Kid Tells Frenetic Stories for Two Straight Hours
All the enemies join She-Ra in fighting skeletons; parents try to follow along
The story comes fast and furious—a complex hero’s journey involving every protagonist and villain from each of Kina’s favorite tales: She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, the Octonauts, Princess Mononoke, Frozen, and Moana. In some versions of this story, the villain from one universe will fight the hero of another, but in today’s saga, all of the villains rallied behind She-Ra to subdue an army of skeletons. I can recall few details from the melee this morning—other than everybody eating pizza at the end—but it was an exhilarating (if exhausting) start to the day. Science fiction battle scenes are now Kina’s preferred genre; the storytelling years have begun.
I tell Kina long serial bedtime stories, making up the plot as I go—which is much, much harder than I expected it to be in my early fantasies of parenthood. I try to put together a reasonably cohesive episodic arc each night, but things eventually start to go sideways, so I tack on a cliffhanger and draw to a close. When she demands more, I tell her that I have nothing left and will need to dream about the next part of the story; this normally convinces her to let me leave the room, so that I can get on with the dream. Our latest dream serial revolves around Kitty Moon Fairy and her cohort of space thieves, who explore the universe in their rocket ship, rescuing squids. In the last five days, they have:
Flown perilously close to the sun
Visited Andromeda for a friend’s birthday
Journeyed to the fictional planet of Etherea, where She-Ra treats them to a feast
Had trouble finding the moon, which, as it turns out, does not stand still
Took a bath after flying through the stinky clouds of Venus
This is a much less cohesive narrative than the now-legendary Nicole Kidman and Paddington Bear series, but Kina will not let this story go, and so I now rely on her to pitch me plot points to run with. As the story unfolds, Kina periodically sits upright in bed and introduces a dramatic twist in the voice of Kitty Moon Fairy, which I then have to follow. I imagine that she’ll be taking over the bedtime story entirely within the next week or so, which will be great, because I am running out of space fiction.
Our little Scheherazade is gradually dozing off as I write this. I wish her sweet dreams, of skeletons and pizza and Mercury. Somewhere in her mind, tomorrow’s hero is taking shape. I’ll meet her in the morning.