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Shimshon and the Golem, Part 2: Chapter 7

"He may have been a Jew once before, but he’s one of ours now. Aren’t you, Jorin?"


Shimshon shivered as his captives stared down at him.

“You know something, boy? You remind me of someone… I’m almost certain I’ve seen your face around here before.”

“Yes, yes!” one of the other men shouted. “I’ve seen him before, too! His face was plastered all over the kingdom. He’s wanted for escaping from the castle, isn’t he?”

“Ooooh, yes…. That’s right. Well, what a wonderful stroke of good fortune tonight has turned out to be. Fell right into our laps, eh? We’re going to truss you up and take you back to where you belong, the palace prison. You’ll return to your gloomy cell, and as for us? We’ll be rewarded and go on our merry way, much, much wealthier than before.”

“I’m innocent,” Shimshon said quietly. “I’ve done nothing wrong. Sending me back is sealing my fate. I beg of you to believe what I’m telling you. I’m an innocent person, lost and very far from home. It’s true I escaped the prison, but only because I was wrongfully being held.”

“I believe the boy,” Jorin said. “Let him go.”

“Quiet, Jorin. Why are you always butting into things that don’t involve you?”

“This does involve me. I joined this clan to take up arms against invaders and those who disturb the peace. Not to persecute innocent children.”

“Jewish blood, eh?” One of the leered at Jorin, sticking his long, crooked face close to Jorin’s. “You’ve always been a soft one. Can’t stomach nothing, can ya? Well, listen close, because I’ll only say this once. You belong to our clan s’long as you can stick with us, and honor the decisions made by the majority. You’re a good fighter, Jorin, but irreplaceable you are not. If your Jewish sensibilities don’t allow you to make the hard decisions when they come your way, then maybe you’d best be leaving now… while you still can.”

“Is that a threat?”

“With us or against us. Which is it going to be?”

“Y-you’re a Jew?” Shimshon looked up at Jorin.

“Aha!” The men burst into laughter. “Look at his face! Think he’s found a friend, does he? Does Jorin look like a devout Jew, boy? He may have been a Jew once before, but he’s one of ours now. Aren’t you, Jorin?”

Jorin looked tortured as he weighed his options.

“I’m with the clan, through thick and thin.” Jorin clenched his teeth. “I think it’s a mistake to pester the boy, but if it’s what the group thinks is right, then I’ll respect the decision.”

“Good man.” The largest man in the group patted Jorin’s shoulder.

Jorin took out a dagger and sliced through the ropes binding Shimshon’s hands.


“Don’t do this.” Shimshon pleaded with Jorin as they pushed him outside and tossed him onto the back of a horse.

“Don’t bother pleading your case, boy. Save your energy, eh? We have a long journey back to the castle you escaped from.”

Jorin jumped onto the horse and quickly bound Shimshon to the saddle with rope.

“He’s right.” Jorin yanked the reins and off they went, traveling swiftly through the forest alongside the other men. “I’m not your friend. I can’t help you. Even if I wanted to.”

“You almost did help me. You were on my side for a moment. If you’re Jewish then you know all Jews share some basic, holy traits. We are bashful, merciful, and doers of kindness. We don’t harm the innocent. We certainly don’t send children to be thrown into prison cells. You can still stop this evil thing. Cut the ropes around my wrists and I’ll slide off the horse. You can tell them I escaped.”


“Please. I know someone very wealthy who lives not far from the castle, near the harbor. A wealthy Jewish man who will pay you handsomely. If it’s money you need, you will have it. Just let me go.”

Jorin yanked the horse, bringing it to a sudden stop. He swiveled in his saddle and stared back at Shimshon. His eyes were flashing.

“Enough! If you can’t keep quiet, I will gag you with rope.”

“You don’t understand anything! Listen, this isn’t just about me. It’s about a mission to stop evil men from getting their hands on scrolls that can create monsters!”

“Monsters?” Jorin’s shoulders shook as he chuckled. “There are no such thing as a monster—”


The entire forest shook as a massive foot landed in the middle of the forest clearing. The impact threw everyone from their horses. Shimshon hit the forest floor hard, beside Jorin.


The men unsheathed their weapons as another foot landed, rattling every bone in their bodies. Then two enormous hands pulled aside the trees and Pinchas the golem peered down at the human beings staring up at him in horror.

Shabsi’s tiny silhouette appeared on the golem’s shoulder, framed by the giant moon above them.


“Reb Shabsi! I’m down here!”

The golem roared in anger, his giant hand speeding toward Shimshon’s captors.

They turned and ran, dragging Shimshon with them.

“To the water!” the leader screamed.

The got to the river and pulled out several canoes hidden behind the trees.

“Let’s hope that thing can’t swim!”

They threw Shimshon into a canoe and began paddling frantically across the still waters.

The golem emerged from the forest, his giant head turning left and right as he searched for Shimshon.

Shabsi’s squeaky voice rang out.

“In the water, Pinchas! He’s in the water!”

The golem plucked Shabsi from his shoulder and set him down gently on the sand. Then he raced forward, splashing into the water, sending waves crashing in all directions. The canoes flipped in the air, colliding with each other.

Shimshon found himself drowning, unable to swim in the frothing, turbulent water with his hands tied as the golem waded closer to them, every movement sending massive waves coursing across the river.

Suddenly, Shimshon felt Jorin lifting him from the water and dragging him into the canoe he had managed to turn upright. The golem let out a bellow of surprise as the riverbed sank beneath his feet, and he dropped deep down, the waters reaching close to his nose.

“Turn us around!” Shimshon yelled at Jorin as the canoe moved further down the river, and the golem roared in frustration, unable to chase them.

“No. I’m going to finish what we started.”

to be continued… 


(Originally featured in Mishpacha Jr., Issue 972)

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