Maria’s deep blue orbs squinted to read the note that they had discovered along with the mysterious golden box. The box was a regal shade of golden with a silver bow on top, which made it look much more bizarre than it already looked.
Maria read the note out loud for all of them to hear.
Liz rolled her sea green eyes and huffed; she had claimed not to be afraid of such games.
“Old Bamir knows this box has no haunted game, girls,” she said, “he must’ve had a good laugh after you had bought this queer box for such a high price.”
Maria paid no heed to her, she secretly felt as though Liz shouldn’t say this for she hadn’t spent her Halloween allowance on buying this game. It was Maria and Amy who had paid for it and if someone was to oppose, it had to be either of them.
“There’s no harm in trying it, Liz. We have always wanted to do something fun for Halloween. This sounds fun,” Thirteen year old Amy said with a smile plastered on her face.
“What fun?” Liz thought but decided not to kill the mood and agreed on playing the game.
Maria spread the small mat out, laid it with their ‘trick or treat’ treats and placed the dice on top, zeal evident in her eyes. She looked around to see if the other two girls wanted to go first. Seeing that they weren’t very sure, she decided to go first, fearlessly. She rolled the dice and chanted the spell, “Doreah, tonight we await your arrival. Say no not to me, there is nothing for you to fear, come and talk to us. Here lies your abode, dear Doreah.”
All the three young ladies waited patiently for something to happen, even though Liz claimed that nothing could happen, she still waited eagerly for some magic to flow through their veins at that moment.
After half an hour of waiting, Liz decided to call it a night. And of course, she didn’t do so right away, she made sure to scold Maria and Amy for wasting their allowance on something as good as the old dustbin down the lane. Maria was disappointed too but she didn’t let her disappointment show, Halloween wasn’t celebrated everyday and she loved Halloween. However, Amy could sense the tension in a matter of seconds.
“Maria, it is alright. We still have the candies. Let’s eat them and watch a movie while she sleeps,” Amy said, making Maria smile.
Before the girls knew it, they had dozed off wearing their Halloween costumes with the television still switched on. Candy wrappers were clumsily thrown about the house and the kitchen was a mess, they were surely up for big trouble when their parents would find the house in such a bad shape, the next morning.
The following morning, Liz woke up to the sun rays falling on her face and the cool breeze making her shiver. She jumped up with a startle when she realised that they still needed to clean the house from last night. She hurried to find the girls in their bedroom but found them fast asleep on the porch instead.
“Wake up, right now!” Liz commanded, waking the two girls up and also making Amy land with a thud on the floor.
“Mother and father will be here any moment, we must clean up this place before they reach!” Liz said as she panicked.
The events from last night finally started to sink in their heads and the three girls hurried to the kitchen to clean it, but little did they know that a surprise awaited them there. To their utter disbelief, the three girls found the kitchen spotlessly clean. They checked the cupboards and found the utensils in there, the sink had been cleaned and the candy wrappers discarded.
“Did you two…?” All the three asked each other, only to realise later that it wasn’t any of them. It couldn’t have been anyone except them either because the doors had been locked for their safety at night.
Suddenly, Maria walked back to the parlour of their house and found the little box which they had left uncovered. It was wrapped properly, now and the silver bow was still attached to it. Beside the little box, lay a note, untouched and unread.
Amy picked it up and it read:
“Call Doreah, and she comes.
Every 31st has witnessed,
Her hands sweeping the floors
Scrubbing the dishes.
And she leaves,
But not alone she goes
She takes with her your rose.”
The girls stared at each other with blank looks on their faces for some time. Liz finally spoke up, “Have any of you lost a rose?”
“We haven’t bought roses in a while,” they replied, unanimously.
“Roses. Does that count Amy’s rose brooch too?” Maria wondered.
“I don’t have my precious rose brooch on!” Amy screamed as she placed her hand on her chest trying to find the pin.
By then, all of their faces had darkened and they were scared out of their wits. Old Bamir hadn’t lied, after all. Chills ran down their spines and they stared at the box which somehow smiled back at them, or so it seemed.
Halloween is round the corner, friends. Have you, by any chance, seen such a box somewhere in your house waiting to be opened?