It’s been a long time. So much has happened. I’ve gotten married, I’ve moved to a different state, and I’ve turned 30.
So here’s the beginning of a story…
With Screams and Axes,
PIECES OF YOU
By Mae MacCallum
On Saturday, when Joe and Kerri woke up on the first morning in their new house, they found a package waiting by the front door. Joe brought the box in and set it on the kitchen table, announcing: “First mail in the new place!” He examined the box that was addressed to both of them. “What’s this? Did you order something?”
“No, I didn’t,” Kerri said, looking at the box. “No return address, see?” She pointed to an empty corner of the cardboard.
“I guess we’ll just have to open it,” Joe said.
Getting a knife from the kitchen, Joe grasped it carefully as he slowly sliced through the packing tape. Kerri gasped and covered her mouth when Joe opened the flaps of the box, revealing a severed human foot. They both stared at it for a moment, completely in shock. Kerri was the first to be able to speak.
“Is that real?” She asked. Joe bent his face down to get a closer look at it.
“Looks real,” he said, covering his nose. “It smells real too.”
“Oh my God, who would send this?” Kerri asked, starting to breathe quickly, a whiny wheezing sound. Joe took her by the shoulders.
“Hey, calm down. It’s going to be okay,” he said, holding her close. “I’ll call the police and we’ll see what they say, alright?”
She nodded and tried to calm herself.
“Hello, my name is Joe and I need to make a report I guess.” Kerri watched him intently while he paced around the kitchen table. “Well, this morning I got a package in the mail, and when I opened it I found a human foot inside.” Kerri could hear a slight rattle in Joe’s voice. “No, I’m pretty sure it’s a real human body part.” She wondered how often the police received calls like this. “No, I don’t know why someone would send it to me.” Joe sighed heavily and started rubbing the side of his temple. “When someone’s available? When will an officer be available? Can you give me a time estimate?” Another sigh. She could hear the pitch in his voice getting higher. She’d never heard his voice sound like that before. “Okay, what should I do with it in the meantime?” Joe picked up a pen from the jar of them on the counter but didn’t write anything down. “Alright, thank you,” he said, hanging up the phone.
“What did the police say?” Kerri asked.
“Not a whole lot,” he sighed. “They’ll send someone when they can, but they warned me this isn’t a top priority. We’ll have to wait.”
“Wait? For how long?” Kerri asked.
“I don’t know, he didn’t say,” Joe said, putting his face in his hands. “The best thing to do is just keep it in the freezer for now.”
“I’m not keeping that thing in my freezer!” Kerri shouted.
“Well, where would you like me to put it?” Joe matched her tone.
Kerri took one last look at the foot as Joe folded the cardboard flaps and closed the box, carrying it to the freezer in the garage. This time, she noticed that the foot was rather small and delicate and that the toenails were painted hot pink.