Jason's act of heroism comes without thinking. Responding to cries for help from behind the school, he finds two high school punks beating up the custodian, captures one when the two try to flee, and turns him over to police called by the neighbors. Fleetingly, he's a hero, with TV coverage and attention at school. But the glow soon gives way to annoyance, outrage, and then terror as the captured punk and his gang systematically intimidate and attack Jason, his sister, and his mother in hopes of scaring him--or finally, of killing him--to keep him from testifying. Jason does of course testify, urged on by a good cop who becomes a sort of marginal father-figure in place of Jason's real one who's perpetually off on business trips. During the ordeal Jason draws a little closer to his sister and mother, though his hysterical, career-busy mother is basically hopeless--strident herself, she's also stridently portrayed. And overall both the characters and the story are dimensionless and predictable.