Posts Tagged ‘Eldon Cene’

Murders in Progress…

November 4, 2012

Out of Gas

(Episode 11)

The bus dropped Leland off back at the Sheriff’s office.  Leland called Ramey, while Ruth tossed him the keys.

‘Ramey,’  Leland said into the phone, catching the keys.

“I’ve put on a pair of flannel pajamas’ and poured myself a big glass of wine and started a roaring fire and I’m just sitting here, “ Ramey lisp, in the slightly feminine voice.  “It’s been quite a couple days!”

“…You sound gay,’” Leland said, completely thrown.

“I’m not leaving the house today, Leland.  I need this quiet time to recoup, and to re-center!  I feel I’ve undergone a horrible psychic invasion,”  Ramey lisp.  Leland could hear the wine gurgle as it was poured.

“Ramey.  I need to see you, now.”

“And I don’t see what good I could do for you there, now,” Ramey spit it out like a mad cat.  “It’s all over now!  It’s too late.  I’ve been deflowered.  I just hope that monster didn’t give me some kind of disease.”

“Ramey, you get your ass in here right now, or I’m coming out there.”

“You know, where was the Law when I came to you?”  Ramey hissed.  “Huh?  You couldn’t be bothered.  You had pressing business. ..”

“How do you know Nancy Loomis, Ramey?”  Leland growled.

“What does it matter?  It’s too late now.  I’m dead!”


“You heard me.  The monster beat me.  God my jaw hurts.  Then cut my head open, and pulled my brains out, and cut my head off…”  Ramey cried shrilly.  Then Leland heard the gurgle of more wine.

“How do you know all that?  ….   Ramey?  Are you there?!”

“Yes.  So I’m just sitting here, curled up here, now, on my pillow … (gurgle)…ing this wine!”  Ramey sighed.  “And not going anywhere!  Because let me tell you, I feel as if I’d been raked over the coals.  I feel humiliated, and abused, and horribly battered, and sore all…  (gurgle)  …and frankly,” Ramey whispered in a low voice, “pissed as all Hell! I think, Leland,” his voice slowly rose.

“And I’m the only male nearby,” Ramey whispered.

Leland said…   “What?”

“ I’m really worried.  Perhaps you could come out here, Leland.  Because I’m really worried.  She’s saying terrible things, and swearing…”

“You’re both there, at the house?”

I’m not going anywhere,” Ramey whined.

Leland didn’t know what to say.

“I’ll get there as soon as I can, Ramey,” Leland promised.  He didn’t know whether to whisper or shout.  So he did both, repeating himself twice.

Leland left the office, after leaving instructions with Ruth to Call Doc Chatham and have him patched to the patrol car.  Then Leland hit the lights on the squad car and with sirens screaming headed out of town.  Three miles out, he ran out of gas.

“That damned Ruth!”  Leland beat on the wheel.  The patrol car was stopped by the side of the road, in the midst of nowhere, lights flashing.

Leland got out.  As he stood there, he noticed what looked to be two guys approaching slowly in a faded pickup streaked with manure.  Leland unsnapped his holster, as the pickup rattled to a stop there in the road beside.

“You got a problem there, Shair-eef?”

As it had approached, Leland realized it was just Bob Weeds with his Great Dane, ‘Vomit’, who always rode sidekick.  Bob Weeds spit a slurry of tobacco juice out the window and smiled.

“No problem,” Leland replied.

“Cause a lot of us was wonderin’ whether or not you had made any progress on thet headless murder a week or so back, and hadn’t heard anything.  Some of us was thinkin’, maybe you’d run out of gas.”  Bob nodded at the can of gas.  He looked about to laugh, but bit it off with a glance from Leland.

Leland stepped around the truck, invading  Bob’s territory, and smacked the hood as he passed, smiling broadly.   Bob jumped.  Vomit started barking.

“Shut up!  Vomit.  Damn it, would you shut up!!”

“Well, we just about got the head and neck connected Bob.”  Leland drilled Bob Weeds with his eyes, staring in the window.

“That’s good.”  Bob nodded.  “That’s a start I guess.”

“Yes it is, Bob.”  Sheriff Leland agreed.

They did the stare down.  Finally, Bob was the one to blink.

“Uh, so good.  Good,” Bob said gruffly.

“And we’re looking to having more definitive developments to report in the next few days.”  Leland had to shout this latter while staring directly into Bob Weeds eyes, which had followed him nervously as Leland has strode around the hood of the pickup.

“Shut up! Vomit.  Would ya shut up!!”  It took Bob Weeds some doing to quiet his dog..

“Well, that’s good.  That’s real good…”  Bob mumbled as he turned his glance back to the roadway and put the truck into gear.  “So we’ll be seeing you now, Sheriff.”

Leland gave him a pleasant, nothing’s wrong, how are you doing neighbor wave – and Burt Weeds drove on.  Then Leland started filling his tank with the spare 5 gallons he kept for stranded roadside motorists.

This was a bit of puzzling behavior for Bob Weeds to be exhibiting, Leland considered.   He usually just slumped around with his head down doing whatever a hen-pecked dairy farmer did around here for a life and a livelihood.   With few friends but a long family history in the valley, everyone knew who Bob Weeds was.   There wasn’t much more to it than that, usually.  But it struck Leland now that he was acting downright cocky.  Downright cocky was what usually proceeded downright arrested.

