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The toymaker stitched his face before anything else. “It’s easier this way,” she says. “The toy can have some say how she or he turns out, so I get fewer complaints from the finished beasties.”

In the corner a one-eyed stuffie grumbled about the size of his belly. “Doesn’t matter how little I eat, she’s stuffed me too full!”

“See?” she asks me, and turns back to her monster-in-progress.

“I’m the Spaghetti Yeti!” the monster says, as soon as she’s finished sewing the two misshapen teeth onto his mouth.

“Pleased to meet you,” she says to the Spaghetti Yeti, and they lower their voices, discussing important life decisions like fabric selection and how many arms he would like to have.

“Wool, three, and I’d like to belong to a little boy named Clifford,” he says.

“Can you make all that happen?” I ask the toymaker.

“Oh, it’s not so hard,” she says with a wink. “I was a fairy godmother before I retired, and I conveniently forgot to turn in my wand. Happens more often than you’d think.”

“Then why not use it to fix ME!” grumbled the one-eyed stuffie with the belly.

The toymaker rolled her eyes. “Terrible manners, just terrible.”

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