Why Simon Needs Glasses
Everyone knows Simon as the tallest, smartest Chipmunk who wears glasses. But did you know that wasn't always the case? That's right. He used to have 20/20 vision and he wasn't any brighter than Alvin or even Theodore. That is, until the incident...
Alvin, Simon, and Theodore were getting ready for winter. They had all their nuts, and were helping each other get the nuts up the tree and into their hiding hole while singing and harmonizing together. It was to help pass the time.
"Aw, man! We're out again," Theodore groaned as he handed Simon the last nut. Simon looked, upset, at the nut, as if it had betrayed him.
"Well, then I guess it's time to go and look for more," Simon told Alvin.
Alvin sighed. "Alright, fine. Simon, YOU can go look for nuts, since you seem to care so much. Theo and I will stay here, right Theo?"
Theodore felt tension between his brothers. "Well, uh, I kinda want a lot of food, so I'll go with Simon," Theodore said. "We'll be right back!" Alvin just rolled his amber eyes.
After a long time, Simon and Theodore had found what they thought was enough. Simon looked around some more. "Well, that's it," then he looked at Theo. "You ready to go?"
"You bet!" Theodore said happily, his arms full of the brown food.
Just then, Simon heard something in the bushes. "Theo," he said, dropping his nuts and running up to his brother and holding him. "Did you hear that?" Simon looked around nervously.
Theodore looked around too, perking his ears. "I don't hear-!" He stopped as he heard a twig snap. The chipmunks stayed huddled close until they heard deep voices. It was much, much deeper than they were used to.
"Are you sure you want to test it on a wild animal? Why not a lab rat or something?" One voice said.
Another spoke up. "Yes I'm sure. And I don't want a stupid rat. I want something that already has feelings, and we can actually see the results."
The first voice groaned. "Alright, fine then." He looked around and saw Simon and Theodore huddled together, staring at him silently with wide eyes. "Hey, what about these chipmunks?" He asked, motioning to them.
Simon felt Theo tense under him as he caught his breath.
The second man walked over. "Yes, they'll do," he said.
"Theo," Simon said quietly. "Run,"
The second man lunged.
"Run Theodore!" Simon screamed as he shoved Theodore away and into some bushes. Theo ran as fast as he could back to their tree. It never occurred to him to look back until he reached the base.
That's when he noticed Simon wasn't there.
"Simon!" Theodore cried. He quickly yet quietly ran back the way he came. But he stopped when he saw a terrifying sight: Simon, being held by his tail by the first man. Simon was crying and yelling to be put down. But if course, the men couldn't understand; he was a chipmunk and didn't speak English.
Theodore watched in horror as they injected Simon with a very large needle. Almost instantly, Simon went limp. Theo could see he was still awake; his eyes were very much alert, but he couldn't move.
Simon looked around nervously. He felt the drug start to take effect, and his brain became fuzzy. Soon he couldn't move and he felt himself being manhandled by his captors.
They laid him on an examining table and brought out a bright light. It nearly blinded the poor chipmunk, but he couldn't roll over or cover his eyes with his arm.
Just then, the men brought out a box that looked like a controller for an airplane or some other remote-controlled thing. They pulled the antennae out. There were two of them. One was placed on each side of Simon's head. "Please stop! I just want to go home! Let me go! No, I don't want those on my head!" Simon tried convincing them to stop, but they did nothing to comply with him.
The man pressed a button on the controller, and Simon felt a wave of pain wrack his whole body. His face contorted and he shrieked in agony. Even though he couldn't feel his body, it naturally arched off the table as the waves shocked through his tiny body.
Theodore nearly covered his eyes, but he needed to know what was happening. He felt tears form in his eyes when he heard his brother's pain-filled cry.
To Simon, the electric current seemed endless; it kept coming in waves and never seemed to stop. The whole time, his eyes were squeezed shut and he was crying.
The men were satisfied when they heard Simon's animal shrieks turn into a more human cry. When they heard that, they immediately turned off the machine. Simon's body felt such relief that it passed out.
The men detached the wires and then proceeded to study Simon further. They hooked up a brain wave sensor, and found much more brain activity than he had earlier. "Well, it looks like it's a success!" The second man said happily.
"Well, so far. We still don't know if it worked completely yet," the first said.
