Simon Says

Simon says…

“Take off your shirt.

Lie down on the bed.

Scream and I’ll make it worse.

If you tell anyone, I’ll kill you.”

You did whatever Simon said at Sycamore Valley Home for Boys. If you didn’t, things were worse for you. I wasn’t always Simon’s favorite. Little Johnny held that honor right up until the day the Johnsons adopted him. On Johnny’s last night at the orphanage, Simon made sure he would never forget him.

Johnny never cried. Never spoke. I think he knew no one would ever hear. But that night, Johnny screamed. I’ll never forget it to this day. He was the lucky one. He got out.

The first night Simon came for me, I was lying awake hoping I wouldn’t be the one he chose that night. When he tapped my bed with his switch, I prayed God would kill me. For three years I was Simon’s apprentice for the evenings. And each night he would tap on my bed and take me to his room.

Until one night I said no.