Conor's mouth is full of blood. His bully Harry has just tripped him on the way to school, and Harry's cronies Anton and Sully think it's hilarious.
Shmoop begs to differ.
Harry is, as Conor puts it, "the Blond Wonder Child." All the teachers love him.
These two weren't enemies, though, until Conor started having the nightmare with the screaming. Not the one about the tree—the real nightmare, the one we don't have the scoop on yet. Somehow he became Harry's target around the same time. What's that about?
On the first day of school that year, Harry had tripped him, and has been tripping and pushing him ever since.
Harry, Anton, and Sully are laughing to beat the band, but Conor straight up ignores them. He just wants to make it to school.
Then Lily, Conor's ex-best-friend, comes up and yells at them to leave him alone. And when Sully laughs that Conor will have to get "his baldy mother" to kiss his bleeding face, Lily shoves Sully into the bushes (we're starting to like this girl).
But then things get dicey. Miss Kwan, their principal (or Head of Year, since we're in jolly old England) sees Lily push Sully, and she yells at Lily, who tries to fink on the boys.
Miss Kwan asks if Sully's okay, and he says he might need to go home. She tells him not to milk it and tells Lily to go to the office.
Lily tells Miss Kwan that the boys were making fun of Conor's mom, and Miss Kwan asks Conor if it's true.
Conor says no, that they were just helping him up after he fell. So then Lily gets dragged to the office, and Conor and the bullies make their way to school—not speaking, of course.