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She walks to work every day with a box under her right arm. “What’s in the box?” you might ask her. I don’t think even she knows anymore. Yet she carries it around with her and locks it in her locker as if it were filled with cash. Wonder if she opens it sometimes, in the privacy of her room, with the curtains drawn and the lights turned off. Imagine it glowing with a golden Aria inducing light in secret. But it doesn’t. She has NEVER opened it.

WHY DOESN’T SHE OPEN IT!?

She has friends, people she sees. She’s a little private, but not a loner by any standards. But there’s always that box; raising questions, drawing curiosity, causing tension.

Hasn’t anyone asked her what’s in the box?

JUST TELL US!

Of course. Her friends have asked a dozen times or more, but less now as the years have passed without more than a noncommittal shrug, a glance away, the shake of the head. Even in the bar where the air is shared so congenially, the box kept its own air. Its air never mingled with others, it selfishly kept its air to itself. The answers got boring, but the box never did.

LET US SEE INSIDE

It looks solid, no flimsy, delicate thing, but something strong and inflexible with no openings or translucency. When she sets it down on her lap, you can almost feel the edge of her seat digging into the backs of her thighs with the weight of it sinking them deeper into the chair.

Sometimes it looked black and other times it was as if it would glow slightly, pulsing with its own life. But that only happened when you chanced upon her alone and quiet. You wouldn’t notice it until she shifted her hips or turned around her hand still casually resting on it. Then you can’t stop noticing. Just big enough, like a purse or a scarf, but far more private and provocative.

It’s as if she taunted the world with that stupid box; a secret out in the open but completely hidden.

I bet its actually really boring, whatever it is. I JUST WANT TO KNOW.

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