Melanie closed the door as the postman walked back down the driveway, and put the heavy parcel on the kitchen counter. It was addressed to her, but he had not ordered anything, and she couldn’t think who would be sending her a parcel.

Melanie grinned as she undid the outer wrapping, and slid the contents onto the table. However, as it emerged, she frowned. Why would anyone send her such an ugly and impractical bag? It was large, like her sports holdall, but in heavy dark material, which she had never seen before. It had many clips, straps and locks, but they were ugly, suited more to keeping in a prisoner than accessorising a handbag. The side had a pattern etched, or burned (she couldn’t tell which) into it, and although it seemed random, she felt it resembled an angry and demonic face.

Melanie put down the ugly bag and went to the fridge for a coke. She sat down at the chair, and looked for a note or letter in the pile of wrappings, but gasped when she noticed that the bag was open. Had she undone it? She didn’t think so. Melanie peered inside.

It was dark. The room was brightly lit, yet the bag remained dark. How could that be? Melanie peered closer, stretching the handles wide to let in more light. It was at this point that Melanie let out a scream the likes of which she had only heard in her most terrifying horror films. Spiky,  clawed arms reached out from the bag and scooped her into it. Although she was nine years old, there was ample room inside, as she fell and fell downwards, towards menacing red eyes. She was sure she had seen them before. And then darkness. Melanie held her breath in the silence. Where had she ended up this time?


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