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Trapped in a Box

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D E C E M B E R  2 5 th  |  2 0 2 0


Sophia was spinning in circles.


Sophia was spinning in circles, and Niall was adjusting his beach chair under the lamp on Lux’s desk, and Tom was searching for his leather jacket that had been lost for about 3 weeks now and Lou was breaking toys and Liam was fixing the toys that Lou broke and Harry was standing at the window watching the snow fall.


He watched as Uncle Nick jogged over (without a coat) to the car that had pulled into driveway to help nannie Annie and grandpa Robbie bring their gifts inside the house. He watched nannie Annie grab a box from the stack uncle Nick held. It was wrapped in shiny, almost reflective, pink wrapping paper and had an unnecessarily large pink bow stuck to one end. It was clear that gift was for Lux.


Harry felt a spark in his wires.


A short squeal behind him reminded him that Sophia was spinning in circles.


“Sophia for the love of god.” Tom groaned from somewhere under the bed.


“Soph.” Harry climbed off the desk and walked over to his sister, grabbing her by the shoulders. “Stop. You know your wires get all crossed when you do that and your phrases don’t work.”


“I can’t help it Harry I’m excited! It’s Christmas! Lux is gonna get new toys!”


“Fuck yeah Soph! Me too I’m pumped.” Lou ripped the door that Liam had just fixed off his car again and dropped it to the floor, kicking it with enough force to flip it over.


“Louise!” Liam looked liked he would off Lou if he could.


“What?” Oblivious.


“One,” he grabbed the door, “I just fixed this. And two, you can’t say that!”


“Oh come on Lux isn’t even in room.”


“So? You still can’t say it. She’s 7 and you’re her doll.” Liam was fixing the door again.


“Lome,” Tom laughed loudly from wherever he was still under the bed. “I’m Girl Gang Louise. I think I can say what I want.”


“Girl Band Louise. Girl Band.”


“Girl band girl gang same diff.” Lou shrugged.


“Just,” Liam sighed. “Please stop breaking things.” She laughed and slapped him on the back before walking over to Harry and Sophia.


“New, toys. New, toys. New, toys.” Lou chanted, knowing it would get Sophia all riled up.


It worked. She was bouncing about and joining the chant, a little off count but that was okay. She tried her best.


“I hope it’s a new doll. She hasn’t gotten a new one in such a long time.”


“It would be nice to have a new face around here.”


“I don’t know.” Tom finally crawled out from under the bed, unsuccessful in his search. “Honey came in the other day while Lux was at school an cleared off a space on that shelf over there. She probably getting something she can’t play with.”


“I wouldn’t be so sure.” Harry moved back to the shelf where Lux put her dolls when she wasn’t playing with them, “Nannie Annie had a very pretty gift in her hand when she arrived. I don’t think she’d make it so nice if it was something boring.” He shrugged simply, ignoring the tingling feeling his wires. I must be broken. “She’s coming by the way.”


Footsteps were heard in the hallway and the five dolls quickly made their way over to Harry, positioning themselves the same way Lux had left them.




“Lux baby why don’t you go get nannie and grandpa’s gifts.” Glenne removed her daughter’s empty plate from the table as everyone finished up eating. They were just about to head into the living room to open gifts and she knew that Lux hadn’t brought down their gift when she had asked her to this morning. Lux skipped out of the room and Glenne watched to make sure she was out of earshot before turning to her mother. “I can’t believe you got her that doll.”


“Why? It was nothing.” Anne loved to spoil her granddaughter.


“Because mum, she’s going to want to play with it and then it’ll get ruined.”




“Jeff, no. It’s an expensive doll and if it breaks then what? Every little jewel on that dress is going to fall off and get lost.”


“It’s fine sis,” Nick stood from the table, reaching for his glass. “Just get a good snap of her with the doll tonight an then it won’t matter if the emeralds get lost. You know, pics or didn’t happen situation an all.” He took a sip, expecting to taste the rest of his wine but instead got the bland taste of water. “What is that?” He looked down and noticed that it was an entirely new glass he had, full of water. “Alright who cut me off?”


