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Opening A Box

Part One

“Daddy?” I exclaimed into the phone. Worry was evident in my voice. “Daddy, where are you?”

“Tory, I don’t have much time,” my dad said.

“What’s happening?”

“Tory, in the lab. Go. Now. I...” Static filled my ear.

“Daddy?! Hello?!” I began to panic. The lab? What am I supposed to do in the lab? It’s just a ton of junk and inventions that didn’t work.

Despite my better judgement, I went down into my dad’s laboratory. It was dark, very dark. I stumbled around, my fingers searching desperately for the light switch. I switched it on, basking the cold chamber with pale blueish-white light. The entire room began to fill with sounds: boiling liquids in various beakers resting on top of Bunsen burners, clinks and clanks of metal-on-metal. Dad’s lab was brought to life once more.

But just as quickly as it had begun, the beauty of science was interrupted. Red lights began to flash wildly. A loud siren blasted in my ears, causing my eardrums to retaliate. I covered my ears and crouched down in pain.

“Please identify yourself,” a voice said.

“What?” I exclaimed.

“Please identify yourself,” the voice repeated.

“Tory! Tory Usher!” I cried.

“Identity recognized. Welcome, Miss Usher.”

The sirens instantly stopped. Slowly, I stood up, cautiously uncovering my ears. I let go of the breath I didn’t even know was waiting to be released. Suddenly, a woman appeared in front of me. I screamed.

“Hello, Miss Usher,” she said. “I am Violet, your father’s aide.”

“What the...?” I asked, reaching out towards her. My hand passed through her abdomen as if she were water.

“I am a holograph, not a physical being,” she replied. “I act as your father’s computer and security system. I was assigned to lead you to the Closet.”

“The Closet?” I asked. “What is… Is my… How did… Whaaat?”

“Please, just follow me.”

Violet began to walk away. I followed close behind, not wanting to lose her. I also hoped to have all of my questions answered. We reached a large titanium door. It suddenly opened with a loud woosh sound and a blast of warm air. I didn’t even realize how cold I really was until that point.

I followed her inside the chamber. Looking around, all I saw was metal, small openings, and a circle in the middle of the floor. I turned to ask Violet a question, but to my dismay, she had disappeared.

“Please stand in the circle,” Violet’s voice rang out. “We will begin momentarily.”

Although I was once again confused and ignored, I stood in the large circle on the floor. The room was much larger when you stood in the middle. Above me was a spotlight. That seemed to be the brightest light source available, considering the fact that only pale lighting illuminated the other areas in the room.

“Is this going to hurt?” I asked.

“No, I’ll be fine,” Violet replied. Even though she attempted to joke around, I wasn’t comforted. “But you might feel a bit of pain.”

Before I could ask what she was going to do, a giant shock coursed through me. My body was racked with painful tremors. I began to cry. The pain was unbearable and I began to get light-headed.

Then, before I knew it, all I saw was black.