Contributor: Kristina England

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Samantha pushed at the lid again.

“Let me out, Jason. Let me out.”

Jason looked at the box and sighed.

Last time he let her out, she went to the next man’s garden and ate all of his berries.

Jason looked out the window at the horizon - a collision of lavender, pink, and gray. He glanced at his breakfast, uneaten on the table.

“Okay, but do you promise to behave?”

Samantha sat down in the box, pulled her knees up to her chin, and said nothing.

Jason lowered his head.

“Then I can’t let you out.”

“But I’m hungry.”

“I can give you some fruit.”

“I don’t want your fruit.”

He bit his lip, looked at the sun exploding outward, his mouth salty with daybreak.

Jason walked over to the box, pulled out a key, and opened it.

Samantha smiled and climbed out.

“When you’re done eating, don’t come back,” he said.

“Don’t worry. I won’t,” Samantha said, grabbing his cold slice of toast on her way out.

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Kristina England resides in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her writing is published or forthcoming in Gargoyle, One Forty Fiction, Short, Fast, and Deadly, and other magazines.
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