They had bound Bear up in rough cords, and tossed his shining rapier to the smaller gobs, who shrieked and squabbled as they fought over it.

“This one…any good to eat?” The largest gob, almost the girl’s size, hungrily licked his lips as he gazed at Bear. “Lot of fight…usually…lot of meat.”

“Come off it,” the smaller gob before him said, the one who had called out orders during the ambush. “He’s all fluff and stitchings. Felt it when I got a good blow on him I did. No good for eating. Only good as a slave.”

The gobs poked and prodded at Bear, during which he maintained a dignified silence, much as he had during all those years in the playroom. The girl was eventually moved to indignation, despite her own bindings. “You leave him alone!”

“Oh, so the other morsel wants a say, do it?” The head gob said, loping toward the girl. “It thinks we’s being too rough on the nasty stitchfluff what spilled our blood?”

The large gob affixed its unlean and hungry look upon the girl. “This one…good for eating? Not all stitchyfluffy?”

The girl gave as fierce a grimace as she was able, though had her mother been there to see the effect would have struck her as more like a twelve-year-old pouting than anything. “I’m not for eating either,” she said. “Just as full of fluff as Bear.”

“That is correct,” Bear said even as the other gobs danced and taunted and cackled madly around him. “She and I are as brother and sister.”

“She look all meaty…maybe not ready for eating yet,” the large gob said, fingering his great and knobby club. “Few year as slave…that do it.”

“I’m a stuffed doll with a porcelain skin,” the girl said, hoping that desperation wasn’t creeping into her voice. “If you try to eat me you’ll have a mouthful of cuts and a bellyful of stuffing.”

The head gob sniffed at the girl. “Me nose says otherwise,” he growled.

Inspired by this image.

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