The claustrophobic, twisting stairwell of bare rock deposits you into a room that seems too tight and too long.
Jars of Cool Pics
, Dank Memes
and Cursed Images
line the shelves running to the cluttered, overcrowded desk at its end. This is where the Pic Master would normally be found, hunched over his dusty tomes and the rugged, cast-iron instruments of his twisted science. It is a sight that has become all too familiar since you began visiting him months ago. Or was it years ago?
The sound of your footsteps seems too loud as you step into the dim half-light that fills his humid, subterranean chamber. Your heart pounds in your ears as you allow yourself to be led forth by some unknown force. You pass by the cantankerous, indecipherable machinery that crowds the center of the room. They look to you more like towering piles of rusted-out industrial equipment and assorted scrap metal than the arcane bones of the Pic Master's mysterious abilities.
The Pic Master is not here. He is out, scouring the world for more pics to feed to his darling machines. You approach his desk, trembling. You should not be here in his absence. You know
this. Yet here you are.
To your disbelief, the box is there, at the center of the desk as if awaiting you. You run your hands over the grooves of the serpentine patterns etched into its top. It is... warmer than you expected. In the center of the winding, floral patterns, the word CRINGE
stares back at you, beckoning.
But the Pic Master forbade you. Warned you. Spoke of the unknowable horrors that lie within. But could the contents of this forbidden Box of Cringe really be so bad as to usher in the end of days? For only a moment you hesitate.
And then you open it.