Do Not Click Do Not Click Do Not Click
Telling Mr. Johnson

By Rachel Brewster

Day 2

Martin Johnson: First day of the interview was unsuccessful. Interviewee Amanda Simms has refused to do the interview without an attorney present. She has brought one with her today. Hopefully, today will go better than yesterday.

(Tape recorder clicks off.)

(Tape recorder clicks back on. A man clears his throat. A chair squeaks.)

Johnson: Thank you for coming back today. You brought a friend with you today, I see.

Amanda Simms: Yes, this is my attorney, Noah Miller.

Johnson: You were very smart to bring a lawyer with you, Amanda.

Simms: I know my rights, Mr. Johnson.

Johnson: So, will you answer my questions today?

Simms: Yes.

Johnson: Okay then. First of all, why did you choose to do this interview?

Simms: This information is going to be used to write a book, correct?

Johnson: It’s research, yes.

Simms: I suppose I’m helping you write your book, then.

Johnson: When did your parents realize you were different?

Simms: I suppose it was because I liked to lie a lot. I lied to everyone, even to my parents. I suppose they thought I was just living in my own little fantasy world, and that I would grow out of it. They kind of started to worry when my baby sister was born.

Johnson: What happened?

Simms: I was four when my sister was born. I never really had any interest in her. I was just kind of like, “Oh, a baby, that’s nice,” about the whole thing. My parents wanted to get pictures and stuff of me with the baby. I took the first picture with my sister with my grandma. After the pictures got taken, my grandma asked me, “How much do you love your baby sister, Mandy?” and I said, “I don’t.”

Johnson: How did they respond to that?

Simms: They thought I was just being cute. My grandma smiled at me and said, “Yes, you do,” and I said, “No, I don’t. I don’t really like her much. She’s not important to me.” My mom looked at me and asked, “Mandy, do you love your grandma?” and I told her, “No.” At that point, they started to look a bit insulted. Then my dad asked, “Mandy, do you love your mom and me?” and again, I told her, “No.” I couldn’t help it. I just didn’t. I didn’t even feel guilty about telling them that.

Johnson: How did they respond to that?

Simms: They didn’t bring it up. I remember them bringing me to a guy right before I started school. I remember that he played games with me and asked me a bunch of questions. The games were easy.

Johnson: What kinds of questions did he ask?

Simms: The same ones my mom did, including some other ones. I remember one question that stands out.

Johnson: Which was?

Simms: “Would you ever hurt someone on purpose?”

Johnson: What did you tell him?

Simms: I told him I would. When he asked me why, I told him it’s because I don’t care if the person gets hurt.

Johnson: Did these tests confirm anything?

Simms: Yes. I remember the doctor bringing my parents into the room and leaving me to play with this little tub of sand. I remember just sitting there, feeling the sand run through my finger, and being really curious to know what they were saying. After awhile, my mom came out with this weird look on her face.

Johnson: What do you mean?

Simms: Like her face was kind of scrunched up and there was water coming out of her eyes.

Johnson: It sounds to me like she was crying.

Simms: She was. At the time, I couldn’t recognize that. I’ve learned to, though.

Johnson: Anyway, back to my previous question, about the test?

Simms: Oh, yeah. On the car ride home, my mom and dad explained to me that I was “special,” different from other kids. They told me it wasn’t my fault that I didn’t love them, and that I shouldn’t feel bad about it. That amused me, to an extent, because I know I’m not capable of feel bad about anything. I think I was eight the first time I ask what my condition was called. She told me it was called Antisocial Personality Disorder. Most people know it by a different name.

Johnson: Which is?

Simms: Psychopathy.

(Author's Note: My name is Rachel. I'm an American student living in a small town in Pennsylvania. I first got interested in writing by writing fan fiction. I discovered "The Tomorrow Code" at my school's library and fell in love with it. After that I bought "Brain Jack" and loved that, too. I can't wait for "The Project" to come out in the US. When I get older I want to be either a diagnostician, an epidemiologist, or a psychologist, which is where the general interest in psychopathy and this story came from. I hope you all enjoyed this story.)

Brian Falkner Books