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Jayben Treat



“One!” Mrs. C said distinctly as she gripped the collar. “Two!” she said with a convincing look into Jayben’s eyes, “and … Three!!!” she said quickly.

Exactly as planned, Jayben shoved his arm toward the elbow of the cape. Yet, no sooner had Mrs. C started to pull on the collar when she dropped the cloth in a gasp of horror and shook her hands as though receiving an electric shock.

“Lord-O-Mercy!” she gasped, “the robe’s possessed!”

Jayben stopped pulling on the sleeve of the cape and looked at his reflection in the mirror. Sure enough the cape took on a life of its own. It rippled about his body in great waves of flutter and at times swelled the way a bird’s feathers plump after a bath. The sleeves dropped to below his knees before rising above his elbows. The hem dropped to the floor and formed a black puddle of fabric then flitted back up to his belt giving the brief appearance of a waist coat.  The hemline lowered like a roman shade and gathered neatly about Jayben’s ankles. So too, his sleeves grew an extra three inches and rested nicely about his wrists.

Finally, the capricious movement of the enchanted cloth settled. The room was quiet as the two stunned observers waited for something else magical to happen.

“Well! Will you look at that?” Mrs. C finally marveled. “It’s fixed!”

“Yes Ma’am!” Jayben giggled in relief. “I keep forgetting that almost everything at school is enchanted! I guess the cape’s no exception!”

“Well, it had me worried there for a minute,” she chuckled. “Why that robe of yours nearly crawled off ya back and ran to school by itself!”

A very relieved Mrs. C leaned over and wrapped her thick arms tenderly about his shoulders in a warm hug. “I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to the idea of you using magic dear; it does seem the work of the devil to me. Nevertheless, I love ya just the same.”

“I love you too Mrs. C,” Jayben said squeezing her neck tightly. “I’m gonna miss you.”

“I know you will dear,” Mrs. C smiled as she slowly rose upright and gently clasped his shoulders, “Me too!”

The maid wiped back a small tear and regained her composure by looking about the tidy room. She took a deep breath and turned her attention back to the boy.

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2007, 2008, 2009, 2010,  by R.L. Mesler
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