“Honey, do you know what I’m talking about?”
Marie tapped her chin with the end of a ballpoint pen.
“Did you check the toolbox in the garage?”
There was the flutter of pages, as Alan dropped what he was holding, and he rushed to the sitting room.
For the first time since the mysterious object entered the house, Marie took a second to look at something other than it.
“Now, you don’t mean that, do you?”
“Yeah, I mean it. Of course. What toolbox? We have a toolbox?”
“Yeah, we have a toolbox. I gave it to you for a present. Remember? You said you’d use it and fix things around the house, like shelves. But of course you never did. I mean, what was I to expec…”
“OKAY… Okay, I get it. The garage… Jesus.” cried Alan, exasperated. “Fuck. I’ll go get it.”
Marie strolled around the box, tapping the pen against her teeth. She would stop every cycle and mumble to herself only to continue around the box, no new information gathered, no revelations. Just the same, flawless side repeated four times. The same infinity, the same emptiness.
“Found it Marie. I found it.”
Alan rushed back in, the sharp, clean, unused Stanley knife glinting as he flicked the blade from its sheath.
“Where will we cut it?”
“Along the top I suppose. We can always use it, if it’s empty.”
Alan nodded overzealously.
“Yeah, good idea.”
He drew the blade along the centre of the box top, a clean, straight line. He then cut along the edges to make two flaps.
“Well, “Marie had a numb feeling in her stomach, as if she knew what the box contained. “What’s in it?”
His face contorted and fresh beads of sweat popped from his forehead, to trickle into the box.
“Honey, what is it? What’s in the box?”
“Marie!” Alan’s voice was weak.
“Marie, there’s nothing in THIS GODDAMN BOX.”
“What a waste of time. It’s bloody empty. The box is fucking empty.”
“But Alan,” Began Marie, “… That’s makes no sense.”