The owner of the box had grown up and moved away, outgrowing her childhood like a shoe. She had new adventures to pursue, but the toy box still held hope that one day she would return.
At night when the house was still, the toys would rearrange themselves because it was uncomfortable to stay still for decades on end. There was a struggle sometimes to see which toy would place itself on the top in an advantageous position to be adored come the first crack of light.
"I know she liked us best," said the little toy horses, "she called us Pony Pony and Sugar and she always carried us with her in her little pocket."
"No, no," said Dancing Monkey music box. "She loved me most, I would play my little song for her each night before she went to bed and in the morning to wake her up."
"You must be kidding! I was her favorite," said Molly the doll. "I even looked like her with my light brown braids, green eyes and red-rimmed glasses." Molly then boasted, "She even took me on trips. I flew first class to San Diego, now that was a trip!"
The set of colored markers snapped its case open at that remark. "You have to be kidding, I went on that trip too, she put you in the seat pouch when she wanted to draw with me. We went through sheet after sheet of paper with her drawings. I remember when she drew the picture of herself flying over a city on the back of a beautiful bird."
"Oh, please," complained Red Storybook, "I should be on top, I taught her how to read. She loved to be read to and then to read me out loud."
There was Blue Bear-ry at the bottom of the pile, he was always a little grumpy and sad and never tried to move around. "If she loved you all so much, why hasn't she come to play with us, why hasn't she ever looked for us?"
All the toys went still, there was no reason. It made no sense to them at all. If she loved them once surely she must love them now, love doesn't just go away, and yet, and yet ... in the attic, in the corner, was a toy box.