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A Time To Speak

There is something about a closet that makes a skeleton terribly restless.

Wilson Mizner


Chapter Twenty-Five

Win

Win

Somebody made a meme about Sam? What are you talking about?


Katrina

Brian just tried to post a meme about him on the Overcomers page. I deleted it really fast, but I screenshot it first so you could see it. How does Brian know Sam?



Alecia

Alecia

John, I found out something about Regina.


John

Is it good?


Alecia

REALLY good.


John

I knew you'd find something. Tell me.


Alecia

OK, she definitely hasn't been telling the whole story about why she left FCU. The full story is in recorded in ED. It turns out that she was forced to resign.


John

She was forced? Why? She's always made it out that she just quit.


Alecia

Technically, that's true, but she didn't just quit on her own. She HAD to quit. There was a dispute over a new rule the school wanted to put in place, having to do with students who were found to be immoral.


John

Define "immoral."


Alecia

Students having sex outside of marriage.


John

Well, we know what the FIC rule is. Any students having fun get expelled immediately.


Alecia

Not any more.


John

WHAT????????


Alecia

It used to be the policy that students found to be immoral would be expelled for at least a year, maybe longer, but there has been some softening there lately. They don't always get expelled any more, depending on if they are repentant and willing to go to counseling. We've kept it quiet, but that's what's been happening for a while now.


John

I can't even describe how messed up that is. College kids have sex. It's what they do. They don't need counseling if they do it. They need counseling if they don't!


Alecia

I know you don't share our beliefs, but can you please at least try to understand where we're coming from? For those of us who want to follow the Lord, staying pure is important.


John

OK, fine, whatever. Tell me about Regina.


Alecia

When this policy first started to be implemented, back when Regina was still teaching here, there was a disagreement about it among the faculty and staff. Some people were in favor of the change, but there were quite a few who opposed it. Regina was one of the ones who opposed it.


John

She opposed it? Are you kidding me?


Alecia

Yes, but that wasn't enough to get her fired. Lots of people, mostly the older faculty members, disagreed with the decision at the time and they didn't get in trouble. The administration met with them to explain what they were doing and why. But Regina refused to discuss it with the administration, and then she started a petition against it.


John

So the school wanted to lighten up a little, and Regina didn't want to play along? This is great. I'm laughing my ass off here.


Alecia

That's what it looks like. She was the poster child for the school. Anything the school said or did, she took to an extreme. She turned in her own roommates for having dress slits that came above the knee. She volunteered to disciple kids who were on spiritual probation, one on one. She had one of the worst reputations as a hall leader—the school had to tell her to exercise more common sense in giving out demerits and not to be so harsh all the time. Her file goes on and on about the FIC things she did. People here thought she was a little nuts. When she turned in her petition criticizing the school for starting to go "liberal," the school had enough. They told her to resign and keep her benefits for six months or else just get fired. She resigned. John, Regina wasn't just a FIC. She was a FIC on steroids!



Win

I saw the meme about Sam when Katrina forwarded her screen shot to me. It was based on that Get Out Of Jail Free card from the Monopoly game, the card that's orange and has a little bald guy wearing prison clothes, but the bald guy's head had been replaced with a picture of Sam instead. There was no explanation why Brian had posted it. He usually didn't have a lot to say in that group.

Katrina

What is he talking about, Win? Is that a reference to when Sam almost went to jail? Did Sam ever know Brian?


Win

I don't think so. I can't believe somebody would do this! Who is this Brian and how does he know my brother?


Katrina

You don't know anything about Brian?


Win

No, I'm looking at his profile now. I don't see any connection he has to Sam at all. I don't recognize the name of his church.


Katrina

You're sure there's no connection between them?


Win

No, absolutely not. I'm thinking about calling Sam but he's really busy right now. It's tax season and he's not even on FB half the time. How long was that meme up on the page?


Katrina

Not very long. It's a good thing I was there to see it go up, and that I knew about your brother.


Win

Then I'm sure Sam wouldn't have seen it. I don't understand. Why would Brian post something about Sam on that page when Sam isn't even a member? I'm the only one who would be likely to see it and understand what it's about, and I don't even know Brian. Sam doesn't have anything to do with the school these days.


Katrina

It looks like Reg is friends with him. Let's ask her what she knows about him.


Katrina opened up a new private message with all three of us on it.

Katrina

Reg, did you see that post that Brian made about Win's brother?


Regina

Yes, it was there and then it disappeared really quickly. But I got a screenshot of it if you want it.


Katrina

No, I've got a screenshot. The post disappeared because I deleted it. I'm going to ban Brian from the group. He's a FIC and he hardly ever says anything there anyways. I don't want to keep anyone in the group who's only there to cause trouble. But we need to know more about him. Who is he?


