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"Ah - the machine," says Leo, his face turning gray and slightly waxy. "I - yes it - uh."

"Ah, don't tell me," says Mr. Dubois, raising the hastily applied tarp. "I don't have my wife's love of machinery, but I do love a good mystery!"

"Is it a purifying machine?" asks Mr. Dubois.

"Uh - " begins Leo, but Dubois waves him down.

"No no, don't tell me, that would ruin the surprise."

Mr. Dubois inspects the device for several seconds while a bead of sweat trickles it's way down Leo's neck. It tickles, like someone tracing a line with a feather, but he doesn't dare brush it away. He feels like a rabbit staring down a fox, as though any movement might break the spell.

His boss peers at the machine and makes appreciative noises under his breath.