Stooped low over him, the old man was carefully sewing up the awful tear to his pant leg, chiding him for his reckless nature.
“You had better be more careful my boy, if someone saw this they’d be asking questions.” The snowcapped head bobbed up and down, half-moon glasses perched on the end of a long nose. “I didn’t tailor this for you so that you could tear it up, you know?”
“I know papa.”
“And talking to that little girl! That was risky, far too risky. We need people to think you are just a doll, otherwise you might scare them away like you did today!”
“I’m sorry papa.”
“And how are we going to find you a home if you keep scaring away families?” The man asked as he bit through the thread, turning to gather his sewing equipment, which he carefully began to put away.
“But I don’t want to go anywhere papa, I want to stay here, with you!”
The old man turned and smiled his yellow teeth narrow and cracked. “Ah, but I don’t have much longer to be here on this planet my boy, we need to find you a family, and soon!”
“I have a family… you’re my family.”
“No son, I’m not. A family is a group of people that love and accept one another. I’m just the person that helps you find a family.”
“We’re not family? You don’t… never mind.”
“Don’t what?” The old man asked, putting away his metal scissors.
In a flash of anger, he kicked forward, his small wooden shoe colliding with the scissors and driving them into the man’s stomach. The old man gurgled, eyes widened in shock before he was slapped with the force of a grown man’s punch, knocking him off his stool.
“Wha-what are you doing?” The old man asked through gritted teeth, spitting up blood as he pulled himself away from his attacker who dropped down from the bench, the old man’s dremel in hand. As he stopped over the old man’s leg, he switched the dremel on, the power tool whirring to life with the Philips head tool still locked in place.
“I’m going to create art papa, just like you did. Only mine will stay still once I’m through with it!”
The old man threw a hand up; trying to force his attacker back, but only received blinding agony as the dremel carved into his arm, pouring blood down onto his apron and chest. A wooden hand clamped onto his wrist, crushing it with nary a thought. His attacker laughed, cackled really, as he ducked under the bleeding arm and drove the whirring power tool into the side of the old man’s neck, allowing it to burrow until it hit bone. Then, with a final act of either mercy or rage, he yanked the tool free, allowing the old man to pass out and slip blissfully into oblivion.
“And the next item up for bid, a genuine wooden dummy crafted by Hans Gruberfield himself, said to be his last piece before his untimely demise two years ago. This dummy is truly one of a kind and a perfect fit for any home.”
Looking out over the crowd, he stayed still as he had for the past two years… he couldn’t let them know he was alive; they wouldn’t love him if they did. Papa hadn’t loved him, and he’d been such a disappointment. The little girl in the shop had seemed to like him well enough, at least until her mother caught them talking. That night he’d made sure to pay that family a little visit. Kerrville wasn’t that large a town, and he was able to find out where they lived easily enough. He was still angry about how the little girl had lived, with only a tale of an “evil wooden doll” to talk about.
They’d had something special he’d thought, back in the store. But when he went to find her, to join her family, all she’d done is screamed. Screamed and ran. Too bad now… she would never run from anyone again after that spill she took down the stairs. And being blamed for her mother’s death, which was just luck on his side. It was then and there he’d decided he needed to stay still for a while, make it to where nobody looked at him in any regard other than a collectible. He needed time to work on his anger issues anyway.
But now I’ll find a family! He thought inside his plastic container as the auctioneer began taking bids. All of these people, here to try and bring him home with them! They loved him already, and they hadn’t even gotten to know him yet.
Hopefully they’ll like me… he thought darkly. I don’t want to have to find a new family anytime soon.