Win

I don't know Brian, and I have no idea why he would know Sam, since Sam graduated way before he did. I'm really upset about this, guys. He has no right to post things like that about my brother!


Katrina

This is horrible. See how FICs treat people? They learned that at the school.


Regina

Calm down, Win. I don't really know Brian either. He sent me a friend request last year and I accepted it, but I can't say that I know much about him. I'll reach out to him and see if I can find out why he did it. I'll let you know how he responds.


Win

Can you include me on the message, too? And Katrina? I should probably just write to him myself.


Regina

His security settings won't allow it unless you're friends with him. Let me contact him first and then I'll send you the screenshots.


Regina responded to us a couple hours later.

Regina

OK, I've had a short conversation with Brian. He's not going to post any more memes about Sam.


Win

What did you say to him? How does he even know Sam?


Regina

They used to go to the same church in Easley. Brian was there when that whole mess with your brother went down. He knows all about it.


Win

But why did he make a meme about it now? That was a long time ago. And why did he post it on the page?


Regina

Look, Win, Brian is a horrible FIC. He's always posting things about Christians who don't live up to "his" standards." He wanted to make a point about people who say they're Christians and don't really follow the Lord, and how their testimony affects other people, and he happened to think of your brother. He was about to post a newspaper article about Sam and make comments on it when Katrina removed his post.


Win

That's weird. What else did he tell you?


Regina

Not very much. He didn't know that you and Sam are related. He said he won't bring it up again.


Win

*Now* he's going to be all kind and considerate? I'm not buying it. I'm going to message him myself. I want to know exactly what's he doing and why.


Regina

You can try, but your message will just go to the Other box, not his Inbox. I don't know if he'll even see it.


Win

Then could you please tell him that I want to talk to him? I want to know what's really going on here, and why he thinks he needs to say anything about Sam publicly. Sam repented, and he's never done anything to this Brian guy. If that stuff comes up again and Sam sees it for some reason, he'll be devastated.


Katrina

I think you should just let this go, Win. If you get Brian mad, he might really decide to go after Sam. Your best bet is to just stay quiet for awhile.


Win

I am NOT going to let this go!


Regina

Katrina's right. Just stay quiet on the page. "Like" some comments if you want but don't post anything, and after awhile Brian will just go away.


The whole thing still sounded really weird, but I was relieved that Reg had dealt with Brian for me. He had agreed not to post anything else about my brother, and Katrina could always kick him out of the group if broke his promise. Sam didn't need any more headaches dealing with his past, and I had a lot of other things to take my attention. I decided I would take Reg and Katrina's advice and just let it go.


John

John

Tell me you found something about Katrina, Alecia. There must be something good there too.


Alecia

Not really. Most of what's in her records I knew already. Regina was the face of FCU for a long time in a lot of ways. Katrina was pretty much the opposite.


John

You mean she was rebellious?


Alecia

No, not that. It's that she wasn't from what the school would call a "good" background, and as you know, at FCU that sometimes carries a stigma. I don't think it's as bad as some people make it out to be, but sometimes there are some attitudes there that shouldn't be.


John

You mean people like Dr. Stern saying you shouldn't marry someone from a divorced family.


Alecia

Exactly.


John

I remember Katrina said that her mother abandoned her, and then there was something about her stepdad and grandfather abusing her.


Alecia

According to her enrollment paperwork, her mother died just before Katrina entered the academy. It doesn't say she was abandoned. That's odd. Maybe her mother died after she abandoned Katrina. I'm also surprised to read about all her abuse. She made many, many allegations of abuse made while she was in counseling here. I'm not sure if they were ever reported to the police, since they happened in another state.


John

I wonder if that was legal or not.


Alecia

I don't know. What's really peculiar to read, though, is how Katrina seemed almost proud to be from a rough background. She told people about it all the time. It even became a point of argument with one roommate her junior year, because Katrina mentioned being sent to Amazing Grace Ministries when she was younger, and the other girl said that she had been in that home for a long time, and that she'd never seen Katrina there. That started a pretty strong argument that got the residence hall advisor's attention. She told them not to discuss it any more.


John

That's weird. Amazing Grace Ministries is one of those FIC ministries that Katrina had listed on the Overcomers page, where she said there was all kinds of abuse going on all the time. But I don't think she ever talked about being there herself.


Alecia

I think you're right. It's too bad we can't go back to look at it now and verify if she did or didn't.


John

I can check.


Alecia

Didn't you take yourself off the site?


John

No, I removed my posts but I didn't actually leave the page. I can still see everything there. I'm going to start really keeping an eye on her and Reg. They're not going to take a crap without me knowing about it.


Alecia

And Bonita. Don't forget Bonita. Her page has some things about her, but I can't find anything more than that because she was never a student here.


John

Don't worry. I'll take care of finding out about Bonita.