Play Date

Holding a doll in one hand and moving it’s legs with her other, Annie said, “Okay, so I’ll be the princess.” She walked her doll up the side of the tower that made up one of the four corners of the play castle. The doll was obviously a human female. It had pearly white skin, and a stick thin figure with all the right areas accentuated. And it was the only doll in the toy bin that resembled a quintessential human.

“I am the princess, so I need to stay up here in the tower and wait for the prince. And the prince needs to come and rescue me.” Annie exclaimed, holding the doll on top of the tower.

“And I am the prince?” Nancy asked.

“Uh huh. You need to come and rescue me.” Annie looked down at the doll in her chunky little hands. She struggled to dress the doll and was about halfway through tugging a sparkling little pink dress over it.

“But why me?” Nancy murmured. “I wanna be the princess.”

Still struggling with the dress, Annie stared at Nancy and argued. “No you can’t be the princess. Someone has to rescue the princess, and we can’t both be princesses.” Annie put down the doll, dressed in a sparkling pink dress. “I’m the only princess here.”

“Why can’t I be the princess?” Nancy sobbed.

“Because I’m a girl.” Annie asserted.

“I’m a girl too.” Nancy quipped.

“But you are both. You have boy and girl parts. And I can’t be the prince because I don’t have boy parts.”

“Princes are no fun. Princesses are pretty and they get to wear pretty dresses. I wanna be pretty.” Nancy sniffled.

“But if we are both princesses, then who will come and rescue us?”

“Oh, I have an idea.” Nancy jerked up from the floor and ran across the room to the toy bin. “Why don’t we have a tea party instead? We can be two princesses in the tower drinking tea and saying bad things about boys.”

Hearing the suggestion, Annie’s eyes widened, forgetting all about their spat from just a few seconds before. “Yeah. Okay. A tea party, like our mommies. And talk about boys like they talk about our daddies.” She joined Nancy in digging through the bottomless toy bin.

“We need some teacups.” Nancy said as they rummaged. “And a teapot for the tea.”

They had nearly found a complete tea set when over the clatter of the toys in the bin, Nancy heard the faint and familiar voice of her father. “Time to go Nancy.” Nancy heard her father calling from downstairs.

***

“So how was your day, sweetie?” Nancy’s father asked.

“It was cut short.” Nancy pouted. “Annie is nice. We were going to have a tea party, but then you came and ended our fun.”

Nancy’s father chuckled he opened the passenger door to the parked hovercraft. “You and Annie can have your tea party tomorrow.”

The suckers on Nancy’s feet made a pop as she leaped into the backseat. “Can’t wait.”

“And spending time with this human child, have you decided upon your gender yet.” Nancy’s father asked as the hovercraft cushions rose, and the hovercraft slid down the driveway into the marshes. “The Becoming Ceremony is next month.”

“We’ll see how it goes with my play date with Billy next week.” Nancy said looking out at the giant dragonflies dancing over the gaseous marshes.

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