It rang and rang. The old house echoed with it. And even after it stopped,a fraud of sound like a scream poured through the room.
The master was calling.
But there was no one home to answer. The cook had left immediately after the wake and the houskeeper the next day. Time itself seemed caught in that house, as if the lightning and the thunder had driven it inside to be stilled by the clock.
Tthe master could hear the thunder, too. Out in the backyard. It crackled in the receiver and shook his tomb.
"For God's sake, help me!" he cried in a voice hot with panic.
And the operator answered: "Number, please."
"I need help...I'm trapped." This against the thunder.
"I beg you pardon, sir; did you say you were 'trapped'?"
"Yes. Trapped. Yes!"
"Where are you?"
"I'm ..."-static in the line--"coffin."
"I said I'm in my coffin!"