Anne laughed and Jeff placed a hand on the back of Nick’s neck as the group made their way to living room. They sat around the tree as Lux made her way down the steps, struggling slightly as the gifts blocked her view.




An excited scream from downstairs startled the dolls, stopping them momentarily from their group effort to find Tom’s jacket. He was starting to complain and they really just wanted him to shut up.


They all looked toward the door, Sophia smiled and Harry raised an eyebrow.


“Well,” Lou turned back to the sweater she had been looking under. “Must not being boring then.”




Lux was bouncing.


Giggling and bouncing.


“Lux sweetheart listen now.” Jeff passed the shiny pink wrapping paper to his wife, knowing that she would be able to use some of it in her art. “You have to be careful with this doll okay. She’s not like the others you have.” Lux wasn’t even looking at him. Her eyes sparkling just as much as the jewels on the doll’s dress. “It’ll probably be best if you leave her in the box….and put the box on a self.”


She looked up from the doll. Eyes big and somewhat confused. “Why?”


“Well dolls like this, they not really meant for play.” Jeff could tell that it didn’t make sense to Lux. Why would it. She was a child. To her, toys are meant to be played with. “They’re meant to look at. To admire.”


“Oh.” Glenne leaned forward and smoothed out the hair on Lux’s head in a loving mother type way.


“She’s like art darling.” She nodded at the doll. “You know how you’re told not to touch artwork?” Lux nodded. “It’s the same with her. Her dress is very delicate, and if you handle it too much, it could break.”




“But she’ll be on a shelf in your room you know. Right next to the other dolls so you can see her all the time.”



D E C E M B E R  2 6 th  |  2 0 2 0


Lux stared her the doll still in her box on the shelf as Nick laced up her shoes. They were going out to play in the snow.


“Uncle Nick?”


“Yes love?” He zipped up her coat before holding out her mittens for her to slip her hands in.


“Do you think I could hold the doll just once?” He stood up and looked down at his tiny niece. He really wanted to tell her yes. Because if he was being honest, he really wanted to hold the doll as well. It was…expensive. And he just wanted to hold it for the sake of how much it was worth.


“I think, if you wait a few days, and ask very nicely, you might be able too.” Lux smiled at him, pleased with his answer. “You ready to go see if nan is ready?” She nodded. “Good.” He put her hat on her head, pulling it down over her eyes and spinning her before pushing her out of her room. Laughter filling the air.




“What is it?”


The six dolls stood in front of the box.


“It’s a doll Soph.” Harry shook his head at Niall’s response, not bothering to look away from the new edition. She was something else.


A sight.


“I mean obviously.” Sophia wasn’t bothered. Niall was a bit of a ditz. A summer sun summer fun beach bum if you will. Waterlogged and all. “But like, what about her?”


“She looks well posh. What’s it say?” Lou leaned around Sophia to get a better look at the words on the box. “What does that say?”


“Well I don’t know. Harry?” Lou and Sophia turned to look at Harry.


“What’s it say H?”


“How am I supposed to know?” Harry spared a glance at the girls while Tom snorted.


“Look none of us can read. It’s not in our description so…..” Tom walked around the box. “Where’s Gem?”


“I don’t know I haven’t seen her in a while.”


“She might be in the car.”


“How would that even help us Tom?”


“She’s Genius Gemma. She can probably read.” He shrugged.


“Oh!” Sophia gasped. “She might! She might!…..but where is she?”


“I think Lux has been taking her to school. She’s probably in the car.” Liam sighed.


“No.” The dolls looked at each other. It had been a muffled ‘no’ but they’d all heard it. The sound a zipper brought their attention to Lux’s backpack that hung off the chair at the desk. “I’m right here.” Gemma popped her head out and smiled at the gang. “And yes, I can read.”


“Yay!” Sophia bounced a round as Liam and Niall walked over to help Gemma get out of the backpack.


“Gem?” Lou scrunched her face up as Gemma adjusted the belt around her dress and put her glasses back on her face. “Have you been in there this whole time?”