‘Which really doesn’t  fit Bob Weeds’, Leland thought as he replaced the gas caps.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress…

November 4, 2012

Editor:  We felt that at this point in our serialization of Murders in Progress…  a list of the important story characters  might be of help to our dear reader/followers.


Murders in Progress…  Cast of Characters

Sheriff Leland Kelly:  Kimmel County Sheriff

Ruth:  Kimmel County Sheriff’s secretary (wears many hats)

Ramey:  local dentist/psychic

Clarisse Clemens:  First murdered woman.

Nancy Loomis:  Murdered CEO of a five million dollar yearly revenue  food accessories business/tagged as the ‘ Muffin Lady’ in the local press

Stan:  Crazed, serial killer/smoker

Bob Weeds:  Stan’s accomplice/local farmer

Harriet Weeds:  Bob’s suspicious wife

Nancy Gillis:  Kimmel County High School student reporter

Burt Campbell:  Kimmel County High science teacher

Merlin Travers:  local veterinarian

Benny Green:  mobster/loan shark

Delores:  Bennie’s Office Manager

Duane:  Bennie’s enforcer/dull cousin

Joe:  cashier at the MiniMart

Vern Smithers:  local butcher, runs a mobile slaughterhouse, dresses wild game, some taxidermy

Mayor Pete:  also Coroner/ Grocery Store Owner/Postmaster / Campaign Manager for his wife’s re-election campaign to the state legislature

Agent Hailey:  FBI

Agent Curtis:  FBI, agent in charge

Doc Chatham:  General Practitioner, elderly

Agent Hailey:  FBI

Agent Curtis: FBI

Benny Green:  mobster/loan shark

Vern Smithers:  runs mobile slaughterhouse, does wild game dressing ,   local butcher

Ralph Bunch:  local alcoholic/poet/artist

Mr. Wallace:  journalism teacher at Kimmel High School

Mr. Buckley:  community activist

Bobby Spencer:  student who runs the tours

Jerry Gillis: Nancy’s dad

Bill Porter: farming neighbor of the Weeds

George Everlee:  a farmer who commissioned Ralph to paint his prize heifer.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress…

October 22, 2012

Merlin the Veterinarian

(Episode 9)


Leland thought he’d better give himself a while before he called Ramey.  So he called Burt Campbell, the Kimmel County High’s science teacher.  After that, he tromped around taking photos.  And after that, he phoned Ruth, told her what was up, and by that time Merlin Travers, the Veterinarian had showed.  Big animal, small animal, human; Merlin didn’t discriminate.  But Leland always put Merlin’s charge into the Sheriff’s Canine Unit accounts column, because not having a dog was easier to explain away than not having a horse.

“What’s up, Leland?”  Merlin said.  He had parked his Range Rover immediately behind the parked Mercedes.  Leland handed Merlin some latex gloves and shoe booties.  And while Merlin put them on Leland explained.

“Woman here, by the name of Nancy Loomis it appears, parks her new Mercedes by the side of the road after its headlights have been shot out.  Then she gets led off into the woods by two guys, it appears.”  He motioned.  “Try not to step on any of the footprints or to tromp on any of the evidence, of course.”  He rolled his hand.  “They have a bit of a walk, and then she’s murdered about 30 yards in.”

Merlin whistled.

“I want you to have a look at her.  Tell me what you think?”

“Okay.”  Merlin nodded.  “Where’s Pete, our Kimmel County Coroner?”

“Sister City Convention business,” Leland replied, with a shake of his head.

“Aaahhh.”  Merlin said.  “Love the government.  Work hard.  Always short-handed.”

“Shut yer yap and just think about who’s paying you,” Leland retorted.

“Yessir.”  Merlin smirked.


Merlin kept his promise.  He just whistled lowly when he saw the mess that was left.

The first thing Merlin did, after standing and studying the scene silently, was to set the rectal thermometer.  Then he began to examine the wounds.  “He broke her hand for some reason.  Maybe she had a gun?  Maybe some of this blood is theirs?”

Leland nodded.  He’d checked the Mercedes while waiting for the Vet, and sure enough, there was an empty holding clip right behind the ignition.   He silently thanked his good fortune that Pete was on that Sister Cities tour this week.  Merlin was the much better deal.

“Sideswiped her.”  Merlin pointed to the grotesquely bent knee.  “Probably in order to incapacitate her.  “Hands tied with a plastic tie.”  He probed around with his pencil.  “Coat pocket ripped, burnt pencil-sized holes.”  He laughed.  “Maybe that’s where she carried her gun?”  Leland nodded.  Then Merlin began to examine the wounds.  Finally, he stood.

“I had a schizophrenic who did his dog something like this, years ago,” Merlin rubbed his face hard, as if to rub away the vision.  “He thought the dog must have had some kind of a transmitter or walkie talkie hidden somewhere on it – because he said he could “hear the dog talking to him”.  So he went looking.  “Like this guy, he pushed his hands into the skull cavity and let the brains squeeze through his fingers as if they were clay, looking for it.”  Merlin pantomimed it.  ”Apparently the dog had been bringing up some sore points and just wouldn’t let it drop.”  Merlin glanced at Leland.  “Could piss anyone off.”

