About a week after we'd been standing next to each other, visiting awkwardly when no one was in the room, something must have prodded him to speak up.
He shot me an inquisitive look, then flashed a dimpled smile when he realized I was teasing him.
Wow, he has a great smile! I found myself thinking.
It's funny. After that talk, all the tension between us seemed to disappear. We started relaxing around each other and not treating every conversation like it was the beginning of a life-long love story. Within the last few weeks, we've really gotten to know each other. I don't know if I'll ever think of Robby romantically, but if nothing else, I've made a great friend.
Another interesting turn in this story happened about two weeks ago. Beast'sbelle brought home another Prince doll from "Beauty and the Beast". He was as different from Robby as the sun is from the moon.
Ben, as he's called, is ruggedly handsome, but rather aloof. It may just be nerves, but when you first meet him, he's very cold. How do I know this? Because Beast'sbelle had this ridiculous idea to take a bunch of posed pictures with me and Robby and me and Ben. No doubt she's trying to decide which of us makes a better couple. I've never been so humiliated in all my life...especially since she made me hold hands with them.
"Give him the benefit of the doubt, Belle. He may just not know how to relate to others, or he may be shy." He hesitated, but I could tell he wanted to say more.
"What is it?" I asked him.
He looked at his feet. "You may not realize it Belle, but you're...you're very beautiful."
I laughed out loud. I couldn't help it. Me...beautiful? I was just me, your run-of-the mill Disney Store Belle doll. Nothing special. My laughter died in my throat when I saw Robby's face, though. He wasn't laughing.
"You really felt that way?" I asked him, unable to believe it.
He nodded. "So, maybe...maybe Ben is suffering from the same problem."
I snorted. "Yeah, right. I think your imagination has run away with you a little bit on that one. He's probably just a cranky guy that doesn't like socializing."
Robby shrugged. "Believe what you want. I've to to go." With that, he started climbing down the side of the dresser. He was going to meet up with some of the Ken dolls that belonged to Beast'sbelle's daughters for some shelf climbing. Just before he left, he poked his head back up over the dresser. "You know, maybe he just needs a friend."
So that pretty much brings you up to speed, except for last night's news. When Eugene and Rapunzel returned from their nightly walk last night, Rapunzel was absolutely glowing. It didn't take long to find out why.
Rapunzel came up to me, hugged me tightly, and whispered, "Eugene asked me to marry him, and I said yes!!"
"Next Monday, the 21st."
"Yikes! That doesn't give us much time to plan," I exclaimed.
"What exactly do we have to plan?" Rapunzel pointed out. "We want a simple wedding...not too frilly. We're not going to send out invitations or serve food or anything."
"Do you have a dress yet?"
Rapunzel shook her head. "I figured I'd just wear this one."
"You can't wear that one!" I protested. "You have to have a white dress for your wedding. And I have the perfect one in mind. Mine!!"
"Yours?" Rapunzel asked, a confused expression on her face.
I laughed. "Beast'sbelle got a whole wardrobe set for me at the Disney Store, and there was a wedding dress included. I'd love it if you'd wear it for your wedding...especially since I don't see any wedding bells in my immediate future."
Rapunzel smiled coyly at me. "You sure your wedding is that far off? Especially now that you have two guys to choose from?"
I ducked my head. "There will be no wedding for me any time soon, no matter what Beast'sbelle is hoping," I said firmly. "Especially since one of my choices is about as friendly as a porcupine and the other is too much of my pal to be anything more."
"I was just teasing you," Rapunzel said gently. "Don't feel like you have to rush into anything. You have plenty of time."
"You just said we never know how much time we have together as dolls," I teased back. "And now I have plenty of time? Make up your mind!"
Rapunzel started to explain herself, but I held up a hand. "I know what you meant. I'm just being a tease. Now, come on!" I continued, grabbing her by the hand. "Let's go look at your dress!"