“Uh huh.” Gemma wasn’t bothered. “Lux got a new picture riddle book.”


“Did you see my jacket in there?” Tom was desperate.


“No.” Tom groaned and Gemma walked away from him, making her way over to Harry who still stood in front of the box. “It’s in the car.” Tom groaned again.


“Ugh it is. I forgot. She took me to that birthday party and took it off in the car.” He kicked the air and stopped his foot before following along with the rest of the gang.


They stood in silence as Gemma observed the box and the doll that rested inside it. She hummed as she looked her over. Taking in the glittering green dress she wore, she was certainly different from them.


Harry felt the spark in his wires again and placed one of his hands against his chest. It didn’t hurt. He was a toy. He didn’t exactly have the sensory for pain. Gemma watched him out the corner of her eye. Observing.


“Honey says she’s not allowed to come out of the box.” Harry spoke calmly. Sophia, true to form, gasped in horror. Lou, also true to form, groaned and shoved an unsuspecting Liam. “I know. It sucks.”


“Well what’s her name then Gem? What about her?” Tom’s question brought the gang back to focus on learning about the new edition to Lux’s dolls.


“It says here that she’s a part of the 2021 Diamond Collection.” Harry felt that spark again. “Hundreds of smoke diamonds nestled among thousands of emerald beads.” He thought he saw her finger twitch. “Kendall. Earth Mother.”


Her head snapped from its straightforward position to look down at Gemma. Everyone took a step back at the suddenness of her movement.


Everyone but Harry.


She turned towards him. It felt like an electric current had passed though his body. He felt…alive.


The stillness that had been in her eyes was clearly gone as she looked at the six dolls that stood before her. She moved over their faces, their bodies. Their feet. She seemed to notice that they were not in the same place as her. That they seemed to be on the outside of where she was. Kendall opened her mouth slightly as if she was going to say something, but instead frowned as the box shook slightly. She was trying to move. Looking down at her arms and waist she realized that she was somehow bound to one of the walls of whatever it was she was trapped in.


The gang watched as a look of frustration settled on Kendall’s face. They all knew that feeling. The panic. Though, none of theirs lasted very long since Honey, Dad or Uncle Nick had removed them from their boxes rather quickly for Lux.


“Somebody say something.” Sophia whispered and nudged Tom’s shoulder. He nudged Niall who nudged Lou, who shoved Liam, who pointed at Gemma. And Gemma shared a look with Harry before they all looked at Kendall. Who was watching them. They all gave her their own goofy nervous smiles, knowing they must’ve looked like an odd bunch.


“Um,” Gemma started, taking a step closer to the plastic of the box. “Hello.”


She seemed to say hello back, though the sound was lost on them.


“We can’t hear her.” Gemma said quietly enough to share with the gang.


“Gem tell her that” Harry turned to Gemma, a somewhat anxious look on his face. “Tell her we can’t hear her.”


Gemma didn’t say anything.


She was thinking.




“We can’t….we can’t hear you.” It was sad. The look on Kendall’s face. They all knew the moment of confusion that happened when you realize you’re in a box. But none of them could relate to the feeling of being stuck in one. Of not being able to talk to your….friends. They had all just met but, they were her friends. They knew that. She knew that.


It was sad.


D E C E M B E R  2 8 th  |  2 0 2 0


“God she’s fancy.” Lou sat under Lux’s bed with Tom and Sophia, watching as Harry and Gemma sat up on the shelf with Kendall. “Never seen anything that sparkly. Not even on Dad an Honey’s date night.”


“Not even on Uncle Nick.” Tom laughed. They watched Gemma talk to the fancy doll, who didn’t reply much (what was the point if they couldn’t hear her?) beyond a shake or nod of her head. A slight shrug of her shoulders. And the occasional smile given to Harry to when he spoke.


“I hope she’ll come out of the box one day. I think it’d be good for Harry.” Lou and Tom shared a look before they turned to look at Sophia.