“Yeah.”  Leland scowled.

“The guy started taking his meds again, washed his hands, bought another dog, and everything was fine.”  Merlin removed the rectal thermometer.

“So you’re saying I should just hang this guy up by his balls and beat him with a stick until he promises to start taking his meds again,” Leland growled.

“No.  You need to shoot him.  There’s obviously two of them.  Which means the guy’s not off his meds.  Or there is something else going on.  Something much more long-standing, I’d say.  Because he’s able to recruit help.  And I’m guessing he pays them with a little ‘whoopee!’”  Merlin nodded at the spread knees and the shredded clothing.  “You really need to have the body examined though, and do the whole rape work up.”

Leland nodded.

“Is that it?”

“You think I have another couple murders around here for you to look into?”

Merlin’s eyebrows rose.  He took a look at thermometer, then wiped it clean and put it away.  “I figured she must have died about 12 hours ago.”  He sighed.  “Can I go, then?  There’s a dog who’s breeching, and she’s about 20 miles away.”

“Sure.  Get lost,” Leland said.

“Will do.”  Merlin waved and walked off through the undergrowth.

Leland stayed to gaze around the scene and think some more.  Then he trudged back out to the roadway to welcome the ‘kids’.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress

October 15, 2012

Setting of the Crime

The Only Law Within 50 Miles

(Episode 8)

Leland was heading out the door when Ruth caught him.  He had a list of known sex offenders he intended to question first, and then the farmers who lived round the area where the decapitated corpse was found.  The body and physical evidence found at the scene had been sent off to the county lab, and he was still awaiting the results on that, which he wasn’t too optimistic about.  The county corner was an elected position.  And theirs was also Mayor, Postman, Building and Roads Inspector, and was promoting his wife for State Representative to boot; an over-achieving quadruple dipper.  So that if Leland got back an autopsy with a finding with more than cause of death as, “corpse is missing head”, he would be greatly surprised.  If anybody was going to stop the dead bodies from popping up around here, it was not going to be their coroner.

“Ramey, the Dentist, called again,” Ruth said.

“You mean our “only one within fifty miles as the crow flies”?”  Leland stopped in the doorway to stand for a moment with his eyelids shut.

“That would be the one.  And he sounds pretty broken up, this time Leland.  All blubbery and crying, I think, from what it sounded like over the phone.   He’s a mess, it sounds like.”


“Yeah.  You might want to have a talk with him.”

“I would, but he’s called at an awkward time,” Leland nodded.  “Tell him that I’m tied up at the moment with someone out there who is not extracting teeth…  he’s extracting whole heads.  And as the “only the practicing dentist within fifty miles as the crow flies”, he should appreciate the severity of that.  So tell Ramey that the only law within fifty miles as the crow flies is out trying to nail this asshole – and will talk to Ramey when he gets back!  Maybe!”

Leland let the door slam as he left.

“Gotcha,” Ruth answered.

Leland had already questioned two former sex offenders by mid-morning, and he was on his way to the third when he passed the fancy Mercedes left parked on the highway side.  It was a nice day and there were lots of flowers roadside, so Leland hadn’t thought much of it until he’d trolled past moving slowly and noticed that both front headlights were broken.

Instead, he had been mulling over the two interviews he’d just given.  He’d ask all the appropriate questions and written down their alibis and answers, which they had signed off on.  But what he’d really been looking for was evidence that they had a buddy or access to a pickup truck, and neither had.  In fact, both appeared to be broke, jobless, all alone, and depressed, not even having enough energy to argue.  In fact, it had been all Leland could do to get the second one to speak at all.  And then, once he’d started, the unshaven guy had just gushed and tried to bribe him with some ”right-out-of-the-oven brownies” not to leave, chasing him right down the steps and back into his patrol car with a hot pad and a pan.

Physical evidence can sometimes come as a relief; especially the kind with that soft leather interior you can smell, Leland noted.  So, it was with some relief that Leland turned the car around and headed back to question the Mercedes.

‘Well, usually,’ he amended that thought, when he saw the crows hovering above the trees somewhere off in the woods.  He walked over to the Mercedes and immediately got a bad feeling.  “Oh shit,” he mouthed silently to himself and undid the snap to his holster.

The headlights were not just broken.  They had been shot out.  Drawing his pistol he followed an obvious trail through the undergrowth and trees for about thirty yards until he came upon the scene of what was obviously another crime.  Dried blood was everywhere.  And Leland put away his pistol.  All that was left were the pickings…

He taped off the scene, called his friend the local Vet, and made it back to the car, but found it locked.  He scanned the car’s interior.  Nothing seemed amiss.   It look Leland another ten or fifteen minutes to pop the locks and have a look inside.  Nothing still seemed amiss.  He checked the trunk.   Nothing was strewn all over.  The dash box and other storage slots were all shut.  Neat as a pin.  Leland soon found the registration and had a look at it:  ‘Nancy Loomis’.  The name gave Leland a chill; then a raging anger which tore right up through him.

“Ruth!”  Leland growled on the phone.  “When was it that Ramey left me that first message?”

