I need to get out of here. It’s all a big mistake. I know the truth.

The problems began when Brandon entered Claire’s room. He shouldn’t have been there. Claire’s grandmother would have disapproved, asked “what about propriety?” and warned her about boys who expect too much.

Immediately, he laughed. “Is every girl required to go through a horse phase?”

“Required, no. But I did. I loved my pony. But now I…never mind. Ignore all that. Pay attention to me.” And he did – so much attention, to so much of her.

It started small. A few toys thrown to the floor. Claire said, “Brandon, I told you to leave them alone.”

“I didn’t touch anything.” He sneered and pointed, “Maybe that creepy doll did it.”

“Shut up! Charlie was my grandma’s, and he’s not creepy.”


“Well, Grandma called him Charlemagne, but that was hard for me, so I renamed him Charlie.”

“More like Chuck.” He turned me to face the wall. “I won’t be stared at by some effed-up doll.”

“Heirloom. And I’m not kidding. Don’t touch him.” Claire patted my head and apologized as she righted me on the shelf, reminding me of how her grandmother Amelia carried me everywhere and confided in me.

A few days later, Claire and Brandon entered the room to find everything in disarray.

“Not funny, Brandon.”

“What? I didn’t do this. I was with you.”

“You snuck in instead of going to the bathroom.”

“I did not come up here. I wouldn’t come in here without you. One, it’s wrong and two, your toys kind of disturb me.”

“You’re ridiculous.”

“No, I’m not. Look at this.” He waved at the mess on the floor. “Especially after this. I don’t like them. It’s like they’re cursed or possessed. They’re waking up for Halloween. It’s a horror movie set. How old are you, anyway? Get rid of them.”

“You’re trying to mess with my mind. This is some elaborate prank. It’s not funny.”

“I’m not kidding. Lose the wicked doll.” He picked me up and scurried to the window.

“Don’t! Leave Charlemagne alone! Get out.”

“I’ll go, but at least put Chucky” – he said it with such disdain – “somewhere he can’t do any more damage. Or worse yet, harm you.” Then he whispered.  “Please.”

She nodded, and he shoved me here, inside her “hope chest” – an ironic name for what’s become my prison. I’m innocent. They’ll see.

The problems started when Brandon arrived, but they’ll only worsen now that he’s gone. I hope for everyone – especially for Claire – that she either talks to her again or gives her away. Before jealous rage converts her wiggling ears, swishing tails, and winking eyes into more lethal magic.

While I’ve seen girls grow up and push me aside for boys, she has not.  She doesn’t realize that with some luck and good behavior, she’ll be saved for a new generation to love.

Pretty? Pony? Hardly. More like Her Green-Eyed Monster.