Katurian is blindfolded in an interrogation room when Tupolski and Ariel enter with a large file. They introduce themselves as detectives and remove Katurian’s blindfold. Katurian is polite and apologetic, informing the men that he has never been in trouble in his life. Ariel, clearly the “bad cop,” responds, “... You have never been in trouble with the police until now. You mean.” Katurian is surprised to realize that Ariel is eager to begin torturing him, but the “good cop,” Tupolski, shuts him down. As the lead detective, Tupolski shows Katurian files which contain stories that he has written. Tupolksi intimates that Katurian’s stories are politically radical. Katurian claims that they are just stories, and he meant nothing by them. Tupolski then confirms Katurian’s name, Katurian Katurian Katurian (first, middle, and last names all the same: “My parents were funny people”), his address, and that he rooms with his brother, Michal.
Tupolski pulls out Katurian’s first story, “The Little Apple Men” and walks him through the plot, which features a little girl who is treated badly by her father. It shares themes with many of Katurian’s stories. In this one, the girl makes little dolls out of apples to give to her father. She tells him not to eat them, but he does anyway. They are filled with razor blades, and the father dies an agonizing death. That night, more little apple dolls come to the girl and whisper, “You killed our brother,” before forcing themselves down her throat and killing her.
Tupolski abruptly changes the subject to Michal, Katurian’s brother, who suffers from mental retardation. The detectives inform Katurian that Michal is not at his “special school” today, but rather in the room next door. Ariel leaves to go speak with Michal. Katurian is furious-- “my brother gets frightened easily, and he doesn’t understand these things… and I think you should just fucking go and fucking let him out of here right now!”
Tupolski ignores the outburst,