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Comptine d'Un Autre Été II
I have a duty to inform the public of the cruel truth I’ve learned. The recent cases of the seventeen “Dollmaker” murders are not to be pushed aside. I assure the reader that all of the chilling details contained in this article are purely fact.
I walked home from the office the day we had our first encounter. My niece’s birthday was only a day away, so I made a stop to a tiny doll shop. I stood in the doorway of the shop, surprised to see all four walls littered with odd dolls from the ceiling to the floor. I stepped inside and began to browse. The dolls were not like other dolls, not in the slightest. Glassy eyed porcelain watched as I circled the shopped. One in particular caught my attention. I stretched to grab it, but was interrupted by a woman.
“Good afternoon, sir.”
Startled, I spun around. I’d always heard stories as a child about odd doll makers, but the sight before my eyes was something I’m not sure anyone would have been prepared for. A tiny woman stood in front of me. She wore glasses and dressed like she’d never been out of this shop. She looked like the dolls. The only difference could be seen in her long, brown hair.
“Oh, uh,” It was hard to look at her. She was very awkward and kept staring, making me uncomfortable. “Hello. I'm looking for a doll for my niece… she's 5."
Her eyes grew wide, and she smiled at me.
“What is she like? Your niece?” She began to walk slowly towards me.
The question was simple, but it seemed there was more to it than that. I thought carefully about my answer. I felt like I shouldn’t give her more information than necessary.
"Well… she's turning 5 tomorrow. She loves playing with her Barbies, but I thought she might like a real doll."
“I think I have one that would be perfect for your occasion,” she said.
She led to me the back right corner of the shop. She walked briskly, as if she was excited or in a hurry. Her eyes were glued to the doll she picked up.
“Her name is Julianne,” she explained, showing her off. The doll was wearing a floral dress. On top of its head was a birthday hat. The hair was done in dark brown braids, and a balloon reading ‘Happy Birthday’ was in its hand.
The woman held “Julianne” with extreme care. She held it gently and made sure to not squeeze the doll too tight. Almost like the doll would cry out if her grasp was too strong.
She stared down at the doll lovingly. She seemed to be reminiscing, like at some point “Julianne” was more than just a porcelain doll, like she was a real person. She was lost in thought, so I interrupted. I wanted to see the doll.
“Oh, my niece will love her!” I thought complimenting the doll would put the woman in higher spirits, but she looked at me as if she could see right through me, as if I were transparent. She just stared at me, still deep in thought. It was like she thought I was doubting her and making fun of her doll. The mood was getting too awkward for me to handle, so I reached for the doll.
As soon as I touched the doll, the woman’s face changed. She had the look of complete horror in her eyes. I was shocked. I may have even jumped at the sight of the look on her face. Before I even had time to react, “Julianne” was descending to the floor.
The sound of porcelain hitting ground was like nothing I had ever heard any time before. It was like a bomb exploding. It gave me a deafening ringing in my ears, one that I can still hear now.
Thousands of shattered pieces littered the floor around our feet. I was afraid to look up, but when I did, the woman dropped to the floor. She had tears in her eyes. She picked up the doll’s head and held it to her chest. My god, this woman must have thought this doll was her child!
“Oh my god,” I said. “I’m so sorry! I’ll still pay for it!”
“It’s not the money that matters.” she snapped at me.
She turned around slowly, watching to make sure I didn’t touch the doll. She walked over to a small closet and brought out a dust pan and broom. She was still crying, but now she looked angry – at me.
She walked back to the shattered pieces. I wasn’t sure what I should do. I still felt afraid.
“I really am sorry, ma’am… I’ll pay for it! … And another!” I assumed she was angry because she thought I wouldn’t pay for the doll.
She ignored me.
“Here, let me help,” I said as I bent down to pick up the pieces.
“No.” she said. She didn’t want my help.
Still, I tried to help clean up the mess.
“Stop!” She shouted at me. I was shocked. I was afraid. What was wrong with this woman? I meant to set down the pieces in my hand, but something was caught in my fingers. It was… hair.
“Wait, what is this?” I said. It wasn’t normal. “This isn’t synthetic.” I continued. I realized it wasn’t doll hair. My heart began to pound.
“Give me that.” she said. She snatched the hair from my hand and stared at it with wide eyes. She was deep in thought again, just like before. I watched her stare at her open palm for longer than what would be considered normal. What is she doing? I thought.
“What are you doing to these dolls?” I said, finally finding my voice. I stared at her, demanding an answer. I knew something wasn’t right about the doll. What this woman was doing, I knew that it wasn’t right. He was more perceptive than I had anticipated. She stared back at me with fear in her eyes. She knew she’d been caught in whatever it was she was doing. She squeezed the hair tighter in her hand.
“You need to leave.” she said, standing up with hair still in her hand and all but running behind the small counter with the register on top. She poured the rest of the doll in the trash can.
“No.” I said, standing up. “No, what is that?”
Her back was to me, but I refused to leave. She was hiding something. She was hiding some terrible secret. I knew it.
“You need to leave.” she said again.
“Ma’am,” I said, moving closer. I spoke softer this time, trying not to scare her. “Please, what are you doing to these dolls?”
She took a deep breath in and tightened her grip on the dust pan she was still holding. I thought was going to tell me what she was hiding.
“You. Need. To. LEAVE!” she screamed, she spun around, and the last thing I saw was the gold dust pan rushing towards my head.
I blacked out.
What she did with me, I’ll never know. How that tiny, frail woman moved my body from the floor of the doll shop to an abandoned warehouse, is beyond my understanding. What she did to my body to keep me unconscious for so long remains a mystery.
I don’t know how long I’ve been asleep. I don’t know what day it is. I don’t know what time it is. I don’t know how long I’ve been here. And how I’ve managed to find cell phone service in this filthy place is an even bigger mystery. But my biggest question is why she has yet to kill me? Why am I still alive?
What I do know is how evil this woman is. I know her secret. I know that I scare her. I know that I’ll never see my family again. I know I’ll never escape. She knows that I’ll report her if I escape.
I sit here and watching her stitch, thread, and sew her “dolls.” This creature is sickening. It’s disgusting. It’s not human. I watch it work madly and caress its creations like its done some sort sick good deed for the world.
Why has she not killed me?! Why am I forced to watch her torture and dismantle people and sew them into some play thing for her sick enjoyment?! Why me?!
She’s dressing her toys. She won’t stop making noise. She’s humming. It sounds familiar; I know I’ve heard it before. Ah, it’s Comptine d'Un Autre Été. The melodies are simple, but over time they become more complex. The tone changes from love to hate to love, again. The song holds its own story. I kick an empty bottle. This startles her, and she turns around, surprised to see me awake.
"Comptine d'Un Autre Été... Rhyme of another summer." I say. I slowly lift myself upright. I’m exhausted.
She inhales deep and says, “How do you know?” Her voice is hardly audible.
“It’s a song,” I say, “for those with a soul. You’re despicable”
She turns around and goes to cabinet. She opens it and pulls out a syringe.
“Is that right?” she murmurs.
“You’re heartless,” I gasp, “and have no soul.”
“You know,” she mutters, and walks towards me, she won’t even look at me, “you’re much more beautiful when asleep.”
Before I can say a word, before I can even move she sticks the syringe in my neck and slowly presses the end down, injecting the serum directly into my vein. I go limp.
I knew I wouldn’t leave this place alive.