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One Guy Named Moe

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.

He recalled fondly the halcyon days of his youth, a sea of faces pressed in close, smudging the glass, as they all stared at him with unrequited love. Young people always think their time will never pass and he had certainly been no exception.

He could still recall when he’d first met Sam. He’d known immediately from the way Sam’s eyes had been irresistibly drawn to him that Sam would be the one taking him home and breaking him in.

After hearing the horror stories from other phones returned for repairs, of being trapped down the back of couches, accidentally dropped into large vats of hot liquid and chewed on by large, furry creatures full of teeth called Drop-it-drop-it-now-you-stupid-dog, he was deeply touched by the reverence with which Sam held him up, turning him in the light.

“Yes, I’ll take this one, thank you.”

And with that Mo’s fate had been sealed.

***

It had been a good life, riding around Manchester in Sam’s trouser pocket, going wherever the case of the day might take them. They worked well together and if, now and again, Sam chose to relieve his stress by absently fondling Mo’s buttons or by pressing him into the lining of his pocket so that Mo bumped up against Sam’s aerial it seemed like little enough to ask. They were happy together.

Until that was, their relationship was cut short by the accident.

***

Mo had watched helplessly from the middle of a clump of grass as Sam had staggered to his feet. It didn’t make any sense. What had happened to Sam’s clothes? To the Jeep? All right, so the Jeep was a bit of a small minded bigot who liked to make snarky remarks after one of Sam’s stress relief sessions, but still, where was he? And then the man in the strange boob shaped hat had arrived and Sam had ran off leaving Mo behind.

In fact, it was the man in the boob hat who’d found Mo, picked him up and taken him to the station. Mo’s station. He been so relieved until they’d stepped inside. He hadn’t understood why everything was different. And who the woman was sitting at the desk who looked like her hobby was crushing the aerial of any man stupid enough to get close to her desk.

Boob hat man had handed him to the woman, “For lost and found, Phyllis. Looks like some sort of fancy German tranny.”

***

Mo had been thrilled to see Sam turn up in Lost & Found, sure that he’d come to claim him. Only Sam didn’t even notice him on the shelf, wedged as he was between a soup tureen and a worn copy of Watership Down. He was too preoccupied arguing with a large blond-haired man wrapped in a camel hair coat.

Mo had spent a couple of torturous weeks on that shelf, being so close to Sam and yet remaining unseen, until the day the Coatman had shoved Sam so hard into the shelving that the whole thing had rattled and Mo had fallen off onto the floor at Sam’s feet. Even as Coatman had continued to yell, Sam had bent down to pick Mo up, running one fond hand over his face.

“Never thought I’d see you again.”

“You what?”

“Not you, Guv. This, it’s mine.”

“Christ Tyler, pay attention before I shove my loafer so far up your arse that—”

But whatever the Coatman was saying was lost as Sam stared at Mo.

***

Sam had tried for several minutes to shove Mo into his trousers pocket but there simply wasn’t room for him anymore. In the end, Sam had shoved him into the pocket of his leather jacket and as Sam had walked, Mo had swung gently against his hip, reassured by Sam’s presence.

With Sam sat at his desk, Mo had felt familiar fingers reach in to caress him, pressing him inward, before Sam’s fingers had been suddenly yanked out of the pocket as Coatman had marched past the desk, yelling at Sam to follow him.

As Coatman had continued to yell, Sam had nervously plucked Mo from his pocket and gripped him tightly between his fingers.

How was Mo to know that the trip outside was about to change his life?

***

He could still clearly remember the first moment he saw her, the sunlight glistening off her bronze roof. If only he’d had the ability to write a sonnet to her beauty but he knew it was beyond his programming. Sam had slipped into her passenger seat and had rested Mo against her upholstery, where the feel of her beneath him had almost overloaded Mo’s circuits.

***

Sam had taken to casually tossing Mo into the Cortina’s glove box whenever he’d leave the car. Once Mo had got over being dumbstruck just by being in her presence, they’d taken to conversing. He’d found out that her name was Tina, that she’d lived in Manchester since shortly after her manufacture and that the Coatman was called Gene and was her boyfriend. If this Gene had been a machine, Mo might have been jealous, but how could a mere human possibly understand a machine’s desires the way that Mo could?

***

When Sam had forgotten to take Mo with him, leaving him by accident on the kitchen table, it had struck Mo as strange. Sam had seemed distracted as of late, but while Sam couldn’t actually use Mo to contact anyone, his mere presence had seemed to comfort Sam.

That night Sam had come home reeking of Tina’s distinctive scent and Mo had felt the sting of jealousy for the first time.

The next evening, when Sam had left Mo in Tina’s glove box again before following Gene into the pub, Mo had seen his chance and made his move.

***

Mo had never seen it coming when Tina had broken up with him. He couldn’t even feel any consolation in Sam’s presence, as Sam now spent all of his time in the flat reading a large book and huddling under a blanket. Sam now kept Mo on a shelf alongside a photo of a little boy in a policeman’s helmet.

All Mo had left to him were his memories of that last humiliating conversation with Tina...

"I'm sorry, but it's over."

"Why?"

"It's me, not you, you've been great. Really.”

“Is this about the kids? Because I know they’re not mine but I think they like me and—”

“No, it’s not about the kids. Sometimes things just come to an end, feelings change and—”

"Tell me what's wrong. I love you. I can change, I know I can."

"Really, it's best that we leave it at that."

"The sex was good right? I really revved your motor."

"I was... faking fourth gear."

"What?"

"You're too small, all right? There I've said it. I didn't want to be cruel but you just rattle around in my glove box. You should go back to Sam. His glove box is a lot smaller than mine."

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