I found the box in the attic, occupying a shaft of gray light angling through a time-crusted window. A blanket of dust had gathered to keep it warm. A brush of my hand peeled back the blanket to reveal a gargoyle’s face in mother-of-pearl. A ratchet lever protruded from the side, as on a jack-in-the-box. I cranked it, slowly, expecting corrosion to have frozen the mechanism. The arm turned, gathering tension. I released it, and tinkling notes rose from the box, echoed from a deep place, discordant, unsettling. And with them spewed a breath of darkness I could not outrun.
She was unaware of my existence even though I attended every performance and sent roses to her dressing room, together with engraved invitations to candlelit suppers at exclusive restaurants. All to no avail. She never graced me with her presence and barely glanced my way when she left the theatre with the latest in her long line of inamoratos. I was merely an infatuated stage-door Johnny. Just another face in the crowd.
But now, she dances for me alone and at my bidding. She cannot refuse.
And her pirouettes are a thing of beauty each time I open the music box.
Last Edit: Jun 9, 2021 13:16:13 GMT -6 by FoxxGlove
Squatter’s Rites 3 Candice and I spent our anniversary in the usual fashion. A morning meal at Beverly’s Saloon. Followed by the end of the year dog sled races at the racecourse, with dancing, sweets, and friends. Afterward, I to the General Store for socializing and her home, to prepare dinner. Rack of lamb, potatoes, beans, and apple pie. Returning home, I gave her a new music box before we cast ourselves onto the bed for some unpretentious lovemaking. This time she’ll get with child, for sure. We awoke to the front door opening and it walked in. This time the wraith dies.