“I don’t know exactly.  I can look it up.  But it was a couple days ago.”

“Do that.  And call Ramey.  Tell him I’d love to see him to have a chat, and soon!  Ask him to drop by the office, if he would?”

“Gotcha Chief.”  Ruth always called Leland,  Chief or Boss! when he was in that mood.  And today, as much as she was able, she even tried to enunciate the capital letters.

“You know what?  Wait on that,” Sheriff Leland said, feeling another surge of anger.  “I’ll call him.”

“Sure, Boss.  Sure,” Ruth said, clicking off and removing her headset as if it were a hot potato.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress

October 8, 2012

The Road Ahead…  continued

(Soundtrack at:  )

Warning!!  X-Rated due to Poor Sex and Extreme Violence!

(Episode 7)

(Editor:  We last left Stan and Bob dragging Nancy away into the darkened woods.)

“This Benny Green ain’t going to be any use to you now, lady,” the thicker fellow said.  “Cause we’re criminals.  This a Crime!”  He bounced with some glee into the woods ahead, clearing a trail.  They walked and stumbled for a while.  “Which means we do what we want, nevertheless.”  He hitched up his britches in the darkness as he turned about to speak.  It looked like they had come to a clearing.   Nancy was just having a hard time registering what he was saying.  “Cops, Benny, the Law… We just don’t…  give them much truck, if you know what I mean.  Cause we is des-per-ate men.  Wouldn’t you say, Stan?”

Stan gave a vicious kick to the side of her leg.  Nancy gave a shrill shriek of agony as she collapsed there in the clearing.  He right leg was bent at the knee to a 90 degree angle.

“If you’re going to rape her, now would be a good time.”  The thinner man shoved her further into the ground with a boot sole on her backside, so that she was clawing the dirt and sticks like a bug.  Stan tapped a smoke out of the pack of cigarettes he carried in his shirt pocket, lit up, and stared at Bob.  “I’m going for a smoke and will get to work when I get back.”

“Right now?”  Bob said.

“I don’t see a line.”

“Okay.  I’ll just get to it, then.”

“Are you waiting for some soft music?”

“Oh, no.  No.”  Bob turned away and started undressing.   First he hunted for some place to sit, and then took off his boots.  Then he stood, turned around hunting nervously for his buttons, and undid his shirt, which he hung neatly on a bush.

As  Bob’s pink stomach flopped from his jersey,  “What the f%^k are you doing?”  Stan asked.

“Am gettin’ ready to plow the field.”  Bob grinned.

“Fuck!”  ‘My knee is ruined!’ Nancy was pissed.

“You know, by the time you get yourself all ready, and perfumed and all dolled up…”

Stan’s speech was interrupted by the pop! pop! pop! of Nancy’s small Glock firing in all directions.  She was shooting for Stan, but the guy was quick as a snake, and three times as deadly.  And Nancy couldn’t get a good bead on anything what with the darkness, her tied hands, and the gun being caught in the cloth lining of her pocket.  “Goddamned expensive coat!’  Nancy cursed silently through ragged breaths.  And fired off another: pop!

“Shit!  Shit!  Shit!”  Stan stamped on her gun hand repeatedly, like it was a striking snake.

“Really?”  Bob was confused.

“You asshole!”  Nancy swore up at Bob.  Trying to hit the big f#cker again with two shots:   pop!  pop!

Stan kicked her hard in the stomach.  Nancy threw up some blood.  Stan removed the Glock from her broken hand and tossed it to Bob.

“Really.”  Stan exhaled and pointed his cigarette at Nancy’s butt.  “Now get your pecker out and get to it.  Because…”  Stan waved with his cigarette, then turned and strode off back towards the Mercedes.  ‘It wasn’t good to get mad at your troops.  But Lord, sometimes…’    ‘Command was lonely,’ Stan finally decided,  by the time he got to the car.  He closed all the windows, turned off the lights and locked it tight.  ‘No reason to leave it for thieves,’ he thought.  Then he heard that damn bitch yelling.  So he had to tramp back through the dark woods and sticker bushes to see what Bob was up to.  And when he got there he couldn’t believe it.  The woman was yelling her head off, calling Bob every name in the book and Bob was just standing there naked and flushed pink with embarrassment at his wilted little pecker.  And the woman was still fully dressed, with her hair was full of dirt and sticks.

“What the hell?”

“I can’t do it,” Bob whined.

“Fuck!  What do you mean, you can’t do it?  It’s the most natural act in the world!  Everything does it.  Chipmunks do it.  Worms do it.  Ducks do it.  Everything in fucking Creation does it, for fuck’s sake.  Now man up, and fuck that bitch!”

“The moron’s impotent!” Nancy shouted.  “He’s f#$cking impotent, and he’s trying to be a rapist.”  She started laughing uncontrollably, and pointing.  Till Stan gave her another hard kick in the stomach.

“No Stan.  It’s true.  It’s true! I am impotent,” Bob nodded, miserably.

“And…”  The woman nodded, on her side.  “His little dick is about the size of a worm!”  She clutched her stomach and groaned.

“No you’re not!”  Stan slapped Bob hard twice.  “Now man up!!”

“Man up!…”  the woman was laughing her ass off, trying to point, and coughing and groaning.

