Chapter 2:

Puppet Show

White Box [One Shot]

A droplet of sweat stained the carpet floor. The darkened theatre felt like an empty void. Being locked in a vast room with strangers wasn't so comfortable for Alice. She sat there, stressed, tapping her feet against her seat.

A hand blasted out from the darkness, pulling Alice into her seat.

Alice's stress was overhauled with horror; adrenaline raced through her veins, as she slowly turned her head. A face shrouded in darkness smiled at her. Though Alice was used to the things of this alien place, that didn't mean she wasn't afraid of it. Keeping a poker face, she gazed at the shadowy figure, hiding her fear.

"You're new here...! Aren't you...!?" The shadow covered stranger asked with a little girl's voice.

"And who might you be?" Alice nervously faked a smile.

"Oh me?! I'm-"

Suddenly a voice echoed across the room, cutting the stranger off.

"The event shall start." The voice said.


"Everyone, please be quiet as the event shall start soon..."

"Alright..." The shadowed girl gave up. "I'll talk to you later..." Defeated.

With the stranger finally gone, Alice brought her gaze back to the stage. Confusingly, nothing was there; nothing but the checkered wall and the lifted crimson curtain.

Rattling noises suddenly raced around the room. Something hit the stage- wait nothing fell. A human-sized wooden puppet was caught by it's strings.

It's appearance haunted Alice. It's hair was like the end of a broom, it's eyes as black as the dark room, it's nose pointy like a medieval dagger.

It stayed motionless, gazing at the horrified girl, as if it were judging her for taking her eyes off the stage.

Then, it's body violently shot around the stage; with it's eyes glowing red, it's top hat fell onto the floor, holding it's head as it swung it's upper body round about the stage. It's freakish dance brought a cold sweat to Alice's face.

Suddenly, It stopped with it's eyes covered in shadows.

Blasting out from it's face, a yellow glow shown from the stage. It picked it's top hat back up from the stage floor. Grabbing the microphone stand with it's razor sharp claws, it stood still, dead silent for a moment.

"LADDDIEEES and GENTLEMENNNN!!!" The puppet screamed, causing Alice to slam against her seat in shock.

"I welcome you ALLLL to our FANTASTICAL event!!!" It continued, raising it's arm free of the microphone to the air as Alice slowly recovered from the shock, her heart beating loud.

"I am your MAGNIFICENNNNT GAME MASTERRRR...!" It paused, introducing itself as it it were a wrestler "IGOR DUMPHREY!!!"

"I'd like to ESPECIALLY welcome you ALLL to the WHITE BOX!!!"

Taking a pair of eyeglasses out of it's tuxedo jacket, it said:

"AND for ALL of you CURIOUS SOULS!!!"

It placed them onto it's face as it's yellow glow turned blue.

The puppet smiled for a brief moment before clearing it's throat to speak.

"I shall now explain the enigma, which is the White Box." The puppet said in a calm tone of voice, drastically different from before, calming Alice.

"The White Box is a society created by an inventor. Your inventor, the one who created every single one of you; and of whom I shall not speak the name of... Yet." 

"All I shall say... Is that it is your choice if you wish to walk down the path he walked... Or choose the other one, the longer one." Igor walked back and forth, hanging above the stage.

"You may not understand the things which I pontificate, however I assure you... You will soon."

"But as for me." It chuckled, pointing at itself. "I am but a puppet on a string. I have no future... But you..." Igor pointed at the audience. "You young and strong souls. You can choose your own destiny, so when time comes, choose it... and don't end up like me, a puppet on a string..."

The puppet ended it's talk.

Igor's speech intrigued Alice. It's words lingering within her mind, she couldn't get her mind off of what it said.

For the first time in her life, Alice felt a mysterious urge. 

She felt that something was wrong with that speech... Something! She knew it... But she didn't understand anything about herself, or anything about the world, no, nothing at all. 

Looking at the ground, she complicated the events that happened, allowing herself to think once again. 

Only to be slapped in the face by reality. Reality being her right hand. 

She couldn't digest everything that had happened to her. She was so confused, so overwhelmed, her stress choked her. 

Her eyes let out some tears as she rubbed her nose red.

She could feel a gaze.

Looking around in aggression, she saw her neighboring theatre-goers glaring at her, causing more than just her nose to become red. Alice blushed out of embarrassment.

Alice was brought back to reality; returning from her world of thought, she gave her attention back to Igor.

The puppet's glasses were gone. it's eyes glowed yellow. Alice noticed a stain on it's cheek... Is that?...

She ignored the stain, bringing her attention back to what the puppet was saying.

It was holding a piece of paper, looking at the last few words, spouting some... Names? None of them had any significance to Alice.

Except one...


A wave of fear washed over her, drowning her in a sea of anxiety. Alice discovered one of her greatest fears... The stage.

Alice was bound to a weight that was unwilling to move, she knew she had to get to that stage or something extremely bad might happen to her... But how? How could she defy her puppeteering emotions?

Alice brought her gaze to the group of people already standing on the stage next to the freakishly terrifying puppet. Her eyes dashed around the theatre... Untill they stopped.

Alice's eyes paused on one person. His hair revealed to be brown, his eyes not red but auburn.

Alice was free, her body no longer petrified with anxiety, though still hesitant. She dragged her way, fidgeting, to the stage. Passing the many staring eyes that were covered in darkness. She entered the light.

Her eyes were illuminated in the warmth, glowing sky-blue, with her hair shining as if it were gold.

"Oh hey you made it." Victan smirked, waving a hello.

"Yeah..." Alice slightly smiled.

A hand shot through the warm air, pulling Alice away. It was a little girl, smiling at her with her arms in the air, rejoicing.

"Hey! We can finally talk!"

Seeing the stranger out of the shadows, Alice didn't find her so terrifying anymore. Her light-pink gaze sparkled on the stage, as her dark-brown hair drifted. 

"I'm Lace! What's your name?!" She asked with her hand out, ready for a handshake.

Alice didn't try to ignore the stranger anymore; because now she wasn't a stranger. Now she was a friend...

"It's Alice." She replied with a genuine smile.

"Alright!!!" The puppet declared, interrupting Alice's wholesome moment.

"Let us GET this EVENT...!" It announced, almost making Alice deaf "STARTED!!!"

Black Pawn to D5


White Box [One Shot]