Dori’s scream of anguish hadn’t done it justice, nor had the steady stream of tears.  All they had done was leave her hoarse and salt crusted as she clutched at the broken mess in her arms.  Ep swore he hadn’t meant to break it, but she had seen the way he looked at it.

Dori had always referred to it as “her box of treasures” never thinking a thing about it, but Ep’s eyes had gone round and wide at the offhand mention of treasure.  It was a look which was not lost on Dori.  So she kept the tiny coffer near her when she was home and put it out if sight when she was gone.  Hoping that Ep would leave it alone.  However, curiosity is one of the unstoppable forces in the world which, unfortunately, only grows.

Dori looked at what was left of the small hand carved wooden box.  The lid hung at an angle, the panels were all cracked, and the contents…were scattered to the winds.  She ran her thumb over the small inscription that ran along the bottom, a secret remembrance of her mother.

When you count your blessings leave hope for last.

The shadow of a smile shone through and Dori’s tears finally abated.  Yes trust, restraint, and good grace had vanished as soon as the first splinters appeared, but hope remained even now.

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I based this re-telling of Pandora’s Box on Aesop’s Fable where in the husband not the wife opens the box allowing all the good and useful things to escape back to Olympus (as seen on http://www.theoi.com).  I hope you enjoyed the story and the new perspective.

Aesop, Fables 526 (from Babrius 58) (trans. Gibbs) (Greek fable C6th B.C.) : “Zeus gathered all the useful things together in a jar and put a lid on it. He then left the jar in human hands. But man had no self-control and he wanted to know what was in that jar, so he pushed the lid aside, letting those things go back to the abode of the gods. So all the good things flew away, soaring high above the earth, and Elpis (Hope) was the only thing left. When the lid was put back on the jar, Elpis (Hope) was kept inside. That is why Elpis (Hope) alone is still found among the people, promising that she will bestow on each of us the good things that have gone away.” [N.B. By “in human hands,” the story of Pandora delivering the jar to mankind is implied. However, in this version it is apparently the husband who opens it.]

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