“Let me the fuck out! Come on, this ain’t funny! Let me out, Goddamnit!”
In an abandoned shoe factory in the town of Salem, Massachusetts a 4’x4’ square metal box hung suspended twenty feet in the air above a room full of ancient, rusted leather cutting machines. The box was constructed of six sheets of triple-reinforced welded metal with a small six-inch hole cut into the top center. Four padlocks secured the top sheet of metal from inside the box. Light from a single bulb hanging from the warehouse rafters shone down on the upturned face of the box’s inhabitant.
The unfortunate man in the box was ‘Lucky’ Lorenzo Fama. Originally from Dorchester, a rough neighborhood on the outskirts of Boston, Lorenzo had moved to Salem under the auspices of taking care of his aging mother. In reality he was just biding his time till the old woman died; as an only child he was the sole inheritor of his mother’s property, not to mention the sole person named in a very substantial life insurance policy.
Lorenzo, knees bent up to his chin, had woken up inside the box a little over an hour ago. Frantic and panicking he’d shifted his body violently until the box began to sway. He stopped immediately, releasing a stream of obscenities through the hole above. He sat still after that, staring up into the milky light coming from the old light bulb, his throat raw and aching from yelling.
Think, Fama, think. Where were you earlier today? He tried to remember what he had been doing prior to his incarceration. He felt all fuzzy in the head, as if he’d been drugged.
I remember! I was buying from someone … fuck, what was his name … Enrico, that’s it! The last thing I remember I was counting the money out for Enrico when we got jumped. There must’ve been five or six guys with guns and masks. Lorenzo reached his hand up to touch the spot on his right temple where someone had rifle-butted him in the head.
“Shit shit shit,” he muttered, trying to shift his body to alleviate the severe cramping in his back. As he shifted his right leg he noticed a piece of paper folded up and sitting on the bottom of the box. Maneuvering his arms he was able to retrieve the paper and bring it up to his face. He unfolded it and read it through once, then again. Folded it back up. Unfolded it and read it a third time.
“Oh my god,” he whispered.