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            Although this has happened more than once, I will only be able to relate the events of a single night.  It all would begin when we would go to bed.  Lights were off and everyone was sound asleep… or so it would seem.  My mom and dad have always collected various music boxes, which she kept locked inside of an old China hutch in the living room.  My story begins at the end of a long day…


            It was that time again; the Eleven O’clock News had just gone off the air, and Pop was ushering everyone to bed for the night.  I, personally, was a bit of a night owl, so even as I would go to bed, I knew sleep still had a long journey ahead before it would finally subdue me, but I went to my room anyway.  Pop walked through the house turning out all the lights, his heavy footfalls announcing where he was, at all times accompanied by the occasional groan of ancient floorboards protesting his approach.  Soon all lights were off, and the house was cast into a shadowy abyss.


            I quietly made my way up the stairs, my eyes quickly adjusting to the dark as I entered the murky darkness of the second floor.  The night beyond the windows seemed to glow with an ethereal resonance by comparison to the ink like shadows of the upstairs hallway.  With well-practiced steps, I walked to the door of my room and entered in.  My light came on with a blinding flash that nearly gave me a headache.  Grabbing a book from my shelf, I began to read, immersing myself in yet another story.  It didn’t take long for my eyes to grow heavy; the pages book I was reading began to repeat themselves.  Little by little, the gentle caress of sleep had lulled me into a waking dream.  Somehow, though I figured that it was I in some manner of half awareness, my light had been turned off. 


            All was silent and still until shortly after one in the morning.  At first, the twinkling sound of music crept in as a distant tone in a dream.  Soon, however, it was joined by the sound of another, then another.  Before long a chorus, if that is what one would call it, of twinkling tones emerged from the stairwell to the living room.  Mom was the first to hear the music boxes come to life.  She lay still and silent in bed, her heart trying to beat as an iceberg formed in her stomach.  “Those music boxes are locked up.”  She thought over and over.  Her mind raced over the possibilities.  A bead of sweat ran down her forehead, and her breath came in shallow gasps as, yet another music box chimed in.  One by one, each of the music boxes played with or after one another.  Only Pop, who was fast asleep couldn’t hear the ghastly serenade coming from a locked China hutch in the living room.  After a while, they “wound” down, and as quickly as it had begun, slowly, deftly, an uneasy silence fell over the old house once again. 


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