In the Way Back

“I thought you said the permanent markers were in the kitchen junk drawer?” Hasina fished around in the mess of odds and ends.

“They are,” Jiro said. “Try farther in the back.”

Hasina pulled the drawer farther. “There they are. Hey, how deep is this drawer?”

Jiro didn’t look up from his book. “I dunno. I thought the markers were in the back.”

“Well, they aren’t.” Hasina kept pulling, and the drawer kept sliding out. Soon, it was longer than the counter was deep.

“So they’re not in—woah.” Jiro looked over. “The drawer can’t be that long, it’d stick out into the bedroom on the other side.”

“Tell that to the drawer.” Hasina stopped when the drawer was the length of the kitchen, before she it stretched into the dining room.

“Yeah, so… what is this stuff?” Jiro got up and peered into the drawer, now longer than he was tall. He picked up something that looked like a dried lizard. “Dried… things, little metal runes… where’d this come from?”

The drawer started withdrawing into the counter about as fast as Hasina had pulled it out. “Wait,” Hasina said. “Grab it.” She pulled pen and paper from the drawer while Jiro played tug of war with it. She tossed a slip of paper into the beyond-the-back of the drawer as Jiro lost his grip and the drawer slid closed.

“What’d you write?” he asked.

“Ten-year lease, one drawer, at 1 oz gold per year: 10 oz gold, due upon receipt.”

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