Cadence opens her eyes and rolls over to look at her clock. 3:15 AM. She reaches for the glass of water on the nightstand and her hand touches an unfamiliar object.
Turning on her bedside lamp, she stares down at the velvet pouch.
She is alone in the house, save for her two cats. Where did this come from? Trembling, she picks it up, examining it. Lush blue velvet, no markings, no sign of where it came from. She unties the silk cord and inside is a small wooden box with a crescent moon carved on top. A music box.
Shaken, she winds up the box and the music begins. She recognizes the song immediately as It’s Only a Paper Moon. Wiping her tear-stained face, Cadence feels peace as the music comes to an end.
She does her best to go back to sleep, but her mind is full of questions. How did the box get on her nightstand? And why that song, of all songs? Counting the notes to the song instead of sheep, she drifts back to sleep.