Long ago in my hometown lived a toymaker. He was the apple of every child's eye and he had a certain craftiness in toy making. Every Christmas, parents would bombard his store purchasing anything and everything they could get their hands on. Wilbur Taliferro would have definitely been considered the icon of quaint little Harvington, for no child in Harvington did not enjoy his miraculous toys. All except for one child…me. The whole idea, in fact, bored me. I smirked at the children who spent countless hours fogging up the window of "Taliferro Toy Shoppe". I, of course, spent my time much more wisely.
Every day after school, I would not follow the usual crowd to his busy shop. I would always insist upon the library. It was much more peaceful there and did not smell of the musty closet at my grandmother's house. Though, on one particular day, my friend Jacob insisted upon me following him to Taliferro's.
"Aww come on Tim! It will be loads of fun! Taliferro has a new one out and they say it's a big hit! You have to come! You must!"
So, reluctantly, I accepted. We arrived at the brightly colored and whimsically designed store much sooner than I had hoped. The usual mass of kids, young and old, crowded around the window murmuring excitedly.
"AH! Look Sarah that is the one I want!"
"Aw man…I don't have enough..."
Jacob smiled at me and I simply rolled my eyes.
"Come and see," he gestured. And as he opened the door, a bell sounded and I stepped inside.
The interior of "Taliferro Toy Shoppe" was, in fact, very similar to the exterior. Everything was brightly colored and even the ceiling had odd designs all over it. I had the feeling I was in a madman's house…and I didn't like it. The small isles were painted bright red and the shelves bright yellow. Every kind of toy imaginable occupied every nook and cranny. Toys like dolls, airplanes, yoyos, teddy bears, robots, puzzles, action figures, play swords, trains, and even some I didn't even recognize.
I frowned at what I saw: overly priced junk. How stupid all of them were…wasting every penny that came their way on material that they would not play with. I turned to inquire to Jacob that I was ready to leave. But Jacob was not there, in his place stood a tall old man in a horrid plum suit.
"Good evening sir! Would you care for a mint?" The man held out a hand revealing a wrapped peppermint.
"No thank you," I said, "I do not much care for peppermint." The man simply smiled and put the candy back into his pocket.
"Please forgive me! How rude I am indeed. I have yet to introduce myself! I am Wilbur T-"
"Taliferro….I know." I interrupted.
"Well then that saves a lot of trouble now doesn't it?" the old man beamed at me. I did not return this annoyingly large grin. "Anyways, welcome to my shop! Has anything caught your eye?"
"Actually I was just leaving." I replied. I then proceeded to walk past him but he caught me.
"Wait. Watch this…" he whispered. "ATTENTION EVERYONE!" he said aloud raising his arms. The room instantly became silent. "The time has come to reveal my newest creation! I am sure this one will be loved by all! It is the invention I am most proud of. However," an unnaturally large smile grew on his old face, "there is only one in stock."
Voices of shock and confusion broke out among all of the children. Some even cried out in anger. Why was the toymaker doing this? If he could make so many toys, then surely he could do the same to this one.
"I will give this one away for free to someone in here, someone who deserves it." He looked down at me. "You. Do you accept my gift?"
Every pair of eyes was on me. I opened my mouth to decline but he interjected.
"SUPERB!" he bellowed. And as he clapped his hands together he shouted, "Bring it in!" Everyone squealed with excitement as a large object was wheeled in on a cart from the back room. A red cloth covered the oddly shaped figure and slowly came to a stop in front of me. The toymaker spoke once more,
"I have put every ounce of creativity I possess in my being to create this toy. Countless and tireless hours have been put into it…and I hope you will like it…" I do admit that the suspense was torturing even me. And finally, as he gave me the signal, I ripped off the cloth.