Cee is serving a life sentence, two of them actually, but after the first one, what’s the point in counting? His sentence is the result of a disagreement over a drug transaction three decades ago. Back in the nineties, Cee was one of the largest distributors of cocaine in Chicago. He did a brisk business, and despite rising quickly to the pinnacle of his chosen vocation, he still enjoyed doing the grunt work, settling his own disputes, and collecting his own debts. The dispute that landed him behind bars for the rest of his current life and all of the one that he will never live to see involved exactly seventy-five thousand dollars.

A jolt of electricity saturates the air, an expectation of something beyond the sheer unmitigated boredom that is 95 percent of a prisoner’s day.