The Music Box

by Jlynn Sheaks 12 months ago in fiction

Short Story

The Music Box

Alexis just turned 16 and her mother told her that she could have a slumber party with her two best friends, Sasha and Allie, tonight to celebrate. Alexis was never more excited for the school day to be over with and practically ran out of the double doors after the final bell rang to get into her mother's car. She was talking to her mom about what they would need to get at the store they were headed to in order to make sure everything was set in place for tonight when her two friends showed up around 6 PM. They pulled up into the parking lot of the store, went inside, got a shopping cart, and started getting the items they would need. Not long after they entered the cart was half full of paper plates, napkins, plastic cups, four frozen pizzas, chips, dip, a veggie tray that Alexis' mom insisted on, juice, water, and some caffeine free soda as well. It all looked so wonderful and then Alexis' mom got an already made cake, some ice cream, a 'Happy Birthday' banner, and some already made gourmet cookies. Alexis helped her mom put the purchases in the trunk and soon they were headed home. Alexis just could not wait. Her mom was even nice enough to ask to get off of work early to help set everything up for the party. This definitely was going to be a night to remember.

After everything had been set up, the pizzas cooked and sliced, and the cake and ice cream in the freezer, Alexis anxiously waited for her two best friends to show up. First to knock on the door was Sasha and her mother who graciously brought a few games for us to play then said goodbye as Sasha was putting her birthday gift to me on the kitchen table. We both sat down on the couch and started sharing stories about what happened at school during the classes we didn't share when there was another knock on the door. Allie and her mother brought some brownies and a cool movie for us to watch, then Allie put her gift to me on the table, and we all were then seated at the table to eat. After indulging on pizza, chips and dip, and a few veggies because Alexis' mother was quite hesitant, the girls headed into the living room to play a few games. The party was in full swing as my mother was in the kitchen cleaning up and getting the cake ready. Soon we were enjoying cake, ice cream, cookies, and brownies. After that I opened both of my gifts from my best friends, Sasha gave me a cool password journal and a locket necklace, and Allie got me a cool bracelet and my favorite perfume. I then opened the three gifts my mom gave me and was delighted to finally have my own iPad, carrying case, a new pair of headphones, and an iTunes card. We all went back into the living room to play a simple game of truth or dare as my mom was cleaning up the kitchen and putting things away.

Just as we were in the middle of our game we all started hearing a sound coming from the basement that sounded like a song playing. We didn't hear the words as there were none, but we heard the intoxicating sound of the music. We stopped playing our game and wondered what could be making that noise. We went into the kitchen to see if my mom heard it and she said that she heard it too. She at first said that it was probably the neighbors next door playing music but then I reminded her that our closest neighbors had went somewhere else due to a family emergency. We heard the sound of the song a little louder now as the kitchen hooked up to the basement. My mom decided that we should all go check it out together with flashlights and stick together. We all went down the steps carefully with the flashlights as the switch at the top of the stairs no longer worked and we had to wait until we got to the bottom of the steps to turn the lights on. As we neared the bottom of the stairs, the sound of the hauntingly beautiful song was getting much louder now. We all finally made it to the bottom and my mother switched on the lights. There was nothing there except an old couch that had a bed in it, a stand with a lamp and some magazines beside it, some boxes clearly marked, an old desk, an old book shelf with a record player on it and some records, and an old wine cabinet that was now empty.

The sound of the song became louder and more frequent and we all figured out that it was coming from the empty wine cabinet. So we all walked over to it and my mother carefully unlocked the cabinet and opened its doors. There on the top shelf laid a small music box that had the lid open and it was playing the song inside it. Mom never saw this music box before and we all wondered how it got there. Mom turned off the music box by shutting the lid then picked it up to examine it. On the bottom there was an old label that showed a faded name and address. We quickly figured out that it was our address by the look of what was left but could not figure out the name other than the first name was either Beth or Bethany or could be Elizabeth as well. We never heard of anyone by any of these names and my mom could not figure out how it got in our basement. She decided to take it back up the stairs and into the kitchen and placed it on the table to clean it off.

Once it was clean we could all see that it was an antique music box with intricate swirl pattern designs on it and was the color of a light mahogany. Mom had never seen anything like this before and wondered how old it really was. She made plans to take me to the antique shop in town tomorrow after my friends left to see if they could recognize the piece and sat it back down on the table. We all went back into the living room to set up our sleeping bags when suddenly we heard the song again playing in the kitchen. We all went back into the kitchen and surrounded the table and there the music box sat with its lid open and the song playing. We all looked at each other in amazement and fear wondering how the lid got opened by itself. My mother shut the lid once again, only this time put a few pieces of tape over it, and we headed back into the living room. Just as we all were starting to get into our pajamas we heard the sound of the song once again. After my friends and I got dressed, we all went inside the kitchen to see that the tape had been ripped off and the lid of the music box was opened yet again. Mom was very concerned at this point, so she decided to leave the lid open, but put the music box in the upstairs broom closet so we could still sleep as it was playing.

In the morning we all woke up glad that we got some much needed rest but were shocked to see my mom standing and pointing into the kitchen. We all got up and looked at the kitchen table where she was pointing and there sat the music box. We all looked at each other and right in front of us the lid popped open by itself and started playing that song. We all quickly got dressed and gathered up all of our things. This definitely wasn't something we planned to keep in our house as it was obviously haunted, but how did it end up in our house in the first place? After my friends left our home, my mother and I took the music box to the antique shop with the lid open the whole way and we just decided to sell it and not even wonder about what it was or what time period it was from. We got $500 out of it, so turns out it was a pretty special music box, we didn't explain to the clerk what else had happened as we weren't sure we even believed it ourselves. So we headed back home glad to be rid of the music box that never seemed to want to stop playing that same song over and over.

We got out of the car, my mom unlocked the door, and we sat down on the living room couch to relax a little. After a while, we both got hungry so we decided to heat up the leftover pizza for lunch so we both went into the kitchen. My mom and me both stopped dead in our tracks as there on the kitchen table was the same music box we just sold and after we had walked in the lid popped back open and started playing that same song. Mom checked her billfold and sure enough that $500 she made from the sale was still there and the receipt that she sold it was still there. My mom called the antique shop to see if anyone had bought that music box yet and the lady said that yes five minutes after we left an elderly lady came in and said she had to have it. My mom hung up the phone trying to figure out how we got the music box back then if an elderly lady bought it. We both turned around to face the living room when all the sudden there stood an elderly lady in our living room staring right at us with a big grin on her face. She sort of floated past us and picked up the music box and then went back down to the basement. We never did figure out who that was and how the spirit made herself into a human to buy back the music box but we never wanted to find out after that. We simply sealed up the basement after making sure everything we needed was upstairs and never said a word to anyone else about it. It is one of the unknown mysteries that my mom, myself, and my two best friends will have to deal with. When I graduated high school two years later, we sold the house and moved into a small apartment and never said a word to the people who bought it why we sealed up the basement. I guess we could have told them, but then they wouldn't of bought the house now, would they have?

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Jlynn Sheaks

I am a single mother of three beautiful daughters.  I often think too much and sometimes ideas just come to me. Joined this to get my ideas, stories, and poems out there.

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