This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales is entirely coincidental.
This story is copyrighted by Parker Sheaffer, all rights reserved. Distribution, including but not limited to: posting on internet sites, newsgroups, or message boards, or in book form (either as a whole or part of a compilation), or on CD, DVD or any other electronic media, is expressly prohibited without the author's written consent.
Falling into a deep sleep Simon was suddenly awakened sometime around three. It was dark but the moon through the window provided enough light to see by. Wondering what had awakened him, Simon stood looking out the window at the street below and the other houses and the parked cars. His attention was drawn to two shadows that moved along the front of the buildings across the street. It was two men or big boys and they were peering into the parked cars, looking for something to steal. They had crossed the street to the driveway of the Lockett house. He could see the streetlight gleam on the wire they were trying to get through the narrow gap at the top of the window of Mr. Lockett's car, apparently hoping to unlock it.
Simon smiled in the darkness and suddenly strange words came to his mind along with the knowledge of what he was supposed to do. He whispered, "Altuentia morponial".
Suddenly the two shadows jumped back from the car and began to almost frantically look around them. Then one of them said something and they both ran back up the street into the night.
That morning Mrs. Lockett was on the phone with a neighbor who told her that a couple of teenaged boys had been breaking into cars last night, but the police caught them.
She said, "They ran out in the street and waved down a police car that was driving past. Said they was scared and something was after them. He saw the CD player with the wires still hanging off the back and took them to the station and they confessed to a lot of those small crimes and vandalisms that have been going on around here for the past year or so. Never did get to the bottom of what scared them, though".
The next day was Sunday and Mrs. Lockett had them all put on their best clothes and she and Mr. Lockett took them to Sunday school at the church down the block. Miss Potter had brought a couple of outfits for Simon earlier that morning so he would have something decent to wear. His own clothes were rather shabby.
He liked Sunday school. Most of the people there were very nice and the other kids were friendly and talked with him.
After church a lot of the people gathered in the basement for coffee and donuts. One man and his wife, a young couple, kept looking at Simon. He felt them watching him and saw them talk to Mrs. Lockett. He knew they were talking about him and he knew that they were being drawn to him by the Green Man's power. He also knew somehow that he would soon call this couple Mom and Dad and he smiled at the realization. They looked nice. After a few minutes Mrs. Lockett brought them over to talk with Simon.
"Hello, Simon. I'm Paul and this is my wife, Karen. We were wondering, if we can get Miss Potter's permission, if you would like to go out to lunch with us this afternoon."
"Sure. I guess so."
A call was made and permission was given. Mrs. Lockett said to him as she ruffled his hair, "They are very nice people and they are registered with the DFACS office. They have a foster parent license so look sharp and be nice to them. This may be a good chance for you. Okay?"
As they walked to their car Simon put his little hand in Karen's and took Paul's hand with his other. He looked up at them, smiling. They looked down and both gave him a big smile. Karen seemed to have a tear sparkling in the corner of her eye and Paul was definitely walking more proudly. They took Simon to a nice restaurant where they had some really good pizza. Simon had never had pizza before and he loved it.
As the afternoon progressed they all talked about lots of things like Simon's father and mother who had died but Simon would not tell them anything about who they were or about his life for the past year. He wanted to put the bad parts of his life behind him and move on in his new one. He had heard some people at church talking about how the police had found a man and woman several blocks over in a dirty apartment and they had been beaten so badly they were both in the hospital. They seemed to be in shock and neither one had spoken a word, they only moaned a lot. Simon hoped that no one would remember that there had been a small boy living with them.
Simon's magic kept working and Paul and Karen grew more and more attracted to the small, intelligent child. It seemed almost magical the way they had discovered him. They loved children and had been trying, without success, to have a child of their own for a few years and had almost given up hope. Being a foster parent seemed like the next best thing for them so they had taken the necessary steps to qualify as parents.
Then a friend had invited them to visit his church that Sunday and when they saw Simon they felt drawn to him right away. It was wonderful to discover that he was living in a foster home.
