Welcome to Purgatory.
There is no coffee.
The slums of Purgatory—their perpetual twilit night of gas lamps, piss-yellow bulbs flickering behind tangled Venetian blinds on the upper floors of near-condemned apartment buildings, the stench and the smoke of a garbage can lit on fire by Purgatorial hobos trying to ward off the icy hands of Hell whose freezing fog burped up from the gutters and the vents in the cracked sidewalks. The alleys of Purgatory—stinking of death, of sickness and garbage, and faintly of laundry detergent, their tangled masses defying the existence of real city blocks, the labyrinth of waiting for deliverance.
At the end of the longest alley in the darkest section of the most defiled slum in Purgatory stood a ramshackle, cramped, rusted building. It was not quite a cabin, and not quite a house, and not quite an apartment, and not quite anything at all. It had few angles that corresponded with any known or accepted architectural guidelines. The dark oaky building seemed to have given up centuries ago and leaned into a slouch, sagging in onto itself with its many shoulders held up by the surrounding brick buildings, its stomach protruding peculiarly in a structural beer belly. It had the look of a building that had seen innumerable residents who had tried to make a variety of additions and even a few improvements, all without taking into account work that had been done by anybody else. Some windows had shutters clinging to their warped ledges. Often, though, the shutters did not match, or one shutter was missing, or they hung on loose hinges, sometimes upside-down or horizontal. Here and there, window boxes had been built from random slabs of wood. The contents of said boxes (some of which were even alive!) had no rhyme or reason to their arrangements. Some areas of the house wore chipping paint on the windowsills, doors, or shutters, but none of it had been touched up since before anybody could remember.
It was a shack. No other word could logically be applied to such a structure. And the inside was even more chaotic than the outside.
This was the home and center of operations of the infamous Heaven's Mafia. The Mafia had consisted of an almost infinite number of family generations, and more would follow, and all would be forgotten. At the time that concerns us, however, the sprawling palace contained a Mafia of twenty-five members, male and female both, though there were considerably fewer women. The Mafia's respected capo was the wolfish Angelo Dimorte...