The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
"Why are you leaving?"
"I have to go. I'm going to die if I don't leave."
I touched his shoulder again and Rowdy flinched.
Yes, I touched him again.
What kind of idiot was I?
I was the kind of idiot that got punched hard in the face by his best friend.
Bang! Rowdy punched me.
Bang! I hit the ground.
Bang! My nose bled like a firework. (7.64-7.72)
I wished Rowdy was still my friend. I could have sent him after Roger. It would have been like King Kong battling Godzilla.
I realized how much of my self-worth, my sense of safety, was based on Rowdy's fists.
But Rowdy hated me. And Roger hated me.
I was good at being hated by guys who could kick my ass. It's not a talent you really want to have. (9.3-9.6)
And so we did become friends. Not the best of friends. Not like Rowdy and me. We didn't share secrets. Or dreams.
No, we studied together.
Gordy taught me how to study.
Best of all, he taught me how to read. (12.170-12.173)