“What?” Sophia looked at them, completely serious. “I mean it. I think she’ll be good. He’s been a bit odd lately, I don’t know, I thought he might have broken but I don’t think that’s it. He might be a bit tired of all of us to be honest.” She shrugged. “Besides, have you even seen him pay so much attention to something? He wasn’t even like that when Gemma got here an they’re best mates.”


They turned back to look at the three dolls on the self. Harry said something that caused Gemma to laugh. Kendall too even. Her eyes crinkled and the corners of her mouth pulled up in a smile. The sadness lifted from her face slightly as Harry started to laugh as well.


D E C E M B E R  3 0 th  |  2 0 2 0


“Niall pretty much gets along with everyone. I mean, we all get a long, but sometimes we kind of annoy each other. Niall doesn’t really annoy anyone. You can usually find him under the lamp to next to the window. Depending on the weather.”


Harry laughed as he though about his sun obsessed friend.


“And that’s pretty much the whole gang.”


He had gone through the whole gang.


Telling Kendall about what they were all like. How long they’d been here. The basics. He watched them all as he spoke, an pointed them out (even though she already knew who was who, he pointed them out anyway. And she looked with interest). Her expressions were exaggerated but, it was the only way she could reply really.


“Lux is the best. I mean, you’ve seen she plays with us all the time.” He laughed to himself, thinking about the /joke/ he was about to make. “Um, don’t tell anyone but,” short laugh. Eye contact. “I think you’re her favorite.”


Kendall looked at him. And he felt nervous for a moment. Too soon?


And then she laughed.


She laughed and he wished he could hear it.



D E C E M B E R  3 1 st  |  2 0 2 0   //   J A N U A R Y  1 st  |  2 0 2 1


It was late. Obviously. It was New Year’s Eve. If anything was happening, it was happening late.


Lux was sleep on the couch. Two party hats on her head, a few stickers littered her shirt and arms, purple and gold glitter sprinkled throughout her blonde hair and smudged across her skin, a black heart drawn on her nose and whiskers on her cheek. Uncle Nick had convinced her that there was a magical cat that had appeared years ago on a foggy night and saved New Year’s Eve from immense disaster.


The Great New Year’s Cat he called it.


She was excited for New Years. As she was every year. Dad and Honey always let her stay up later to watch the ball drop and the fireworks go off. All of her dolls were relocated down to the living room with her (so that they could also bring in the new year) and set up on the window ledge to watch the fireworks. But, like clockwork, Lux always fell asleep at 10:25. It was pretty much the only reason Dad and Honey told her she could stay up.


It was near midnight now.




Honey and Uncle Nick stood near the TV, an arm wrapped around each other and swaying slightly.




Dad was seated on the couch, keeping a watchful eye over his wife and bother-in-law who looked like they’d topple over at any given moment.




Nannie Annie, between sips of wine, was busy taking more than enough photos and videos of her children.




A few selfies with Grandpa Robbie and several snaps of passed out Lux.




Nannie Annie loved to remember the moment.




Dad turned the TV up




From the window, Harry had been a bit upset that Lux placed him so far away from Kendall’s box.




But now, two seconds away from her year, he was glad he was so far away from her.




That he could so easily look at her without moving.




That he could give his most genuine smile to her as their faces lit up with every firework that went up in the sky.




And she smiled right back.


J A N U A R Y  1 1 th  | 2 0 2 1


Harry stood up abruptly, startling Kendall a bit as he had been sitting quietly, leaned against her box.


“Ken.” He pulled at the bit of fabric that hung around his neck. “Can you….like…like you try to tell me something?” He pulled at the fabric as if it were choking him, despite the fact that it was in fact very loose around his neck, hanging low against his chest. “I mean, I know I can’t actually hear you say anything. And I know you can’t move your arms because of the ties, but like, could you try to tell me something?”


She looked away from him, her brows pulling together in thought.


“I just feel like…” Harry was feeling some type of way. He was short of breath, which is odd because he was a toy. Why he was letting an inability to breathe affect his ability to speak when he didn’t even have lungs was a question in itself. But lately it seemed as if Harry lost his logic whenever faced with the issue of Kendall’s box. “I just hate that…”


He thought…this might be the beginning of a panic attack. He remembered seeing one of Lux’s friends at a sleepover have one. It started like this.


