The paint-peeled wooden canopy cast dark ominous shadows across the covered sandbox, an otherwise mostly inviting space to Josh. But as the white sands slowly turned tar black in the shifting late afternoon light, it took on the role of a kid trap, waiting for one to sit in its cool confines and then slowly be consumed by course granular teeth by the millions, the body splintering in its descent, the sand masking the sounds of death.
Josh cast a doubtful, mistrusting glance at the sandbox. He wondered how many bodies lay in the form of writhing, screaming skeletons beneath its surface. Countless generations of unlucky kids, lured into its deadly grip and then torn from life, like a beach of bones in miniature. He could almost hear the sound of meatless fingers clicking together, frantically clawing their way to the surface, followed by eye sockets deep and dark behind the sand that filled them. Sand-scoured teeth followed, grinding their way against long-lost toys, searching for the remains of their voices; searching for him.
Josh abandoned his love of the sandbox, his gritty refuge now lost to a killing ground, a place where the bones of the past lingered, waiting, hoping to gather more. He wondered at its true depth, if it reached beyond the craggy bedrock to the dark depths below, where it could hide its sinister secrets. Where the polished bones of kids waited silent in the cold.
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