A thick layer of dust covered the shelves of the battered wooden framework of pigeon-holes at the end of the otherwise empty room.
It had been a long time since anybody had used this message room, or even this outpost.
Agent Jakov’s eyes snapped back into focus, darting all over the bric-a-brac in the cubby-holes. He began swapping the items, slowly, then more rapidly; roller-skate for an etch-a-sketch, an empty vitamin bottle for a seashell…
After forming the coded message, he turned up the collar of his coat and departed.
He’d return in a week to check for a response.