why are so mad?" Pony asked.
"Why am I so mad? You got yourself arrested Pony!" Darry shouted.
"I just don't understand why Soda had to take you out so late, or why you couldn't have just said no. Just because you're mad at me."
"I have every right to mad at you," Pony muttered under his breath.
"Yeah, yeah. I hit you. It was two weeks ago! I've tried to apologize a hundred times, can we please move past it?"
"It isn't just that Darry, it's everything!" Ponyboy yelled, months of frustration poring out of him.
"I if I get a B, you want an A. If I get an A, you want to make sure they stay A's. If I'm in the house reading I should be out playing football, if I'm out playing football I should be inside reading." Pony yelled. "Nothing is ever good enough for you!"
Anger built up even more in Darry's eyes as he gritted his teeth and slammed on the breaks, turning to Ponyboy.
"You have no idea how much I have to put up with! I work all the time, I have to worry about money for bills, food, and about two younger brothers! I've suffered ever since mom and dad died!"
"So have I god damn it! They were my parents too you know!"
Ponyboy then got out of the truck and slammed the door closed.
"What are you doing!" Darry called out.
"I'm walking home," Pony growled.
Darry drove the truck slowly beside him.
"Come on Pony, get back in the truck. We're still about ten minutes from the house!"
"I don't care! I don't want to be anywhere near you!"
Darry stopped the truck and got out.
"What do you care? You hate me! You only keep me around because Soda won't let you put me in a boy's home!" Pony yelled.
"You don't actually believe that do you?" Darry asked, shocked by his outburst.
When he didn't respond, Darry quickly ran over and grabbed Ponyboy's arm and pulled him into a tight embrace.
Pony tried to pull away but Darry just hung onto him tighter.
"I don't hate you Pony, I would never put you in a boy's home," Darry said, tears coming to his eyes as Ponyboy began to sob into his chest.
Tears finally came down both his cheeks too, as they both realized just how much the deaths of their parents had affected them and how scared they were.
Back at the house Sodapop bounced his knee has he tried concentrating on the show he was watching, and failing as every ten seconds he kept looking at the front door.
He insisted on going with Darry to pick up Ponyboy but he wanted to get him alone.
Soda jumped up when the door opened and a soaked Ponyboy and Darry came walking in.
"Hey, did everything go alright?" Soda asked.
"Yeah," Pony said, he then looked over at Darry and smiled "Everything's okay. Right Darry?" Darry smiled back at him and nodded.
Sodapop looked at Ponyboy and Darry in surprise.
"Wow, you two are actually being civil to each other."
"Yeah, we ain't gonna fight anymore. Are we little buddy?" Darry asked, messing up Ponyboy's wet hair.
"Alright, everyone time for bed." Darry announced.
"You don't gotta tell me twice," Pony said. He walked to his room, took off his wet clothes and collapsed on the bed. After the long, stressful, and emotional night, Ponyboy was asleep the second his head hit the pillow.
Ponyboy woke up the next day to the sound of two voices yelling.
"You can't take him away! Damn it, he and Sodapop are all I have left!"
He recognized Darry's voice. A female voice then responded.
"You're brother will be taken into my custody for the time being, until I can find him a foster home. However, you may go to a custody hearing of the matter, but for now, I must take him to a boy's home."
"Is that my only option?" Darry asked.
"Yes. You have to call this number to set up the hearing..."
"What foster home?" Pony asked, walking out in the living room to see Darry arguing with Mrs. Rhodes, the social worker. Sodapop sat on the chair, tears in his eyes.
Mrs. Rhodes turned to Ponyboy and smiled.
"Ponyboy, I'm afraid you're going to have to come with me."
"I'm not going anywhere," Ponyboy growled getting a bit more anger raised in his voice.
"By order of the state you have to. Plus, it won't look good on your brother getting custody of you if you don't. It'll only be temporary." She said getting a little frustrated.
Ponyboy spun around and walked back to his room, slamming the door closed. He looked at a picture on the desk of him and his family at one of Darry's football games. They all looked so happy together.
The door opened again and Sodapop came in.
"I'm sorry, Pony. They found out about you getting arrested. This is all my fault."
Pony shook his head.
"No it isn't. Don't blame yourself."
Soda sat down on the bed as Ponyboy grabbed a bag out of the closet and began putting his things into it.
"There's a good chance Darry can get you back…you only have to go away for…a little while," Soda said, holding back tears.
Pony nodded as he continued packing his things.
"Ponyboy, are you almost ready?" Mrs. Rhodes called.
Ponyboy turned back to Soda,
"Should I go with her? I don't wanna leave…"
"You don't have a choice," Soda said quietly. Pony sighed and stared at the floor.
"Maybe if I make a good impression then Darry can get me back," Pony said hopefully.
"I'm gonna miss you Pony..." Soda said getting to his feet. He pulled Pony into a tight hug.
"I know, I'm gonna miss you to," Ponyboy said. He took a deep breath and fought tears as Soda released him. He finished shoving things into a bag and slowly walked out of the room.
"Come on Pony," Mrs. Rhodes said, ushering him towards the car.
"Wait!" Darry called from the door.
He ran over and caught up with them.
"I'm gonna get you back okay? Even If I got to work day and night to do it, I'm gonna get you back, I promise."
Ponyboy smiled and they hugged.
"Keep in touch alright?" Darry said with one last hug for him.
Ponyboy finally were ushered into the car. He felt nothing but sadness sweep over him as he looked at Darry and Sodapop walking outside to join him, standing by the mailbox watching the car until it was out of sight.