The next day Roy finally gets a break from the bullying Dana (he's far too busy terrorizing a 6th grade boy in the back).
Roy occupies himself by looking for the strange boy at the same intersection as the day before but doesn't see him. He goes all Groundhog Day and repeats this search unsuccessfully all week.
Except for Friday.
Roy sees the strange boy running again. And in the same outfit and everything.
Time for Roy to jump out of his seat and head for the door but Dana (of course) stops him.
To break free Roy punches Dana in the face. Wait, what? That's right, Roy punches the bully square in the face. (Go Roy.)
And then he runs off the bus, almost knocking down a blond girl in the process.
Now, the chase after the strange boy is on.
But this strange kid has some Usain Bolt-like speed, and Roy finds himself huffing and puffing and not even close to catching up.
Roy ends up following the strange boy onto a golf course where he gets hit in the head by a golf ball.
It must have been an insane hit, because Roy passes out
We're briefly thrown into Roy's memories as we learn why he's called "cowgirl" and how hard it was for him to move from Montana to Florida. (He wasn't even excited for Disney World!)
Of all the places he has lived, Montana was by far his favorite. So that's where he said he was from on his first day of school at Trace.
And hence Roy is called "cowgirl" and other creative nicknames courtesy of Dana Matherson. We're back at school with Roy and he's getting interrogated by Miss Viola Hennepin, vice principal of Trace Middle School. Turns out that punching another kid in the face is frowned upon. Who'da thunk it?
With each question, Roy passionately denies the false claims of Dana's innocence. He also occasionally throws in a dash of sarcasm for good measure (Note: probably not the greatest thing to attempt this in reality).
After taking an uber-close look at Roy's injury from the golf ball, Ms. Hennepin reckons that Roy has learned his lesson and punishes him with a two-week suspension from the bus.
He also has to write a "sincere" letter of apology to Dana which Roy agrees to but questions, "Who's going to help him read it?" (2.69). Bazinga. Point for Roy.
After leaving Ms. Hennepin's office, Roy heads straight to the bathroom where he sees what the vice principal saw when she examined his injury; fingerprint-sized bruised on his neck left behind by Dana's bullying. Nice job, Dana.
Roy's relived that Ms. Hennepin knows that he's telling the truth.
At lunch Roy finds an empty table and devours his food. But as he begins to leave, someone stops him.
And this time it's not Dana.
Instead, the blond girl that Roy almost ran into while getting off the bus is standing in front of him.
This is no ordinary girl—she's just as scary and intimidating as Dana.
Roy starts to explain about punching Dana as that being the reason he ran but she's not buying it. In fact, she knows he was chasing after someone. Whoa, did she see the strange boy, too? Roy doesn't get an answer…and neither do we.
But in the empty cafeteria the blond girl jabs Roy in the ribs with his lunch tray and tells him to mind his own business.
She refuses to answer any question that Roy has regarding that strange boy he ran after.