He stopped pulling at the fabric and took a step back.


“Please.” He stepped forward. “We can just try right? Things can’t get any worse.”


Kendall nodded.


Harry nodded. Calmer than he was before.


Kendall thought about she would try to tell him. Looking around the room for something. Looking at him for something. He was staring at the bottom of her dress. Waiting. She shook her hand as best she could to get his attention.


“You’re ready?” She nodded. “Okay.”


They stood paused for a moment. Allowing a moment to pass so they could start fresh.


She pointed to him.


“Me?” She nodded. “Okay. Me.”


She waited for a moment before pointing up.


“Up?” Pause. She was thinking.


She pointed up towards herself and shook her head again, with more force, before pointing back at him.


“My head?” She nodded, smiling.


She shook her head again. Looking up with her eyes only.


“On top of my head?” She nodded again, quickly. This was working somehow. She looked up again and he raised his hand to touch his head “The top of my….” But his hand came in contact with his hat. “My hat?”


She nodded of course. Then paused for a moment.


Something about my hat?


Then she raised her eyebrows at him, a big smile spreading across her face.


“You’re smiling about my hat?” His eyebrows pulled together as he thought about it. “Smiling at my hat….you like my hat?” She nodded. This worked.


She motioned back at him with her chin, looking down this time.


He looked down too.


“My boots.” She was smiling when he looked back up at her. He thought her eyes were a little sparkly. But it might’ve just been her dress. “You like my hat and my boots?”


She laughed inside the box, nodding again.


He smiled back at her, letting out a small laugh as well.


“You like my hat and boots.” She nodded a final time. Crinkly eye smile on both. “You are lovely aren’t you.”



J A N U A R Y  1 5 th  |  2 0 2 1


It was hard.


Watching Harry get more and more stressed everyday about the box situation.


He hid it well. But all of them knew that he had his moments. Gemma new first hand, as she was the one he often voiced his concerns to. And the rest knew because of Sophia, who always knew when her brother was feeling too much something. (Sophia was bad at keeping secrets.)


It was hard.


Watching Harry get more and more stressed everyday about the box situation.


There was nothing Kendall could do. Besides being trapped in the box, and him not being able to hear anything she says, Kendall herself was feeling pretty stressed about the box situation as well. Not only from her own thoughts, but watching Harry wasn’t helping that much.


It was hard.


J A N U A R Y  2 1 st  |  2 0 2 1


And then one day, there was a bang. And the wall shook.


And Kendall fell from the shelf.


She landed at an angle; the corner of her box hitting the ground with force. The plastic in the now damaged corner of her box popped out from behind the cardboard, creating an opening in the packaging.


A tiny gasp came from each doll and Harry leaned forward to check on her. Before he could ask, Dad and Honey appeared in the doorway.


“Shit.” The dolls, in still silence, watched as Honey moved forward to pick up Kendall. “Fuck her box is ruined.”


Dad walked over behind her to examine the box over her shoulder before moving back to inspect the shelf. He fixed Harry back into a sitting position and sighed.




“I know.”


“She has to come out of the box. Just leave her on the stand an we’ll tell Lux what happened.”


“She’ll want to play with it Jeff.” Honey was standing at the desk know, pulling open the packaging to begin untwisting the ties that held Kendall to the cardboard wall. It was silent for a moment, as Dad watched Honey pull all the plastic ties from Kendall’s arms.


“Would it be so bad?”


Honey looked over her shoulder at Dad before turning back to the doll in her hands, fixing the hair that had become a little disheveled.


“No.” She snapped the clear holder around Kendall’s waist and adjusted her feet so she stood evenly on the platform. “Her dress is just so beautiful an delicate Jeff, what if it gets torn and all the little jewels fall off?”


Dad laughed quietly, wrapping his arms around Honey’s shoulders he placed a kiss on the crown of her head before pressing his cheek against it. “Then we’ll get Anne to hem it an make it a party dress.”