Just as he said that, they heard a tiny groan. They looked at Simon just as he started to wake up. The numbing solution also was wearing off, so Simon could move, but not very much. He opened his eyes and stared up. He didn't move his body at all. Simon felt his eyes open, but he still saw blackness. What's wrong? Something's wrong, Simon told himself. If my eyes are open, then I should be able to see. Wait, why am I thinking this? Why do I care?
"What's wrong with him?" Simon vaguely heard one man ask. He perked his ears that way, but couldn't see him.
"I don't know. Wait! Look at his eyes!"
The two men loomed over Simon and stared at his once beautiful, crystal blue eyes. Now they were a clouded, murky blue color. He also didn't seem to notice them looking at him.
But after a minute, he groaned again, sitting up and rubbing his eyes. "Ugh, what happened?" He asked himself. The men were overjoyed; he spoke clear English.
Theodore heard his brother speak, and got so terrified, he ran back to the tree. "Alvin! Alvin, come quick!" Theodore cried.
"What now, Theo?" Alvin asked, annoyed.
"These men, they captured Simon! They hurt him, and now he's talking funny!" Theodore sobbed.
Alvin sat up immediately. "Where's Simon?"
"This way," Theo said hurriedly and led the way.
"Now, chipmunk, can you understand me?" One man asked Simon.
Simon blinked a few times; he could see only vague shapes ahead of him and anywhere. He couldn't focus on anything, no matter how hard he tried.
"Uh, yes?" Simon asked, more than answered. "Where am I?"
"You're still in your forest, don't worry," the first man said. "We just did a little experiment, and it seems to be fine. Do you feel funny in any way?"
"My eyes..." Simon said again, rubbing them. Everything was still so blurry. And it looked like the men were right in front of his face. But Simon could tell by the sound that wasn't the case.
"What's wrong with your eyes?"
"They're blurred. I can't see anything clearly,"
"Hmm, a side effect is vision distortion. Interesting…" The second man said. Simon heard a pencil scraping across paper as the man took notes.
"Well, we need to leave now," the men told Simon. Since their formula had a bad side effect, they couldn't use it. So they left, leaving Simon sitting on the table. He was afraid to move; he couldn't see the edge of the table, and he didn't want to fall. So instead, he just lay down and tried to focus his eyes.
It wasn't working.
He heard something behind him, but when he turned around, he felt dizzy and had to lie back down again. He heard the footsteps getting closer and closer...
"AAAHHH!" He cried, nearly jumping off the table.
"Simon! It's okay! It's just us, Alvin and Theodore," he heard Alvin's voice say.
"Alvin? Theodore?" He asked in English. Alvin was startled to hear this foreign language coming from his brother.
"Uh, yeah, it's us," Alvin started.
"Why are you talking funny? It sounds like you have some weird accent," Simon noted, trying to look at his brothers.
"Um, we're the same. It's you that has a problem; you're speaking English!" Theodore blurted out.
"What?" Simon cried. "How am I speaking English? I'm talking the same as I always have! Wait, those men. They did something to me. Do you think that is a reason for this new behavior?"
"Simon, that's the smartest thing you've ever said. Yeah, I'm sure it has something to do with those men. What exactly did they do to you?" Alvin asked, intrigued.
"They sent an electrical current through me, and right after, my eyes became extremely blurry, and I started thinking about things I never thought. Did you know that it's a major problem if your eyes are open and you still see black? Unless it's nighttime; then that would be expected. But right now, it's bright outside… I think," Simon said, looking up.
Alvin and Theodore stood next to each other, eyes wide. Something was off with their brother. He was thinking too much or something. But if there was something wrong with him, they vowed they would help him. "Well, Simon, it's not going to do you any good sitting here. Let's go back to our tree," Alvin said, walking up to Simon. Simon looked back down again, and it seemed like Alvin was right on top of him. He jumped.
"Aahh! Alvin, back up!" He cried, putting his hands out in front of him. But he felt nothing. When he looked at his hands, they looked like they were touching him, but he felt nothing. Alvin stopped walking and stared nervously at his younger brother.
Alvin stood a foot away from Simon.
"Simon, I'm like a good foot from you. Let me help you stand up so we can go home, okay?" Alvin said, slowly walking up to his brother again.
