“Mr. Bulluck, please sign here”, the bank teller asked. “Here”? replied customer Jackson Bulluck as he began writing his name. “May I have your key please”, the teller asked while unlocking the slight looking aluminum door blocking entry into the bank’s vault of safe deposit boxes. Bulluck handed the key to the woman and directed her with a wave of his hand to where his box was located.
She found the box and struggled a bit to get the keys to turn together. “Let me try”, Bulluck suggested, and the teller handed both keys to him. Carefully, he inserted them and then turned both at the same time. The locked door was released, and he removed the three by five by eighteen-inch box. The teller asked for her bank key, excused herself, leaving through the aluminum door, closing it.
Bulluck opened the top of the container and stared intently at the contents. Gone were his documents and what he saw now, were two safe deposit box keys. He removed them from his box. One key had the number 100, and the second key did not have any numbers, though it looked exactly like the key the teller had taken with her.
Bulluck took the keys and found box 100. He took his two new keys and opened the door to box 100. Inside, he found two more keys, one with the box number 999. It was cool in the vault, though now feeling stress he began to sweat. This was due to not finding his documents and opening another box that just contained keys.
Again, Bulluck took the keys, and went to find box 999. He inserted the newest set of keys and removed the box inside. He opened it, just to find another set of keys, this time with the number 435 on one. Under his breath, he cursed at himself, removed the keys and left to find box 435. There, he performed the same procedure opening yet another box. The sweat of his forehead was dripping on his face consequently burning his eyes.
Bulluck inserted and turned the keys to open box 435. He carefully removed the box, his anticipation of opening it made him conscious of his rapidly beating heart. “TWO MORE KEYS”, Bulluck screamed! And this time one with the number 911. Bulluck stepped back from the wall containing the safe deposit boxes. His heart pounding, he stumbled, dropping all the keys. Bulluck picked them up from the floor and found the 911 key and a bank key.
His mind raced, “What was going on, why is this happening, and why to me”, he thought while inserting the 911 key and turning it along with the other. He removed the box, opened it, and was struck in the face by a spring loaded, pop-up, head of a small plastic clown figurine. Bulluck, took the sleeve of his shirt, cleaning away his sweat and looked at the clown as it bobbed up and down smiling from its perch in the open box.
Bulluck grasped the seemingly amused clown head, ripping it from its box and threw it to the ground. He investigated the box, to see what remained inside. “Keys, of course, two more keys”, Bulluck stated out loud. This time though, the numbers on one of the keys were for box 666. “Right, 666”, he thought to himself, reaching into the box to obtain the keys. “Ouch” he shouted, as his fingers were singed by the key with the number 666. Bulluck reached into his pocket to retrieve his handkerchief.
Carefully, he removed the keys and proceeded to find box 666. He inserted the keys and just like with the rest, turned them until the door of the box swung back revealing the box inside.
Bulluck removed the box, placed it on an adjoining table and opened the lid. Nothing jumped out at him this time and the box contained a slip of paper. He removed the paper, which had writing on its backside. “See you soon”, was scribbled on it.
Bulluck shook and was awoken from a dream. He sat up in the bed, his muscles sore like they had been twisted and bent into unlikely contortions. He looked outside into the night; a slight breeze was coming through his window. In the shadows of the trees, he would see three black silhouettes.