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The box in the second drawer to the left

by Ang920

He sprinted away, not daring to look back, his footsteps echoing down the hallway like distant gunshots. He just had to get to the back stairway and up to his office on the second floor, where it was. In the desk in his office, the second drawer on the left always locked never opened. It was inside that drawer, safely tucked away in a small box, and he needed to protect it. He darted up the stairs, the loud footsteps behind him urging him to move faster. 

At reaching the top of the stairs he bolted into the office and locked the door. The lock would not keep them out forever but it should give him just enough time. 

"Second drawer down to the left" he muttered to himself as if he would have needed a reminder. Kneeling down in front of the large mahogany desk, he reached for the key he kept around his neck. He always kept in there, so that he knew that the box was safe. He fumbled around with the small key , trying to steady his shaking hands just enough so he could unlock the desk drawer. 

Finally, he was successful. He slowly slid open the drawer and exhaled a sigh of relief when he saw the box was still there. He quickly snatched it up and held it tight to his chest. He just had to escape through the window and down the side of the house without anyone noticing him and then...

By the time he heard the gunshots it was too late. The bullets burrowed themselves into his exposed back sending him and the box to the ground. He had not even heard the door open. His vision blurred and he was no longer able to move, no longer able to protect the box. He had failed.

A man stepped into the room. He let out a soft chuckle as bent down a picked up the box. This had been all too easy. The man grinned down at his highly sought after prize, just like a cat grinning down at a caught mouse. He then shot two bullets into the injured mans head. 

He had gotten his treasure, killing the man was just an added bonus. 

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Points: 292
Reviews: 1

Sun Jul 24, 2016 12:14 pm
TombRaiderFan wrote a review...

Hi, this is my first review so I'm sorry about anything dumb I might say.

Okay, so firstly I want to say the title is really good. It grabs people's attention and I just love it.

Now on to the story. The way you started it is really good and doesn't make the reader feel bored.The box makes the reader want to know more about its content/s and I like how you made it a mystery so that the only thing the reader will know about the box is that whatever is inside it is worth killing for.

This story is now one of my favorites. It's really well written and its concept is nice and original.
And I hope you continue writing stories like this one.

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27 Reviews

Points: 61
Reviews: 27

Sun Jul 24, 2016 1:01 am
spectator wrote a review...

Hey, there! It's spectator and (you guessed it) I'm here to review your short story!

The first thing that drew me to this work was the title. I love lowercase titles, I love long titles, I love overly descriptive titles. So, this title is kind of perfect.

The second thing I loved about this was that it started right in the middle of the action. That makes this story very exciting. I love reading stories like this. I love writing stories like this.

The third thing I love about this story is that you never find out what's in the box. You leave your readers wonder and that's really cool.

Here's a few quick minor suggestions:

1) The first sentence could be two. Like this "He sprinted away, not daring to look back. His footsteps echoing down the hallway like distant gunshots." That way it's not one big clunky run-on and it looks a lot cleaner.

2) "always locked, never opened." you could use a comma here. Or maybe just get rid of "never opened", because it's redundant and already established by the words "always locked".

3) To me "At reaching the top of the stairs" sounds a little awkward maybe something along the lines of "Once he reached..." or "As soon as he reached..." or "Upon reaching..."

4) "The lock would not keep them out forever, but it should give him just enough time." comma!

5) "he reached for the key he kept around his neck." I think it would be cool to describe the key or maybe the chain which it's kept on??

6) The transition from 4th paragraph to the 5th paragraph really stood out to me. I dislike "then..." - this is too obviously ominous. I also feel like you need something before the line "By the time he heard the gunshots it was too late." maybe an onomatopoeia for the sound of the gunshot.

My Major Suggestion (there is only one):
If you are going to kill off your main character, readers should care about him and at this point there isn't an adequate amount of detail for me to do so.

I know approximately three things about your character:
He is being chased - which tells me more about what's inside the box then him.
He is a man - which doesn't tell me much, outside of assumptions I can make based of our society's jaded definition of masculinity.
He really loves a box - this detail makes me care the most about 'the man'. Attachment is a very human emotion and one that I can relate too.

My advice to you is add more details (it doesn't need to be excessive, I don't need a lengthy backstory, just a few details here and there) that make readers relate, sympathize, and care about the main character. And maybe add a few more details to make readers see the cruelty of the other character.

Other than that I don't have anymore critiques for you! This was a really cools story!!! Keep up the good work!!

Continue writing! Have a cute rest of your day/life!
~ spectator

P.S. This is a good song. You should listen to it!

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46 Reviews

Points: 61
Reviews: 46

Tue Jul 19, 2016 5:05 am
thecolorofthesky wrote a review...

Hello there lovely! I'm thecolorofthesky here to review. To start let me say that to me, this story seems like an inbetweener. By that I mean that it is neither a very specific action story story, nor a strongly themed one. That's certainly not a bad thing! I'm here to offer a few suggestions for you to edit this into becoming a very amazing and elevated story. So as I see it, you can go one of two ways. First you can take the Hemingway approach and use less description to only focus on the theme/message. Maybe read "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place" or "Hills like White Elephants" by Hemingway if you want to try that style. He creates a very deep iceberg effect with very little character description. The second way would be to expand on your story through vivid imagery. The two characters are not clearly characterized. Get creative! Describe not only their physical traits, but their psychological, and personality traits as well. It seems like you were just starting to develop these characters. Build a character that people can connect to in some way. The total evil villain? The protagonist with a dark past? It's up to you. Also add more imagery of the settings and especially the box. Is it cold, dulled from damage, gray metal? Is it carved auburn wood? It would also be more cohesive with a backstory. Why is he after the box? You could always publish this in parts, but you need a sturdy backstory to drive the plot. You could introduce the tension between the two in the beginning, or let the audience see the issue develop throughout the plot. Play with plot twists and "ah ha!" moments! The ending doesn't leave the audience satisfied or on edge, ready to read more. Without more background, it's baffling as to what the connection between the box and the two men is. Maybe it could develop into a stronger action story, or a story based on the theme "what is worth dying for?". This story has a lot of potential, but it needs expansion to blossom into a stunning flower of a story. My advice in short is to own the story. Drive it, weave it, flaunt it. You are its creator so make it your work of art. You have some good phrases and literary elements. I like the phrase

The bullets burrowed themselves into his exposed back
because it gives the bullets life. Take phrases like this, and run with them! This is definitely a good start with good framework. Keep writing this! I would love to read your edits. Let me know if you revise!
Always keep creating art!

Never express yourself more clearly than you are able to think.
— Niels Bohr