‘Like most, this woman just didn’t have any good sense’, Stan thought.   “I like it when you make it worse for yourself,” Stan said.

“I’m a CEO and I deserve a better fucking than that!”  The woman kept shouting and glaring with such disrespect that Bob looked even more miserable than Stan thought a person could.

“How am I supposed to get it up, when she talks like that?!”  Bob whined, looking all the world like the aggrieved party, that Stan had to agree with him.  Though with the woman shouting,  “I’m a CEO and I deserve a better fucking than that!”  And Bob whining, that Stan thought for moment that he was going to lose it.

“Well, why didn’t you say so?!!!”  Stan said, smashing the woman’s jaw so hard to shut her up  – again and again – that all the teeth flew out and the rest of her face was so fractured is oozed blood like a sponge.

Nancy felt like she must have fallen into a nasty, inbred, rabid little nest of McCoys,  or was it Clampits?  That was the only thing in her addled mind which seemed could explain it.  But to tell herself the truth, her mental functions weren’t razor sharp; and she could barely count.  She knew, because she tried it… doing a real slow review of systems: “onnnntoootreeeeeeefffffoohhhhhhhhhrrrrRRR…..”

“How’s that?” Stan asked Bob, ignoring whatever it was ‘the bitch’ was trying to say.

“A little better!”  Bob said, feeling a little tingle in his member.

“Here!  Let me break a leg.”  Stan tromped on Nancy’s left thigh resting on a branch.  It broke with a snap.  Nancy let out a broken jawed shriek.

Bob smiled.   “I’m gettin’ … …a woodie,” he exclaimed.  “Here it come!”

“Well there you go,” Stan encouraged him with a pat on his shoulder.  And it was true.  He was.  They both stood there watching is grow in the moonlight as the woman moaned.  Bob gave the woman a little kick himself, and it grew all the more.

Stan couldn’t say it was much of an erection as those things go himself, but Bob was definitely excited, and quite proud of it.  “Ya just got to know how to handle ‘bitches’,”  Bob said, with another little kick.  “But she’s still dressed,” Bob noted to Stan, afraid to move or do anything for fear of losing his ‘woodie’.

“So undress her!”

Bob sighed, and knelt down, neatly unbuttoning her blouse.

Stan cursed, pushing Bob away, slicing the woman’s garments off from stem to stern with his K Bar knife, and then tearing the shreds away finally in a fit of pique, tossing bits of her undergarments this way and that.   “Oh for fuck’s sake.”

“Oh yeah, oh yeah,” Bob said, eyes all alight with glee.  “Am I ready now!  Yessum, Bob.  Ah am ready now!”  Bob gazed down at the woman’s private parts, pale in the moonlight, with wide eyes.

Stan stood back an’ shook another cig from his pocket pack.  “If you’re going to start trying to improve upon a woman, you’ve gotta rape ‘em first, or last…  But you got to rape ‘em,” Stan mused.  “Otherwise, people’ll start thinkin’ you’re just another nut.  They can’t comprehend the finer aesthetic.”  Stan lit the cigarette and walked off.   He was disgusted by all of Bob’s grunting and didn’t care to watch.

When Stan returned he found Bob flat on his back, covered in cum and blood, and with his arm around the woman while smoking a cigarette, gazing off into the stars and talkin’ real chummy like.  “The first woman I ever made it with… Well, she wasn’t much of a …woman, actually, I’d guess you’d say.”  Nancy groaned some agonizing blend of gurgling vowels beside him.  “But we got along… we got ‘er done.”  Bob smiled and offered his smoke to the woman.  But she wasn’t really all there by then, Stan figured.  “I miss her, I guess.”  Bob studied the tip of his cigarette.   “She run off with a Mexican.  Not that I hold it against her.”  Bob nodded to Nancy.  “ She was real young…”

“WHAT the F#$K!  ARE YOU DOING?!!!”  Stan shouted.

“’Am relaxin’!  …in the …afterglow.” Bob look bewildered.  He’d dropped his smoke and it rolled underneath of him.  “Shit!  Ouch!  That burns!”  Bob gasped, rolling about and kneeling his heft up while swatting at his back.

“Well put your damn clothes on and get prepared to help me.”

“Okay.  Alright!”  Bob looked annoyed.  But he rose and got himself dressed, turning his back to them both.  Nancy’s body gurgled and seized.

“Okay.  Now hold onto the shoulder there real tight.”


Stan returned him an unblinking stare.

So Bob held her shoulders down as well as he could, while Nancy’s eyes grew even more saucer-sized, if that were possible, as Stan began sawing away on the crown of her head, gently removing the cap of her skull.  He looked in there for a while, poking this and that, nodding for Bob to look.  Then his attention returned to the neck, gently dissecting out certain ligaments and blood vessels for reasons Bob had no idea of, thought he nodded in the affirmative, as if he agreed.

Nancy, all the while, had a real feeling she wasn’t going to get out of this night alive.  But she wasn’t at any sane place where she could have put that into words.

