Monday, July 28, 2014

The Doll on the Porch

Lilith Saintcrow threw up a flash-fiction prompt on her blog. (You may have seen the news story that prompted it already.) This was my response:

The doll appeared on the porch Friday evening, with blank black button eyes and a soft vacuous smile. Abi played with it her room, and tucked it into her bed when it was time to sleep.

On Saturday, she carried everywhere she went: to the store with her parents, to the restaurant for lunch, to the park to play. Abi was very proud of the way the doll slid down the slide all on its own. The doll was heavy, and seemed to get heavier the longer she carried it, but Abi didn't mind. When bedtime came, she tucked it into bed again, and they both slept very soundly.

On Sunday, she arranged the doll so that it sat with them in church. The doll was very well behaved. They spent Sunday afternoon at G-ma's house, and the doll was very well behaved there, too. "What a big doll," remarked G-ma.

"Abi found it," Mom told her. "I didn't realize how big it was until this morning, though."

That night, Abi carefully put the doll to bed again. She even made a big show of brushing its teeth. The doll, of course, just smiled its empty smile.

Abi woke up early on Monday. Her parents were still asleep, and she was still very tired, even though she'd slept deeply. She got out of bed, and tried to pick up her doll, but now it was bigger than Abi and far too heavy for her to carry. "Come on, doll," she told it, thoroughly exasperated. "We can't stay here all day."

So on Monday, the doll carried her. It carried her out of the house and down the street, across roads and through empty fields. Far away, it found its own house, where it carefully tucked Abi in its toy bin.

Incidentally, if you haven't read any of her books, I'd recommend checking them out. I haven't read everything she's written, but everything I've read has been really enjoyable.


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