Thursday, August 4, 2016

Alice's Story: Part 6 (Mattel The Twilight Saga Eclipse Alice)

(Note From Treesa: This is a continuation of the previous post. Alice's draft was way too long, so I broke it up.
Signed, Treesa)

The next time I went to see Joy she talked a little about her past life. I found out Treesa is Joy's second owner, and that Joy didn't always have such an easy time going with the flow. She told me it wasn't until after Treesa bought her that she'd realized she'd be a lot happier if she focused on all the good things about her life, instead of carrying around grudges for things that happened in the past.

Then Joy asked me to tell her more about my life. I'd already told her, when we first met, that Treesa bought me at the thrift store. And she knew I'd been friends with Wedding Bells and Wedward. So I told her a little about my old family. I told her how much I missed everybody. I told her how Esme had been like a mom to most of us. That's how she got the nickname Esmom. I even told her a little about Jazzy Jazz, how he was always goofing around and trying to make the rest of us laugh. I didn't mention that I'd been in love with Jazzy Jazz. I didn't really want to talk about it, and I thought Joy must've already heard about it from Jasper. I did tell Joy how Jane and Victoria had actually been really nice, even though their characters are villains in the Twilight series.

"What's Twilight about anyway?" Joy asked. "I know it has vampires in it, but that's about all I know." I was a little surprised Jasper hadn't already filled Joy in on the storyline, but I didn't say that out loud. I thought maybe Jasper had a reason for not sharing more about Twilight with Joy. Maybe he was like Lois and wanted his own identity. Maybe he wanted other dolls to see him as himself, and not the character he was made to look like. Though if you ask me Jasper is a lot more like the Jasper in the books/movies than Jazzy Jazz was.

I knew it would take a while to go over the whole Twilight saga with Joy, so I warned her, "It's kind of a long story." Then I started summing up the plot of the first book. I left out the part about my character and Jasper's character being a couple. I didn't really want to talk about that either, and it was easy to skip that part because the book mostly focuses on Bella and Edward's relationship. I did mention Alice's power to see the future, and Jasper's empathic 'gift', when I told Joy about Edward's mind reading skills. When I finished I told Joy, "And that's just the first book."

At first Joy didn't say anything. She looked like she was thinking something over. Then she said, "I guess I just don't get it."

"What don't you get?" I asked. I thought there must've been something in the plot she didn't understand and needed me to explain better. "I don't get why this was such a big thing," Joy said. "Maybe if I actually read it I would. Or maybe it's a human thing."

That's when Jasper came around the corner. "Joy, I was wondering if...", but he didn't finish the sentence. He sort of froze when he saw me. Then he got this look on his face like he was going to turn around and leave again. I felt bad knowing that me being there was driving him away. After all he hadn't known I was there. He probably just wanted to spend some time with his sister. I wanted him to know he didn't have to leave just because I was hanging out with Joy. So before he could disappear I asked, "What do you think of Twilight, Jasper?"

Jasper didn't answer right away. When he did he said, "To be honest I don't know that much about it, only what was printed on my box." Then he gave this short, dramatic monologue about a 'modern day vampire love story'. I was a little confused, until I realized he must be quoting whatever was printed on his box.

When he finished Joy tapped her fingers against her palm and said "Bravo" in a snooty voice. I guess she was trying to imitate the applause of a cultured theater goer. Jasper bowed, but it looked like he was trying not to laugh. So he did have a sense of humor after all.

I was sort of stunned that Jasper could remember a whole paragraph word for word like that. "You memorized all that?" I asked. Jasper shrugged. "I was in the back row at the toy store," he said. "I spent weeks staring at the back of the box of the Jasper doll in front of me."

"Couldn't you talk to any of the dolls next to you?" I asked. Jasper looked sort of embarrassed and said, "I was never much of a conversationalist. I never know how to begin." For a minute I didn't know what to say. I knew for a fact I wouldn't have been able to take that kind of isolation. Just thinking about going through what Jasper had at the store made me upset. "That sounds awful!" I told him. "I was in the second row, but the Alice dolls were selling so fast that I moved to the front pretty quick. I can't even imagine being stuck all the way in the back for weeks!" I didn't realize how upset I sounded until Jasper tried to calm me down. "It's alright Alice," he said. "It was a long time ago."

