Sprinting through the street, my heart racing,
I spot the entrance. Hidden behind a wall of ivy,
the wooden door is embellished with brass scrollwork.
My hand shakes as I fit the aged skeleton key
into the lock and turn the handle. Slowly, the door creaks
open, revealing a strange reddish light emitting
from somewhere deep in the cavernous room.
I step inside and am instantly enveloped by a sickly-sweet
odor. My eyes water and my breath catches in my throat.
I know what I’ll find if I open the box sitting on the table,
but I can’t seem to help myself. Sweat trickles down my back
as I reach for the lid. The hand inside has decayed
to the point of being nearly unrecognizable.
I don’t even notice as tears begin cascading down my cheeks,
soaking into my shirt. I was too late. As the scene begins again,
I realize that I will always be too late.