It was just laying there. The dim lights casted grey, dancing shadows on its sides, raising its mystery. This was strange. With the occasional crimes, mail rarely reached this side of town. I released a deep breath that clogged my throat, and glanced sideways down the hallways.
I hastily bend down, grabbing the oak-colored box. Smudges of dark brown littered its top and sides.
It was wet.
Locking the door behind me, i head to the kitchen bar. An occasional roar lightened the room as though god turned the flash on to take a frame lost in time; Pelting rain, filling the streets, slipping through the stairs, falling through cracks and holes, draining down the gutter, people hurrying down the roads, eager to get to the warmth of their home. Following the flash was a defining crackle through the city. I examine the box tentatively.
No address. More mystery.
The box was not heavy nor light. Just moderate. Placing it on the kitchen bar, I heave a sigh. I have not ordered anything in the past few days, and I am not expecting mail from anyone. I knew I shouldn’t open it. It surely did not belong to me. No Address? Such mystery.
However, I was curious.
Curiosity coursed through my veins, filling me up like tiny sand granules, slipping and tumbling, slowly clogging my lungs. I want to know what’s inside it.
No. I need to know what’s inside.
I yank the box, tearing through the wrappers within, scattering the ground with crumpled papers of white and beige, like a blanket of fallen snow.
Then, it showed. All that mystery was answered in a heartbeat.
Laying amidst the pearl foam beads was a small black pistol with a cassette tape. A bolt from the blue momentarily tears through my skin. I close the box scared stiff. Sharp tingling struck my eyes, as though pricks and needles were shoved in them, making me blink rapidly. I am the cat that is going to get strangled, murdered for her curiosity. It was in that moment that a thought pierced my mind, full of clarity. If something were to happen to me, I might as well know what the tape holds.
I scurry to my storage closet, thanking the heavens for my outdated radio. Although it’s old and covered in dust, it still works like magic. I return back just as fast placing it on the kitchen bar, opening the box and taking the tape. The tape had three words written on it:
LISTEN TO ME
I insert the tape into the radio, clicking on the button ‘play‘. I am met with strong static. Then slowly, like the clearing of a storm, words pierced through the white noise.
“Listen carefully, we don’t have much time.” A man’s voice sliced the air, a panicked, hurried voice.
“They’re coming for you…the secret’s out, they know. They figured out James’ spot and they’ll soon come after me. It won’t take them long before they find you too. Grab the pistol and run.” A few breaths escaped his panicked voice.
“I’m giving you a head start. Take…take the gun as soon as you hear this.” My face pales, draining of color and curiosity. Instead, it fills with apprehension. Because of two things, Firstly, I am going to die. Secondly, I know who James is. I know who the voice belongs to.
I am in trouble.
Just then, loud knocks reverberate through the door, shattering to a million pieces through the air, filling my apartment.
“Mr. Johnson.” A muffled voice yelled. “It’s the mailman.”
No, it’s not the mailman, it’s them. I thought as I grabbed the pistol.