OMW. I’m late. Okay. Well, here we go. Deep 3rd and we’ve got some very…interesting characters to choose from.
Photo owned and copyrighted by Katie Johnson. Photo credit: https://katierenejohnson.com/
Tooma stood unsteadily on her dainty, wooden feet. Another toy convention. She didn’t mind, however, because it meant she could be out in the world.
And this year, the convention had a magnificent view. Just look at that city. It was amazing. All those buildings. All those people.
All that life.
A choked sob startled. She jerked and looked around. She’d invoked fear before. Lots of times in her three hundred years of “life”. The little girl’s pale blonde hair was pulled back in two matching braids and she clung to the lapels of her coat so tight her knuckles had turned white. She pressed her fingertips to the glass, her breath fanning across the pane in shallow puffs.
Tooma should find the child’s mother, but to do that, she’d have to talk to the girl. Not a good idea. Wooden dolls weren’t supposed to talk, for one thing. Even with today’s advancements. Plastic toys could talk. Wooden ones typically didn’t.
But the girl was panicking and no one was paying attention. Looking around, she carefully walked toward the nearest table and took a large sheet that had been left on the floor. If she stumbled, she would create an earthquake. Just another part of her curse.
Never anger a witch. Ever. Their form of karmic retribution was unforgivable.
With the sheet in hand, Tooma draped it around the girl, pressing her wooden hands along the girl’s coat-covered arms. “It’ll be okay,” she whispered in a child-like voice that hadn’t changed in over three centuries. “Deep breaths, little one.”
The girl jerked, trying to look back.
If she saw Tooma’s wooden face, the panic would turn into screams and then Tooma would probably fall…
And there would be another earthquake. Would she never learn?
“Shh.” Tooma shook her head and hung her head in self-kicking defeat. She should never have gone there. She should never have tried to help this girl. “I’m just trying to help. Use the sheet to blanket out all other senses.”
The girl slipped through Tooma’s hands and stared up at her face, the girl’s blue eyes wide. The girl stopped breathing.
Tooma froze. What would she do if the girl screamed? Run? Like she always did?
“You’re…” The girl’s voice came out in a wispy breath of a whisper. “You’re real.”