Part One

Steve immediately began to panic; thinking he was about to become a flaming, charred lump of flesh.

“Here, put these on.” Mr. Jones handed Steve something dark.

“Sunglasses? Why, are we going outside?”

“No boy, just trust me and put them on for crying out loud.” Mr. Jones put on his own thick, over-sized pair of sunglasses. They almost made him look like he was a blind man. Yet there was something intimidating in the way they rested on his face.

“Alright, whatever you say. sir.” Steve followed Mr. Jones’ lead. But the glasses didn’t have the same effect for Steve. He just looked like an elderly man leaving the optometrist office after getting his eyes checked.

They arrived at the second apartment and Mr. Jones reached into his pocket. He pulled out the large ring of keys—fiddling with them between his fingers—before finding the right one and inserting it into the door lock.

“Aren’t you always supposed to knock or something first? Steve asked.

Mr. Jones just smiled at the young man’s naivety. “Nah, sometimes it’s best to just let yourself in when it comes to some of these here rooms. You’ll figure out which ones once you get the hang of the job.”


“Alright, whatever you say.” Steve shrugged his shoulders and looked toward the door—very unsure that they should be just walking in.

“Good. You ready?” Mr. Jones asked.

“Ready for what?”

Without answering him, Mr. Jones pushed opened the door and a blinding red light poured into the hallway. Even with the extra tinted sunglasses on, it was still bright enough to make Steve squint.

“Come on now! Don’t just stand there, get in here before you heat up the whole damn building,” Mr. Jones barked.

Steve stepped into the apartment and was in awe at the sight before him; the whole room was on fire—everything from the ceiling, carpet, and furniture, to the “woman” who lived in the fiery dungeon.
Steve immediately began to panic; thinking he was about to become a flaming, charred lump of flesh. Then he looked over at a calm and collected Mr. Jones—who was reaching for a flaming book that looked like Ghost Rider had been reading it.

“Mr. Jones!” Steve screamed. “Don’t touch that. It’s going to burn you!” Steve lept forward to try to stop him, but he tripped over a small flaming table and fell face first to the fiery floor. He shot back up to his feet and shrieked like a banshee.

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