Star crossed

When we changed houses in Mumbai the kids’ took a long time adjusting. Whether it was the new house, the new school or the new friends.. the kids were just not themselves. Their misbehaviour reached the peak, or rather the nadir. At a complete loss on how to handle them the doctor-dependent me marched off to the counselor. She helped.. immensely.
At her advice I started the kids on a star-cross system, a star for good behavior a cross for bad. It worked so well that now, almost a year later the stars and crosses are still celebrated and mourned with gusto.
H remains more sensitive to the issue. Threaten him with a whack and he remains blissfully unaffected, threaten him with a BIG BLACK CROSS and he comes running. For some weird reason each time I say ‘H you’re getting a big black cross,’ his immediate reaction is ‘And N?’ It’s as if N’s getting a cross too makes the whole thing more bearable. But boy oh boy if he's the only one being penalized I am prepared for some serious protests.
A few days back he got a cross. He pleaded with me no end to reconsider, which of course being a mean mama I didn’t. Then for the longest time he followed N around saying, “Please take a cross.. please N, please.”