There was a box in the basement. A box Makki had never seen before. It had strange drawings and symbols on it. Faces with creepy expressions.
He tried to open it. The cover didn’t budge. He pulled and pushed, turned it around. Shook it. Something moved inside, but it was securely sealed.
He got crowbar, pushed it in under the lid. Held on to the box, pulling the crowbar down. The lid broke.
He looked inside. He couldn’t see anything, but it smelled horrible, like rotting road kill. He turned it up side down to see if something would fall out. It didn’t.
Disappointed he dropped the box on the floor and went upstairs. He started cutting some bread. He was home alone, and he hated cooking. He ate a sandwich, and went into the living room, sat down in front of the TV. He felt strange, like if someone was watching him. He could hear sounds as well, weird whispering noises. Like voices, but they didn’t make any sense.
He looked around to find the source, but soon he gave up. They seemed to come from inside his head. Laughing. Mocking him.
As nightfall arrived, the voices got stronger. The feeling of being watched as well. He sat down by the window, watching the street outside. Old Mrs Gandu came walking by, she lived next door and was on her way home. The voices started screaming when they saw her. Nagging him, pushing him. The eyes felt more intense.
He slept horribly that night. He had nightmares. He dreamt about the box he had broken, about old Mrs Gandu. Horrible, violent scenes that didn’t make any sense.
The next day he went to visit his friend Peika. Makki was very quiet.
Are you OK? Peika asked after a while.
Sure, Makki lied. I just haven’t slept well.
You look like a ghost.
That night Makki didn’t sleep at all. All night he lay there staring at the ceiling, listening to voices that didn’t make sense.
One more day things were getting worse. He tried to close the box, but it was no use. The pieces just kept falling off.
He sat by the window. Looking out there in the evening light calmed him. Calmed the voices. Mrs Gandu walked by again. The voices started screaming. As she walked towards her house, they became unbearable. He needed to get closer to her, it seemed to be what they wanted. He staggered out the door, jumped the fence to her garden.
He looked in the window. She was sitting in her chair, knitting. She looked up. Saw him. Got out her chair, looking frightened.
Makki! She said, relieved. She walked over to the veranda door, opened it. -What are you doing here?
The voices screamed. He lost control. He just wanted them to stop, to silence. He pushed her to the floor. They changed. They started laughing. He held her throat. Pressed as hard as he could. Her eyes bulged out of their sockets. Her wrinkled skin turned blue. The voices were soothing. She stopped fighting. He held the grip for a long time. He was afraid the voices would start torturing him again if he didn’t.
He got up. Stared at the body on the floor. At what he had done. His mouth dried up. The room started spinning. He ran towards the door.
The voices started screaming again.
He came home, walked into the living room. Opened the bag he’d taken at the old woman’s house. Pulled out her head. The voices were whispering a soft tone now, almost singing. He pushed the head into the box, put the pieces back on. In a glowing light the box was sealed again.
He was freed from the curse.