Last night, we all gathered around to welcome her as Mama looked on. Hailey took an immediate shine to Charlie, although they're about as different as night and day. Then again, I guess you could say the same about Maggie and me, and we've been great friends for as long as I can remember! :) Mama said she's still doing research, but she thinks that Charlie may even be our cousin (sister to Katie and Lucy).
And that brings me to some other news, not altogether very pleasant. After the other dolls had settled down for bed, Mama took Maggie and I to the other room. I could tell by the look on her face that something serious was on her mind.
"I just wanted to let you girls know about some changes that are going to be happening in the next few weeks," she explained. She paused for a moment, as if she was searching for the right way to begin. "You girls know that I've been having a hard time taking care of everyone," she started.
My heart sunk. I knew what this meant. She's going to tell us who she's getting rid of, I thought to myself. I glanced over at Maggie and saw from her expression that she also knew what was coming.
"It's been a hard decision, but I've decided to pass a few dolls on," Mama continued.
We both waited for the blow.
"At this point, it's going to be Claire, Emily and Zaara that go," she finally said.
I had mixed feelings at this announcement. My first thought was, Yay! She's keeping me and my sisters and Maggie! Then I realized that both of my little sisters would be losing their best friends. For Hailey, this would be the second time she'd lost a friend. I wondered how she'd handle it. And poor Emma would be sad that Mama's Bollywood doll was leaving us.
"There are two others that will be playing a different role in the house," Mama continued.
Maggie and I exchanged a look. What did Mama mean?
Mama took a deep breath. "I've decided that Ella and Lucy are going to be part of Felicity's history now. Ella will now be Elizabeth Cole, Felicity's best friend, and Lucy will be Nan Merriman, Felicity's little sister."
I was numb with shock. My sister and my little cousin....she was breaking up our family?
Mama took my hand. "Let me explain, Tess," she urged me. "I wanted to keep my active dolls down to 6. You and Maggie were givens, since you have a blog. You're both so special to me, too. Emma is staying, of course, and Katie is my traveling doll, so I need her to stay active. That only left me two more spots. Charlie will have one of them, and I wanted Hailey to have the other."
She eyed Maggie, hoping for some support. I didn't look for myself, but I doubt she found any support in Maggie's face. I'm sure my friend was ready to spit nails!
"The reason I decided to make Ella historical," Mama continued, "is that I wasn't sure how she would do being without Emily after just getting her back again."
"An excellent question," Maggie inserted tersely.
Mama ignored her. "Even if I kept her active, she would have no one her age. I think that would make Emily's loss even harder. But as Elizabeth (which is the name she originally came with, by the way), she has Felicity's friendship, and the ability to go back into Felicity's time."
I gave her a strange look. "Go back into her time? What do you mean?"
Mama smiled. "That's why Felicity doesn't do much with you girls...she's busy in her own time. I don't know if it's a time warp, or what, but she is back in her own time, even as she's standing beside my curio. That's how it works...sorry I can't give you any more details. When Ella...now Elizabeth, holds Felicity's hand, she'll get to go, too."
"But everyone knows that Elizabeth Cole has blond hair and blue eyes!" Maggie blurted out. "No one will be fooled for a minute."
"Ah, but my Felicity is pre-Mattel, back when Elizabeth had brown hair and brown eyes. She'll fit right in, don't worry," Mama assured us.
"And Lucy?" I whispered. "She'll already be a different person by the time Katie gets home this week. She's been waiting so long for Katie to get home, and now..."
Mama sighed. "That was a hard decision, too. But Lucy will still get to see Katie and talk to her still. And now, when Katie travels, Lucy won't have to be alone anymore. She'll have Felicity watching out for her. And she'll get to go back in time, too!"
"What about Charlie?" Maggie interjected. "Charlie could have taken care of her, too!"
Mama sighed again. "Look girls, I know this isn't just cut and dry, but I did the best I could. At least this way Lucy and Ella are still here! And there may be a time when they return as their former selves. But, like I said, for now I'm trying to limit active dolls to 6, and this was the best way I could do it."
We were all quiet for a while. "Do they know?" I finally asked.
Mama nodded. "I thought it only right to prepare them before I told everyone else. Emma, Hailey and Charlie still don't know anything about it. I wanted to tell you two first."
"How did they take the news?" Maggie asked sarcastically.
Mama looked hurt. "They're coping as well as can be expected. Emily is looking forward to meeting new people and actually getting played with, but she'll miss Ella. Claire was pretty quiet about it. Zaara took everything in stride. Ella and Lucy were a bit down at first, but I think they're getting excited about being historical."
Another awkward pause settled over us, until Mama broke it. "I know this is going to be hard and take some getting used to," she soothed. "But it's the best I can do. Feel free to come talk to me about things any time."
"Are we going to be next to go?" Maggie glowered. She was seething.
"No," Mama said firmly. "That's another reason I'm making our family group smaller. From here on out, I'll be very cautious about adding family members until I'm sure they are a good fit. I want to avoid this scenario as much as possible."
We didn't say much else. What else could we say? Our world was crumbling around us.
That night, when I went back to our room, Ella and Hailey were waiting up for me. Ella took one look at me and realized that I knew. We shared the news with Hailey and had a quiet cry together. It was our last night as official sisters. Ella was going to start her role as Elizabeth Cole in the morning.
That's about all I can handle for this morning. I'll write more as more changes take place. Mama said it would be at least a week or two before anyone left. Oh, and sorry about the lack of pics, but I figured pics of Maggie and I sitting around gloomily talking to Mama wouldn't add much to the post. :}