It was barely dark by the time he stepped out of his home. Polished glasses peeked out from under a green banded, large top-hat, hiding their wearer's eyes from view. Alongside the over coat and the acid green waist-coat, The Once-ler made quite the intimidating picture. Had anyone been able to see him under the glimmering shades, they would see the way his smoky grey eyes flickered over the street lamp above, looking for any signs of life. His high heeled dress shoes clicked against the pavement as he walked. Occassionally, someone would wave or shout out a greeting and he would respond in kind, a polite smile curving his plush lips. For a short while, he kept this up; simply enjoying the atmosphere, walking around town. His town, the city of Thneedville. After the fiasco of meeting The Lorax, he had decided to simply continue to chop trees at his Mom's prompting but had planted two for every for one to cut down. The Lorax grudgingly agreed and no more had been said on the subject, unless The Once-Ler had pushed his luck. And now barely two years later, he was twenty two and a 'very successful business-man' as his Mom had put it. Not that she had been much help in the actual build up of it.
Seemingly out of nowhere, a loud wail cut off his thoughts. It was shrill and almost desperate, as though its' maker was demanding to be attended to. Cautiously, he paused at the mouth of an alley way, glancing down the length of it uncertainly "Hello? Anyone there?!" He sighed, frowning slightly as he began to walk down the darkened alley. Inwardly, he bean to wonder whether or not this was an elaborate scheme for him to be captured. Although it hadn't happened for that long, it didn't seem likely. Rather than some idiot expecting to grab and kill him, he found a small box, a tiny wriggling bundle of clothing inside "Hey little...kid?" He leaned down, going to his knees when he saw the bundle. It was a he, tiny pudgy hands and adorable bright brown eyes that peered up at Oncie pleadingly. His tiny arms waved as his cries lessened, the baby pausing at the sight of a new face. The Once-ler paused, tongue flickering out to nervously lap at his lips as he wrapped the green over-coat around the kid, lifting him out.
Despite him being small and clearly fragile, the baby seemed happy now he had been picked up, gurgling loudly. His skin and tiny button nose held a blue-ish hue,suggesting how long he had been here. "You wanna come home with me,kiddo?" He whispered, laughing slightly as he seemed to get even more excited at the words, not even knowing what they meant but just happy someone was finally here, was finally holding him. The coat was warm too which helped a lot. The Once-ler hummed, pressing an affectionate kiss to the kid's forehead before beginning to walk. Thankfully, nobody saw him on the way back, least of all the paparazzi and he made it inside easily.
Over a half hour later and he had wrestled the tiny tot into a hot bath to try heat him up, dressing him in a baby sleep-suit he had the maid retrieve from a nearby twenty-four supermarket. 'Theodore' as he had quickly been dubbed was now curled into a ball in a make-shift cot (a washing basket filled with blankets and sheets) beside Oncie's bed, tiny thumb stuck between his lips. Looking down at him, Oncie couldn't even bring himself to call the Thneedville orphanage to have Norma take the kid. Ted cooed softly, wriggling in his spot and turning to get comfier. The Once-ler felt his heart melt and he ran a bare hand over his litle cheek, his still gloved hand resting on the rim of the 'basket'. Keeping Ted wouldn't even be a hassle. He had plenty of money, influence, knowledge and even time to raise the infant into a kid then young man. It was difficult to fathom who would want to be rid of any kid, especially one who seemed as sweet. Maybe time would tell but he was sure, he wouldn't ever give Ted up, not for the world.