It was a couple hours  before,  working away as hard as they could, and getting all bloody besides, they had finally removed the head.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress

October 3, 2012

The Road Ahead

(Episode 6)

Nancy Loomis was tired… bone tired.  Some evening  she was going to fall asleep navigating these narrow little country roads and end up as a quadriplegic running her company with a soda straw on an iPad.  She squeezed her eyelids shut, hard, then opened them again.  For a bit, she was focused, and kept the sleek new Mercedes on the road.  Part of the problem was, ‘the damn thing was far too comfortable’.  She pushed the window levers lowering them one by one as the fresh air roared in.  ‘I should probably try sitting on a tack,’ she thought, staring ahead at a straight stretch of road.  ‘A box of tacks,’ she amended, finding herself enthralls to yet another urge to sleep … picturing a dreamy box of tacks.  ‘They weren’t really all that sharp at all!’, she found, amazingly, as her mind made itself all comfy among them as if on a downy bed.

Just then the headlights failed with a “pop! pop!”   Nancy blinked, as she slowed the car while steering a steady course towards where she remembered the road as being.  “It’s incredible how fast a person can become wide awake, when you’re scared shitless!”  She murmured.  The car slowed as she brought it slowly over to where there was the crunch of gravel.  She sighed, put it in Park and crunched the Emergency Brake.  ‘Great!’  She had her cell half out of her pocket when she heard voices.  “Shit!”  she  growled, immediately waking.  ‘Those were shots!’.

She quickly folded the cell back into her jacket pocket and reached for the Glock under the dash, just back of the ignition key.  She’d thought she and Benny had reached an understanding, but apparently that wasn’t the case.   As soon as she had met the man, she had sized him up as an idiot!  And had thought to herself at the time, ‘I should be running away, fast.’

Nancy ran what she called “The Muffin Business”, but actually was a fairly substantial, five million annual gross revenues food accessories supply business – which had suffered an acute cash flow shortage in the downturn of 2008, forcing her to seek out a quick loan from Benny Green.  ‘You go into business with a bunch of losers and you don’t bring them up to your level.  They bring you down to theirs,’ she grumbled silently for the umpteenth time.  “And it’s just problems, problems, problems!”  ‘The f#$ker couldn’t work a computer; couldn’t even understand a spread sheet.  And now with this whole thing, it was running about on level with the Keystone Kops.  They had to be complete morons, out there.  Who else would work for that idiot?’

“Alright, alright!” Nancy shouted into the darkness, opening her door with her hands free.  Her eyes had not yet adjusted to the dark.  But she had the small Glock in her pocket and figured in close quarters in a scuffle she was ahead against a rifle – if it came to that.  “You’ve made your point.  You can fire a rifle out of the darkened woods at a hundred and twenty pound woman who’s half asleep and wake her up!   And wreck her car!  Tell Benny that’s coming off my bill, by the way.  AND, go to the police if you don’t like it.”  Nancy Loomis peered forward.  “Or sue me!”  Her eyes had started to adjust and she could see what appeared to be the shapes of two fairly mid-sized men.  And least they smelled of it.  They were closer than she’d imagined.  She put her hands on her hips, the one near her right pocket, and waited.  The first person to speak in any negotiation was the less powerful.

“What do we do now?”  the thicker set one asked as if he were truly bewildered.

Nancy guffawed.

“Shut up,” the thinner said.  And he moved so quickly that what with the darkness he was a blurrrrrr…   And the next thing Nancy knew, her knees buckled and she was on the ground with her hands out, and starting to get really scared.  Her hose were ruined.  Her knees were scraped.  One shoe had come off.  And she screamed, loud!  Loud as she possibly could.

‘On the whole she didn’t like women who screamed’, she thought.  ‘But, on the whole, she didn’t like the spot she was in.’  The Glock was in her pocket away from where her hands were being tied behind her back.  So, her ‘big mouth’, was about all she had left.  She stomped with the spiked heel of her right foot searching for the thinner fellow’s instep, hard! as he pulled her up.  But all she accomplished was the breaking of a heel.  “Tell Benny that this is about the stupidest thing he has done to date.  It’s just plain idiocy!”  She shouted while trying to catch the thinner fellow in the balls with her legs, backwards.  “I’ve been making my payments.  It’s a good account!”

“Who’s Benny?”  The thinner fellow murmured, as he marched her off deeper into the woods.   So quietly that she’d had to stop kicking and squirming to hear him.

“You’re not with Benny?”  Nancy queried.  All of a sudden she was confused.  Really confused.

“I don’t know any Benny,” the thicker fellow queried the thinner.

“No shit Sherlock.”

“Just trying to get to the heart of it, that’s all Stan,” says the thicker fellow.

“You’re not with Benny Green?”  Nancy couldn’t believe it.  If it weren’t Benny, then what in the world?

Photo by Carl Nelson


Murders In Progress

September 29, 2012

Barn Birds

Cow Birds

(Episode 5)

‘Sound suppressor’…, Bob swished this around in his brain, taking another swig of cold beer.  That’s what the guys down at the gun shop had preferred to call them, but Bob didn’t know.  They were kinda nerdy and over-educated… one of ‘em wearin’ special glasses and glancing real close at things.  Ever since he’d been a kid glued to the TV it had been a  “Silencer”.

