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Soul

By Lucy Truth All Rights Reserved ©

Fantasy / Drama

The Dark Box

Warner Reiler sat down heavily on the couch. His eyes were fixated on the table in front of him, the glass glittering in the afternoon light that streamed through the windows. The bright prisms hurt his eyes as they danced around the box.

The box was small, of course. It didn't need to be any larger than it was. The wood was polished to a shine, a sharp contrast to the gray ashes it contained.

Rest in peace, Dad.

"Warner?" He turned his head to see Ryan in the doorway.

"Hey." His response was short and succinct. His little brother would never understand - he had spent far less time with their father than Warner and and far more time listening to music in his room. Ryan would grieve, sure, but not the way Warner was. He wouldn't feel the heart-wrenching pain as sharply or for as long.

Ryan crossed to the couch, sitting next to him. "Are you alright?"

Warner resisted the urge to snap at him. That wasn't fitting behavior for twenty-nine going on thirty. Instead, he took a deep breath and put an arm around his brother's shoulders. "I'll be fine. How are things in Boston?"

"Cold." Warner let out a brief laugh, and Ryan smiled faintly at his success. The merriment faded, though, at his next sentence. "I don't think I'm going back, though."

"What?" Warner stared at his brother. "You've wanted to live in Boston since we were kids, Ryan."

"I know... but Dad... it was a car crash and Boston, it's-it's filled with cars!" Ryan sighed, resting his forehead on his hand. "I just... I don't think I can do it."

Warner tightened his grip on his brother's shoulder. "Hey, it's OK." Ryan gave him a tight smile. "Besides, you can just drown out the cars with that radio of yours," Warner added, laughing lightly.

"Close the blinds," Ryan said, "Live like a hermit forever." His smile was beginning to grow back.

"Exactly." The brothers laughed. Ryan stood up as Warner let go of him. "I'm going back out to calm down Aunt Tanya, OK?" Warner nodded.

"Good luck."

Ryan laughed again as he exited the room, pulling the door closed behind him.


The moon was up now, filtering through the windows onto the glass table. The dark wood of the box seemed almost black in the near-blackness.

Still Warner sat on the couch, staring at the box. His mind was million miles away, floating among the memories of his childhood. Laughing with Dad on a family picnic, golden sunlight flooding the scene... the two of them knocking on the Ryan's door every five minutes to tell him his music was too loud... laughing as Ryan slammed the door in their faces every time...

Warner sighed, the first sound to echo in the room since Ryan had closed the door earlier that day. He had a sudden urge to touch the box, to feel close to his father one last time. He reached out... his fingers trailed over the wood... "I love you, Dad."

Pain.


Warner felt a shudder rip through his body. The carpet was rough against his cheek. Why was he on the floor? He opened his eyes.

He was sprawled on the ground, hand near a small black object. He squeezed his eyes shut and opened them again, trying to see the lump better.

It was the box, tipped on its side, ashes that had tumbled out of it nearby. Warner blinked in confusion. What was going on? Slowly he climbed to his feet.

"Warner?" The voice was low and unmistakable. "Oh my God - Warner!"

"Ryan?" He turned and saw his little brother standing in the doorway, eyes wide and all the blood drained from his face. "Ryan, what's wrong?" The younger one stared right through him as if he weren't there. "Come on, talk to me." Still no response. Warner turned his head to where Ryan was staring-

Oh my God.

A body was splayed out on the floor, dark hair spread around the head and wide blue eyes staring into nothingness.

"That looks like me. That... that looks like me. Why does it look so much-Ryan?" Ryan had stumbled over to the body, grabbing the wrist. "Ryan, I'm right here. Ryan? Come on, bro, talk to me- Ryan!" His brother had let out an animal scream. It echoed in the room, twisting off walls and becoming more terrible each second it continued.

"Warner!"

Ryan grabbed the body's shoulders, shaking violently. "Warner, wake up!" The older brother could only watch in wide-eyed horror as the only family he had left broke down before his eyes.

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Chapters
1. The Dark Box
Further Recommendations

ga1984: I really enjoyed it! Characters were deep and plot was pretty complex. A bit on the violent side but it doesnt detract from the story. Very dark but situations make sense. Ends kinda abruptly and later chapters will need some editing work. I'm assuming there's more in the works?

Carolyn Hahn-Re: I really liked this story! The writing was well done, and the plot was suspenseful. I couldn't stop reading chapter after chapter, on the edge of my seat! The characters were well developed, and true to form. Thank you so much for this wonderful read.

Marijana1: The melancholy present throughout this story has the power to influence and etch into the minds of the readers, to stay there and refuse to leave even after they have finished reading the story. This is a deep, powerful story, making the readers wonder about everything – about love, about their e...

Felisa Yoder Osburn: I really enjoyed the story. Civil War stories are some of my favorites and the intertwining of the past with current times was wonderful. I look forward to reading the next stories.

Elizabeth Robbins: 4.5 starsAs far as apocalypse stories go, this one took a new direction. I'm glad someone finally addressed the need for a vampire apocalypse! This is sort of a multi-genre festival of delights. With hints of forced societies, vamps, hunters, romance, apocalypse, government conspiracy, and thrill...

Schaelz: I was intrigued from the second I started reading, and it kept my interest the whole way through. Chelsea has a way with words that will enchant you until the very end. She is very poetic with the way she mixes genres and keeps you on the edge of your seat. The main character is also very relat...

JWalker: I loved this story from start to finish! It flows at a really nice pace and the story world feels so real. The fight sequences are a treat especially when Isanfyre is training to become a warrior. I found the names really cool and thankfully easy to pronounce. Personally I have always struggled w...

Alice Liu: Whoa! I've been wondering how would the Maurauders react to Harry's life and here we go! YOU ARE THE BEST! All the characters are consistent with their personalities shown in the book! I love how you compare Lily with Molly and it's definitely true for her being a mother! I wish Peter comes have ...

jessiehs: This was absolutely amazing. I loved how it went back and forth between perspectives. I actually cried at the end I was so happy. This was amazing. I can't even think of another word to describe it. Thank you for writing his.

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