The magician told sixteen-year old Linda, “The first act would involve you disappearing inside the large box and when the box is opened, Mrs McNeil would come out of it.”
“What about me then?”
“There is an underground passage beneath the box. You can slip down to the basement. Mrs McNeil, was that clear? “asked the magician to the sixty year-old new performer.
Mrs McNeil nodded her understanding.
The stage was set for the performance.
“Now for our disappearing act.” the announcer said in a booming voice.
Linda smiled, parading in her outrageous costume. Then, the magician opened the lid and she crawled inside the box. He opened the box after two minutes. An old woman appeared from the box and the audience applauded. But, the magician was astonished. She was not Mrs McNeil. Had there been last-minute replacements, he thought irritably. He disliked unprofessional behaviour.
The magician hurried to the basement after his show. Finding it empty, he joined his team in the first floor. “Where is Mrs McNeil?” he thundered. No one knew where she was.
“Okay, have you seen Linda?” he asked.
“Here I am.” said a young voice.
The team looked around, but Linda was nowhere to be found.
“It is me.” said the old woman, who had appeared from the box.
“Who are you? Where is Linda?”
“I am Linda.” she sobbed. “When I made my way down the basement, I met with Mrs McNeil. She looked at me strangely and walked towards me. I felt her disappearing through me. All of a sudden, I felt exhausted and my skin shrunk. I feel that I have lived for 100 years. Oh, what am I going to do now? Give me back.” she cried.
Written for Ermilia’s Picture it & Write