My boyfriend thought it would be a romantic idea to take me to build-a-bear for my birthday. I’ll first say I’m not a child or in my teens unfortunately. I’m a grown woman of thirty.
It was a cute gesture from David, my boyfriend of 5 years. I didn’t know it was to be a marriage proposal as well, and was pleasantly surprised when he popped the question.
“Hey Sam, come on,” he said as he pulled me into the build-a-bear workshop. The female assistants in the background giggled to each other as David pulled me over to a display of the available bears.
“Which one will we bring home bae?”
I chuckled to myself, slightly embarrassed, looking over the array of stuffed friends of yesteryear. Superman Bear, Iron SpiderMan Bear, Kelo Ren Bear, Rey Bear, Incredible Bear. The sheer magnitude of bears were overwhelming, and then you could further customise them with clothes, voice boxes with personal messages and even a little token heart.
I chose an original Tatty Ted Bear from way up the back row, I felt sorry for him as he seemed almost forgotten in the furs of his brethren.
“Are you sure? What about this one?” He reached for Olaf from frozen.
“What am I, like twelve?”
We gave the Tatty Ted to one of the girls who started to sell us various other bits, I wandered off to the stuffing machine as the other girl worked the fluff into one of the bears.
“Sam? Do you want a heart for your Tatty Ted?”
“Yes please.” It wouldn’t have seemed right without one I thought.
At the register David paid for my Tatty Ted and gave it to me eagerly.
“Give it a squeeze. It’s got a voice box inside.” He said grinning.
I gave it a squeeze and David’s voice boomed out of Tatty’s chest.
“Samantha REDACTED, will you marry me?”
I squealed and hugged David, I answered yes. That night went by in a haze of champagne and celebrations and soon as we got home it dawned on me that I had forgotten Tatty Ted.
“Don’t worry Sam, I can alway get you a new one.” Said David sleepily as he pulled the covers up to his chin.
My last thought before my drunken eyes closed was of Tatty Ted sitting against the menu in the restaurant watching us celebrate.
Something like a distant drum beat woke me. I rubbed at my eyes and got up to pee. I screamed as I saw a silhouette in the light of the doorway. Tatty Ted stood motionless with something clutched in one hand while a knife pointed to the floor in the other.
“David!” I shouted, but he didn’t arouse. Instead David’s voice boomed from Tatty Ted.
“You gave me a heart, so I could love you as much as you love me.”
“That’s not what you’re programmed to say.” I gasped.
The light flashed off the knife in his tiny hand, and I glanced back at the bed. David’s mouth hung open, so did his chest. David’s heart dripped in Tatty Ted’s other hand.
“Now you can love me forever.” Said Tatty Ted as I screamed and ran for the bathroom.