We worshiped the mannequin in the tree fort. Its name was Eugene. We gave it funky clothes and crayon tattoos. We told stories about him on endless Sunday afternoons. He was a hero and a scoundrel, living at the distant edges of teen imagination.
The tree fort was ours during the day. It belonged to others at night. We often had to clean out the debris. Then some junkie fell asleep heating his spoon and burned down the tree fort. Billy tried to save the melted remains but his mom threw it away. He soon faded from our story world.