I am now a very old teddy bear, and this happened in the spring of 1918. There are not too many people left who can tell you about those days, but it was a different time. There were very few cars, and hearing or seeing a plane in those days was an occasion. I worked on the railroads in those days, I often stopped off at a local pub for a nickel beer and a sandwich after work. One evening I had a few too many beers and no food. I was drinking to celebrate a .50 cent pay raise, which was a lot of money in those days. Walking home I got turned around in the woods. I passed a brook where a little girl sat crying. I knew something was off about her right away. She had long black hair that hung over her eyes. Her cries seemed to echo in my head.
“Teddy, I’m so lost and cold. Will you please hold me and comfort me?”
Being a teddy bear this is our instinct naturally to comfort. Yet my beer filled brain told me to stay away, something about her wasn’t right.
“I have to head home,” I said. “I will telegram the Sheriff for you girl.”
“But I’m so COLD!” she yelled in a lower growl. She flipped her hair back to reveal hideous yellow eyes, she had sharp teeth and had been gutted.
I screamed and ran back towards the pub but tripped over a branch and sprained my paw. Nevertheless I could feel her chasing me. I knew if I felt a hand on me I would die from fright. After what seemed like ages, I saw the lights of the pub. I barged in out of breath and sweating.
“A little girl! A dead little girl is in the woods!” I babbled to Alan the Alligator, who was the bartender.
He calmed me down with a whiskey but had turned dead serious. It shocked me because he always had a smile on his face and was the best of friends.
“Did she have black hair?” he asked, pouring me another drink and one for himself.
“Yes, but she didn’t look normal at all.”
For humans and stuffed animals had coexisted for years, the rule is we love and expect to be loved.
“My God,” said Alan, “that’s no girl. That is little Sarah Jane. She was murdered by her parents in 1880.” Alan explained that her family thought she was a demon. She haunted the woods and if you approached her or tried to offer comfort or help either as a human or stuffed animal, you would die a terrible death.
That day is one hundred and one years gone. I still walk to Alan’s pub now, run by his great grandson. Alan himself has gotten soft in his old years. Living above his bar and watching old reruns of Matlock. I have never seen Sarah again. I have never seen the brook I saw her on that day either. However I never have forgotten her. Suppose she tries to approach me again? I’m too old to really run. Heck I can barely make it to the bathroom without my mobile scooter. And suppose she is still cold?