The Tin Box – Remembrance

Our Creative Writing Group has penned a series of meditations on “Remembrance”

The Tin Box by Louise Headley

It was 10.30.am when Miriam arrived in Edinburgh. She was going to a special exhibition at the Novo Museum, the highlight being exhibits from the First World War 1916.

As she approached the museum she could see the military police chasing a young man wearing a mask. After making enquiries she was told that a tin box with enclosures had been stolen from the exhibition.

She was curious to find out why it had been stolen and if there was any significant relationship to a tin box in her possession passed down through the centuries to her family. Quickly she put on her invisible scarf and started looking for the masked thief. Then she saw him making a run towards a grey aerocar. She moved like a bolt of lightning and jumped into the back of his aerocar. He could feel it moving and knew it was travelling to some destination.

Then it stopped and the man, Hamish, got out and walked smoothly into a cottage in the Scottish Highlands. She followed, invisible to human eyes, and could see he had returned home to Flora, his wife. Hamish delighted in bragging to Flora how he had triggered the security mechanism and stolen the tin box. On a small table in the kitchen were other tin boxes and other old items. The idea was to sell these off at the highest price possible.

During the afternoon, an unseen hand was dropping a heavy sleeping draught into a bottle of whisky. Miriam had gone into action. Soon Hamish and Flora were in a deep sleep.

Miriam recognised the stolen tin from photographs she had seen. As she touched it, she felt a strong vibration, and it seemed to radiate a vibrant light. She opened the tin. Inside were many items – a small sketch pad, pen, comb, cigarettes and couple of pennies. Then she saw two postcards, never posted, written by Marcus Miles to Elspeth Miles his wife, dated 17th July 1916. It said “Dearest Elspeth, I miss you very much, I think of you all the time. I am all alone here in the trench. Mu companions haven’t survived. If I do not return my darling, please keep everything safe and carry on with what we have started. All my love, Marcus.

Miriam was astonished. Marcus Miles had the same name as her friend Marcus who was at present a prisoner of the Martian High Council on Mars. The tin box seemed larger on the inside like the Tardis. She touched the bottom of it, which opened up to a hidden chamber. Inside she found a piece of meteor rock and a crystal key, identical to her own.

What could this mean? Who were these people? Spies perhaps! The crystal key concerned her most. How could these two men have the same name? This was 300 years ago.

Miriam knew she had to investigate this strange discovery. She left the cottage and returned to London using Hamish’s aerocar which she left abandoned at the railway station.

She knew what had to be done. In order to find the truth she had to go within herself and make contact with her friends on the Elfin Council. She couldn’t understand why this had happened to her. There must be a mistake for there to be a second crystal key. What will the Elfin Council tell her?

Will they reveal the truth? We shall see.