(Part 2 of the Toaster series… Please read Rage of a Toaster, in order to understand the chronology of events in this story)
The lights were switched off, the toaster was unplugged but he found it difficult to sleep. His left side was starting to make that mild, annoying rattling noise again. He tried not to think of what he had done, or what might happen when they found out.
Soon dark gave rise to dawn and it was the horrific screams of the youngest of the house that sent the whole house into a furore. Their favourite Captain America blue waffle maker was in the tub and by the looks of it, completely not functioning. Accusations were hotly flung, as was the word punishment and accountability. The children seemed genuinely distraught over losing the waffle maker. Mom said “Now you know that was expensive and a one time thing, we cannot bring that sort of thing again. Let’s go downstairs, think calmly while we have some good old fashioned toast.” Dad smiled at her sensible idea and each separated a kid, leaving the youngest to walk behind them terrified. The youngest had come up with a theory about how the toaster might be culpable because he was old and the waffle maker was new, and he may have been jealous. Dad ruffled his hair and said “Good imagination, kiddo. Why don’t you write something?” and the whole family laughed it off, feeling significantly lighter despite their recent loss.
The Toaster watched them carefully over days, that same joy was no longer felt either in him nor on their faces, he had been called “boring old toast”. Oh they thought he didn’t hear them, but he did. Every life had a price, he thought. His was 10.99, he was truly shocked when he found out when Mom and Dad were discussing how much a new waffle maker would cost and if they were any cost cutting measures they could take, to get the kids another one by Christmas. To be honest, his conscience niggled away at him so much he was being inattentive and ended up burning the toast many a time. He thought about his old friend, her sweet smile, her trusting nature, the fear in her eyes… No! No! He would not think about it. No matter how hard he tried though, he could still seeing her body filling with water, and the mewling sounds coming out of her, and finally… Dead silence. His own rattling problem got worse, his handle stopped working and then he heard the words he thought he would never hear in his lifetime, when Dad said “Looks like this one is going too, we might just have to give the toaster for service.” Service? Oh what fresh hell was that? He had never been to that place ever before. Whenever something was a little iffy with him, Mom usually fixed him up in a jiffy. He liked Mom and her gentle hands, fixing him. He didn’t want to go to some Repairs Man. Yuck!
But the following day despite his vehement protestation which Dad didn’t register of course, he was sent away. In a strange fit of doom and gloom, he thought it would be a fitting end for him. He resigned himself to his fate, as he was taken apart and lost consciousness. When he came to, he was looking at some stranger. A kindly, old face with twinkling eyes “There you go, you will be right as rain soon and you will be able to go home.” The Toaster was baffled. Did this man understand him? He tried saying something in return but all he heard was a squeak, so he shut up. “Rest now, you have given a lot of service. We are going to have to completely replace some parts but you will be good as new once we are done”. Again with the kindly smile. He felt lulled into a sense of calm and let the events take over.
One week later, he went home to an over joyed family who were happy to have their Toaster back, it turns out they did miss him, value him. Only differently from the waffle maker. This time, when the new but slightly used waffle maker came home, he would make sure to be welcoming. His old friend deserved at least that, he thought as he popped and crackled joyfully, happy to be serving his family once again.