One thing at a time

The box hadn’t been opened in years. The damp of the swamp had softened the outside, though the inner metal lining and clasp kept it as closed as ever. The smell was somehow worse than the surrounding waters, though whether that came from the rotten wood or whatever had been stored inside was a mystery.

“This.”

The lock and hinges were metal, rusted together. Some design shown on the front, at one point, though it was now impossible to tell.

“Swing.”

An axe dropped down on back hinge. A bitten back curse as the weapon tried to bounce back up. Readied again, the axe fell back down.

“Again.”

The box, the true box, seemed unmarred. Trying to avoid the wood, heading straight for the hinge, and part of the external shell still fell off, exposing more of the tarnished surface.

“Damn.”

This continued for some time, until axe stopped. Given up. The box was left, stuck in the muck beneath it, closed as it had been when it had been found. Still unopened.

Of course, there was nothing inside, so the only thing lost was time.

 

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