That's when things got weird. I started feeling sort of guilty. I'd asked Jasper three questions at the most, but somehow I'd managed to dredge up what were probably some of his most painful memories. I hadn't meant to, but that wasn't the point. Because of me Jasper had had to relive his time at the store. I felt like he should've been mad at me for bringing it up, but he wasn't. Instead he was trying to comfort me. I felt like I didn't deserve it. I felt like I should be comforting him, not the other way around.

I realized I was about two seconds away from putting my hand on Jasper's arm and telling him it would be ok. He probably would've taken that the wrong way. Luckily I managed to get a hold of myself before I did anything stupid. "I have to go," I said. Then I turned to Joy and said, "It was nice talking to you again."

"Stop by any time," Joy said. Maybe next time you can tell me what happens in the second book." I nodded, told Joy, "I'll see you later," and left. For the next few days I sort of kept to myself, trying to figure things out. I couldn't understand why I'd reacted the way I had. It was one thing to feel sorry for Jasper, but it was something completely different to actually want to do something about it and make it all better. Thinking over what had happened I realized that in that moment I'd finally started to see who Jasper really was. Before then, when I'd thought about Jasper, I'd always compared him to either Jazzy Jazz or the character from the books/movies. I realized now that that wasn't really fair to Jasper. It wasn't fair to compare Jasper to a made-up character or to another doll I'd known who looked like him because Jasper would never be either of those things. All he could be was himself, and I was finally starting to see that. What I saw was a doll who could be funny in his own way, a doll who was quiet not because he didn't want to share but because he didn't know how.

I can't really explain why I went back to see Joy again. Maybe I just wanted someone to talk to. Or maybe I wanted to hang out with Joy because I thought she already knew how I'd felt about Jazzy Jazz, but was tactful enough not to bring it up. Like I said before, back then I thought Jasper must've already told Joy about my past. It'd be a few more months before I found out he hadn't.

I went over the plots of the other Twilight books with Joy, and we talked about them a little. Jasper was around for some of these discussions. When he wasn't Joy would fill him in on anything he'd missed. Joy joked that it was like being in a book club where only one person had read the book.
Jasper really seemed interested in the story though, like he wanted to find out as much about Twilight as he could. I know Jasper's a Twilight doll, but still he seemed more obsessive about the details of the books than I ever was. I actually said something about it at one of our 'book club meetings', as Joy called them. I tried to make it sound like a joke so Jasper wouldn't get offended. Then Jasper told me, "You have to know where you came from before you can know where you're going." I'm still not sure what Jasper meant, but it did make me think.

So I guess that's about it. I thought this post would be a little rambling, but I didn't know it would turn out this long. And I still feel just as mixed-up as I did when I started. Maybe I need to take a break and stop thinking so much. That might help.


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Alice's Story: Part 5 (Mattel The Twilight Saga Eclipse Alice)

I should probably warn you ahead of time, this post might not make much sense. There's some stuff I'm trying to figure out right now, and I thought if I wrote everything down it'd help me sort out my thoughts. I'm not really sure where to start though. I guess I should pick up where I left off. When I last posted I wasn't really sure where my life was headed. So I was sort of on cruise control, waiting for something to happen. I know now waiting for something to happen isn't always the best idea. For one thing it gives you too much time to think, and I kept thinking about the last thing Jasper said to me.

After I told Jasper about Jazzy Jazz, the first doll I ever loved, Jasper thought I'd be happier if I didn't have to see him at all. I tried to tell Jasper I didn't blame him for me and Jazzy Jazz getting separated, but Jasper still must've thought having to be around him day after day would torture me. So he just kept avoiding me, and he was really good at it. It was early January when I told Jasper about Jazzy Jazz, and I barely got a glimpse of Jasper for the rest of the month.

At first I was sort of relieved. Telling Jasper about my first love had made me really uncomfortable. I'd never told anyone how I felt about Jazzy Jazz, not even Treesa when she'd asked if I'd left someone special behind. I'd never even told my old family, though I think some of them might've figured it out anyway. Jazzy Jazz couldn't have known, because if he had things would've been a lot more awkward between us. Things probably would've been a lot more awkward for the whole family if word got around that I was in love with Jazzy Jazz. It was sort of embarrassing and uncomfortable, being in love with someone who thought of me as a sister. So I just never told anyone.

