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slod 10 1024 paradise2

Page history last edited by Cleolinda 10 years, 10 months ago

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October 24th, 2010: Paradise Lost


Yesterday on The Secret Life of DollsThe Littlest Edward lost it and told Tonner Edward off. And it was bad. Really bad. 




 "I won't apologize." He was scrubbing the floor of the Paradise Kitchen with one of my old toothbrushes, unable to look me in the eye. "He stalked and coveted and harassed my Bella. He mocks the ponies constantly, and I heard him threatening to eat them. He treats me with nothing but disdain. Me, a hard-working vampire who contributes to society. If the truth hurts--well, he deserves it." 

Tonner Edward shut down after that--not that he was ever terribly social before. He had, as you will remember, begun spiraling into a sort of desperatecovetous madness the moment The Littlest Bella had arrived. Even before that, he had always been self-sabotagingly antisocial, but Little Bella choosing, you know, the Edward that had been made for her at the NECA factory had quietly broken his heart. Then Anna had tortured him, and, amazingly, he had still had some feelings left to hurt. (But then, Edwards, as a species, have always had a lot of feelings.) And now--Little Edward's outburst. Oddly, it wasn't even that he was angry with his smaller self; it's that he had felt the truth of it, and it had touched his worst fears about himself, about an unending life of abject loneliness stretching out before him. His first impulse seemed to be an attempt to fill that emptiness--one of the reasons the squirrel hostilities ceased for the winter was because, as mentioned, Tonner Edward ate half of them. (Which, I am sure, did not endear Shelfia to the survivors, but there you are.) Then--perhaps disgusted with himself even further--he went back to barely eating anything at all. Alarmed, I had already promised him a Bella of his own, whether he was "ready" for her or not--having introduced the very concept of Bella Adoraklutz Tastyblood into the Shelfian ecosystem, it seemed like things could only get worse unless each Edward had his own. 

So I told him: hold on. She's on her way. 

At first, he stood at the attic window with his forehead pressed to the cold glass, watching the mailbox and waiting. 


Yes, he was stalking her before she even arrived.



One of the few times he actually spoke was to ask me if his Bella was ever coming. 

"I don't know what's going on with that--they emailed me and said she was back-ordered, I guess because everyone wanted them for Christmas--" Because, you see, I'd tried to get my bargain-hunter on and get a Bella from a secondary site rather than order directly from Tonner. When my mother had ordered Lyra that one Christmas, she'd run into the same "lol sorry, out of stock now that we've taken your money" problem at the first site she'd gone to, and eventually had to cancel the order and try another site. It happens. But oh, for the thirty dollars I saved, did I pay dearly for it in the end. 

 "And next week, you'll find out that they've run out. They'll have to give you a refund. No one else will have it. She'll have sold out. It's a popular character, after all." Well, actually, he's the popular character. The Bellas, not so much; there really shouldn't have been this kind of trouble getting one in, and I was starting to worry that I'd just been flat-out scammed. But he sighed before I could even decide whether to say that out loud. It was a dead dry sound, like a wind in a cemetery. "It's all right. You don't have to make excuses. You don't have to lie." 

"I swear, I can show you the email, I can show you the receipt--" 

But he had already turned away. 

Edward Dollens are generally a punctilious species in all their varied sizes, but he seemed to give up on everything once he decided to believe that no Bella was coming, no Bella was ever coming, nor would one ever be happy with him anyway. He stopped combing his hair; he barely bothered to hunt, and when he did, he didn't clean up after himself, which he knew was one of my house rules. One day I found a trail of bird feathers on the stairs and had to step lively in order to get it vacuumed up before anyone in the family could ask too many questions; I was able to pass off a tiny dead lizard as a "gift" from Bad Cat, and then hurried off before anyone thought to point out that he's an indoor cat. I gave Edward a stern talking-to after that one. He just stared at me with vacant eyes. 

"It's awful," I told Galadriel. "He can't even brood vertically anymore." He was spending most of his time these days curled up in my laundry basket--and he didn't even care if the laundry was clean, which was how I knew he was bad off. 

 "But you really did order the Bella?" 

"My hand to God. The money's gone from my checking account and everything." 

I was consulting Gladdy because I didn't know what to do--as spring blossomed towards summer, he was getting more and more bitter, more despondent, more reckless; his face had taken on the look of a haunted house. We would end up discussing what happened and what led up to it a lot in the days afterwards, and it was Little Mind-Reading Edward who would be able to give me the most insight into his larger counterpart's state of mind at the time. For all the concern spent on matchmaking for "the little one," no one worried about Tonner Edward or his loneliness. The girl he loved had nightmares about him. He wasn't even the hero in his own story; he was the obstacle, the villain. In retrospect, you begin to see how it happened, the self-fulfilling path he went down--how it ended up that one day, Little Edward was pulling at the leg of my jeans: "Miss Cleo, Miss Cleo, the attic, it might not be too late--!" 

And somehow I knew, before I even had time to consciously register what he was saying, what I was thinking--we had been trying to puzzle out the prophecy for months, and finally it was upon us. Little Bella came running (and tripping, and running) behind us, far slower than Little Edward, but at the attic doorway he gasped and held her back. Galadriel was the next to arrive, 







and I felt rather than heard the intake of breath when she saw Ellowyne's light red hair spilled out over her green sweater, in a dark room stabbed by a few rays of afternoon light. Galadriel had failed. 



 "Is she going to be a dollpire now?" Bella whispered. 

 "No," said Galadriel, her voice faint. "She's dead."



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