There was a loud knock on the door. George stood up and looked out the window to see no one standing there. He strode over to the door and looked outside into the rain-tainted gloom. Something caught his attention out of the corner of his eye. A shiny red object lay on his doormat. It was a small cube.
George picked up the box and turned it around in his hands. Engraved in the cube were several large panels, but as far as he could tell there was no way to separate them. George walked back into his kitchen and looked toward his wife Annie. “Look what I found on our stoop,” he said, pushing the box into her hands.
“A red puzzle box, how queer. It was just sitting out in the rain?” she asked, head tilted slightly.
“Yeah, it was lying out on our mat. Some kid must’ve thrown it at the door and ran or something. I wonder if anything’s in it.” George tried to slide one of the panels to no avail.
“Shake it,” Annie said to him. George shook the puzzle box, making no sound.
“There seems to be nothing in it. What a shame,” he declared. He set it down on the table and gave a slight sigh.
“Let me try a moment,” Annie said. She picked it up and tried to push, lift, and otherwise manipulate the box. When she pressed down on a smaller square panel a soft noise could be heard. “Did the box just moan?” she asked to the air.
A shadowy mist began to leak from the box. A figure slowly became visible, the form of a young girl. The image shone clears for only a moment, and then disappeared as quickly as it had come. Annie fell back in fright, barely caught by her astonished husband. The box had gone as well.