Moments later, Wren and Anais were back at the box pile. “This one’s next,” said Anais, very decidedly. “And I know who’s in here.”
You probably know everyone who’s in every box, thought Wren.
Once again, they took turns to lift each side of the box down, slowly and steadily.
When the box was on ground level, Anais moved to the side, while Wren began lifting the lid.
The dolls were beginning to feel like experts at box lifting.
When the lid was off, Anais held it to the side, and Wren removed the pink tissue paper that was becoming apparent in every box.
“What exactly does the tissue paper do, aside from keep dolls padded?” she wondered aloud.
“It’s a very specific type of tissue,” Anais explained. “It’s acid-free, so it helps us dolls stay in better condition for longer.”
“And that is a Collector’s Registration, sort of like a certificate. It validates who we are and who we belong to… though most of the time we don’t really need it. It’s more for collectors’ use.”
“Alright, ready to see who’s inside?”
“Yes indeed!” said Wren, moving aside the last of the tissue.
In the box, laying peacefully asleep, was a very familiar doll. Wren knew she had seen her somewhere before… realizing who it was, she exclaimed, “You’re Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz!”
“She certainly is,” said Anais. “Let’s stand her up so she can open her eyes and talk to us.”
Dorothy looked even more stunning standing up in her box.
“Ooh, hello,” Dorothy said, looking at Anais, then Wren, and back at Anais. To Wren, she said, “I don’t recall seeing you before.”
“Hi!” said Wren, waving. “I haven’t met you either.”
Anais quickly made the introductions, and explained that they were in their new home. “Come out and join us… and let’s free you from your ribbons.”
Dorothy thought that was a good idea.
Stepping out of her box, Dorothy breathed a sigh of relief. “It feels so good to be out.”
“Were you very lonely in your box, Dorothy?” asked Anais, suddenly feeling nostalgic.
“I was. But Toto kept company for the most part. It did get quite lonely without doll company, though.”
“Well, now I can shake hands with you, Wren! Delighted to meet you.”
“Delighted to meet you, too,” Wren said.
“You must come and meet everyone else,” said Anais.
The dolls moved to stand by the new glass display table, where Dorothy was introduced Debbie.
“Very pleased to meet you, Dorothy,” Debbie said. “And am I correct in guessing that’s Toto, your trusty sidekick?”
“Why yes,” Dorothy replied. “He’s very well-behaved, and hardly barks… though he has a habit of wandering off sometimes.”
Wren took a few occasional peeks at Toto, and saw his little tail wagging back and forth.
Toto was indeed very quiet, and hardly barked even while Dorothy swung him around in her basket.
“And how are you all doing, my friends?” Dorothy asked, turning to the other de-boxed dolls. “It’s been ages since I saw you! Annette, how are you? Looking good with all those white garments, I daresay. Not a spot of yellowing in sight.”
“The same to you,” said Annette, stepping forth to give Dorothy a hug. “It certainly does feel like ages since we’ve been out.”
“I do have a yellow brick road stand that came with me,” said Dorothy, turning to look at the various boxes. “It is in another box… it should be that one, over there.” She pointed to the white box. “Don’t worry about it… I can manage for the time being, as long as I have my ruby slippers.” To demonstrate, she tapped her heels together.
“Don’t do that, Dorothy!” Annette exclaimed. “You might end up somewhere else.”
While they were talking, Anais, who had moved to stand on the other end of the table, looked deep in thought. She was trying to calculate how many more dolls they’d have to free.
Fifteen are approximately in boxes, including me… I’m out, and so are Tori, Annette, and Dorothy… that’s four. There’s eleven more to go. She sighed. We’ll be very tired by the end of today… if we even get through all the boxes.
As she was about to say something, a loud thump! thump! thump! came from the box right below Dorothy’s. The dolls turned.
“I think I know who that is,” said Annette. “And I do believe she should be the next doll to come and join us.”
To be continued…