Death, grim and hollow-eyed, was the first to arrive, ahead of schedule as usual. He received the forwarded letter while paying a patron a visit in old Mesopotamia and immediately flew to Paris, hailed a cab to his small flat, entering only long enough to pack a carry-on, returned to the cab, circled back to the airport then bid adieu to the old world from out his window seat and prepared for the long journey to America by striking up a conversation with the decrepit and dying old man sitting next to him. Upon arrival at the designated back alley entrance, and with some reluctance, he checked his scythe at the door but refused to disrobe of his black cloak, cryptically proclaiming, “It does not leave my shoulders until another time and another place.” He entered the room with the hood drooping over his dark and cavernous eye sockets, hiding his prominent forehead, and with both hands in his hidden pockets. He walked up to the round table and withdrew the letter, the tattered edge exposed where he ran his bony finger to open it. He placed the letter on the table then withdrew from his other pocket, two dice carved out of pelvic bone, with numbers ranging from one to six etched in red roman numerals on each die, rolling the bones upon the granite top. Satisfied when the dice terminated their roll on twelve, he pulled back a chair, remarking on its heaviness, sat down, put the dice back in his hidden pocket then kicked his feet up onto the granite edge while scrutinizing the room.