Drawing a deep breath, Harmony embraced the lion head brass knocker in her right hand and lifted it perpendicular to the door. Upon her exhale she released it sharply, as if the beast has come alive in her hands; threatening to bite the palm of her pale hand.
With another gasp of breath, she gingerly took a step back from the imposing ten foot tall mahogany door, whilst feeling the echo of the metal clang in the depths of her chest; each beat in time to the drum of heart beat.
Sans the sound of footsteps as warning, the thick wooden door was slowly opened; giving way to long ebony talons seemingly embedded in translucent white fingers; clutching onto the portal so as to keep the sunlight from outside and the darkness beyond at truce.
“H-h-h-hi Pandora, my name is …”
“Harmony.” She hissed.
“I’ve been expecting you. Do come in dear.” A voice expressed with sudden saccharine, whilst the form attached still part and parcel of the dusky shadows.
Harmony instinctively looked over her right shoulder and scanned the azure blue sky dotted with chalky cotton candy clouds; squinting in search of the source of the warmth on her back; the source of her strength.
You don’t have to do this Harmony, a whisper from her soul pleads. We’ve survived this long without that Piece, turn around, go home! We don’t need it!
Our flaxen-haired heroine squeezed her eyes shut; not so much from the glare of the sun, but in a vain attempt to cut the celestial communication.
Her multi-coloured eyes reopened on the path she had just walked, lined with imposingly eerie green conifers; reminding her of the torment of the recent full moon and resolving her strength to retrieve what was rightfully hers.
An inaudible sigh escaped from the yet unseen full blood-red lips of Pandora.
“I’m disappointed in you Harmony. I fully expected you to barge in, guns-a-blazing; demanding your Piece.”
And with that her elegant claw slowly enticed the door inwards, stealthily inviting shards of light to enter her domain.
Curiosity beckoned Harmony a tentative step closer and with both hands grasping the weathered door frame, she gasped.
In a chamber yonder, not well lit enough to ascertain it’s purpose; seemingly suspended about half a meter off the ground, glistened a beautiful bejewelled treasure chest.
“Pandora! I must have that box!” exclaimed Harmony, her voice betraying the awe of the splendour of her Piece’s prison.
A laugh from her honey-voiced nemesis.
“Don’t you mean what’s in the box, darling.”
Releasing her hands from the splintered wood as if they’d taken on red hot poker status, Harmony placed them, trembling, on the irregular beat of her incomplete heart.
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