Simon was partially right about them becoming his parents. They wanted him, but the process of getting him was hampered by the fact that no one knew where he was from or if he had parents. It would take a court order for the termination of parental rights of whatever guardians he had out there, if any, but Simon still refused to talk about his past. He just kept telling them that his mother and father were dead.
There were a lot of hard feelings at the home because the other children had been waiting a long time for someone to love them and they thought it was unfair that Simon should be so lucky. They were all sullen whenever Simon was around and the twins stopped talking to him completely.
Paul and Karen took him out several evenings that week and the resentment of the other children grew visibly each time. Simon knew that he could help them, but not until the next Sunday morning.
Sunday finally came again and as they were walking to the church Simon lagged behind and with a smile he whispered, "Dontoiamene esauardine." He felt a little surge of power tingle through his body and he released it to the world so it could do its work.
They had just walked inside the church and stopped to talk with friends when a couple of smiling people approached Mike and Marty and the man said, "My goodness. You are two of the cutest little boys I've ever seen. Don't you think so, Beth?"
"Why, yes I do. Hi there, what are your names?"
The twins couldn't believe that adults were finally noticing them. Nervously they said, "I'm Mike." "I'm Marty". Their faces were pictures of astonishment.
"Do you live at the group home down the street?"
"Would it be alright if we came to see you there and visit for a while after church today?"
"Sure, that'd be awesome."
"Why don't you come sit with us after Sunday school."
Across the room Lisa was talking with a very kind and friendly looking older woman and they seemed to be getting along well. Lisa was smiling and looking happier than she had all week.
Joey was chatting and laughing with the Sunday school teacher and her husband. It was odd because they had never paid attention to him before.
Only Charles stood alone, staring in disbelief at all of the others as they suddenly seemed to draw the attention of the adults. A lump formed in his throat as he realized that they might all find parents except him. He would be all alone because nobody wanted a twelve-year-old boy. He saw the new kid, Simon, looking at him with a strange smile and saw him mouth something, but couldn't hear what it was. The kid was sure weird.
"Hi, there. You're Charles, aren't you?"
A man and woman and young boy had walked up behind him and he jumped when they spoke. Quickly gathering his wits he said, "Ah, yes sir. Charles."
"I thought so. I'm Peter and this is Laura and this is Larry, our son. You know, we've been talking about you and asking about you for a few weeks now and we wondered if you might be looking for a permanent home to live in. Maybe with a family like us?"
Charles was speechless and tears filled his eyes as he nodded his assent.
"Larry here would love to have an older brother and we would love you just like you were our own son. Is it okay with you if we talk to the right people and see what we can do about it?"
"Oh, yes, please," Charles cried, trying not to break into tears. Although it was very sudden he felt instinctively that this was supposed to happen and that it was the right decision, almost as if he had been waiting for it for a long time. Laura gave him a big hug and Peter clapped him on the shoulder reassuringly. Larry gave him a big smile.
There was a level of excitement at the home that afternoon that had never been seen there before. Miss Potter made a special trip out to bring paperwork for everyone. She kept saying, "I can't believe how fast this is happening. It's unheard of. It's just like some sort of miracle. You children are very, very lucky because I think these are all good people. Of course we will have to check them out to be sure but I'm willing to bet that it will all work out."
Within the month Simon was alone at the home with Mr. and Mrs. Lockett. They had cried as the children left with their new families, but Simon didn't cry. He was happy and knew that his own foster family would come for him shortly.
Soon after that a smiling Paul and Karen worked through the legal complications and came to take him to their home. It was a pretty little house in a neighborhood that had a large park for him to play in. His life had certainly changed in more ways than one and he felt a joy that he had never known. Now in the mornings his mother woke him with a kiss or often the enticing smell of bacon frying in the kitchen wafted into his room and roused him from slumber. There was food to eat, toys to play with, fun places to go with his parents and new friends in the neighborhood. In the evenings, after dinner, the three of them would watch a little television or Paul would read a story aloud as they sat comfortably together on the sofa.
There were other children to play with in the neighborhood and Simon made a few good friends, boys whom he would be going to school with in the fall.