But I had to tell Jasper. I realized pretty quick that Jasper liked me, and it wasn't fair to let him get his hopes up. The sooner I told him I couldn't love him the sooner he'd move on. So I told Jasper how I felt about Jazzy Jazz. Those feelings I'd hid and guarded for so long were finally out in the open. I didn't realize it then, but I was trusting Jasper with my biggest secret. Jasper knew though, and he wouldn't break that trust. That's why he didn't tell anyone, not even his sister Joy. I hate to say it but I was really surprised when I found out Jasper hadn't told her. I mean, I never thought Jasper would tell everyone, but I thought he'd at least tell his sister. It wasn't until a couple months after I started hanging out with Joy that I found out she didn't know.

That's right, I'm sort of friends with Joy now. When Wedding Bells and Wedward left I knew I'd have to make new friends eventually. You can't take two steps in Treesa's room without bumping into another doll, so it's not like I could avoid having any contact with the rest of the collection. And honestly I didn't want to be a loner. I didn't want to spend the rest of my life thinking about the past and wishing things hadn't changed. I wanted to be able to move on. But moving on is tough, and I'll admit I really didn't try that hard to make friends at first. I was polite to everybody, but close friendships are something you have to work at, and I knew I wasn't putting in as much effort as I should've.

I can't really explain why I started hanging out with Joy. I'd met a lot of Treesa's other dolls by then, so I could've tried making friends with someone else. But when I tried to think of dolls I'd have something in common with nobody seemed like the right fit. Halle and me both had some grudges against Treesa, but Halle's a lot more...hostile to humans than I am. Lois is a character doll from a movie, like me. But Lois has more of an independent streak than I do. Dandelion, and her friends Shade and Rampion, are fun-loving dolls who like to have a good time. The way they act around each other reminds me of my old family. But I didn't think I was lively enough to fit in with them.

When I thought about Joy, I remembered her go with the flow, take things as they come attitude. I wondered if she could teach me to be like that. And I'll admit I was also curious about Jasper. I couldn't forget the last thing he'd said to me the day I told him about Jazzy Jazz. Jasper told me he'd like to be my friend, but only if it wasn't too painful for me. For some reason that really stuck with me. Here was a doll who cared about me so much he'd put what I wanted first, even if it wasn't what he wanted. The more I thought about it the more I wondered how he could be so selfless. I mean, when I lived with my old family I was close enough to all of them that I would've gone out of my way to help them if they needed me. But Jasper had already proved he'd do anything in his power to make me happy, and he barely knew me! It made me wonder if Jasper really could've fallen in love with me at first sight. Or maybe he only thought he was in love with me. Maybe he'd fallen in love with his first impression of me, and not the real me. Or maybe, because he was a Jasper doll, there was something molded into his plastic that made him fall in love with the first Alice doll he saw. Would he still have fallen in love if it'd been another Alice doll he met, and not me? But if it was something in his plastic, if all Jasper dolls automatically fell in love with the first Alice doll they saw, then why had Jazzy Jazz only ever loved me like a sister?

I wasn't sure if I'd ever have the answers to all these questions, but for some reason I wanted to at least try and find out. I can't really explain why. Maybe it was just the timing. It was mid-February by then. Valentine's Day was coming, and without Wedding Bells and Wedward and the rest of my family around me there was no one to take my mind off it. I was in a new house, surrounded by new dolls, and even though I'd been here for a while those dolls still felt like strangers. I felt completely alone.

The first time I went to visit Joy I was a little nervous, because I hadn't come up with a good excuse for why I was dropping by. But Joy was just as friendly as she'd been when Treesa first introduced us. I don't remember exactly what I said when she asked if there was a reason I'd stopped by. I think I told her I felt overwhelmed. Trying to decide which dolls would make the best friends by weighing the pros and cons was sort of stressing me out, but I didn't say that out loud. Whatever I said probably didn't make much sense to Joy, but she didn't ask me to explain. She just started talking about the weather. Then whenever the conversation started to drag she switched to another safe, small-talk topic.

Valentine's Day came up, of course. Joy told me it's not a very popular holiday in Treesa's collection. Most of Treesa's dolls don't even celebrate it. For the most part it's an excuse for the married couples to get one of their friends to watch the kids so they can spend some quality time together. I guess it makes sense if you really think about it. Toy companies always make a lot more female dolls than male dolls, since most dolls are bought for little girls and little girls like dressing their dolls up and playing with their hair. So unless you have a really small doll collection it's almost impossible for every female doll to find the love of her life. Luckily some dolls like staying single. Dandelion and Lois don't seem like they're in a hurry to find dates.

(Note From Treesa: The post that Alice drafted is way too long, so I'm breaking it up. I'll post the rest later.
Signed, Treesa)