The Skeleton Key

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The master thief locked another door behind him, hoping to further the distance between himself, the competition, and the Minotaurs in pursuit.  As he gasped for air, he could still feel the rumble of hoofs on stone reverberating through the floors and walls. “Thud, thud, thud…” The menacing sounds of harrowing screams and a certain death suffocated his lungs with dread. Such was the challenge to steal the famed Skeleton Key, the key of all keys that could open any lock in the wider world. A coveted prize worthy of one who called himself master thief indeed.

With no time to lose, the master thief advanced through the labyrinth of doors. One by one, his nimble hands picked the locks with the haste of a stenographer at an auction. The difference being that entry required a bid of one’s life with no clear insurance of a winner. Whoever said auctions were fair game never had to put their life on the line! But as the hours ticked away, progress slowed and the once murderous echoes of casualty had been replaced by a quietude of unease. The Minotaurs were listening for that next jingle. Fearing that the slightest snap of a broken pick would give a heading, the master thief could do nothing but remain still.

Morning returned with the sound of thrashing. The hunt resumed but the master thief now had second thoughts about the ordeal. Was the Skeleton Key just a legend? Would he run out of provisions before finding it? Would he find his way back to the exit? Perhaps cutting his losses would be the best course of action. As he weighed his options, the sound of doors snapping in two intensified and he choose the latter. Run and live to fight another day he thought.  But just as his convictions were overturned, all the locks around him bolted shut and vanished. The sound of impending doom subsided like an apparition facing a strong wind. A realization then dawned on him. There was never a Skeleton Key to be found but always one in the making. How else could it open every lock in the world? Thus the master thief remained and trained his hands to become a master key.

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