Dawn crept into the kitchen of a small house by the sea in New Zealand. The toaster sighed and watched The Man wander about the room. But what was this? Something wasn't right. Something wasn't quite as it had been the day before. It was then that the toaster realised what was different - The Man was filling a glass jug with water. A glass jug from a brand-spanking-new coffee machine that was sitting quietly on the counter next to the toaster, humming to itself in barely concealed excitement.
"Good morning!" The toaster exclaimed. "I didn't realise that you were there! He must have snuck you in when I was switched off yesterday."
The coffee machine gurgled as happily as it could, considering it was yet to be filled with water. "Yes! I'm SN.52651. How wonderful to meet you!"
The Man approached, full jug in hand, and tipped the water into the reservoir. The coffee machine gurgled even louder.
"Set for strong, I see." The coffee pot exclaimed. "I was wondering what the setting would be. I do love someone who likes their coffee strong." The coffee pot sighed happily and began to warm up, the electricity coursing through its lead and into the element within. "So, is he a nice man? Is he good to his appliances?"
"Well, yes." The toaster paused, then continued somewhat hesitantly. "He is. Never over-uses us. Always cleans us out. Very impressive really. The last tenant was a nightmare, so this one is a dream in comparison."
"Oh. He hasn't always lived here then?"
"Well, no. He's just been using the furnishings from the let. In fact, you're the first new appliance that he's bought."
"Didn't he have a coffee machine before?"
"Erm...well, yes. There was one here." The toaster sounded slightly wary. "It broke."
"Oh, dear! How dreadful! What happened to it? Did it burn out? Did the pot crack?" The coffee machine was horrified that one of its fellow machines had failed in some way for its owner. Indications of vulnerability were not part of the deal.
"Oh, look! A visitor!" The toaster said, cutting off any enquiry as to the fate of the coffee machine's predecessor.
A young, dark haired youth bounded into the room and threw himself at The Man.
The toaster sighed. "I call this one Bouncy Boy."
"Oh! He looks nice and enthusiastic!" The coffee machine gurgled louder and began to steam away as the water began to boil.
Bouncy Boy was draped around The Man's neck and, to the coffee machine's surprise, appeared to be nibbling his neck. "What is he doing? Is he always like this?"
"Well, yes." The toaster groaned. "You'll get used to it, they're always like this. Well, except when they have an argument."
The Man and the Bouncy Boy were bantering. The coffee pot was aware that it had something to do with Chai Tea and Earl Grey. "He drinks tea? How dreadful!"
"Well, he does sometimes drink coffee." The toaster sounded a little evasive.
The coffee machine watched as Bouncy Boy teased and petted The Man. "He's fun! Oh, look, The Man is smiling! They're good friends I see."
"Oh, yes. They are very good friends. Bouncy Boy is indeed very enthusiastic. Sometimes a little too enthusiastic. I don't want to bitch or anything, but you have to watch him." The toaster sniffed dismissively. "Appearances can be deceiving, you know."
"Oh, you don't like him then?" The coffee machine was intrigued. "Why not?"
The toaster muttered and coughed. "Oh, you know. He just annoys me."
The coffee machine pondered this comment. "Well, I like him. He seems very nice. So there!"
Bouncy boy suddenly moved to sit on the kitchen table and continued to laugh and tease The Man. They were talking about swords and playing some sort of game. The coffee machine was listened with interest. Suddenly The Man pulled Bouncy Boy onto his lap and began stroking his face and nuzzling his cheek.
"Good heavens! What are they doing?" The coffee machine was getting more horrified by the minute. The Man was now pressing his mouth against that of Bouncy Boy and they were twisting against each other.
"That's called kissing, I do believe. They do that an awful lot." The toaster was trying to sound bored, although it could feel its elements begin to heat up as it watched the two men grapple with each other.
The coffee machine and the toaster stared as The Man and Bouncy Boy continued to fondle each other.
"Good grief! Is that normal?" The coffee machine was agog. The men had now shifted so that Bouncy Boy was perched on the edge of the table, moaning and wiggling, and The Man was on his knees in front of him, slowly pulling down Bouncy Boy's jogging bottoms. "Honestly, if I had thought I would be forced to witness this sort of behaviour, I would have suggested that SN.CM52648 take this post!"
"I told you he wasn't very nice. This is all Bouncy Boy's fault. The Man is perfectly respectable when Bouncy Boy isn't around! Then he shows up and suddenly the two of them are either rolling around the room making a dreadful noise or else Bouncy Boy is throwing things around acting like a brat!" The toaster sniffed in disgust.
The coffee machine dragged its attention away from the shenanigans at the table. "Throwing what things around?"
The toaster snorted in triumph. "You want to know what happened to your predecessor?"
"Well, yes. You said it broke. Wasn't that what happened?" The coffee machine sounded concerned.
"Yes, it broke alright. Or more to the point, when the two of them were having a fight a couple of days ago, Bouncy Boy picked the coffee machine up and threw it at The Man!"
The coffee machine gasped in horror. "No! Oh, heavens above!" They were silent for a brief moment then the coffee machine continued. "Well, appearances can indeed be deceiving. He looked so nice. So friendly. So perky. I tell you what, though, If he tries anything with me, I'm going to bloody well scald him!"
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