I first drew a version of this tale for You Are Not Alone volume 2, an anthology featuring stories addressing the important problem of kids and teens being bullied, for all sorts of reasons. I’d illustrated a story for the first volume, written by Marc Lombardi, dealing with the teasing and weight yo-yo-ing that a kid can go thru in their years of school.

I’d already written this version of the story for JAQrabbit Tales, and thought it would be a valuable example to include in YANA, because let’s face it: one of the most persistent and pervasive “reasons” for bullying is the perception that a kid is queer in some way. But that book has a different – younger – audience than the Tales, so I had to make changes to the art. First that meant additional clothing. (They were still OK with the shower scene, however.) It also meant rewriting (and totally redrawing) the ending, for reasons that will be obvious when you see the second half….

NEXT: The second half!

AFTER THAT: The sequel!