Honey laughed loudly and pulled away from Dad. “A party dress?” She watched him pick up Kendall’s box and look over her description on the back.


“Maybe Kendall likes to go to the club on a Friday night.” Dad shrugged and Honey shook her head, turning to place Kendall back on the shelf between Harry and Gemma.


He wanted so badly to turn his head and look at Kendall.


To say something to her. Knowing that she could finally reply.


“I imagine being ‘Earth Mother’ must be very taxing. I think she’d very much enjoy going on a bender for the weekends.”


Honey shook her head laughing. She called him an idiot, though the love could clearly be heard in her voice. “Com on, let’s finish moving that mattress.”


And then they left.




Eyes wide and with parted lips, her mouth hung open just slightly but nothing came out.


As soon as Lux’s door has closed behind Dad and Honey, they scrambled. Rushing to gather around Kendall in a tighter group than the shelf lineup they had bee arranged in.


Harry sat on his knees. Looking up at her like she was a higher power he was meant to pray to.


She looked down at him, kicking her foot out to nudge his thigh with the toe of her little black shoe.


“Well what has she become a mute?” It had been whispered, but, not very quietly. Being quite wasn’t really a part of Lou’s make.


“Lou!” Liam tried to hush her even though everyone had already heard her. Kendall looked at her, smiling warmly when they made eye contact. “That’s rude shush.”


“What, she doesn’t mind!” They were still whisper shouting. “Look see, she’s smiling at me we’re best friends.”


“Lou shut up.” Kendall turned back to Harry, pausing for a moment to acknowledge Gemma who stood next him, an smiled again.


“Excuse me Tom,” Harry smiled at her, a little embarrassed, laughing slightly as he shook his head.


She laughed. Loudly.


And it was wonderful.


Kendall laughed and the little sparkle painted in Harry’s eyes never seemed more real.


Kendall laughed, and Harry laughed.


And everyone kind of laughed because they didn’t know what else to do.


Harry stood up then, holding one of her hands in his while the other went for the plastic that gripped around her waist. Tom shoved his way through the dolls to help him. Holding each other’s wrists to help steady her as Harry pulled the clip open enough for her to slip through.


She stumbled a little when she stepped off the platform, which caused Harry’s hold on her tightened.


“Oh my gosh.” She was breathless in a way. Being able to speak and be heard was exciting. “I honestly thought I’d be stuck in that box forever.” She laughed again. “Hi guys!”


Her face scrunched up as she smiled largely at the group, waving. “Lou,” Lou elbowed Liam roughly when she was the first doll to be addressed. A sort of, ‘I told ya so’ that Lou reserved for Liam only.


“Yeah babes?”


“I’ve been dying to tell you, I absolutely love your hair.”


“Awh thank you.” Lou leaned forward to shove Sophia’s shoulder (gently of course, Sophia was a fragile being) “She loves my hair.”


“Kendall.” Sophia placed her hand on Kendall’s shoulder, moving to stand closer to her. “I know I didn’t really talk to you much when you were in the box but, I’m really excited that you’re here.”


“Oh that’s so nice Soph,” Kendall nodded as she spoke. “Harry’s told me so much about you.” Sophia glanced at her brother. “About all of you actually. Think I’ve got enough knowledge that I can fake like I’ve been her for a few years.”


She moved away from Harry, letting his hand go as she walked with the group of friends across the shelf. He and Gemma hung back, watching as Tom and Liam helped her get down from the shelf.


“Did you think”


“No.” Harry was quick to answer, not needing to hear the rest of Gemma’s question. “Not now at least.”


“Now?” They watched as Niall proudly turned on the desk lamp while Kendall lay back in his beach chair, laughing.


“I thought at first, that she’d be out by New Years at least. I mean, it’s Lux ya know. She opens everything. It’s her favorite part of anything.” Lou showed off her guitar and mic stand. “But then, New Years came and went, and she was still in that box. I started thinking that maybe she really would be in there forever.”


They stood quietly, watching as Kendall tried on Tom’s jacket. (Dad had brought it inside a few day ago after he cleaned the car out.)