He supposed he had all afternoon to decide whichever: ‘Silencer or Sound Suppressor’.  Or longer than that.  He could take longer.  Sure he could.  He could take as long as he wanted.  ‘A guy with a Sound Suppressor is his own man,’ Bob figured as he shot another cow bird off the peak of his barn.

“This sound suppressor sure works.  Used to be with one shot, the birds  ‘ould spook, and he’d had to wait a coon’s age for another’n,” Bob said to his imaginary buddy in the empty lawn chair nearby.   “An’ then one more shot an that’n ‘ld spook!  It made for a long afternoon and a lotta beer.  But with this here sound suppressor,” he popped off another round after setting his beer carefully and sighting like a sniper, “they just fell of the peak of that roof like they was in a shootin’ gallery and he wuz takin’ all the stuffed teddy bears like they wuz just handin ‘em out.”  Bob grinned, so pleased with himself an’ full of beers, that he fully imagined his imaginary buddy grinning back.   ‘Damn!  I like this thing,’ Bob thought, ‘even though it don’t make no noise, to speak of.’  Harriet stuck her head out of the house to say something, and Bob pointed the gun at her… just in fun.  And she pulled her head back in.

And after about “Number 15” cow bird bit the dust, Bob decided that Sound Suppressor was what he was going to call it, ‘nerdy’ or not.   ‘It would make it sound more technical, like them boys down at the gun shop, and it might even impress Stan,’ thought Bob.  ‘Who could be mighty hard to impress, havin’ shot a bunch of people an’ all, an’ gotten away with it.’ probably raped several.’  Bob licked his lips… and felt that tingling in his groin.

‘Man, we is livin’ fast, ‘ thought Bob.  ‘Drinkin’ beer, killin’ cow birds, usin’ a silen… Sound Suppressor!’   Bob grinned wildly at his imaginary buddy again.

Ever since he had happened upon Stan his life had improved in so many ways, he could hardly sit still.   “A person wouldn’t normally think meeting a serial killer would have that effect on your life,” Bob explained to his imaginary buddy.   ‘But that seemed to be the way it was.  Nobody seemed to want Bob around for nothin’ nohow.  An’ now all of a sudden he’s got just about the most unusual friend ever.’  Bob shot another cowbird, (Number 16),  ‘leavin’ nothin’ but a puff of feathers.’  “Damn.”  Both Bob and his imaginary buddy just couldn’t get the shit eatin’ grins off of their faces.  They just kept looking at each other, turning away, and then looking back at each other again.

“There’s just the smallest whiff of a pop! an’ then thet cowbird was nothin’ but feathers,” is how Bob would explain it to Stan later, with his palms open to emphasize, after they’d finished eatin’ – with his silent wife keeping her own counsel – over the emptying dinner table dishes.  ‘Ya just couln’t get her excited over nothin’.’

‘Well, not entirely silent,’ Bob corrected himself, recollecting the event.

“You point that there gun there at me again, an’ you’re goin’ to encounter someone shootin’ BACK, Sound Suppressor or no,” Harriet had said with an angry twist of her head.  “An’ I won’t be aimin’ to miss.’

“You gonna take that from her?”  Stan said, once Harriet had stomped her way into the other room, carrying a load of dishes, after first spearing Stan with her gimlet eye.  Which gave Bob a little chill watching Stan.  Bob could tell Stan hadn’t liked it.

“Well.  Yeah.  I guess so,” Bob said.

“You gotta understan’ how marriages work.”  Bob defended himself to Stan later, trailing him up into the hired hand’s loft. “It’s a little give here, and a little give there that makes the whole thing work.”

Stan snorted, but never looked up from this plexi-glass case of curios and specimens ‘or somethin’ or other’ he seemed to prize so highly, ‘from the look of it,’ thought Bob.

“Plus, she’s a good cook and a good worker,” Bob added, while thumbing through some yellowed and stained bondage magazines, after several more minutes of rumination.  “Plus…”  Bob stopped turning the pages.  “The durn woman can shoot the nose off a squirrel!”

Stan glanced up, a quizzical look appearing on his face.

Photo by Carl Nelson



Murders in Progress

September 24, 2012

Episode (4)

Does the Name Nancy Loomis Mean Anything?

          “Does the name Nancy Loomis mean anything?”

          “Sir, do you have some information you wish to share with the Kimmel County Sherriff’s Bureau?”

          Ruth liked the word ‘Bureau’ better than the word ‘Office’.  It sounded vaguely Federal which, she felt, gave it more ‘Oomph’.  Sheriff Leland didn’t.  But then again, Sherriff Leland never answered the phones.  So Ruth figured the two of them were whoever she said they were. 

          “I don’t know.”  Ramey was on a disposable cell phone he had picked up in the city.  He had a box of them.  After watching all of the TV shows he figured one could come in handy.  And he had been right.  He couldn’t have these calls traced back to a practicing dentist.  That could cause all sorts of difficulties.  “I’m not certain, I mean.”  Ramey was looking out his car window at a flower stand.  He was working his way, left to right, through the various hanging baskets of assorted flowers, slowly pronouncing the name of each.  This seemed to keep the flashes of horrible imagery, terrible things really, from overwhelming his thoughts.  “Petunia,” he said softly.  “Chry-san-themum”…

          “Sir, you’ll have to speak more loudly,” Ruth said in her Passive Aggressese, getting a bit annoyed.  After all, this was Federal Business.

