The Hiding pt.3

When the contents of the box came into view, a few things ran through Mary’s mind. The first was recognition and realisation, followed by surprise, and finally fear. Inside the box lay her missing ornament – a small ceramic cat painted emerald green. Underneath it was a petite slip of paper with small words scribbled on it in someone’s terrible handwriting. Afraid to touch the cat, she carefully slipped the paper out of the box and squinted to read it. In blue ink, written with vigour where the words:
‘We are where you are
We know what you know
We take what you have
We return all but life.’
A chill ran down Mary’s spine as she registered the last sentence. A million questions buzzed through her head, each screeching louder than its predecessor. ‘Who were they? Where were they? What did they want? What would they take next?’
With a careful hand and a wary eye, Mary lifted the small cat out of the box.

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