Simon leaned back a bit, but nodded. He lifted his paw for Alvin to grab it, and it startled him when he felt his brother's warm paw against his own. He just closed his eyes, and it made everything feel better.
Suddenly, Alvin cried out. Simon immediately dropped his paw. Alvin clutched at his paw. "Ow! Simon, you shocked me!" Alvin said. But he didn't sound normal. He spoke English.
Theodore cried out. "Ah! What's wrong with my brothers? They're both speaking funny!" He gripped his hair, trying to make sense of the situation.
Alvin turned to his youngest brother. "Theo, it's okay! I can still see just fine! And it doesn't hurt anymore!" Alvin reached out to his youngest brother and placed a paw on his shoulder. Luckily, nothing happened. He led Theodore over to Simon, and motioned to him to pick up Simon's arm, and he would get the other.
Simon looked at his brothers. He couldn't see their faces anymore; they just looked like dark shapes of brown. Alvin was a bit taller and thinner, while Theo was short and wide. He tried to see their faces, but couldn't. He felt a lump form in his throat; he would never see Alvin's mischievous amber eyes or Theodore's kind and innocent emerald eyes again.
He felt Alvin grab one of his arms, and start to lift him up. But when he felt Theodore grab his other arm, he felt a small shock leave his body, and Theo cried out. "Ow! Simon! What did you do?"
"I'm so sorry Theo! I don't know what happened!" Simon apologized. "Wait, Theo, you're speaking English!"
"I am?" Theodore asked, bewildered.
"Yeah. Huh, I guess whatever it is that those guys did, I can transfer it," Simon noted to himself.
Theo raised an eyebrow. "What does that mean?"
"It means that it can go from one… Oh forget it. You wouldn't understand anyway," Simon sighed. He used his brothers' help and stood up. He was a bit shaky at first, but after a second or two, he was okay. "So… Do you mind helping me back to the tree?" Simon asked, groping at the air, trying to find his brothers' paws.
"Sure thing, Simon," Alvin said, grabbing his paw and walking slowly to the edge of the table. "Okay, this is the edge, so jump!" Alvin told Simon.
Simon had never jumped when he couldn't see how far down he was going, so he gulped hard and hesitantly jumped. Alvin gripped his paw tighter so they wouldn't be pulled apart. Alvin landed on all fours, but made sure to not smash Simon's paw into the ground. Simon, however, landed on his chest with his legs crunching over himself. "Ohh…" He groaned.
Alvin helped him back up and Theo jumped down next to them. Altogether, the three of them walked back to their tree. When Simon got to the tree, he tried to find something about it that would make it so he could recognize it, without his brother's help.
He noticed it had some of the largest roots, but that didn't help much. He would just have to hope he didn't ever get lost.
That night, he dreamt.
I struggle with all my might. The man has an iron grip on my tail. I seriously consider chewing right through my tail to be free; I know what he's going to do, and I don't want it. I know what he's going to do because I already went through it, but I survived. Now my eyes are fine again. It feels so good to see the forest so clearly again. I had been admiring the beauty of nature when the men came back.
"We know our machine worked. We know that you are smart and can speak English, just like we wanted you to. But we know it had a side effect that hurt your eyes."
"Well, yes," I reply to the man, grimacing at the pain in my tail. "But the eye thing has worn off, and I'm perfectly fine now, so please leave me alone!"
"Never! Since you survived and overcame the side effect, you are now going to be a lab rat, and instead of seeing if the makeup and stuff kills rats, we're going to test it on you so you can tell us what's wrong with it,"
"But I don't want to! I just want to live with my brothers and be a regular chipmunk!"
I am shoved in a cage anyway, and shipped off to a makeup factory. I see Alvin and Theodore's faces, desperately running after me as the truck drives away. Soon, I can't see them anymore. I try to pick the lock, but I can't. It requires a key, and I have nothing to pick it with.
I arrive at the makeup factory.
I am put in a glass cage. A hairspray is sprayed in my small, airtight cage, making the air hard to breathe. I feel my lungs burning. I hear people asking me questions, but I can't answer them.
This stuff is fast-acting!
I gasp for breath, but the spray coats my mouth and goes down my throat to my lungs. "Simon," When it coats them too, I feel them shutting down. I'm going to die! "Simon!" No! I don't want to die! I see pinpricks of light everywhere… "SIMON!"