          “I don’t know!”  Ramey shouted.  Then tried to calm himself, moving onto the next hanging basket of florals.  “Begonia…  I mean, I’m not sure.”

          “What information is it that you wish to share with the Kimmell County Sherriff’s Bureau?”  Ruth said again, mustering all of her authority.  These ‘informants’ were so flakey.  She had often told Sherriff Kimmel, ‘sometimes I wish we could just haul them in and beat it out of them with a rock!’, which had gotten a laugh.  But she also wondered if Sherriff Leland hadn’t become a pussy.  After all, she was the one in the trenches. “Is there information that you wish to share with the Kimmell County Sherriff’s Bureau?”  She growled more loudly, “…sir.”

          “I don’t know.  I mean, I’m not sure if I do or not.  If the name Nancy Loomis means anything to you, that is, if it figures in a current, by that I mean an, on-going investigation, then, I figure, I do.”

          “I know what current means, Ramey,” Ruth said, finally discarding all of her patience.

          Ramey looked at the cell phone as if he had been cheated.  He had asked the fellow in the city directly: ‘Is this phone traceable?’

          “How do you know my name?” Ramey asked, the disbelief creeping into his voice.

          “You’re my dentist!” Ruth barked.  “Everybody around here knows your name Ramey.”

          Ramey flushed.  “Well fine, then!”

          “What is it you want Ramey?  … for the fourth time.”

          “I need to know if the name Nancy Loomis, figures in any way into your investigation,” Ramey’s voice trailed off softly, “of the recent murders…”

          “I’m sorry sir, but ….”

          “Ruth, it’s me, Ramey!”

          “And I told you, I know who you are, RAMEY.  But we can’t reveal any information on an ongoing INVESTIGATION.”

          “Well then, for Pete’s sake! Ruth.  Just tell me if the name Nan-cy Loo-mis  figures in any way in what is currently happening in the investigation.”

          “That would be to reveal information.  This phone is for incoming information: tips and leads only.  Now if you would like to leave a tip or a lead, or any other information you may have or know of relating to the current INVESTIGATION, I would be happy to write it down and relay it to Sherriff Leland.  Do you have any of that information?”

          “I don’t know!”

           “Well then, perhaps you could call us back when you do know, sir.”

          “That’s not my job, that’s your job,” Ramey pointed out.

          “Are you phoning to tell me my job Ramey?”  Ruth’s voice went from Passive Aggressive Bureaucratese to actively hostile in a quick second.  Which was a relief, Ramey felt.

          Ramey quickly said the names of three more flowers.

          “Okay, Ruth.  Let’s do it this way.  You’re into me for $300. of past dental work on two old fillings with a deteriorating crown coming up that could fracture any second, given the nature of this ‘fractious’ conversation.  Now do you really want to give the only practicing dentist within 50 miles – as the crow flies – trouble?”

          “Are you trying to threaten a Federal officer, sir?!”

          “YES!” was Ramey’s curt reply.  You didn’t stay in a dental practice long without learning to play trump.

          Ruth ground her teeth, then stopped, remembering what Ramey had just said.  Then Ramey could hear her polished nails clicking on the desk as she thought it through.  The one with the big phony rock on it struck loudest and last.

          “Okay Ramey,” Ruth said.  “I’ll give Sherriff Leland the message.”

          The finger with the big rock on it struck once again.  Then, dial tone…  Ramey smiled.  Sherriff Leland was a patient with a lot of gum problems.  He’d get back.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress

September 22, 2012

Editor’s Note:  Publishing editorials always awakens my urge to publish murders…  Here is episode 3, hot off the pen of Eldon Cene.

Cow Noir

(Paranoia & Guilt with a Rural Backdrop: Episode 3)


Stan knew that he had killed all of those women.  But how did the cows know?

It made him angry the way women could insinuate themselves into his most personal thoughts.  Nothing was sacred.  They had to look, and observe, and turn it over… ruminate over every LITTLE thing, from some little light-hearted comment, to an upturned gaze, to even a breath that was a just a SHADE deeper than the rest…  and it was like his mind was a picnic basket for them to rummage through!  He inhaled the last puff from his smoke, as he looked out across the shit speckled pasture he’d stopped to look out over to calm himself.  Bad choice!  Stan knew what perversities and abominations such a ruminating and placid demeanor could revel in revealing, and he hadn’t wanted any part of it.  But here they were everywhere…  F#$king cows!

He flicked his cigarette butt at the most condemning of them and the dumb old milker didn’t even budge.  ‘They deserve to be extinct!’  He thought.  He briefly considered killing them – and butchering them too.  But Bob’s wife wanted him to pick up some milk

He supposed he’d better.

Photo by Carl Nelson

Murders in Progress…

September 3, 2012

(Episode 2)

Mowing the Lawn

Ramey, a local dentist, (when he wasn’t a practicing psychic) had a sudden vision… ran inside, still dripping sweat, and called the Sheriff’s hotline.

All he had seen for sure was what looked like the edge of an old oil drum, maybe six cows, and a pasture that it seemed he had passed on the way home.

Photo by Carl Nelson

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