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The Kids Are Alright

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Sometimes Finn goes down and watches his father's Lego sets.

He doesn't touch them. Just watches.

He never sees them move.

Finn is unsure about letting his sister play with the Lego, but his father watches her carefully and anything she breaks is carefully put back together again. Nobody dies.

Not that lego people can die in the first place. Even Vitruvius came back as a ghost, and once he took off the sheet he was back to normal.

Finn doesn't know what prompted that change. Maybe after meeting Emmet, he felt sorry for him. So he finds Vitruvius' head piece from where he had left it and puts it back on his head and acts out a scene where Wyldstyle gets tired of Vitruvius acting like a ghost and pulls the sheet off him. It's short, but heartwarming. He thinks.

The people have forgiven President Business, Finn says, but the Man Upstairs thinks he's saying that for his sake, not them. Not that that makes any sense. The people are toys, after all, and if Finn says they've forgiven him, then that's what they've done. Finn is their will, their characterization, their... the Man Upstairs can't put it into words. Finn is the one who decides what they think and do, because they're not real.

But maybe Finn is lying.

The Man Upstairs thinks someone is angry at him, but he can't figure out exactly who. It's not Finn, who's overjoyed that he's allowed to play with the Lego sets now. It's not his wife, who is glad that he's spending quality time with his children. It's not his daughter, except during those fickle mood swings that toddlers have.

He thinks back to the clattering he heard on the desk, the movements of the construction worker figurine he saw out of the corner of his eye.

Finn is certainly an imaginative kid.

The blue classic spaceman goes missing.

His name is Benny, Finn says.

They scour the entire basement, but they can't find him. It. The toy. The person.

Benny went off on his own but he crashed his spaceship and got lost. Finn enacts an elaborate adventure with the remaining figurines where they all go out on a search party for him. It doesn't work. They still can't find him.

The Man Upstairs stops on the basement stairs, while Finn walks up ahead of him. They can't search anymore tonight, not when Finn has school and his father has work the next morning.

The Man Upstairs doesn't know what he should do. Toys go missing all the time. But toys aren't people. Benny isn't a person, and yet he is, and the Man Upstairs doesn't know what to think.

Sometimes he goes downstairs and finds the figurines in different positions than he left them. Finn says it's not him doing it.

Maybe Benny will come back on his own.

The Man Upstairs closes the door behind him, and the second search party succeeds.

Finn is getting older.

His father thought that imaginary friends were supposed to fade with age.

But Finn takes Emmet -- the construction worker -- everywhere with him. He talks to it. To him. Sometimes he takes the others with him too, carrying them around in his pockets. The Man Upstairs doesn't know what to think. His wife is worried.

The Man Upstairs watches Emmet talking to his son.

Maybe everything is going to be fine.

What makes us real? What gives us life? Do the people you read about in fantasy really exist? Are we just acting out an elaborate story with everyone else? Is someone writing about us, this very moment? The Lego figurines Finn holds in his hands are real, they have a solid weight and they exist. They are real. But are they alive?

Finn thinks they are.

The Man Upstairs thinks they might be, but he isn't sure.

Is this what God wonders about us?

Emmet says, It's okay.

Emmet says, You are doing a good job.

Emmet says, Everything is going to be fine.

Finn says

To be given life, a creation has to be given a soul.

To be given a soul, a creation has to be loved.

Finn looks at the multitude of figurines his father has collected over the years, and he loves them with all his heart.

The Man Upstairs tells his wife not to worry. The kids are alright.