He jerked awake at Theodore's loud yelling, gasping. His eyes blurred, he turned to Theo, who was worriedly looking over Simon, shaking his shoulders. Theo gave him a big hug. He understood about the nightmares.
Later that year, the chipmunks found themselves being thrown out of Dave's house after him having found out they could speak. He didn't take them being able to talk very well, and while panicking, threw them out of his house. "Don't do this, Dave! We can gnaw right through this door!" Alvin shouted desperately through the door. But the man named Dave didn't answer.
That night, the trio started to sing, considering that's what they did all the time to ease their nerves, especially since Simon couldn't do much else with them with his eye problems. Since the accident, Simon had been learning how to see with his bad eyes. He still couldn't tell distances at all, so he relied on his other senses a lot. Thus making his singing so much better than it was before.
And there they were, singing "Only You" together. Alvin was singing the main part, Theo sang the beat, and Simon was the backup singer.
Soon, the door opened, and Dave was right there. He admired their singing so much, especially since he was a failed songwriter. After complimenting them, and having them sing another song, he let them in. Alvin jumped in the window easily, Theo following. But Simon jumped to the sill, then nearly fell off as he thought that the counter was right there, when it was in fact a ways away. "Woah!" He cried out as he slipped. Luckily, his paws caught the edge of the trash can, and he held on. Dave helped him up.
"There you go," Dave encouraged.
Simon thanked him.
Late at night, the chipmunks got restless and started playing around in Dave's house. They colored on his presentation boards, made toaster waffles and stored them under a rug, and made a general mess.
Dave awoke to thee fire alarm going off. He ran to the kitchen to find the chipmunks huddling behind a rolling pin, waiting for the burnt toaster waffle to explode from the toaster. "What are you guys doing?" Dave asked, grabbing a rag and fanning the smoke from the alarm.
Alvin thought he was starting a conversation, so he replied, "Nothing. What are you doing?"
Simon grinned wildly. He hadn't had this much fun for a long time. "Watch out Dave! It's gonna blow!" Just then, the blackened waffle exploded from the toaster, and went flying through the air. Simon jumped up, having noticed the dark shape leave the shiny shape. He ran back, holding his arms out. "I got it! I got it, guys!" It landed right in front of him, but Simon could have sworn it was a lot further away. Suddenly, it left his vision, and he looked around for it. "Hey, where'd it go?"
Dave thought this was weird. It landed right in front of him, how could he not see it? Was there something wrong with him? He walked over to Simon, who was still looking for the waffle. Dave picked it up and dropped it again. "Simon, this landed right in front of you. You didn't see it?"
Simon thought for a moment. He didn't know what to answer. He HAD seen it, but it seemed too far away, and then disappeared. He knew it was his bad eyes again, so he whimpered and slumped a bit. Dave held up two fingers in front of Simon. "How many fingers am I holding up?"
Simon stared at them. To him, they were so blurred, he couldn't tell one finger from the other. What made it worse was when he tried to focus, they moved around, becoming four, then eight, then four again. "Uh… four," Simon guessed. He looked harder. "No, nononono," he contradicted himself, rubbing his eyes. It did no good. "Um, eight, counting your thumb?"
Dave frowned. He wasn't even holding up his thumb. "Hold on a sec," he told Simon, looking around.
"Waitwaitwaitwait, six. Final answer: Six," Simon mumbled loudly.
Since it was around Christmastime, Dave had out some doll Santa's which moved when their key was turned. He had a particular one, though, which had glasses he thought might be a perfect fit for Simon. He grabbed them and walked back to Simon, who was squinting to see what Dave was doing. He saw Dave walking closer and holding up something. He held the something up to Simon's eyes, and Simon glanced through them. Everything was in perfect focus and depth. He eagerly grabbed them and pushed them up against his nose. Looking around, he breathed, "Wow,"
He hadn't seen anything so clearly for such a long time. It was just then that he realized that the house was a mess. "Someone trashed your house," he noted. Then he turned to his brothers and gasped lightly. He saw their faces again. Something he had crossed off as something he could never see again, among other things. He looked into Alvin's amber eyes and Theo's emerald eyes, and Simon knew that this Dave guy was gonna be a good guy.