SoCS – Root

“Dig,” she thought as she shoved the spade into the ground again.

“Dig, dig, dig, dug. Doug. It’s Doug I should be digging for. To hell with this root.”

But the root had been the bane of her existence since she moved into the house. Because it was more than a root. It was a stump. The stump of a tree that had been cut down maybe a century ago. God knew what was below it – maybe there was a cemetery down there, like in Poltergeist.

Chunk, went the spade. Chunk, chunk ching!! She hit something. Getting down onto her hands and knees she dug with her fingers until she uncovered something silver. Something shiny. A treasure! Could it be that all this work had made her rich?

With renewed determination she stood and wielded the shovel once again. The silver box was small – it didn’t take much to dig around it. But it was deep, like a tiny coffin that had been buried lengthways. By the time she reached the bottom of it, Doug had come home.

“Hey asshole,” she called to him. “Can you come and help me with this?”

“Go fuck yourself,” he muttered as he marched from the car to the house. He slammed the door behind him.

“Just a little wider,” she mumbled to herself. “And he’ll fit right in.”


Two weeks later…

The house had been deathly quiet for so long that it seemed as though noise had given up on her. Doug had woken up while she was still filling in the hole, but she took care of that with the spade. The silver box was the final nail in his makeshift coffin – or lack thereof. It was the deciding factor. Not only did she have the means to cover up what she’d done thanks to her discovery, she wouldn’t have to share whatever was in the box with him. Or anyone else.

It took three days to pry the lid off the box and then another day to figure out what was in it. A pair of glowing orbs, like cat’s eyes lay in the bottom, which was five feet from the top. Tipping it hadn’t worked, nor had turning it upside down. Now the object sat on the table in front of her. It had climbed out on its own it seemed, after she went to bed.

The object – what could she call it? A cat-box? – refused to move from the table. It smelled like toast in the morning, a chicken sandwich at lunchtime, and a steak at dinner. But every time she made something to eat, her food would disappear. Into thin air. The only thing it didn’t touch was her coffee and her booze.

She couldn’t leave the house; she was slowly starving to death. Except.

Every day for the past seven days there had been a note on the table when she woke up in the morning. The note read: if you’re hungry, dig up Doug.


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