One pair of legs bounced up and down, they belonged to a small girl upholstered in polka dots. The chair tried to bounce up and down too on his stubby legs. The chair wished he too had a festive upholstery to catch her attention. But the girl turned away as the bigger people said something, her name maybe, as they stomped out of the room.
The chair sighed and his stuffing un-fluffed. Then the girl turned back. She snuck a grin like she was sharing a secret with him.
“Want to hear a story?” She said.
The chair was flabbergasted. No one had ever talked to him before. He’d gotten used to the idea that the closest he could ever be to the people were those few times they chose to seek rest on his strong back.
“You can hear me?” The chair thought as hard as he could, trying to project it from every seam.
“Quietly, like mouses,” the girl muttered, her eyes darting to the doorway. The chair stopped his loud thoughts, pulling his fabric together closely. After a second she relaxed.
“This is our story, you’ll like it. Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who lived in a castle in the bluest part of the sky,” she began, her face dimpling. “She only ate jellybeans and was a doctor who cured brain cancers. A troll married her mom and his name was Hank and he ate a lot and laughed too much at things that weren’t funny. One day they flew down into the city that was made of whalebones and pine trees and the beautiful princess found a best friend. She loved him and named him Horatio. Hank said to leave Horatio because a best friend has to at least talk but he doesn’t know anything. The princess vowed to be with Horatio forever because she was brave and daring and everyone loved her. The end.”
The chair swelled, like he was a loveseat. No, a reclining sofa. This person loved him. She named him. Horatio. It was a beautiful name. The chair started crying, softly, choking it back into his springs so his seat wouldn’t get wet and become uncomfortable.
“Happily ever after, right Horatio?” The girl said, digging into her pocket and pulling out a turtle. She kissed it on its scaly head.
The chair felt like its seat had been kicked out. He had been such a fool. A turtle had legs that actually moved. Anyone would love that. He was only good for the junkyard, or kindling if he was lucky – at least kindling was useful for a few minutes.
His thoughts were interrupted by the unexpected weight of a small body melting into his.
“Now you tell one,” the girl demanded.
The chair wrapped her in his protective arms and told her everything.
Anne Cunningham is a writer of fiction and game content living in southern California. I cannot wait to record this story for my Story Chairs project.