Story: The Sociable Sleeve – 11/08/19

Most sleeves were used for surreptitious snot wiping. But not this Sleeve! He wished to be conversant all the time, wherever he might be! He’d talk and talk, to whoever was within his realm, he would chat, chat for hours, until he felt his words were finished, and that to be silent the time was rightly so. When his wearer, dear Amelia, moved her hand to press a section on her smart phone, clever, cheeky Sleeve would carry his weight upon another button, to cause a video time call! And this happened frequently, how embarrassed Amelia felt, for she had to explain the calls to her friends and family, her breath was often now misused, not well spent at all.

“Naughty Sleeve!” she would chide him. “Naughty you are, indeed.” With irritation, she pulled Sleeve upward her arm, and left him perched around her bicep, there was no freedom for him, nowhere to run. He simply had to remain, inanimate, unable to commence a sneaky call, where he could have conversed with whoever might answer, and now, it was as though he was facing a brick wall.

Sleeve felt deflated with his disuse, he felt utterly saddened, mourning his former life, he no longer felt alive. Why was Amelia so cruel, when freedom she could have continued to allow him, to better his grasp of English and conversational skills, too? For, Sleeve was not a native English speaker, he had grown up in the land of One Another, where sleeves and pant legs, and collars could hide, in plain sight and daylight their wearers and owners were not there to of their lives decide. They could do as they wished – for example, one pant leg loved to fish – and pursue all their talents and passions would they, they could do it for hours, upon years, upon days. No intervention like Amelia’s was allowed, and Sociable Sleeve was able to do as he well pleased within this country and his town.

There had come a point in Sleeve’s earlier years where his parents unfortunately decided to separate, he was mournful, he was thunderous, he felt the anger between his eyes. An overwhelming pressure within, a headache growing deeper and more paining still, he had lost his familial structure, and now, broken and shattered among the community they would be seen.

“Darling, we have to tell you something,” his father said carefully. “Your mother and I, and you, will be leaving this land of One Another, to pursue new dreams. Your mother and I have separate dreams, and you need to choose who you will live with for the majority of time.” A tear escaped Sleeve’s eye, this was a great disaster, or so it seemed. He could not readily choose between one or the other, so he threw himself upon the sofa and began to cry, with his tears rapidly falling, and nose dripping then streaming, he wiped himself clean with a section of his pressed and ironed styling. He decided to make it on his own upon Mother Earth, a land far, far away, and when he had successfully procured a kind owner and built a life with them, return to his parents part time would he, there he would partially stay.

So upon arriving to Earth, he had of course found Amelia, who had presented herself as an initially pretty little picture. Full of kindness and warmth, but wasn’t this truly a farce, she simply wanted Sleeve to wear and to her school friends show off. For Sleeve was beautiful, intricate, sewn with golden thread. She didn’t realise she’d look odd with only one sleeve on, rather than two instead. Some people failed to think.

And now that Sleeve is wrapped around her upper arm, now useless, immobile, of nothing positive here could he learn, in this position he was of inaction, a negative, a contraction, sadness welled around his eyes as he soaked in the reality of no more forced or welcomed interactions. Poor Sleeve, he did not know what do. Poor Sleeve, how can we assist him, what shall will we do? We simply must wait until Amelia becomes cold again, and pulls him back down her arm, to be used again, as a warmth provider or as a nose rag factor, unappreciated for his conversational charm. Although chat to himself would he, this charming Sociable Sleeve, until a fresh opportunity arises, to connect with a video through Amelia’s devices. He awaited the chance for this with excitement and baited breath.

One day to the right individual, the right sleeve, he would connect. He would find his match through an accidental connection, shared lifetimes forged with the beauty of their breaths. His perfect sleeve mate, a soul match, a shared, startled then amazed moment, the reflected look in their eyes would scream of internal soul knowledge, changing their worlds as they’d currently known them.

© 2019 Alice Well Art, Lauren M. Hancock, also known as Alice Well. All rights reserved.

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