All about a mysterious lady and her dangerous box.
|“I can’t get this damn thing open!” A construction worker yelled to his companion.
“What the hell do you want me to do about it? Just grab the tools and pack up the truck. We’ve got to go!” The agitated companion yelled back.
“It took me weeks to pull this contraption out! I’m not about to just leave it! Come help me!”
“We’ve been at this since lunch. The entire construction site couldn’t get it open. We tried picking the lock, jamming it open, and even the sledgehammer. Nothing. Let’s go!”
“But why won’t it open?!” He glanced up as the rain that had threatened all day began to fall in large droplets.
“You can’t get that open because it’s mine,” I said loudly enough that it echoed off the nearby buildings. They both froze like a deer caught in a crosshairs. “I would really love it if you would give that back to me. I can promise you there isn’t anything inside it. It was lost, now it’s found. And I am grateful.” I let a ripple of sweetness run through my words, but they saw right through it.
“Listen pretty lady, we found this and we’re going to get all that it’s worth.” The one with the box had stood up and turned to face me. I continued to advance on them. I stopped in front of the one that had spoken last and held out my hand. He smelled of old stale beer and sweat. Their construction helmets lay on the hood of the truck.
“Please.” It was more of a statement then a request. But he only tucked the box under the crook of his arm tighter. I heard his companion release an exasperated sigh before approaching us.
“Dude, just give it to her. We can’t get it open anyways and we’ve done everything we know how to do! Just drop it and let’s get out of here! These sites are creepy without anybody working.” The one with the box glanced at me and I raised my eyebrows expectantly. He reluctantly took it from its safe haven, gave it one last longing look, and placed it into my hand.
“Thank you, boys. Now be on your way before something dangerous comes along.” The sweetness in my last statement had gone away and what I’d said came out as a threat. They scurried into their pickup truck and drove off as fast as they could while their tools clanging as they turned onto the main road. As their taillights disappeared, I let out a hefty sigh and looked down at the box. “You’re the reason for all my grey hairs. Do you know that?” I ran a hand over it and all the scratches and pock marks the thieves had made in it disappeared. Satisfied with its renewed appearance, I put it in the small backpack I always carried across my shoulders and left the construction site.