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Curiousity. By D.A.


“What are you doing?”

“I’m trying to get the lid off this.”

Dean was struggling with a box he’d found at the back of the room, it was a reinforced cardboard affair with faux leather straps and a small padlock.

“There must be something worth keeping in here mustn’t there, or they wouldn’t have locked it?”

“It might be something horrible they didn’t want to come to light” warned Benny.

“Nah, it’ll be valuable, mark my words. Have you got some scissors?”

“Here, in my pocket, I’ve got secateurs.” Benny passed them over.

“Secateurs?” Dean queried. “Were you thinking of doing some pruning?”

Benny shrugged.

Dean slipped one blade under the strap and cut it easily, the padlock fell to the floor with a bump.

“That did it!” Benny exclaimed, grabbing hold of the lid and pulling it off.



“Benny!” He could hear a voice calling in the distance, “Benny!” Again it came. It sounded familiar, it sounded like… his own voice.

Dean thought for a moment or two. He thought about where he was, he didn’t know. He thought about what had happened, he wasn’t sure.

“Benny!” The voice called. It WAS his voice, why was he calling out when he was obviously asleep?

“You’re OK, don’t worry, just rest.” Another voice, a gentle female one this time. He started to come to consciousness. “Where am I?” He asked the nurse.

“Cartwright General Hospital, you’ve been here for a week, we thought we’d lost you a few days ago.”

“Lost me? Is it bad? What happened?”

“Don’t know, we were hoping you could tell us, you seem to have been knocked out by something but there are no scars or bruises to indicate what.”

Blurred images floated around in Dean’s mind.. a box.. a strap.. a padlock.. a pain so strong it made him wince just thinking about it. “Where’s Benny?” He asked.


“The bloke I was with, is he here too?”

“There was no-one with you when you were found, you were lying in the street, outside the old shop.”



The policeman showed Dean into the shop. “Is this the place?”

“Yes, the box is upstairs in the old store, we were clearing it out.”

“And you have no idea where your friend may be? We’ve had to put out a missing persons bulletin.”

“Last time I saw Benny we were in here, trying to open that box there.”

They had entered the store room, a feeling of foreboding came over Dean.

He pointed a trembling finger at the box; the box with a faux leather strap neatly wrapped around it and fastened with a small padlock.

The policeman pulled out a pen-knife and bent down as if to cut the strap.

“No!” Cried Dean…



“If you’re now awake sir, we’d like to ask you a few questions about your role in the disappearance of one of our officers.” Dean opened his eyes to see the familiar hospital ward and a large policeman staring down at him.

“OK, I’ll show you where it happened, make sure you bring a knife”.



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