“Gemma?” They introduced her to some of Lux’s older toys. The ones that lived under her bed.




“I keep feeling these sparks in my wires….” Gemma turned to observe him. His eyes stayed trained on Kendall as she showed off her sparkly dress and tiny shoes.


“You feel them now?”




“Look at me.” Harry dragged his eyes from Kendall to rest on Gemma’s face. But she didn’t say anything. They watched each other a moment. “Do you feel it now?”


Harry took a second to make sure that he didn’t feel any sparks besides the previous ones that were fading away.


“Not really, no.” Gemma nodded in acceptance and looked away from him, knowing he’d take the bait and look down at the group as well. Eyes on Kendall.


“And now?”


“Yeah.” Kendall just happened to look up then, smiling at him as she pushed her hair over her shoulder before Tom stole her attention away. Spinning her in a circle while Lou sang a song. “Yeah…………you don’t think…..”


He turned to Gemma. A look on her face that said enough.


“You are a part of the Celebration of Love Collection Harry. And according to that movie, you’re from Paris as well.”


“Okay but, so is Sophia and she don’t feel sparks in her wires with Liam.”


“But Sophia doesn’t love Liam. She just likes him. Which is enough for her I guess.”


“Okay, love, fine. I love Sophia but I don’t feel sparks for her.”


“Well because you don’t have to feel that. It’s in your description. It’s how you were made. You don’t have to feel that you love Sophia because you know that you love Sophia. You’re twins, you all were made to represent family.”


They looked back down to the group. Kendall still had on Tom’s leather jacket, but had now switched shoes with Lou. Copying the pose Lou told her to do, she held up the end of her dress with one hand to show off the chunky boots on her feet, a rock and roll sign with her other. She stuck her tongue out briefly before breaking into laughter.


“Alright.” Gemma turned back to Harry, he ran his fingers through his hair, curls bouncing right back into place before placing his hat back on his head. “I love her. What now?”




It had been a group effort getting Kendall back on her stand when they heard the heavy footsteps of Dad, Honey, and Lux coming down the hall. Of course, they had to explain to Lux what happened, and they came to an agreement with her. She could play with Kendall, but, gently. And not all the time. And, inside the house. (Honey nearly had a heart attack when Lux said she could wait to show her off to her classmates.)


It wasn’t until dinner that Lux left her room again. The dolls went about their usual dinnertime activities while Harry and Gemma took the opportunity to actually talk with Kendall. It was mostly Gemma asking her questions and Harry watching fondly.


“But, as Earth Mother, what exactly did they give you in terms of knowledge about the earth?” Gemma leaned back on her arms, giving Kendall a moment to think about it. To review the information in her mind that she had never had to think about before.


“Well, I know about the earth itself, an the life on it to an extent. Like, geographic stuff, environmental stuff, plants and animals.” She was sitting on the platform of her stand, legs stretched out in front of her and crossed at her ankles. “I do know some about people, but I think it may be the basics. Like the natural changes humans experience. Not….not the changes that humans have control over….because of their own mind… you know what I mean?”


Harry nodded in response. He didn’t know. He also wasn’t who she was talking to, but he nodded along anyway. He sat near her feet, wrapping a lose thread at the bottom of her dress between some of the jewels so it was hidden. Honey would freak if she saw it. Would probably put her in a glass box that was sealed shut on some shelf that no one would be able to reach.


Harry couldn’t let that happen.


“People are weird.” Harry still nodded along, looping the thread through another and tying it in a knot.


“Aren’t they?” He looked up when he was done, Kendall was watching him.


He grinned at her.


And the conversation continued.




“Hey.” It was so quiet. “Harry.” Her whisper. But he heard it.


Looking up Harry squinted slightly to see her in the dark, the glow in the dark stars stuck to Lux’s ceiling really did nothing. How Dad and Honey managed to convince her that they were just as effective as a nightlight was beyond him.


“Yeah?” It was late, and Harry felt bad that Kendall was stuck on that stand all night. Not that it really mattered, but why would you stand when you could sit? She just smiled at him


“I really do like your hat.”