<How pitiful…> he thought as he watched the object of his affection draw closer to death. <”Be nice!”> echoed the voice of the dying doll’s creator. <”I can’t enter that part of The Eternal Garden but you can. I’m counting on you to make her last moments happy ones.”> with those words constantly playing in his head, he stepped closer towards her. “Is that you, Master?” asked the nearly dead doll, thinking she was speaking to her creator. Taking a deep breath, he answered, “Yes. How are you feeling?” he was trying his best to sound like the man who created her. The dying doll smiled. “Good. A little tired though.” He looked down at her before slowly sinking down beside her. As soon as he was seated, the dying doll laid her head on his shoulder. “I’m sorry…” she whispered. He looked at her confused. “For what?” “For pushing you.” came her immediate response. “I just wanted to protect you…” He thought he felt something roll down his cheeks.
“Master, I have a question.” “What is it?” he asked, his voice a bit shaky. “It feels like I’m sitting on grass against a tree, so I must be outside. Can you please tell me what it looks like?” He was shocked. “What are you saying? You make it sound as if you can’t see!” The dying doll raised her head, causing her long black locks to tumble from in front of her face and down her shoulders. “There’s something in my eyes making it difficult to see…” He silently gasped in horror. Her originally vibrant eyes had gone from a lustrous sapphire blue to a lifeless pale color. He felt something roll down his cheeks again.
Without a moment’s hesitation, he stood and lifted her onto his back. Together, they made their way into the sunlight. He took a deep breath before speaking. “It’s a wonderfully warm and sunny day. The garden seems to be glowing!” The dying doll smiled as tears of joy cascaded down her cheeks. “I’m so happy!” she cried as her head slowly sank down onto his shoulder. “Thank you…Alex…” His eyes widened as he cried out, “You knew?!” But it was too late. She had died in the garden’s warm sunlight. Suddenly more of those ‘things’ began to cascade down his cheeks as he dropped to his knees and brought her in front of him. He cradled her small frame in his arms. “Why…? Why did you pretend not to know?!” he cried out in rage and sorrow. “Why did you pretend not to know it was me?!” Lowering his forehead down to hers, he whispered, “I love you so much…Willow…” He finally understood what it was that was flowing down his cheeks. Alex was crying…
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